Post Tagged with: "Collaborative learning"

Preparing the Environmental Professionals of the Future: Backwards Design in Environmental Studies

Paroma Wagle, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy Learning about sustainability, climate change, and environmental justice, the ‘wicked problems’ of the environment, is absolutely crucial for students, as they will not only go on maybe select careers in environment and policy fields, but also are going to be decision-makers in their own fields and consumers. Our day-to-day decisions as well as broader policies are closely connected to environmental concerns. […]

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Making Group Work Work: Designing Positive Group Work Experiences for Students

Deanna Myers, Department of Chemistry Group work. Just hearing the phrase brings up feelings of dread in many students. I remember feeling this way when I entered an upper-division chemistry course at my undergraduate institution. When the professors told us we would be assigned lab groups, with whom we would be doing projects and turning in group reports, I was filled with trepidation. But over the course of the quarter, […]

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Rethinking the Physics Classroom: 4 Tools to Consider

Francisco J. Mercado, Department of Physics & Astronomy When we think about a physics classroom, more often than not, the picture that comes to mind is an ‘all-knowing’ professor standing at the front of a classroom writing on a blackboard while some of the students behind them are vigorously taking notes struggling to keep up. Others are attempting to complete the difficult problem set that they have to turn in by […]

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Improving Critical Thinking Skills in College Students

Erica M. Leung, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering “People grow best where they continuously experience an ingenious blend of support and challenge.” -Robert Kegan1 Cognitive Development of College Students Most students enter college with the notion that there are right and wrong answers and the road to knowledge is straightforward.2 Students undergo significant cognitive growth during college, shifting their view of knowledge from objective duality to subjective multiplicity (i.e. […]

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Implementing Flipped Classrooms into Law School Pedagogy

Conor Gómez, School of Law Welcome to Law School. All your hard work wooing professors to write encouraging letters of recommendation and studying for a standardized test that supposedly predicts performance in the first year of law school is finally over. Now the really hard work begins. For those of you like me (who did not participate in Greek life during undergrad), law school’s hazing tactics to weed students out […]

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Phone-a-Friend: Tips for Designing Meaningful Collaborative Exams

Jaclyn Beck, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior Wait a minute. You want to test how much your students learned! Why would you want to give them a group exam? Perhaps a shift in perspective can answer that: Aside from scoring a student’s performance, exams themselves can be used as additional learning opportunities. Collaborative activities can increase student learning and performance in many different settings (Johnson and Johnson 2009, Efu 2019, […]

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Improving Students’ Writing Abilities Through Peer Review

Alma P. Olaguez, M.S., Department of Psychological Science What Makes a Good Paper? Most students can differentiate a good writing sample from a bad writing sample. However, most students have difficulty producing concrete reasons why a paper is bad beyond “It just doesn’t flow.” Most importantly, the students who cannot produce concrete reasons are the students who struggle with writing the most. By having students identify what makes a paper “bad” […]

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Three Tips for Promoting Student Motivation

Yangyang Liu, School of Education Students play an active role in their own learning. However, as an instructor, you may have noticed that some students are more motivated than others in your classroom. According to educational research, optimal learning happens when individuals are intrinsically motivated (Black & Deci, 2000). You can motivate your students by promoting their sense of autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Granting Autonomy Teaching is a structured human […]

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Learning through Writing Assignments

Jinna Kim, Department of Sociology Instructors often use writing assignments to assess students’ learning. There are many ways that writing assignments can be a form of active learning, especially when considering it as a writing process. Below are suggestions for implementing effective writing assignments that will enhance student learning. Writing Workshops Devote a class session to discuss assignment expectations and guidelines (ex. formatting, citations). Instructors can also connect with librarians […]

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Using Science to Inform Evidence-Based Practices – The Role of Flipped Classrooms

Emily Kan, Department of Psychological Science At universities across the world, student researchers work for hours to uncover new scientific discoveries. After months and years of hard work, they finally see the fruits of their labor – successfully publishing an article in a top-tier journal. Yet, publishing in a scientific journal is not the ultimate goal. At least, it shouldn’t be. Has our research impacted practice or policy? Is our […]

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