This essay is primarily analytic and historical with respect to the conceptualizations that should guide the contextualization of assessment in education.
Redefine participation. Let it include more than verbal comments. Invite students to contribute electronically—with an email or post on the course website—with a question they didn’t ask in class, a comment they didn’t get to make, or a thought that came to them after class. Remind students that listening is also part of participation! Model and promote good listening skills. “Did you hear what Fredric just said? That’s an explanation that belongs in your notes.” Let the definition of participation honor silence—and give students the time needed to think about a question and assemble an answer. Maybe it’s time to stop grading participation and let students speak because they have something to say.
Imagine if a college, using learning analytics, has determined that students of a specific ethnic background who live in a handful of zip codes and score a certain way on standardized tests are highly likely to earn a low grade in an important course -- potentially jeopardizing their chances of graduating on time. Should the college actively prevent those students from enrolling in the course?
That is an example of the type of dilemma researchers from more than a dozen colleges and universities debated earlier this month as they made progress toward developing a set of shared standards for ethical use of student data, including how the data should be used to improve higher education.
This report examines community colleges from the perspective of the faculty who deliver their public service – high quality post-secondary education and job training. The report is based on conversations with over 600 faculty at all 24 CAATs,
along with historical research and present-day inquiry into the sector’s financing, management, and operations. The report is focused primarily on perceptions by college faculty that there is a crisis of quality within the college system today.
The President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology has called for a 33% increase in the number of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) bachelor’s degrees completed per year and recommended adoption of empirically validated teaching practices as critical to achieving that goal. The studies analyzed here document that active learning leads to increases in examination performance that would raise average grades by a half a letter, and that failure rates under traditional lecturing increase by 55% over the rates observed under active learning. The analysis supports theory claiming that calls to increase the number of students receiving STEM degrees could be answered, at least in part, by abandoning traditional lecturing in favor of active learning.
Active learning is "anything that involves students in doing things and thinking about the things
they are doing" (Bonwell & Eison, 1991, p. 2).
Felder & Brent (2009) define active learning as "anything course-related that all students in a
class session are called upon to do other than simply watching, listening and taking notes" (p.
Active learning strategies can be as short as a few minutes long.
Active learning techniques can be integrated into a lecture or any other classroom setting
relatively easily. Even large classrooms can involve learning activities beyond the traditional
Survey of counseling center directors finds continued high demand from students for various conditions. Data show centers are diversifying clinical staffs, a demand of many minority student protests.
As they begin taking classes, most incoming adult learners express a strong desire to complete a degree, but many also harbor concerns and attitudes that reduce their motivation and put them at risk for attrition. This report explores a wide range of these noncognitive, motivational attributes that influence completion. The study is based on a national sample of 5,000 first-year adult learners who filled out a 74-item, college completion risk survey in 2014 or 2015 at 50 colleges and universities across the United States.
One of the scariest conversations to have with an adviser can be telling that person that you are not interested in an
academic career. Depending on your field, they may have high expectations that you will follow their path to a tenure-track position. But you may not even be sure whether you want to go into academe or another industry, and you’d at least like to talk about your different options. So how do you mention to your adviser that you are considering nonacademic career fields?
Included in this addendum are the fi ndings for the Noel-Levitz 2014 National Freshman Attitudes Report by race/ethnicity for incoming students. These data show the percentage of students within each group that agreed with each item.
This annual report from Noel-Levitz goes beyond the usual metrics of standardized test scores and high school transcripts to explore a wide range of non-cognitive attitudes that infl uence student retention and college completion rates for today’s entering college freshmen. Findings are reported separately for fouryear and two-year institutions, private and public, as well as for student subsets such as male vs. females.
The report is based on student survey responses drawn from a sizable national sample of entering
undergraduates in 2013.
I’ve been ruminating lately about tests and wondering if our thinking about them hasn’t gotten into something of a rut. We give exams for two reasons. First, we use exams to assess the degree to which students have mastered the content and skills of the course. But like students, we can get too focused on this grade-generating function of exams. We forget the second reason (or take it for granted): exams are learning events. Most students study for them, perhaps not as much or in the ways we might like, but before an exam most students are engaged with the content. Should we be doing more to increase the learning potential inherent in exam experiences?
The key to graduating in four years (at least in the minds of many parents) is picking a major early and sticking with it. But a new report suggests students who change their major as late as senior year are more likely to graduate from college than students who settle on one the second they set foot on campus.
The report, published by the Education Advisory Board, a research and consulting firm based in Washington, D.C., challenges the notion that changing majors is keeping students in college past their intended graduation date and driving up their debt. Instead of looking at when students first declared a major, the EAB's study explored the connection between students' final declaration and how it affected their time to degree and graduation rates.
Every professor has had one: the incredible disappearing student. Mine was "James," a talented and innovative thinker who had great things to say in class until he vanished, about halfway through the semester. He didn’t submit his paper. He didn’t show up in office hours. He didn’t respond to my emails. He was just gone. Poof.
Students like James are increasingly common at colleges and universities. Report after report has shown that undergraduates today experience more anxiety and stress than ever before. In extreme cases, the "pressure of perfection" can have tragic consequences. Nationally, suicide rates for 15- to 24-year-olds have risen, and suicide remains the second-leading cause of death for college students.
The National Survey of College Counseling Centers (previously the National Survey of Counseling Center Directors) has been conducted since 1981 and includes data provided by the administrative heads of college and university counseling centers in the United States and Canada. The survey attempts to stay abreast of current trends in counseling centers and to provide ready access to the opinions and solutions of colleagues to problems and challenges in the field. The areas addressed cover a range of concerns including current concerns, innovative programming, and a number of other administrative, ethical and clinical issues. A directory of all participants is provided.
Humor is one of my favorite teaching tools. I rely on it—when the room feels tense, when I sense learner drift, if I aspire to make a point more memorable. Humor doesn’t cause learning, but it does help create conditions conducive to it. It doesn’t make hard content easy, but it can make learning it feel easier.
OISE’s pathways to education and work team has been commissioned by Education International to prepare a
paper, to be entitled “Global Trends in VET: A Framework for Social Justice.”
Education International is a federation of 396 associations and unions which represent some 32.5 million teachers and other employees in all forms of education: early childhood, primary school, secondary school, vocational, university and adult education. Education International represents organisations from 171 countries which are served in 5 regions: Africa, North America and the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Latin America.
Experts from within and outside of academia expound on what role universities can play to further the innovation
The buzzword “innovation” might perk you up – or make your eyes roll. Regardless of how the term sits with you, innovation is clearly on the federal government’s agenda and of big interest to universities as they try to keep pace with rapid changes in society and the economy, while staying responsive to government funding priorities and continuing to meet the needs of their students, faculty and the wider community. With the federal government grappling with weak economic growth and working on crafting a new “ innovation agenda,” (PDF) we asked six experts inside and outside the academy what role they think universities should play in fostering greater innovation in Canada. Their innovation definitions differ in their wording, but are variations on the theme that innovation is not about inventions, per se, but about the novel use of inventions and technologies that lead to transformative new or improved services, products and processes. Universities already make substantial
contributions through their teaching, learning and research functions, and have at least some role to play in the innovation ecosystem, they agree, but how far that should go and in which ways yielded intriguing ideas from each of them.
Many years ago, educational anthropologists George and Louise Spindler (1982) urged us to "make the familiar strange and the strange familiar" (p. 15) to understand the commonplace in our culture. The lives of 21st century students are strange in many ways; they face much of the traditional angst associated with social acceptance, prospects for academic achievement, and economic success. However, the lives of today’s youth are also defined by a burgeoning number of technological innovations that shape every aspect of behavior, relationships, and communication. As such, attempts to make this world more familiar are important to adults seeking to understand and perhaps create spaces where there are opportunities to bridge the gap between a rapidly changing and complex contemporary world and a future where the only certainty is that our notions of community, work, and family are likely to be even more sharply defined by technological innovations.
In Educational Leadership for a More Sustainable World, author Mike Bottery uses Rittel and Webber’s (1973) framework of tame and wicked problems across the book’s three sections. This situates and contextualizes current complex and seemingly intractable issues in education by connecting them to equally wicked issues in economics and the environment. Each of the three sections is comprised of three to four chapters.