Mini-Conference Cultivating Student Leadership to Foster a More Inclusive Liberal Arts Classroom Host: Amherst College Center for Teaching and Learning in partnership with Being Human in STEM and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion Invited Speaker: Bryan Dewsbury, University of Rhode Island Location: Amherst College Center for Teaching and Learning Date: April 5 Attendees: mix of faculty, Deans (diversity, student life or other), teaching and learning personnel (Max: 50 people) (more…)
Event: Language Instruction Jam Location: Bryn Mawr College Date: March 23-24 Attendees: Language Instruction working group and project teams
CHIANTI: Ample time will be devoted to collaborative workshopping on CHIANTI, the shared teaching resource for college-level language instruction; participants will explore the resources that have been gathered so far (including student and faculty reflection videos on liberal arts language learning), brainstorm on ideas for the emerging platform, and work on building additional content.
SKILLS DASHBOARD: There will be opportunity for a demonstration and brainstorming on the language skills question bank and dashboard prototype – initially developed for French last year, with future possibilities for other languages.
DIGITAL TOOLS for LANGUAGE LEARNING: Colleagues across LACOL will be invited share their experiences with digital pedagogies and tools for language instruction. What works best for you and your students in meeting various pedagogical goals? How can we share and learn from each other? The group of Asian language instructors who met up at the Vassar 2017 workshop has been pioneering such exchanges as one model to build on.
Update on the shared grammar resource, summer 2018.
Convened by Chico Zimmerman and Clara Hardy (Carleton College), about a dozen faculty and technologists met at the workshop to make progress on ideas that emerged from several separate Zoom meetings in the two months preceding the conference. Eventually, the discussions centered on three main elements to focus on moving forward in the near term:
A set of videos featuring LACOL language instructors and students reflecting on the college-level language-learning experience. These videos will be available for sharing with all LACOL institutions by the end of the summer (see next bullet).
A self-curated online digital library of shareable resources for LACOL language instructors, for which a proof-of-concept site has been created and tentatively named CHIANTI (as a more appealing version of MERLOT). The (currently WordPress) site would allow for submissions from LACOL language instructors and would be searchable by category and tags. The initial categories will be in the area of:
General tips for college-level language learning, including research on adult L2 acquisition
English grammar for L2 learners, including models or maps that integrate all aspects of language
An interactive glossary of grammatical and linguistic terms from which instructors can draw for their own pedagogical purposes and to which they can contribute their own definitions and examples.
The CHIANTI site will continue to be built through the summer and populated with some initial resources for testing. A prototype submission form has been drafted and will be tested and finalized through the summer as well. The group will be soliciting contributions once these elements are finalized. (more…)
Session: Measuring Complex Domains for the Liberal Arts (Inclusive Pedagogies) Date/Time: Thursday, May 31, 1:30-2:15PM Resources: ⇒ Project site: https://emergentedu.org ⇒ About Sensemaker: http://cognitive-edge.com/sensemaker/#sensemaker-about Lead Presenters: ⇒ Kristen Eshleman, Director of Digital Innovation, Davidson College ⇒ Brent Maher, Director of Academic Assessment, Davidson College ⇒ Annie Sadler, Instructional Design Fellow, Davidson College ⇒ Paul Youngman, Prof. of German, Chair, Digital Humanities, Washington & Lee University
WATCH!Intro video (15 min)
Innovations in assessment can directly address a key challenge for our institutions – demonstrating our value in a time of increasing skepticism about the liberal arts.
On April 27, Davidson College and Washington & Lee University hosted a LACOL workshop to explore an assessment tool and method called Sensemaker that has the potential to manage and account for the complex domains of learning. Pursuing a research design as a network of allied liberal arts institutions provides evidence at scale while building capacity for experimentation and innovation at each of our institutions. (more…)
Emerging pedagogies for inclusion are keen topics of interest across the liberal arts. Our Teaching & Learning Centers, and our academic support colleagues have a growing body of experience – what works and what doesn’t work – when it comes to supporting our diverse student body academically and as whole persons. Collaboration around these insights and measurements across LACOL has seemed like a useful idea to many. To advance these conversations, two interrelated workshops will be held in the Spring of 2018:
WORKSHOP 2: Measuring Complex Domains of Learning (Inclusive Pedagogies)
The goal of these paired workshops is to start a dialogue across our stakeholders around issue of access and inclusion, and to consider ways in which both qualitative and quantitative assessments might be used to jointly study this aspect (and others) of the liberal arts experience. (more…)
The QLAB core team led a workshop session to update QLAB participants on the latest developments with the project. The team presented a redesign for the next phases of the project, reflecting a perspective shift from crowdsourcing new or curated materials to adapting existing, validated materials with the multi-campus faculty team. Several lessons learned from the fall 2018 QLAB pilot were discussed. Participants engaged in brainstorming around the applicability of the problems in the validated online skill building modules “The Math You Need When You Need It” for Geosciences and Economics and “Math Bench” for Biology. Discussion focused on the possible scope of each Qbit, and ways to engage faculty in appropriately framing the Q skill for use in their course(s). (more…)
Event: Information Session – Update on QLAB / What’s Next? Location: ZOOM Date: Wednesday, April 25 Time: 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM Eastern Presenter: QLAB Core Team*
You are invited to join a webinar update and discussion about QLAB, the multi-campus collaboration to develop a shared framework for curating, implementing, and assessing online instructional modules to assist students with quantitative skills and reasoning across disciplines.
Webinar Agenda: The goal of this session is to bring those who are interested up-to-speed with where the QLAB project stands, what we have learned so far, and what our next steps might be. Based on a new proposal developed by the core team over the winter and spring, the team welcomes your input on the next phases of the collaboration.
Status of the Q-bit project — overview of what’s been accomplished to date and the latest thinking toward the next phase of the collaboration.
To assist our students with readiness for their quantitative work across the curriculum, and to investigate the role that online resources may play in this, the Liberal Arts Collaborative for Digital Innovation (LACOL) has kicked off a multi-campus development and educational research initiative, nicknamed QLAB. The QLAB project provides a framework for creating a series of modules called Q-bits. Each online Q-bit module focuses on a particular quantitative skill or concepts and provides instructional and review content that is “wrapped” by pre/post knowledge and confidence checks, contextual guides, and applications problems in several disciplines. (more…)
The Language Instruction Working Group is currently (Spring/Summer 2018) exploring an idea for a online resource built collaborative by/for LACOL faculty and instructors that will guide language learners on foundational grammar concepts.
There is an emerging plan for collaboration toward Shared Grammar Resources for Beginning Language Students. This concept has been discussed with enthusiasm in some earlier LACOL meetings, and Carleton Professor of Classics Chico Zimmerman has drafted a proposal to articulate more of the vision – see link above and below.
Four small teams are actively collaborating across several schools on the following module topics:
General Advice to Learners
General advice to incoming students about language-learning at college.
This includes some student voices on their learning experiences, but also could include some more general data/research findings on the benefits of L2 acquisition and the potential interferences of L1.
Map of Language Learning
An “overview” or map of the different domains that language takes in, including “grammar” broadly construed and its relevance
Glossary of Grammar Terms
A glossary of grammar terms with English examples; perhaps including sentence diagramming
Phonetics and Phonology
Phonetics/phonology module (perhaps with differing emphases depending on the target languages)
The workshop and pilot are the next step in a sequence that began with the Language Skills Hack-a-thon at Swarthmore College in May 2017 and the Dashboard Prototype Technical Workshop at Carleton College in October 2017. With groundwork laid at these previous events, the team is well positioned to put forward a working prototype in French that can be piloted with faculty and students for placement and advising in the summer/fall of 2018.(more…)
Muller (pictured above right at the 2017 QS Hack-a-thon alongside Prof. A. Honig, Amherst College) has been at the forefront of Q-bits module design and implementation as part of a multi-year, multi-campus collaboration called QLAB. Given Laura’s teaching background and expertise in peer support and tutoring for Quantitative Skills and Reasoning, she’s interested in assessing the potential for online modules like Q-bits which can provide just-in-time support to help students brush up on, and apply, quantitative methods and concepts across the curriculum.
At NNN, Laura focused on issues of meta-cognition, student confidence, and transfer of QS/QR knowledge and skills across different context.
A distinguishing features of the Q-bits design is the opportunity for students to see that it’s worth investing time in learning certain foundational concepts that they will see over and over in their academic career.
This summer and fall, teams of faculty and technologists collaborated intensively to launch QLAB, a shared framework for curating, implementing and assessing online instructional modules for quantitative skills (QS) and reasoning for just-in-time review and skill-building across disciplines. The goal of the QLAB project is to assist faculty teaching quantitative subjects who find they need methods to support students with gaps in preparation. The strategy draws on a body of research in higher education and experience at our institutions showing that online modules can be a beneficial component of an overall QS support program.
The individual modules, known as Qbits, review quantitative topics and demonstrate the topic’s applications in different disciplinary contexts. For example, a module might review logarithms and then consider the application to decibels and sound perception in psychology, the Richter scale in geology, the concept of pH in chemistry, etc. In Fall 2017, Qbits are being implemented through a combination of videos and quizzing, and consist of an initial knowledge check, short videos to review specific quantitative skills, structured application problems that give students practice applying the quantitative skill in disciplinary contexts, and a final knowledge check.
Developing online resources that can be used in multiple contexts to help students strengthen their quantitative skills serves two purposes. First, by demonstrating the relevance of specific QS in various disciplinary contexts, students learn to view quantitative skills as fundamental and transferable skills that they can draw on in many areas of their liberal arts experience. Second, the consortial effort allows us to collect meaningful data about the effectiveness of the various modules for a greater number of students in a wider variety of contexts. Using what we learn in this pilot, we plan to expand the collection of useful modules.
Aims of the pilot include:
Developing a collaborative framework for design, implement and assessment of online modules for QS/QR instruction and review at residential liberal arts institutions.
Crafting an initial set of instructional modules on high-priority QS topics, drawing on high quality instructional content, developed in partnership with Yale ONEXYS and others.
Assessing module effectiveness as refreshers for tutoring and as just-in-time instruction embedded in coursework.
Gathering data to evaluate the impact of modules on student learning and confidence in each phase of the project and beyond.