Rather than telling students what community to join, institutions should work to create an infrastructure which allows students to find community that is relevant to them. When a student connects to a person, group, department, service, cause, event, or yes, even an academic experience, they are far more likely to succeed (graduate). But when a student is expected to build community around an educational experience alone, we see average national graduation percentages in the 40’s.
One of the top questions we regularly receive relates to the SLACK tool. With so few platforms for education realistically providing a social, community-based portal, complete with a full mobile solution, but also integrating important tools beyond simple SSO, some clever CIO’s have looked to the business world. Enter Slack.
We are going to try very hard to answer your questions. Ideally, the site will soon have enough content that you won’t even need to ask many questions. Each blog will essentially become a FAQ eBook. Through this information, we believe you will be armed with the information you need to determine if the Ucroo platform is indeed an omni-channel, community based, portal replacing, holistic student life-cycle system, actually helping you realize ROI.
At the heart of this series is an assumption, if not an earnest question. What is active learning? Does confirmation bias cloud our judgment regarding this crucial issue? Do we struggle with prospect theory, over-weighting small measures as we evaluate the engagement level of students? Is our attention blindness of subject matter clouding our ability to note meaningful interaction between the students and the topic? While this question can be answered quickly, if not dismissively, it is an important question to answer thoughtfully, from a learning perspective. But an answer may be harder to find than one might think as there is little community agreement from the teaching profession regarding how to answer this question. Ambiguity surrounds the notion of active learning.
Stated as pragmatically as possible, norepinephrine, dopamine, and endorphin creation by students means classroom presentations, educational experiences, and learning architecture should be facilitated puzzles, gamified experiences, or flow-inducing moments. Audience centric problems, punctuated by tension building narrative, woven around focus shifting boredom busters should result in audiences assembling the pattern on their own – not manufactured the facilitator – in order to achieve maximum retention, connection, and ultimately, learning.
This series has already examined several context-based ways to create a learning rich paradigm. But if one looks beyond the learning environment, on a brain-chemical level for instance, far more variables are created. From a chemical perspective, the next blog in the series will illustrate how to create a desirable “chemical cocktail” for learners. But we should also note ways to (hopefully) avoid negative synaptic experiences. Here are two neurotransmitters that could easily qualify as “too hot” or “too cold” for learners.
Desirable difficulties lead to better learning. It may not feel as comfortable as we are used to, but the research is undeniable. At the same time, this strategy for learning may be entirely foreign to an instructor. But, like any skill, it should be nurtured, practiced, but not abandoned over time. Modeling grit, tenacity, and resiliency, professors should master this new paradigm. Taking a page from change management books, that new paradigm may evolve like this: Resistance --> Mockery --> Usefulness --> Habitual --> Finding Efficiencies
This blog series is designed to help point out, define, and find ways to apply the desirable difficulties, but it is the onus of the instructor to dig deeper. After all, do no harm is one thing when the harmful behavior is not known to be harmful, but altogether different when it is known but ignored. Part 1 of Desirable Difficulties was a bit more theoretical, part 2 will “talk turkey” about what this actually starts to look like in the real world (classroom).
Master teachers ensure that novices are changing strategy or direction for an upcoming presentation based on the audience in the room, how much internal credibility the speaker has, and whether examples should be emotional narratives more than logical video clips. Novices typically do not filter by a larger frame at all and expert (non-master) teachers unconsciously change style and format for the situation at hand, but struggle to explain this to students.
To be sure, higher education is filled with experts. People who have thoroughly studied and made connections from their home discipline winding out like roots from the deepest trees to other ancillary and interesting disciplines walk the halls of every college in the land.
This series will try to showcase, exemplify, demystify, and deconstruct some of the best teaching and learning techniques known by researchers (at this time) to help professional educators teach better.
Silos may just feel like a realistic, pragmatic view of life at an interdepartmental organization. They may just feel like a fact of life. But if you dig, even just a little bit, they may be the most substantial problem higher ed is facing.
“Summer melt” is a term that explains the phenomenon of college-intending students failing to enroll in the fall after high school graduation. Fortunately, interventions can have a significant impact on summer melt.
The resistance of staff and faculty to changes in utilizing technology and managing that resistance may be among the most pressing challenges for leaders in academia. These strategies help facilitate a smoother transition.
Education technology has dramatically changed the delivery of knowledge from staff to students and students to their peers. While there are potential downsides to the implementation of technology in the learning process, the overall outcome is positive.
There is an overwhelming amount of industry information shared in Higher Education every single day. Here is an overview of the Top 5 Higher Education conferences, when they're happening and why you should be there.