Loading...

Follow Teaching & Learning Blog By Pearsoned on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
Or

Valid


My dream job is to work in a museum as an archivist or curator. So far, I’ve been doing well to achieve these goals. After I complete my bachelor’s degree in Social and Cultural History, I plan to earn my master’s degree while working an internship through a museum. Entering the museum workforce is a unique but rewarding experience! I will share with you three helpful tips that are applicable to success in any career field.

Studying allows you to stand out

Many students have the same goals you have. One of the best ways to stand out for internship, scholarship, and graduate school applications is to get good grades and have a high GPA. Stay on top of your coursework and take advantage of every study support resource available through your college.

Internships give you experience

The number one advice I’ve been given is to complete multiple internships at different places. This allows you to gain experience in a variety of areas. Not only does this help you stand out to graduate schools, but it shows employers that you have well-rounded experience.

Networking gets you hired

Get your name ingrained in as many heads as possible. Email a leader in your target field. Ask for their advice. Leave them with your resumé so if a position opens, you’ll be on the top of the pile.

Whether you’re working towards a career after college or looking ahead to graduate school, it’s important to realize that your dream won’t be achieved overnight. It takes studying, strategic planning, and networking to achieve your dream job!

I’m looking forward to my career as an archivist. What’s your dream job? What are some tips you would share as you make your way through the process?

Tulin Babbitt is a junior and the University of Maryland – College Park. She’s majoring in Social and Cultural History, and hopes to work in a museum after graduating. Tulin currently serves on the board of UMD’s She’s the First club, which raises awareness of the importance of girls’ education.

Tulin is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post Majoring in…Museum? Tips for Landing Your Dream Job appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Being in college means pulling all nighters because you waited until the last minute to study for a huge test. College means scraping together five dollars from the cushions of your couch and the depths of your car so you can buy a pizza with your friends. It also means moving to a town four hours away from home and realizing you have to start all over with the whole “making friends” thing. Luckily, even with all of the stress and newness that college brings you, there is something extremely special about it.

New school, new friends

When I came to college I was unsure of pretty much everything. Am I going to make friends? Are my classes going to be hard? How do I study? What do people wear to class? So naturally when it came time to actually move into my dorm I was scared for my family to leave me in such an unfamiliar place. As a junior it’s kind of funny to look back at this moment of uncertainty in my life. This is because the friends that I have made, and the people I have surrounded myself with have completely made all the difference in my life.

Showing kindness no matter what

If you’re wondering how you can make a difference in someone’s life like my friends did for me, it’s actually quite simple. Love them right where they’re at. It seems so easy, doesn’t it? Being there for someone when they need you, understanding their flaws and loving them anyway. Although in actuality it can be really hard. When your best friend comes home and tells you she’s dating this guy that you absolutely dread, it may be hard to support her. Or perhaps your roommate has gone out to party for the fourth night in a row and comes home completely loud and destructive. Again, it becomes kind of hard to show that person kindness when you’ve had a total of 12 hours of sleep over the last four days because of them. This is exactly what you must do though, show them kindness no matter what it is that they’re going through because that is what makes the biggest difference in people’s lives.

Two friends who made a difference

There was a time where I didn’t know what I was doing. I didn’t know how to study, I didn’t know how to organize my time, and there were some traumatic things happening in my family. I didn’t know where to turn, but you want to know what made all the difference? Two people chose to take the time to love me right where I was, flaws and all. I’m so very thankful for my best friends Lexie and Kamika. The coolest part is that it doesn’t matter what time it is or what they’re doing, they will always be there for me when I need them. That is truly what has made for such a strong and loving friendship. They really changed my life, and I don’t know how I would have made it through my first two years of college, in such an unfamiliar place so far from home without them.

Christian Stafford is a student at Oklahoma State University and plans to go to nursing school. She is a Pearson Campus Ambassador and an active member of Pi Beta Phi. In her free time she enjoys drinking coffee, snuggling with her cat, and learning about Jesus.

Christian is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post Friendship: Lessons Learned in College appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
(part 2 of a 3 part series)

I spent five months in The Hague, Netherlands! (Yes, it’s a small town, and if you want to know WHY I choose this location, please read my previous study abroad blog about location and weather. )  If you are even considering studying abroad, DO IT! Taking the leap of faith and stepping out of your home country, let alone state, can seem unimaginable but will be worth the experience. As fun as it may seem, you truly do a lot of learning while abroad. You will learn a tremendous amount about a new culture and even more about yourself. Since the whole process may seem daunting at times here are some tips that I wish I had known before studying abroad.

Packing

There are two things to think about when packing: packing to leave home and packing for shorter trips throughout Europe. First off, the contents needed in your suitcase will largely be based off the country you choose to study in and how many souvenirs you want to bring back. I recommend taking two suitcases. Stuff one to the fifty-pound limit and leave the other one about half full.

Think about attire

If you want to fit in, and not look like a tourist, it’s important to consider what they wear in that culture. People tend to dress nicer in Europe than we do in America, so I would recommend taking a pair of nice looking shoes to go out in and a pair of comfortable shoes to walk around in all day. Leave your graphic tees at home and stick to more plain tops; patterns are fine too. If you want to stick out like a sore thumb wear American flag tees. Please do not forget a pair of comfy pants and a pair of nice looking jeans. Female students need to be aware that some tourist attractions, like St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City, require your knees and shoulders to be covered out of respect for the monument. Also, leggings and yoga pants are not as popular in Europe. My girlfriend only took two pairs and never wore them outside of the house. If you insist on wearing them out I would recommend dressing them up. Finally, pack a lighter jacket, like a hoodie, and a heavy coat if you want to visit colder countries.

Luggage matters

For people studying in Europe, the flights between european countries are cheap but they will nickel and dime you for everything else. This means you are only taking a carry on and some airports will ensure that every carry-on is the right size. Therefore, you may want to check the airline’s guidelines before traveling. I just used a backpack. Once I watched a man break the wheels off of one those hard shell roll-able carry-ons so that it would fit the size requirement! These may be convenient in the states but they may have some limitations in other areas of the world. Also be aware that every liquid you pack must be in a plastic bag. Some people just bought toiletries in every country they visited and left them there.

Packing is a important aspect when traveling abroad. Everything from your clothing to your technology matters. Check out part 3 of my blog where I’ll discuss technology and things to consider when taking your tech with you on your study abroad experiences. When it comes to packing for your study abroad trip, it’s important to consider the attire you will wear, how you pack your items, and to follow restrictions per country or airline to avoid them confiscating your items at security or customs.

Pearson Students: are you packing for your study abroad trip? Where are you heading? What are you looking forward to most? Share by commenting below!

Kristopher Medina is a senior attending Colorado State University (CSU) studying Business Management with a minor in Sports Management and Marketing. Kristopher is the Pearson Campus Ambassador at CSU. His ultimate goal is to start and own his own business one day. He is also the vice president of the Student Center for the Public Trust, an ethics club. Kristopher is wildly curious about anything and everything that crosses his path. Furthermore, Kristopher enjoys watching his Denver Broncos and spending time with his friends and family any chance he gets.

Kristopher is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post Studying Abroad: Packing Tips appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

I grew up in rural Indiana. My earliest memories are of my family’s farm. Because of the love for agriculture that my family planted within me, I have found my home in agriculturally related organizations. As a ten-year 4H member, I served as President of my township club for three consecutive years. Exhibiting pigs at the county 4H fair led to my involvement in my county’s Livestock Evaluation Team. As a member of this team, I was exposed to FFA and immediately knew I belonged in that particular organization. I spent countless hours after school in my school’s agricultural building preparing for national competitions, chapter events, and building relationships with my peers in FFA.

Leadership at the state level

After serving as my chapter and district’s President, I decided to run for Indiana State FFA Office. I was elected and served as the Indiana FFA State Southern Region Vice President. This prestigious position offered irreplaceable professional development opportunities. I deferred my first year of college and traveled across Indiana to present speeches and leadership workshops. I networked with sponsors, members and stakeholders of our organization.

Working towards the future

At the conclusion of my year of service, I enrolled in Lincoln Land Community College. In addition to my studies, I’ve continued my livestock judging career, traveling the country with my teammates to represent my school in national competitions. In the fall of 2018, I will be transferring to Purdue University to major in Agribusiness and minor in Political Science. Eventually, I envision myself advocating to lawmakers in Washington D.C. on behalf of American Farmers and Ranchers.  

Becoming a Pearson Scholar

In the Fall of 2017 I was selected as a recipient of the Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education. The financial reward aspect of the scholarship has alleviated some of the stress regarding my financial future. I have been able to feel less obligated to work extra hours and instead dedicate that time to my studies. I feel much more comfortable with my grades and courses.

Meeting my mentor

Pearson’s financial help has been appreciated, but the mentorship program that goes along with the scholarship has been very beneficial. I speak with my Pearson mentor, Chris, quite often and we discuss life. Our personalities sync perfectly! Being able to ask Chris for guidance has allowed me to find success during internship interviews and additional scholarship applications.

Other influential mentors

I find great value in mentorship. In my mind, it is the key to finding success in life. From a young age, I have been fortunate with influential mentors. My high school agricultural teachers were, and still are, my greatest mentors. I constantly found myself in their offices discussing life’s latest events. Each served as a friend, brother, father, or coach when I needed one. When I was looking for larger leadership roles, they gave me constructive feedback and allowed me to grow as a leader before I stepped up and took new roles. They built me up when I needed confidence, and brought me back down to reality when I was soaring too high. They reminded me of my strengths, and reminded me to do all I could to help others find their strengths as well. I hope to one day have an impact as a mentor the way they have had an impact on me.

Mason is a recipient of the 2017 Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education. Each Pearson Scholar is paired with a Pearson professional mentor who provides support as Scholars progress toward degree completion. We are incredibly proud of all the Pearson Scholars. Please check back as we continue to highlight each scholar’s story!

The post Love for Agriculture Fuels Drive for Leadership appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Understanding data is a very important skill, regardless of your major! However, if you are like me, you might have found that as you are nearing graduation, there are a few things you wish your degree would have taught you. I wish I would have known more about data analytics. This is a very hard skill to teach yourself, but fortunately I found some resources I would like share with you that will allow you to build on your education to get that competitive edge.

 Start with Google!

 Google Partners offers online courses and study guides to learn their products. The online courses are FREE and very well done. Each course takes about 5 minutes and they are broken down by learning objective. By the time you are done with the course, you will begin to see connections, how your action can influence user behavior and how data will reflect that. All the Google products: Google Analytics, AdWords, and Mobile Sites teach students how to interpret data and how that data reflects human behavior.

 YouTube is your teacher, friend, tutor, sensei, master, etc.

 There are so many YouTube educational channels that will help break down large complicated topics. YouTube has made education more accessible. It is a free resource and a great place to start. Some of my favorite channels are Google AdWords, Crash Course, Big Think, Google Analytics, Google Partners, HubSpot, Moz, and TED-Ed. Some other sites you can use to learn for free are EdX.org and Khan Academy.

 Take practice exams

 This step was critical for me because I did not know how well I retained the information until I was taking a test. On YouTube I could follow along live practice exams other people had already taken. For a Google Analytics and Google AdWords exam, I would follow along and answer the questions in the video by pausing along the way to allow myself time to answer the question. I would check my answer against the video and use my wrong answers as a study guide.

 I am pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing – needless to say, my approach to data analytics is unique. The reason I became so fascinated with data and data analytics was because it provides more insight to user behavior and motivations. Having that type of insight is a powerful leveraging tool in the context of business and provides interesting insight to human motivations. Understanding data and how to manipulate data is not an intuitive skill for me. I was interested in learning but it was an uphill climb. The online resources I discovered allowed me to learn material that makes my education diversified and competitive.

Are you seeking to learn a new skill? Share with the Pearson Students community when you retweet my blog!

Nnenna Umelloh is a full-time student at the University of Houston set to graduate May 2018 with a BBA in Marketing and a BA in Liberal Studies. She is the founder of Achievement Consulting by Nnenna Umelloh. Her goal is to help others develop a plan to achieve their academic and professional goals. Her vision is to redefine access to higher education and professional achievement through education and awareness. Nnenna is also the Editor-in-Chief of Empower!, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering young women and girls to become independent women. In her free time, Nnenna is an avid writer, reader and long-distance runner.

Nnenna is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post Learn Valuable Skills Outside the Classroom: Data Analytics appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

There are times I look back at my college experiences and smile with pride. However, there are times that I reflect and want to cringe! I wish I would have known things my freshmen year that I have since learned. I want to pass on the wisdom I gained with experience to other college students so that they don’t make the same mistakes I did. Here are three tips to help you succeed.

Save on supplies

Supplies for dorms/apartments are expensive at school or on campus. Plan to shop either online with places that offer free shipping, or with a local retailer. Something as small as a contact lens case can run you nearly 500% higher on a college campus. You can also check out local pages like Craiglist or Facebook Buy and Sell Groups to score deals on higher priced appliances like coffee machines or toaster ovens.

Be safe

When you drink at a party or event, sometimes you lose sight of your true intentions and morals. This can lead to bad decision making and regret. My best advice is don’t drink, but this may be an unrealistic expectation. At least have a trusted friend keep you accountable, and always have a designated driver. 

Watch your grades

Don’t lose sight of the REAL reason you are in college – to get a higher education! You have more responsibility to keep yourself accountable in college. There is not a parent or teacher ensuring you get your assignments completed, and that you get enough rest the night before an exam. Be responsible and take pride in your academics.

Your years in college are some of the most impactful years of your life. You shape yourself as an individual and set goals for the future. Allow yourself to succeed by watching your grades, keeping your priorities in check, and be frugal with your money. These are things I wish I would have known, or at least paid closer attention to when I first started college.

Upperclassmen: Is there anything you wish you would have known when you started college? Share with the Pearson Students community by commenting below!

Sasha Brown is a sophomore at Pima Community College (Arizona) studying Paralegal Services. She will graduate formally in Spring 2018 with two Associates degrees. She is the proud wife of a military veteran with 23 years serving in the Army. She and her husband share 6 children and seven grandchildren.

Sasha is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post College Experiences: Three Tips to Help You Succeed appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
(part 1 of a 3 part series)

If you are even considering studying abroad, DO IT! Taking the leap of faith and stepping out of your home country, let alone state, can seem unimaginable but will be worth the experience. As fun as it may seem, you truly do a lot of learning while abroad. You will learn a tremendous amount about a new culture and even more about yourself. Since the whole process may seem daunting at times I just wanted to share some tips that I wish I had known before studying abroad.

Location, Location, Location

I studied abroad in The Hague, Netherlands. Ever heard of it? Neither had I!  After 5 months of studying abroad there, it became my home away from home and I still miss that little city to this day. The two biggest factors I had to consider were size of the city and weather. You will have the option to stay in some of the most famous cities in the world, like Barcelona or London, but you can still have a wonderful experience in a smaller town as well.

Big city vs. smaller town

There may be more activities in a bigger city but you can become more immersed in a smaller town. An area with fewer tourist attractions offers a more authentic culture and experience. There will still be plenty of things to do either way but you may have to look a bit harder when you are in a smaller town. Plus, you can plan shorter side trips to the bigger cities during your free time.

Weather matters

In Europe, traveling from country to country is relativity easy, so pick a climate that best suits you and you can still see other countries that have less appealing climates. Also, take into consideration that you will want to do a lot roaming around the city so you most likely will be exposed to the elements more than usual.

Remember that everyone has a different experience while studying abroad and all the information I have shared above is solely based off my experience. These tips may help you better plan your study abroad experience and enjoy every single second because the time will fly and before you know it, you might be back writing a blog and sharing your own tips on studying abroad! Look for the second part of this blog discussing tips for packing and technology usage when studying abroad!

Pearson Students, are you studying abroad in the upcoming semesters? Where are you headed and what are you most excited about? Share by commenting below!

Kristopher Medina is a senior attending Colorado State University (CSU) studying Business Management with a minor in Sports Management and Marketing. Kristopher is the Pearson Campus Ambassador at CSU. His ultimate goal is to start and own his own business one day. He is also the vice president of the Student Center for the Public Trust, an ethics club. Kristopher is wildly curious about anything and everything that crosses his path. Furthermore, Kristopher enjoys watching his Denver Broncos and spending time with his friends and family any chance he gets.

Kristopher is a Pearson Student Insider. To learn more about the program and apply, click here.

The post Studying Abroad: Location Tips appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

My story began long before I found myself in college as a non-traditional student. When I was growing up, one of my favorite things to do was to play teacher. My grandparents had a house that was built in 1912 in Opelika, Alabama that was the former primary school for their neighborhood. The basement of the house was the schoolhouse, and the old desks and blackboards were part of my childhood playgrounds. The money I earned money doing chores to help my grandparents was spent at the local teacher supply store. I decorated the old schoolhouse like a real school, used my dolls and stuffed animals as my pupils, and my uncle’s textbooks from Auburn University as my curriculum. I’m sure it was quite a sight to see a seven-year-old fumbling through a book of literature and calculus to teach her toys! As I grew older, I was always was drawn towards my teachers and the significance of their roles in my life.

When I became a mother at not quite twenty-two, I embraced each moment to be able to teach my daughter about the world. I had the fortune of being able to stay home with my young children, as I was also a Navy wife. I decorated the house as a kindergarten. Books and engaging toys were in little areas of each room, and our living room became the classroom. I read as much as I could about child development and planned my days as if I were teaching a Montessori preschool. Three children and a world of life changes later, I found myself going through a very difficult divorce. I suddenly was faced with the reality that I was going to have to figure out what I was going to do to help myself and my children in the world.

I eventually became a nurse’s assistant in elder care, which helped me balance work life with family life while providing for my family. This also helped me feel that connection to my grandparents I missed so much after they passed away. The message that I kept receiving from the residents that I cared for was about how important it was to live the life that makes you happy and that leaves something meaningful for your family and future generations. This really struck me because, even though I was very happy working with the elderly, I wasn’t feeling that satisfaction the residents always spoke of.

I had the experience of working as a paraprofessional in a high school ESE (Exceptional Student Education) classroom two years ago, and it was the catalyst that set my world spinning towards the path to my dreams. The students impacted me in ways that I will forever carry within my heart. I had my first experience teaching a student something brand new and observing the process of understanding and their synthesis of the knowledge. In that moment, I knew that I had to go to college and finally become a teacher. I began this journey in August of 2016 and am so proud of how far I have come!

In September 2017 I had the amazing opportunity to receive the Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education. Becoming a Pearson Scholar has added to my confidence in myself tremendously. I have been able to focus much more on my studies without as much stress about finances. As part of the scholarship, I have been matched with a mentor from Pearson, too. My Pearson Mentor has been very helpful in keeping me on track, helping me to further develop my academic and career based goals as well as helping me feel confident in my act of juggling work, school and family. My dream of becoming a teacher is coming true.

Erika is a student at South Florida State College and is a recipient of the 2017 Pearson Scholarship for Higher Education. Each Pearson Scholar is paired with a Pearson professional mentor who provides support as Scholars progress toward degree completion. We are incredibly proud of all the Pearson Scholars. Please check back as we continue to highlight each scholar’s story!

The post From Playing School to Becoming a Teacher: One Student’s Journey to Discovering Her Career Path appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

This is the sixth in a series of essays surrounding the EdTech Efficacy Research Symposium, a gathering of 275 researchers, teachers, entrepreneurs, professors, administrators, and philanthropists to discuss the role efficacy research should play in guiding the development and implementation of education technologies. This series was produced in partnership with Pearson, a co-sponsor of the symposium co-hosted by the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education, Digital Promise, and the Jefferson Education Accelerator. Click through to read the firstsecondthirdfourth, and fifth pieces.

Economists define a collective action problem as one in which a collection of people (or organizations) each have an interest in seeing an action happen, but the cost of any one of them independently taking the action is so high that no action is taken — and the problem persists.

The world of education swirls with collective action problems. But when it comes to understanding the efficacy of education technology products and services, it’s a problem that costs schools and districts billions of dollars, countless hours, and (sadly) missed opportunities to improve outcomes for students.

Collectively, our nation’s K-12 schools and institutions of higher education spend more than $13 billion annually on education technology. And yet we have a dearth of data to inform our understanding of which products (or categories of products) are most likely to “work” within a particular school or classroom. As a result, we purchase products that often turn out to be a poor match for the needs of our schools or students. Badly matched and improperly implemented, too many fall short of their promise of enabling better teaching — and learning.

It’s not that the field is devoid of research. Quantifying the efficacy of ed tech is a favorite topic for a growing cadre of education researchers and academics. Most major publishers and dozens of educational technology companies conduct research in the form of case studies and, in some cases, randomized control trials that showcase the potential outcomes for their products. The What Works Clearinghouse, now entering its 15th year, sets a gold standard for educational research but provides very little context about why the same product “works” in some places but not others. And efficacy is a topic that has now come to the forefront of our policy discourse, as debates at the state and local level center on the proper interpretation of ESSA’s mercurial “evidence” requirements. Set too high a bar, and we’ll artificially contract a market laden with potential. Miss the mark, and we’ll continue to let weak outcomes serve as evidence.

The problem is that most research only addresses a tiny part of the ed tech efficacy equation. Variability among and between school cultures, priorities, preferences, professional development, and technical factors tend to affect the outcomes associated with education technology. A district leader once put it to me this way: “a bad intervention implemented well can produce far better outcomes than a good intervention implemented poorly.”

After all, a reading intervention might work well in a lab or school — but if teachers in your school aren’t involved in the decision-making or procurement process, they may very well reject the strategy (sometimes with good reason). The Rubik’s Cube of master scheduling can also create variability in efficacy outcomes: Do your teachers have time to devote to high-quality implementation and troubleshooting, and then to make good use of the data for instructional purposes? At its best, ed tech is about more than tech-driven instruction. It’s about the shift toward the use of more real-time data to inform instructional strategy. In some ways, matching an ed tech product with the unique environment and needs of a school or district is a lot like matching a diet to a person’s habits, lifestyle, and preferences: Implementation rules. Matching matters. We know what “works.” But we know far less about what works where, when, and why.

Thoughtful efforts are underway to help school and district leaders understand the variables likely to shape the impact of their ed tech investments and strategies. Organizations like LEAP Innovations are doing pioneering work to better understand and document the implementation environment, creating a platform for sharing experiences, matching schools with products, and establishing a common framework to inform practice — with or without technology. Not only are they on the front lines of addressing the ed tech implementation problem, but they are also on the leading edge of a new discipline of “implementation research.”

Implementation research is rooted in the capture of detailed descriptions of the myriad variables that undergird your school’s success — or failure — with a particular product or approach. It’s about understanding school cultures and user personas. It’s about respecting and valuing the insights and perspectives of educators. And presenting insights in ways that enable your peers to know whether they should expect similar results in their school.

Building a body of implementation research will involve hard work on an important problem. And it’s work that no one institution — or even a small group of institutions — can do alone. The good news is that solving this rather serious problem doesn’t require a grand political compromise or major new legislation. We can address it by engaging in collective action to formalize, standardize, and share information that hundreds of thousands of educators are already collecting in informal and non-standard ways.

The first step in understanding and documenting a multiplicity of variables across a range of implementation environments is creating a common language to describe our schools and classrooms in terms that are relevant to the implementation of education technology. We’ll need to identify the factors that may explain why the same ed tech product can thrive in your school but flop in my school. That doesn’t mean that every educator in the country needs to document their ed tech implementations and impact. It doesn’t require the development of a scary database of student or educator data. We can start small, honing our list of variables and learning, over time, what sorts of factors enable or impede expected outcomes.

The next step is translating those variables into metadata, and creating a common, interoperable language for incorporating the insights and experiences of individuals and organizations already doing similar work. We know that there is demand for information and insights rooted in the implementation experiences and lessons of peers. If we build an accessible and consistently organized system for understanding, collecting, and sharing information, we can chip away at the collective action problem by making it easier and less expensive to capture — and share — perspectives from across the field.

The final step is addressing accessibility to shared insights, facilitating a community of connected decision makers who work together both to call upon the system for information and to continue to make contributions to it. Think of it as a Consumer Reports for ed tech. We’ll use the data we’ve collected to hone a shared understanding of the implementation factors that matter — but we’ll also continue to rely upon lived experiences of users to inform and grow the data set. Over time, we can achieve a shared way of thinking about a complex problem that has the potential to bring decision-making out of the dark and into a well-informed, community-supported environment.

My work with colleagues at the first-ever EdTech Efficacy Research Symposium found that a growing number of providers, organizations, and associations are already working with educators to crowdsource efficacy data. And educators across the country are already doing this work in informal but valuable ways. Bringing these efforts together and creating a more standard approach to their collection and dissemination is a critical step toward improving decision-making. My observation from both research and discussion with the field is that the effort is not only deeply needed — it also already enjoys great support. If we take collective action, we can develop a democratic approach to improving the fit between ed tech tools and the educators who use them.

This series is produced in partnership with Pearson. The 74 originally published this article on January 2nd, 2018 and it was re-posted here with permission.

About the Author

Bart Epstein

Bart Epstein is founding CEO of the Jefferson Education Accelerator and a research associate professor at the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education.

The post Analysis: Why school districts need a ‘Consumer Reports’ for ed tech appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

As a college professor, I have spent a fair amount of time trying to find the ideal working system for my own research as well as for my students. And I know that so many of my colleagues have done the same.

Change is a constant in the world of learning technology. First there was the rock and chisel method of notetaking. That was tiresome. And how many rocks can you really carry around? Then there were innovations like the ballpoint pen. Typewriters with onionskin or carbon paper for multiple copies. The electronic typewriter, so you could make quick edits! All of these changed the process of writing and learning long before we became digital.

Now we’re online all day and night, and our phones have more computing capability than a roomful of punchcards. But old technologies persist. And in the many thinkpieces, hot takes, and public scholarship on the topic, there’s the constant refrain: At least for note-taking, pen and paper beat all technology. So why do so many professors search for digital methods of course management and instruction? Students need it, we need it, and technology is cool.

First of all, just because pen and paper note-taking forces the brain to slow down and synthesize information so the hand can record it, that doesn’t work for everyone. Particularly for students with a variety of accommodations, this method just isn’t accessible. And banning laptops from class either alienates students with disabilities, or outs them as different if you make exceptions in your course policy on laptops.

Next, as professors, we are often teaching more students in more classes while asked to give more feedback more quickly than ever before. Plus, carrying around 200 8-10 page papers gets tiresome pretty quickly. At first, course management tools feel revolutionary: I can post videos and see who’s watched them, have students upload papers (which ends coffee stains, misplaced work, and any “I put it in your mailbox” sob stories, true or otherwise). No one has to pay for printing. We’re better able to comment and collaborate. Digital methods save time and energy, and ultimately benefit our students as much as ourselves.

But just as pen and paper don’t actually work the way research says they should, neither do digital methods for course management. Whatever software your college or university uses, chances are you hate it. Often, the interface is wonky, you can’t change privacy settings, your carefully-curated media links suddenly won’t connect — and there’s almost nothing you can do about it, because it’s your university course management software.

Sigh.

Some of us try all the options: Google documents are free and easy. A psychology colleague at a small liberal arts college hipped me to the many uses of Google docs: You can make self-grading quizzes! You can have students submit papers and tests so there are no more “but I uploaded it” excuses. Still, comments come through in real time, so some students get feedback earlier than others.

A sociologist friend at a different small liberal arts college says, “I’m currently regretting my decision to have students turn in things with Google drive.” He has to download, then re-upload papers with comments to get around that feedback timeline lag, “which is super annoying even with my tiny class size,” and not an option if you teach large lectures or at a research university.

Throughout my time teaching, I’ve worked to modernize my classroom, for better and for worse. I’ve made YouTube playlists with video and audio clips connected to course topics. I’ve had students share examples through Twitter or use Storify. I’m not saying these methods don’t work — but they’re not a quick fix for long-term content management.

Pearson’s trying to help professors sidestep wonky campus systems and provide more student feedback with Revel MyLab and Mastering.

Revel helps professors teach and students learn through “reducing extraneous cognitive load, boosting active and constructive engagement,” and “providing immediate feedback.” So students are less likely to be overwhelmed, but more likely to think constructively and apply their new knowledge. Students can set notifications to remind them of deadlines, take practice quizzes with immediate feedback, and make connections between core concepts and practical applications. Unlike many institutional packages, students can access content on multiple devices, including cell phones.

MyLab and Mastering provide homework, assessment, and interactive content developed by leading authors in their fields to challenge students to engage deeply and think critically. Personalized learning features help ensure every student gets the support they need — when and where they need it — to be successful.

This post is a sponsored collaboration between Pearson and Studio@Gizmodo. It was originally published on November 21st, 2017, and it was re-posted here with permission.

About the Author

Carolyn Chernoff

Carolyn Chernoff is an American sociologist of inequality and everyday culture. She earned her PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to public-facing outlets, such as the Huffington Post, Chernoff has published work on democratic process, community-based arts, and media representation in journals including Visual Arts Research, Michigan Sociological Review, and Perspectives on Urban Education. Chernoff has also published work on RuPaul’s Drag Race, and various theories of education.

The post Here’s how the college classroom has evolved over the years appeared first on USA.

Read Full Article
Visit website

Read for later

Articles marked as Favorite are saved for later viewing.
close
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free year
Free Preview