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    #246055 - 09/09/19 05:02 AM Re: Which colleges have good teaching? [Re: Bostonian]
    Bostonian Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/14/10
    Posts: 2592
    Loc: MA
    Originally Posted By: Bostonian
    Lessons in learning
    Study shows students in Ďactive learningí classrooms learn more than they think
    by Peter Reuell
    Harvard Gazette
    September 4, 2019

    A blog post about the study:
    Active Learning Works But Studentís Donít Like It
    by Alex Tabarrok
    Marginal Revolution
    September 9, 2019 at 7:25 am in Education
    A carefully done study that held students and teachers constant shows that students learn more in active learning classes but they dislike this style of class and think they learn less. Itís no big surpriseĖactive learning is hard and makes the students feel stupid. Itís much easier to sit back and be entertained by a great lecturer who makes everything seem simple.

    Despite active learning being recognized as a superior method of instruction in the classroom, a major recent survey found that most college STEM instructors still choose traditional teaching methods. This article addresses the long-standing question of why students and faculty remain resistant to active learning. Comparing passive lectures with active learning using a randomized experimental approach and identical course materials, we find that students in the active classroom learn more, but they feel like they learn less. We show that this negative correlation is caused in part by the increased cognitive effort required during active learning. Faculty who adopt active learning are encouraged to intervene and address this misperception, and we describe a successful example of such an intervention.

    The authors say that it can help to tell students in advance that they should expect to feel flustered but it will all work out in the end.

    The success of active learning will be greatly enhanced if students accept that it leads to deeper learningóand acknowledge that it may sometimes feel like exactly the opposite is true.

    I am dubious that this will bring students around. An alternative that might help is to discount student evaluations so that teachers donít feel that they must entertain in order to do well on evaluations. As Brennan and Magness point out in their excellent Cracks in the Ivory Tower:

    Using student evaluations to hire, promote, tenure, or determine raises for faculty is roughly on a par with reading entrails or tea leaves to make such decisions. (Actually, reading tea leaves would be better; itís equally bullshit but faster and cheaper.)Ö the most comprehensive research shows that whatever student evaluations (SETs) measure, it isnít learning caused by the professor.

    Indeed, the correlation between student evaluations and student learning is at best close to zero and at worst negative. Student evaluations measure how well liked the teacher is. Students like to be entertained. Thus, to the extent that they rely on student evaluations, universities are incentivizing teachers to teach in ways that the students like rather than in ways that promote learning.

    Itís remarkable that student evaluations havenít already been lawsuited into oblivion given that student evaluations are both useless and biased.

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    #246312 - 11/14/19 01:22 PM Re: Which colleges have good teaching? [Re: Bostonian]
    Old Dad Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/30/12
    Posts: 422
    As for active learning and quality of teaching, as I've mentioned previously, I've found it unacceptable that other than the school of education, very few college or university professors are required to have one credit hour of classes in education. I have yet to meet a college student who hasn't told me that they had many, if not most of their professors, who knew their field of study well but really struggled to communicate it well, teach it well, and differentiate well. Simply because one has vast amounts of knowledge in a field doesn't mean they can teach it and that's too often the case at colleges and universities in the U.S.

    I see the stirrings of realization that our U.S. colleges and universities are losing the confidence of the people. I see serious changes in post K-12 education coming. Teachers and libraries are no longer the key holders to education, colleges and universities need to update their methods to keep up.

    As for the original post of the thread, perhaps the wrong question is being asked, instead I would encourage the question, "What is the best fit for your child and how will I know it?"

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    #246317 - 11/16/19 06:59 PM Re: Which colleges have good teaching? [Re: Bostonian]
    puffin Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/11/12
    Posts: 2014
    By post high school age the onus is on the student to learn irrespective of whether the lecturer can teach.

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    #246321 - 11/18/19 06:35 AM Re: Which colleges have good teaching? [Re: puffin]
    Old Dad Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/30/12
    Posts: 422
    Originally Posted By: puffin
    By post high school age the onus is on the student to learn irrespective of whether the lecturer can teach.


    I would agree....and I hope that's a problem in everyone's eyes. Teachers, whether they're teaching preschool, K-12, under grads, or post graduate, should be well versed in teaching methods, learning styles, and other variables that make one better able to help students achieve their goals. That should be the whole point of teaching.

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