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The Importance of Sound Pedagogy while Using Moodle: A case of one college

As much as I am always excited working with Moodle, the truth is that many Moodle users do not use sound pedagogy to have an impact on student achievement. Moodle HQ understand it very well, or are at least beginning to know the importance of sound pedagogy. That’s why they appointed a new pedagogy Adviser (read the interview). The main Moodle site also includes some pedagogical resources. Moodle also gives annual MOOCs for teachers and instructors to learn how to use Moodle from a pedagogical approach. There is however a problem when Moodle partners deliver those professional development sessions on Moodle as these sessions tend to be heavily reliant on Moodle features. They are not crafted to meet the professional needs or open possible opportunities for educators attending those sessions. This post will discuss how one college, through a review study of their Moodle use has unsightly came to the conclusion that Moodle is viewed as unsatisfactory for faculty members and students. Re…
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8 Free Interactive Video Tools to Impact Student Learning

This post was first  published on my company blog.As educators, we all know that videos engage students more than reading texts. Although having students analyze and reflect on videos should be balanced with textual analysis and interpretations, videos do have the added value of using the visual and auditory channels to help students retain more information so that they can be in a better position to  deconstruct the messages encoded in the video, reflect on it, and discuss with peers. However, like reading texts, especially long intricate texts, students need embedded formative feedback. Watching a 20 minute video for example might disengage a student, or might include more information than the student can retrieve. The best solution to help students think about the video they are watching is embedded questions and discussions. This is why we have listed 8 free video tools that can help you, more or less, build activities or questions around videos students watch at home as part of a…

Improving Student Learning with Effective Learning Techniques Part 3: Summarization

Students often need to read and understand a lot of information by extracting the more important ideas. This requires discarding less important ideas and connecting ideas within a text. Accomplishing these goals requires student to write summaries of to-be-learned texts (often as part of or pre-requisite to  text analysis and evaluation). Although summarizing a text is considered an instructional goal of its own right, the post is only concerned whether improve student performance on subsequent criterion tests on the same materials. Description and Why it should workAs an introduction to the issues relevant to summarization, we begin with a description of a prototypical experiment. Bretzing and Kulhavy (1979) had high school juniors and seniors study a 2,000-word text about a fictitious tribe of people. Students were assigned to one of five learning conditions and given up to 30 minutes to study the text. After reading each page, students in a summarization group were instructed to wr…

Learn the Levels of SOLO Taxonomy

This post was first published on my company’s blog, Eductechalogy.In an earlier post we said that Bloom’s taxonomy, although well known among teachers and schools is unreliable and does not transfer well for classroom tasks (more used for teacher assessments). We said that SOLO taxonomy has a great potential for differentiated instructions, tasks, and assessments, all whilst having students keen about their SOLO development. In this post we have created a short interactive presentation of SOLO taxonomy. It introduces the basics of SOLO with the symbols for each of the 5 levels (taken from Pam Hook).
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Improving Student Learning with Effective Learning Techniques Part 2: Self-Explanation

Description and Why it should workIn the originative study on self-explanation, Berry (1983) explored its impacts on logical reasoning using the Wason card-selection task. In this task, a student might see four cards labeled “A,” “4,” “D,” and “3" and be asked to indicate which cards must be turned over to test the rule “if a card has A on one side, it has 3 on the other side” (an instantiation of the more general “if P, then Q” rule). Students were first asked to solve a concrete instantiation of the rule (e.g., flavor of jam on one side of a jar and the sale price on the other); accuracy was near zero. They then were provided with a mini- mal explanation about how to solve the “if P, then Q” rule and were given a set of concrete problems involving the use of this and other logical rules (e.g., “if P, then not Q”). For this set of concrete practice problems, one group of students was prompted to self-explain while solving each problem by stating the reasons for choosing or not c…

A Mobile Application Provides All relevant Information for Incoming Asylum Seekers

Almost 3 million people are expected to reach Europe by the end of 2017. This creates a tremendous geo-cultural challenge for refugees, especially at the outset. Being forlorn, destitute, lost in translation – and with a mobile phone, new comers do not have enough local information and are held back by language barriers. As much as they get help, especially in Germany, there is a mismatch between public aides and refugees. The is why Integreat app was developed.
Integreat provides comprehensive local information for refugees, is multilingual, has simple administration, and is connected to local authorities, is linked to job platforms, and is free of charge. Creators of Integreat asked these two simple questions that lead to the creation of the app : Can we provide all the relevant information to incoming people in our city in their own language as quickly as possible – without permanent internet access and without confusing paper chaos?

Integreat is available in the App Store and Googl…

Improving Student Learning with Effective Learning Techniques: Elaborative Interrogation (Part 1)

The achievement gap among students is widening, although there are major strides in the educational systems to bridge the gaps. From my experience as an educator and educational leader, one of the chief factors affecting student achievement is learning techniques. I am talking about the learning techniques that can be reasonably taught to students so that they can independently use it in the same or different contexts at a later date. Many students use ineffective learning techniques that if trained with more effective one can improve their achievement. Many teachers help students to use ineffective learning techniques because they do not know about effective techniques due to their ubiquity (Dunlosky et al., 2013). A comprehensive review of the literature by Duosky et al. (2013) offered  recommendations for the utility of learning techniques to improve educational outcome. The review yielded 10 learning techniques that are labelled as low utility, medium utility, or high utility. The…