The purpose of this qualitative case study was to gain insights into how aca-demics understand undergraduate graduand attributes. The findings reveal some alignment in views about student attributes, including that they are engaged citizens, are self-directed, have imagination, are questioning, are flexible, display leadership, are problem solvers, and possess character. This consistency, however, does not include the spectrum of views on how these attributes are conceived and developed. The findings reveal a range of inter-pretations regarding the kinds and levels of understandings of how graduand student attributes are developed throughout an undergraduate program of study. The findings indicate that (i) a shared understanding does not exist on how academics construe student attributes, (ii) academics do not share com-mon meanings about the core achievements of a higher education, or how these are developed through students’ undergraduate programs, and (iii) stu-dent attributes tend not to be perceived as developing from the usual process of an undergraduate education.
The University community has an interest in improving the happiness and well-being of graduate students for a straightforward reason: to enable graduate students to do their best work. Balanced, happy people are more productive, more creative, more collaborative, better at pursuing long-term goals, more likely to find employment, and more physically and psychologically resilient, among other things. Positive emotion is associated with curiosity, interest and synthetic thinking. In contrast, depression is associated with loss of interest, helplessness, difficulty concentrating and remembering details, and worse. For more on this, see Part VI, “The Objective Benefits of Subjective Well-Being,” from the World Happiness Report.
There has been an increase in the number of universities relying on graduate students to teach undergraduate coursework in recent years. In some universities, such as Purdue and University of South Florida, up to 26 percent of undergraduate courses are taught by graduate instructors (U.S. News and World Report, 2017). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
(2018), there were over 135,000 graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) in 2017.
Most graduate research degrees culminate in a thesis. Thesis students require supervisors. There are few relationships more important to these students than their relationship with their supervisor. The centrality of this relationship requires that it be entered into and maintained with great care. It is incumbent on the University to do everything possible to provide guidance in how to maximize the likelihood of excellent supervision. The School of Graduate Studies (SGS) is charged with the responsibility of providing that guidance for the University graduate community. The previous version of this document is now 10 years old. It is time for the update that follows.
This study examines 143 graduate assignments across 12 faculties or schools in a Canadian university in order to identify types of writing tasks. Based on the descriptions provided by the instructors, we identified nine types of assignments,
with scholarly essay being the most common, followed by summary and response, literature review, project, review, case analysis, proposal, exam, and creative writing. Many assignments are instructor-controlled and have specific content requirements. Some are also process-oriented, providing students with teacher or peer feedback on outlines or initial drafts, suggestions for topic choices, and examples of good writing. With an overview of the types of writing tasks across campus, the study has implications for English for Academic Purposes (EAP) or graduate writing program designers,
material developers, educators working within and across disciplines, and researchers interested in the types of university writing assignments in Canada.
Beware reliance on teaching excellence framework metrics, says Claire Taylor
A guided meditation on the word “empathy.” An ambidextrous drawing where a student used both hands to illustrate and write about the word “renaissance.” A video on the word “ingenuity” where the student spoke the entire final paper into Siri without typing. A violin background score with birds flying into the sky to explain the word “unknowable.”
These are examples of student final projects in an M.B.A. class titled Creative Thinking: Designing Sustainable Innovations that I taught in Rome and where we used principles of Leonardo da Vinci to understand the creative process. Many students in this class were specializing in finance, accounting, supply chain and other “hard” disciplines, and some were pursuing joint J.D. degrees. Thus, this was probably the first time in their careers that they had worked on a nontraditional final project.
Historic High in the History of the Learning Technology Industry
The investments made to learning technology companies in the first half of 2015 were the highest for a half year period in the history of the learning technology industry and exceeds the total amount for the entire year of 2014. In the six month period between January and June 2015, $2.51 billion was invested in learning technology companies across the globe. This is astonishing considering that the total global investments made to learning technology companies for the entire year of 2014 was $2.42 billion, which set a record in the industry.
Sometimes I watch my students in the hallways before class starts and marvel at the computing power (they call them 'smartphones') they hold in their hands. They use this power to text and share pictures and thoughts on social media. Then they stuff all that power in their pockets. In my small, private school, we have an "off and away" policy for cellphones in the classroom, which is supposed to eliminate the distractions. But it is not a perfect system, and students are still tempted to use their phones.
Perhaps you've had thoughts like mine: How can I get those supercomputers to work for their learning instead of being a nuisance? Why should I make them hide their mobile devices or fear they will get in trouble for using them? I'm just not satisfied with "off and away"! These questions have grown into a desire to find new ways to leverage my students’ mobile devices into learning tools.
Elementary and high schools spend so much time on the content-laden curriculum that students are unprepared for the analytic and conceptual thinking they'll need at university
Has Ontario’s educational system taught a decade of students not to think? There is growing evidence that the combination of standardized testing with a content-intensive curriculum that’s too advanced – both introduced by the Conservative government between 1997 and 1999 – has done exactly that.
A dramatic indication that there could be a serious problem was the performance of my introductory physics class on their November test last year. It was identical to one given in 1996, but the class average over this 10-year period had plummeted from 66 to 50 percent. There is about a five-percent fluctuation in this test grade from year to year due to variation in student ability
and the difficulty of the questions but, when I looked at the class average over the many times I have taught the course since 1981, I found that four of the five lowest grades have occurred in the last four years, with the lowest this year. When I enquired elsewhere at Trent University, I found the same pattern in the mathematics department, where the first test in linear algebra was down some 15 percent from its historic mean, and the calculus average had dropped nine percent from the year before.
When Emzhei Chen moved into residence at the University of Waterloo about 10 years ago, she found the experience nerve-wracking. Her parents supported her, but her dad was a machinist who had never gone to university and her mom hadn’t finished high school, so they were as unfamiliar with universities as she was. She saw a reference to “first generation” on the application form (a term that meant your parents hadn’t attended a postsecondary education institution or had done so abroad), but she doesn’t remember checking the box. “It didn’t seem to be a pressing characteristic,” she says. “I didn’t think it was important.”
Veteran researchers present five strategies—like maintaining success files and allowing choice—to help struggling students develop a positive attitude needed for success.
The current public assumption that safe spaces and trigger warnings conflict with academic freedom and are the result of political correctness gone mad is a false dichotomy. If students today are indeed more fragile, then it is vital that we in higher education understand: (1) the specific nature of this sensitivity and (2) what colleges can do to help.
After this divisive election, we will need more capacity for talking about controversial issues. While the anonymity of social media may have escalated invective, it has not made for more ease with difficult conversations. Technology has allowed a generation to end relationships by text message, or even by “ghosting” an ex -- deleting a relationship from your life without any conflict or effort.
performance throughout the course, especially for those students who do poorly on the first test. Faculty and institutions provide an array of supports for these students, including review sessions, time with tutors, more practice problems, and extra office hours, but it always seems it’s the students who are doing well who take advantage of these extra learning opportunities. How to help the students who need the help is a challenging proposition.
If a student wants to earn an A in a class, the best way to do that might not involve concentrating on the grade at all.
Instead, students should set their goals on the shorter-term, more tangible parts of a class -- committing to doing homework, showing up to a certain number of classes or dedicating a set time for exam preparation -- according to a working paper (abstract available here) from the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Background/Context: The rapid pace of technological change, undergirded by near ubiquitous access to the web, is producing a new learning ecology—a new ecology of information, of knowledge, of reading, of teaching, and of thinking. This instant availability of digital resources frees both time and cognitive energy that may be used to facilitate higher order thinking. This article provides a framework through which to better understand, evaluate, and scaffold the generative synthesis of knowledge in a web-mediated world.
Purpose/Objective: The purpose of this article is to describe a theory that can stimulate additional scholarly work examining higher order, or generative, thinking in web-mediated environments.
OUSA asked students about their experiences of living in the community where their university is located: from how far they felt their municipality sought to engage students, to their housing situation, and their use of public transit.
Overall, students responded positively regarding many aspects of their experiences. For example students were broadly positive about the range and quality of off-campus housing available, and many of the students who relied on public transit to commute to school felt it was meeting their needs.
In today’s digital age, social media competence is a critical communication tool for academics. Whether you’re looking to engage students, increase awareness of your research, or garner media coverage for your department, engaging in social media will give you a competitive edge.
The student who says “I’m bad at languages” or “I don’t ‘get’ math” is approaching learning with a “fixed” mindset – believing that his or her competence is, and always will be, limited.
A student with a “growth” mindset, on the other hand, understands things differently. He or she believes that with diligence and smart work habits, improvement is not only possible, but inevitable.
The difference in mindset can make all the difference in performance.
The curriculum should pay particular attention to ethnic, gender, and other forms of social difference and inequality. At the same time, it should stress the importance of studying, ideals and experiences of what it means to be a teacher. Courses should be designed to explore these issues in both historical and contemporary settings. Although the concentration needs to be on the content, a good curriculum needs to be designed to foster a community of learning among people and at the same time to offer considerable flexibility and intellectual diversity (J. Yalden, Long, Micheal H., Richards, Jack C. 2001). In this paper we will analyze key aspects of, and changes in, the curriculum, social and economic development in South Eastern Europe in the last twenty years. Major issues covered in this paper will be: the impact of communism on society; political and education reform; the problems of people with special needs; the changing role and status of minority groups and the introduction of a service learning project in the curriculum.
Keywords: Service-learning; education, curriculum, creativity