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Presentation by Suzanne Vrancken and Sanne Tromp (JCU) at International Conference "Evoking Excellence in Higher Education and Beyond", Groningen 3-4 October 2012

Presentation by Suzanne Vrancken and Sanne Tromp (JCU) at International Conference "Evoking Excellence in Higher Education and Beyond", Groningen 3-4 October 2012

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Characteristics of a challenging learning environment affecting students’ learning processes and achievements Characteristics of a challenging learning environment affecting students’ learning processes and achievements Presentation Transcript

  • Characteristics of a challenginglearning environment affectingstudents’ learning processesand achievementsSuzanne Vrancken & Sanne TrompJunior College UtrechtUtrecht Universitys.e.a.vrancken@uu.nls.tromp@uu.nl
  • Contents • Introduction • Research aim • Theoretical framework • Method • Results • Conclusion & recommendations4-10-2012 2
  • Introduction (1) • Talented students Can do more than is offered in regular curriculum Need to be challenged Education needs to be adapted to students’ needs and capacities • Dutch government policy Education is insufficiently challenging for talented students Motivating and challenging learning environments need to be created • Excellence programs Existing programs can serve as sources of knowledge and inspiration4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 3
  • Introduction (2) Junior College Utrecht (JCU) • Science program for 100 students in grade 11th and 12th of pre-university education • Two years, two days a week • Students are selected • Accelerated and enriched curriculum • Research activities • Excellent student achievements • Example of an excellence program: Junior College learning environment affects students’ learning processes and achievements4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 4
  • Research aim & questions • To identify characteristics of a learning environment that affect the learning processes and achievements of 11th and 12th grade pre- university students • Research questions (1)What are the characteristics of the JCU learning environment, according to students? (2)What effects do the characteristics of the JCU learning environment have on students’ learning processes and achievements, according to students?4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 5
  • Theoretical framework Natural abilities & previous experiences Learning process Learning environment within school Learning achievements Learning environment outside school4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 6
  • Method (1) • Research strategy Grounded theory Deduct answers on research questions based on students’ experiences Choice for JCU as site for data collection: critical case sampling (Patton, 2001)4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 7
  • Method (2) • Data collection Graduation speeches of 300 students Open group interviews with 4 x 3 students Semi structured interviews with 9 students Transcribed Interviews summarized Member checks • Data analysis Qualitative analysis of transcripts using AtlasTI Speeches coded ‘in vivo’ Codes grouped and categorized Second analysis Intercoder agreement of 92%4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 8
  • Results (1) Characteristics of JCU learning environment Teachers Education Learning community General Teaching skills Challenging Social interaction between Physical education students environment Meaningful educational Social interaction between Organization activities students and teachers Autonomy for Shared culture students Academic environment Training skills4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 9
  • Results (2) Effects on students Knowledge and skills Attitude Personal Future Personal development wellbeing Knowledge aquisition Urge to Self esteem Study Stress learn choice Thinking skills Work Independence Part of a attitude community Changing results Satisfaction Skill development4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 10
  • Results (3) Teachers Education Learning community Social Social Autonomy Meaningful interaction Teaching Challenging Academic Training interaction Shared for educational between skills education environment skills between culture students activities students and students teachersKnowledge andskillsKnowledge 2 16 6 5 29 2 1 3 4acquisitionSkill development 1 2 1 1 5 10 2Thinking skills 2 5 3 8 3Changing results 4 8 7 2 1 1 1 3AttitudeUrge to learn 16 11 3 8 11 2 2 6 16Work attitude 5 9 1 7 4 5 5 17PersonaldevelopmentSatisfaction 10 1 1Independence 4 1 11 1 1 1Self esteem 5 2 2 2 3 5 7 2FutureStudy choice 1 12 11 4 41 1PersonalwellbeingStress 9 2 2Part of a 1 1 1 4 1 3 30 10community Number = how often students relate a characteristic of the learning environment to an effect4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 11
  • Results (4) Teachers Education Learning community Social Social Autonomy Meaningful interaction Teaching Challenging Academic Training interaction Shared for educational between skills education environment skills between cultureKnowledge and students activities students and studentsskills teachersKnowledge 2 16 29acquisition “I really learned a lot from my thesis research at the university research group. You work together with scientists and share your knowledge with each other. That was a very valuable experience.” (cf. Pyryt, 2002) “In modules you don’t just learn about one subject, but also about related topics beyond the subject.” (cf. Reis & Renzulli, 2009; Rogers, 2007) “At my own school teachers only explain the stuff that is written in your book, but at JCU they explain much more. I really like that I learn more than just what I need to know for my exam.” (cf. Croft, 2003; Hattie, 2009; Pyryt, 2002) “Because of the high pace you don’t always have time to practice everything and take time to learn. I feel that I know the things I learn less thoroughly.” (cf. Rogers, 2007; Subban, 2006; Tomlinson, 2005)4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 12
  • Results (5) Teachers Education Learning community Social Social Autonomy Meaningful interaction Teaching Challenging Academic Training interaction Shared for educational between skills education environment skills between culture students activities students and studentsAttitude teachersUrge to learn 16 11 16Work attitude 9 17 “I never want to be the worst at anything. I always want to be the best, but the bar is set much higher at JCU than at my own school.” (cf. Gallagher, 2003; Lens & Rand, 2002; OECD, 2010) “I’m used to always being the best of my class, but at JCU I’m not. I feel really stupid sometimes.” (cf. Kulik, 2003; Subotnik, Olszewski-Kubilius & Worrell, 2011) “The teachers at JCU ask more challenging questions. I like that and it stimulates me to ask more challenging questions too.” (cf. Croft, 2003; Hattie, 2009) “The high pace can sometimes be really demotivating. Last weekend I worked really hard on my math homework, but I’m still not up to speed.” (cf. Rogers, 2007; Subban, 2006; Tomlinson, 2005)4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 13
  • Results (6) Teachers Education Learning community Social Social Autonomy Meaningful interaction Teaching Challenging Academic Training interaction Shared for educational between skills education environment skills between culturePersonal students activities students and studentsdevelopment teachersSatisfaction 10 1 1 “I rather work hard and get a 6 (B-), than do nothing and get an 8 (A). The results I get at JCU are much more satisfying and I can really be proud of my grades.” “I think it’s good that I finally learned to earn my grades by working hard. If you work hard for something and earn a good grade, you really feel good.” (cf. Lens & Rand, 2002) “JCU really challenges me. When I get home after a day at JCU, I really feel like I learned something. It’s exhausting, but also satisfying.”4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 14
  • Conclusion & recommendationsTeachers Knowledge and skillsTeaching skills Knowledge acquisitionEducation Skill developmentChallenging education Natural abilities Thinking skillsAcademic environment & previous Changing resultsAutonomy for students experiences AttitudeMeaningful educational Urge to learnactivities Learning Learning process Work attitudeTraining skills environment PersonalLearning community development within school Learning achievementsSocial interaction Satisfactionbetween students andteachers IndependenceSocial interaction Learning Self esteembetween students environment FutureShared culture outside school Study choiceGeneral Personal wellbeingPhysical environment StressOrganization Part of a community4-10-2012 Introduction - Research aim - Theoretical framework – Method – Results – Conclusion & recommendations 15
  • References Croft, L. J. (2003). Teachers of the gifted: gifted teachers. In N. Colangelo, & G.A. Davis (red.), Handbook of gifted education (3rd ed.) (pp.558-571). Boston, Verenigde Staten: Allyn and Bacon. Gallagher, J.J. (2003). Issues and challenges in the education of gifted students. In N. Colangelo, & G.A. Davis (red.), Handbook of gifted education (3rd ed.) (pp.11-23). Boston, Verenigde Staten: Allyn and Bacon. Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning: a synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. London, Verenigd Koninkrijk: Routledge. Kulik, J.A. (2003). Grouping and tracking. In N. Colangelo, & G.A. Davis (red.), Handbook of gifted education (3rd ed.) (pp.268-281). Boston, Verenigde Staten: Allyn and Bacon. Lens, W., & Rand, P. (2002). Motivation and cognotion: their role in the development of giftedness. In K. Heller, F. Mönks, R. Sternberg, & R. Subotnik (red.), International Handbook of giftedness and talent (2nd ed.) (pp.193-202). Oxford, Verenigd Koninkrijk: Pergamon. OECD. (2010). PISA 2009 results: what makes a school successful? (volume IV). Paris: OECD. Pyryt, M.C. (2002). Talent development in science and technology. In: Heller, K., Mönks, F., Sternberg, R. & Subotnik, R. (Eds.), International Handbook of giftedness and talent (2nd ed.). (pp.427-438). Oxford, Verenigd Koninkrijk: Pergamon. Reis, S.M., & Renzulli, J.S. (2010). Is there still a need for gifted education? An examination of current research. Learning and individual differences, 20, 308-317. Rogers, K.B. (2007). Lessons learned about educating the gifted and talented: a synthesis of the research on educational practice. Gifted child quarterly, 51, 382-396. Subban, P. (2006). Differentiated instruction: a research basis. International education journal, 7(7), 935-947. Subotnik, R.F., Olszewski-Kubilius, P., & Worrell, F.C. (2011). Rethinking giftedness and gifted education: a proposed direction forward based on psychological science. Psychological science in the public interest, 12(1), 3-54. Trost, G. (2002). Prediction of excellence in school, higher education and work. In K. Heller, F. Mönks, R. Sternberg, & R. Subotnik (red.), International Handbook of giftedness and talent (2nd ed.) (pp.317-330). Oxford, Verenigd Koninkrijk: Pergamon. Tomlinson, C.A. (2005). Quality curriculum and instruction for highly able students. Theory into practice, 44(2), 160-166.4-10-2012 PPT FIsme 16