Learning Strategies
WestShore Centre’s Journey
to increase
Online Course Completion Rates
Introductions
Dal Little
Online Support Teacher for:
Sooke School District’s
- WestShore Centre for Learning
- Juan de Fuc...
Today’s Agenda
Effectiveness of an online orientation course
Platform neutral (WebCT/Blackboard, Moodle, D2L ...)
The purp...
Not For Sale
Learning Strategies is designed for one school
Learning Strategies is not for sale or sharing
Too much licens...
A Little Background
WestShore’s History
Started in Community Education (CE)
Adults began registering for K-12 courses lead...
Background continue
WestShore Centre opened Juan de Fuca DL
Accommodating grade 8-12 students
At the time, limited choices...
Issue to Investigate
We start brainstorming the problems and issues:
Clearly identify profile of referred students
Often n...
Improve Low Completion Rates
As a staff, we focused on the goals of what we wanted to
achieve:
Increase student course com...
Criteria for Course
Student profiles and school issues
1 hour Orientation was insufficient preparation
(Teachers provided ...
What Learning Strategies provided
Teachers wanted to teach the material in the course.
Teachers did not want to provide a ...
Operational Configurations
o Changed the term Activation to Active Status
o each course TOC has an Active Status location ...
Developed Five Units of Instruction
Unit 1 - provides an overview of what is expected of students and
what students can ex...
Unit 1 - Learning Outcomes
Unit 1 provides you with an overview of what is expected of
students and what students can expe...
Unit 2 – Learning Outcomes
Unit 2 allows you to investigate your current level of
competency in online skills.
Students wi...
Unit 3 - Learning Outcomes
Unit 3 allows you to review and update your knowledge and skills in using
a computer and conduc...
Unit 4 – Learning Outcomes
Unit 4 encourages you to determine your strengths and challenges as a
learner and what may be n...
Unit 5 – Learning Outcomes
Unit 5 encourages you to extend your methods of note-taking and
understanding course material.
...
Completion Rate with Learning Strategies
Blue columns are for 2008/09
Red columns are for 2009/10
Compared:
•
Total of Onl...
Blue columns are for 2008/09
Red columns are for 2009/10
Compared:
•
Total of Online Students
•
Total of Blended Students
...
Summary
2008/9 stats based on 3500 course registered
2009/10 stats based on 4200 course registered
The significant change ...
Summary
o Insisting all new students take the online orientation course
(Learning Strategies) provides:
o All students, te...
Thank You for Attending
Dal Little
WestShore Centre
Sooke School District
Victoria, BC
250-391-9002
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Learning strategies

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Power Point slides used the the Digital Learning Spring Conference on April 19. the session was at 10:45-11:30 am and was titled "Increasing Completion Reates by Providing Online Skills" by Dal LIttle

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Learning strategies

  1. 1. Learning Strategies WestShore Centre’s Journey to increase Online Course Completion Rates
  2. 2. Introductions Dal Little Online Support Teacher for: Sooke School District’s - WestShore Centre for Learning - Juan de Fuca Distributed Learning - Byte Alternate
  3. 3. Today’s Agenda Effectiveness of an online orientation course Platform neutral (WebCT/Blackboard, Moodle, D2L ...) The purpose of today's presentation is to share one year’s worth of data from one year ago and show you the results Overview of WestShore Centre WestShore Centre’s rationale, process and outcomes Course structure and outcomes
  4. 4. Not For Sale Learning Strategies is designed for one school Learning Strategies is not for sale or sharing Too much licensing (AVID content) Must be configured like WestShore Re-developing for new Blackboard 9.1
  5. 5. A Little Background WestShore’s History Started in Community Education (CE) Adults began registering for K-12 courses leading towards established DL delivery Mainly online with a some blended classroom New funding, 8-12 students (under 19 yrs) registering School started reconfiguring to accommodate For several years, we had some of the lowest completion rates, i.e. 20-25 % on average
  6. 6. Background continue WestShore Centre opened Juan de Fuca DL Accommodating grade 8-12 students At the time, limited choices, knowledge, services Passionate staff wanting to make a difference We want to change something to improve rates DL schools were evolving, as result, each school has developed its own way of registering students, delivering courses and complying to the DL policies We were told “Make do with what we have” Our completion rate remained low
  7. 7. Issue to Investigate We start brainstorming the problems and issues: Clearly identify profile of referred students Often not successful in regular settings Not just adults, but 8-12 students were increasing WestShore Centre is an urban school Consider themselves IT capable, navigate a course and do the expected work in an LMS We also knew we had to remain within Activation Policy We looked at the goals of what we wanted to achieve.
  8. 8. Improve Low Completion Rates As a staff, we focused on the goals of what we wanted to achieve: Increase student course completion Funding policies would dictate $$ available Education Counselor, Bonnie, suggested designing and developing a Board Authorized Course (BAA) to achieve these goals and make 2 credits for funding
  9. 9. Criteria for Course Student profiles and school issues 1 hour Orientation was insufficient preparation (Teachers provided “How-To” and not Subject Learning Outcomes) Too much information for most students remember Needed time to reflect and understand online learning (i.e. Online learning is self-management, Reading and writing basics) Needed time to practice the mechanics of “How-To” (i.e. Attach files, Save as .rtf, navigate course structures, students think they know, but at home they can’t remember. Do not ask for Help!) Needed to ensure funding was in place Conclusion: Needed a credited course on “How-To”
  10. 10. What Learning Strategies provided Teachers wanted to teach the material in the course. Teachers did not want to provide a continual technical support and administrative role The course was to act a filter for those student who register, do not do anything, leave, and then start again. Establish a quality control, set the bar high at the outset (See assignment as example) The course needed to provide a sense of everyone being on the same page, have a common understanding of expectations for students and teachers Efficient way of setting academic expectations and standards Focused more on the process of learning and not content First step of a path towards entering academic courses
  11. 11. Operational Configurations o Changed the term Activation to Active Status o each course TOC has an Active Status location (after 10%) o attending first class of Learning Strategies is mandatory o after completed the Learning Strategies, two weeks are allocated for you to reach the Active Status point o to receive textbooks/resources after reaching Active Status o to contact the Principal or Vice-Principal if students do not reach the Active Status in academic course o to submit assignments regularly, with at least one submitted assignment or a mail message each week.
  12. 12. Developed Five Units of Instruction Unit 1 - provides an overview of what is expected of students and what students can expect of WestShore Centre. Unit 2 allows students to investigate their current level of competency in online skills in the LMS (Tools) Unit 3 allows students to review and update their knowledge and skills using a computer and conducting basic file management activities. Unit 4 encourages students to determine their learning strengths and challenges and what may be needed for them to succeed in an online environment. Unit 5 encourages students to extend learning skills by note- taking, studying and understanding course material.
  13. 13. Unit 1 - Learning Outcomes Unit 1 provides you with an overview of what is expected of students and what students can expect of WestShore Centre. Students will: o Attend this Unit 1 class. It is mandatory to attend to receive critical information o Be informed of the skills and competencies required to work independently in an online learning environment by beginning to work through Unit 2 of this course; o Or, challenge the course timeline by completing all the assignments and assessments from Unit 2, 3, & 4 with 80% as quickly as you are able.
  14. 14. Unit 2 – Learning Outcomes Unit 2 allows you to investigate your current level of competency in online skills. Students will: o Get started with (login, password, global settings, configuring your home computer to work with WebCT) o Learn to navigate and access course content o Understand how to use the Course Menu and Table of Contents, Breadcrumbs, Home Page o Use the Discussion forums, Mail Messaging, Assignments, Assessment o Finding and completing the Orientation assignment in your academic course(s) o Reach Active Status in Online Learning Strategies course
  15. 15. Unit 3 - Learning Outcomes Unit 3 allows you to review and update your knowledge and skills in using a computer and conducting basic file management activities. Students will: o Identify parts of the computer o Know the difference between input and output o use WebCT (online learning management software) o file saving options o Identify file types and extensions (.doc, .rtf) to know how to ensure files will be received in a readable format o Know about linking, cutting, pasting of URLs for efficiency in completing and researching assignments o Recognize different browsers, word processor, operating systems o Understand the difference between network vs personal computer options
  16. 16. Unit 4 – Learning Outcomes Unit 4 encourages you to determine your strengths and challenges as a learner and what may be needed for you to succeed in an online course. Students will: o Learn guidelines to being successful as an online learner o Prepare an outline to independently keep track of assignments o Prepare a realistic schedule of the anticipated timeline to complete course requirements o Learn strategies to effectively manage time o Learn about and become familiar with personal learning style o Develop an awareness of strengths and weaknesses as it relates to academic success o Identify areas that need additional instruction to achieve 80% mastery and schedule next session/s
  17. 17. Unit 5 – Learning Outcomes Unit 5 encourages you to extend your methods of note-taking and understanding course material. Students will: o Learn to use the Cornell System of note taking o Learn to mark up printed material to extend your understanding o Learn to mark up the margins to help retain information o Understand the "Curve of Forgetting” o Learn to use the KWL technique to reinforce long-term memory of information
  18. 18. Completion Rate with Learning Strategies Blue columns are for 2008/09 Red columns are for 2009/10 Compared: • Total of Online Students • Total of Blended Students Note-Number of online students who completed little more than doubled. This chart includes students completing Learning Strategies.
  19. 19. Blue columns are for 2008/09 Red columns are for 2009/10 Compared: • Total of Online Students • Total of Blended Students Note-Number of online students who completed doubled. This chart does not include students completing Learning Strategies.
  20. 20. Summary 2008/9 stats based on 3500 course registered 2009/10 stats based on 4200 course registered The significant change is how much the online completion changed - it doubled. The significant change is how much the online completion changed - it doubled.
  21. 21. Summary o Insisting all new students take the online orientation course (Learning Strategies) provides: o All students, teachers, parents and administrators with a common understanding of what to expect o A learning standard is set for quality of work, formatting documents, timelines .... o Science teachers teach science, math teachers teach math o It is a funded, 2 credit course o Reduced the redundant one-on-one, inconsistency in messages and yo-yos (start, no activity, leave, restart)
  22. 22. Thank You for Attending Dal Little WestShore Centre Sooke School District Victoria, BC 250-391-9002

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