Category: Teaching

Learning at Scale Slides from ICTCM

Learning at Scale: Using Research To Improve Learning Practices and Technology for Teaching Math In the last 5 years, there has been a rise in what we might call “large-scale digital learning experiments.”  These take the form of centralized courses, vendor-created courseware, online homework systems, MOOCs, and free-range learning platforms. If we mine the research, successes, and failures coming out of these experiments, what can we discover about designing better digital learning experiences and technology for the learning of mathematics? Learning at Scale: Using Research To Improve Learning Practices and Technology for Teaching Math from Maria Andersen   Possibly...

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Clickety Click Click: Awful Measures for Learning

I feel a little inspired by Sam Ford’s post The Year We Talk About Our Awful Metrics. Ford writes about the need for change in metrics of online media publications, but we could just as easily be discussing the metrics of learning management systems, ed-tech vendor platforms, and institutional analytics. Ford argues that we need to “get serious” about better forms of measurement in 2017. As long as we are measuring metrics with little meaning, we aren’t really improving learning. Let me give you a few examples to illustrate the similar problems in education. Page Clicks As in, how many pages...

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The Importance of Findability for Learners

How do you feel when you go to find information on a website, and you just can’t find it? This happens to me all the time when I want to find out what some new ed-tech wonder product does, and I visit the website and can’t see any screenshots, any descriptions, or any videos of the product in action. I find it incredibly frustrating and this story generally ends by me giving up on even signing up for a trial. The same thing happens to students when they go to find information and it is buried in a non-sensical...

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Why Random Practice is Important

As educators, we often find ourselves in the uncomfortable position of trying to explain why students don’t seem to have learned what we know we’ve taught them. Economics instructors ask math instructors, “How come these students who have taken College Algebra still don’t understand slope?” Science teachers ask English instructors, “How come students still don’t understand basic grammar rules when they write in my science class?” The key here is to understand that students aren’t learning skills in a way that helps them to transfer the skills to new situations – the learners have compartmentalized the skill to a particular...

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AMATYC Keynote Notes: Durable Learning

In the 2016 AMATYC keynote, I covered three main themes: Interaction & Impasse Challenge & Curiosity Durable Learning (this post) Here are references and resources for Durable Learning: What is durable learning? The learning design practices that make learning “stick” over the long-term. These include (but are not limited to) spaced repetition, knowledge retrieval, interleaving, and varied practice. A really good book on the subject of durable learning is “Make It Stick” by Brown, Roediger, and McDaniel. We also took a dive into some cognitive science and again, there is a fantastic, easy-to-read book I recommend “Cognitive Development and Learning in...

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