The College Classroom Week 7: They're not dumb, they're different

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The College Classroom
collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu
Peter Newbury
Fall 2013

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The College Classroom Week 7: They're not dumb, they're different

  1. 1. Week 7: They’re not dumb, they’re different. The College Classroom November 12 and 14, 2013
  2. 2. Today… 2 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  3. 3. Discussion procedure 3 1. The person with the ball will give the first comment. (Hang onto the ball until the next slide.) 2. After that, everyone is welcome to comment. 3. When we advance to the next slide, pass the ball to your right. Today, you are instructors, not students. Start your comments with  “When I’m the instructor…”  “If this was *my* class…” collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  4. 4. The Eric Experiment [1] 4 I still get the feeling that unlike a humanities course, here the professor is the keeper of the information, the one who knows all the answers. This does little to propagate discussion or dissent. (p. 21) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  5. 5. The Eric Experiment [1] 5 There was a Hispanic woman who sits next to me who is already having trouble with the material. She tells me she spends seven hours a night on homework and needs to get an “A” to receive an ROTC scholarship next year. (p. 22) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  6. 6. The Eric Experiment [1] 6 … students in a science class try to identify people who score well and then constantly compare their scores (or time studying or answers on homework) to their own. I have never been in a class before where my grade had any effect, real or perceived, on anyone else. (p. 23) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  7. 7. The Eric Experiment [1] 7 The best classes I had were classes in which I was constantly engaged, constantly questioning and pushing the limits of the subject and myself. (p. 25) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  8. 8. The Eric Experiment [1] 8 If you find you do not understand something from the last chapter, you must wait until after class to see wither the professor or the teaching assistant. The professor’s office hour is busy and there is not much time for in-depth help. The teaching assistant, while well-meaning, has problems communicating in English, and is only around on certain days of the week. (p. 26) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  9. 9. The Eric Experiment [1] 9 What is not as well understood are the various ways in which this already hard subject is made even harder and more frustrating by the pedagogy itself. (p. 29) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  10. 10. The Eric Experiment [1] 10 [My classmates] will have had no training in working collectively. In fact, their experience will have taught them to fear cooperation, and that another person’s intellectual achievement will be detrimental their own. (p. 24) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  11. 11. The Eric Experiment [1] 11 The lack of community, together with the lack of interchange between the professor and the students combines to produce a totally passive classroom experience. (p. 25) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  12. 12. The Eric Experiment [1] 12 “…the greatest stumbling block to understanding” was the lack of identifiable goals and the absence of linkage between concepts. (p. 29) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  13. 13. The Eric Experiment [1] 13 [F]or the most part, “why” questions are neither asked nor answered. The preference is for “how” questions…[Eric’s] classmates didn’t appreciate his interruptions, however. They seemed to “lose patience” with his “silly ‘why’ questions.” These got in the way of the mechanics of finding the right solution to their assigned problems. (p. 20-21) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  14. 14. The Eric Experiment [1] 14 If physicists learned to regard every one of those 250,000 introductory physics students – most of them somewhat better than “ordinary” – as having something valuable to contribute and much to gain from science, there might be no science “crisis” at all. (p. 32) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  15. 15. Eric’s physics professor: [1] 15 I assume the students in [introductory physics] are preprofessionals who have already decided on a career in science and are in class to lean problem-solving techniques that will be required of them in their careers. (p. 30) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  16. 16. Eric’s physics professor: [1] 16 Students not interested in the physical world have a harder time, since they don’t know and usually don’t care, how things, cars, bodies, weather, the heavens, work. (p. 30) Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  17. 17. 17 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  18. 18. Teaching the History of Women [2] 18 For the opportunity to introduce both the Middle East and women’s history to a captive and diverse audience, I am very grateful. But challenges abound, beginning with the time-consuming obstacle of students’ ignorance of even the region’s basic geography… Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  19. 19. Teaching the History of Women [2] 19 [H]ow, in this tense climate, can we present our students with honest, critical, and nuanced information about contentious topics… Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd *
  20. 20. Teaching the History of Women [2] 20 My experience to date suggests that one of the most effective teaching strategies is to address all topics in comparative global perspective, drawing particular parallels with the history of women in the United States and Western Europe. Assessment, Expertise Development, How People Learn, Learning Outcomes, Cooperative Learning, Fixed/Growth Mindset collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  21. 21. Peer Instruction 21 Before class: students read the text, watch online lectures complete a reading quiz, online assessment During class: Periodically, between mini-lectures, 1. instructor poses a conceptually challenging question 2. students vote individually 3. students discuss the concept in groups of 2-3 and then vote again 4. class-wide discussion led by instructor, confirming why the correct choice(s) is correct, why the incorrect choices are incorrect collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  22. 22. Halving Fail Rates using Peer Instruction [3] 22 “Fail Rate” refers to the number of students earning a W (withdraw), D, or F grade out of the total number students passing (A,B,C) and failing (W, D, F). collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  23. 23. Halving Fail Rates using Peer Instruction [3] 23 By designing a course to better support students in their attainment of learning goals, standards can be preserved while facilitating “easier” learning. Also, peer instruction  builds on students’ knowledge  has a social constructivism component  gives students opportunities to practice talking like experts  timely, formative feedback  student-centered / engaging / active learning collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  24. 24. Tobias’ conclusions: 24 But as least as important as content…will be changes in the “classroom culture”       more attention to an intellectual overview more context (even history) in the presentation of physical models less condescending pedagogy differently challenging examinations more discussion, more “dissent” (even if artificially constructed) more community in the classroom ([1], p. 31) collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  25. 25. Take away: 25  become aware of your own biases about who can succeed in your classes  find ways for students to contribute to the class collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  26. 26. 26 Next week: Alternatives to Lecture Watch for Homework 8 post collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  27. 27. References 27 1. Tobias, S. (1990). They’re Not Dumb, They’re Different: Stalking the Second Tier. Tuscon, AZ: Research Corporation. 2. Scalenghe, S. (November, 2012). Teaching the History of Women in the Middle East and North America. Perspectives on History, 50, 8. http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2012/1211/TeachingWomens-History-Forum_History-of-Women-in-the-Middle-East-and-NorthAfrica.cfm 3. Porter, L., Bailey-Lee, C., & Simon, B. (2012). Halving fail rates using peer instruction: a study of four computer science courses. Under review. 4. Kruger, J. & Dunning, D. (1999). Unskilled and unaware of it: How difficulties in recognizing one’s own incompetence lead to inflated self-assessments. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 77, 1121-1134. collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  28. 28. 28 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  29. 29. Unskilled and Unaware of it [4] 29 When people are incompetent in the strategies they adopt to achieve success and satisfaction, they suffer a dual burden: Not only do they reach erroneous conclusions and make unfortunate choices, but their incompetence robs them of the ability to realize it. (p. 1121) collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  30. 30. Unskilled and Unaware… 30 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  31. 31. Unskilled and Unaware… 31 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  32. 32. Unskilled and Unaware… 32 collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd
  33. 33. Unskilled and Unaware Conclusions 33  in domains where they have no intuition at all (“translating Slovenian proverbs”, “reconstructing an 8-cylinder engine”) people do not overestimate their ability, rate themselves worse than their peers  when they have a “minimal threshold of knowledge, theory or experience”, people poorly estimate their own abilities and the abilities of their peers (p. 1132) collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu #tccucsd

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