Academic news roundup: assessment, active learning, and online ed

April 16th, 2012 Comments Off

Derek Rodriguez, writing for In the Library with the Lead Pipe, reported on a 2011 study that utilized the Understanding Library Impacts (ULI) protocol, a method of studying and reporting the library’s impact on student learning.

Libraries need efficient methods for connecting student use of the library with the learning outcomes that matter most to faculty and stakeholders. Failure to do so leaves libraries out of important campus conversations about student learning. The ULI protocol is designed to meet this challenge.

Meredith Farkas, writing for American Library, talked about incorporating active learning into online instruction:

It’s one thing to tell someone how to do something, but to have them actually do it themselves, with expert guidance, makes it much more likely that they’ll be able to do it later on their own.

The New York Times reported on new initiatives to measure student learning:

The concern is less about measuring knowledge of chemistry or literature than about harder to define skills like critical thinking and problem-solving.

Special Note: Arum & Roksa’s Academically Adrift is mentioned. Everybody drink!

Finally, The Chronicle and Inside Higher Ed gave us inside information on two online learning platforms: 2tor and Udacity. 2tor is a platform used by Georgetown University, UNC Chapel Hill, and my place of work, the University of Southern California, to provide online instruction for graduate programs. On the flip side, Udacity is a platform for offering free college-level courses in computer science. Enjoy!

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