FROM TEACHING TO
LEARNING
TEACHING & LEARNING SYMPOSIUM
UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN – MADISON
MAY 20, 2009
Aaron Brower
Vice Provost for Teaching & Learning
Professor, School of Social Work
Today’s outline
4.
Moving from teaching to learning: What do
students know and retain?
What kinds of information and experiences should
we offer?
The 5 teaching best practices that foster student
learning
Web 2.0 in our own teaching & learning
5.
To use as many activities as possible!
1.
2.
3.
Who are our students?
“A Vision of Students Today” by Michael Wesch, Kansas State University
“The real cure for the ills of
democracy is more democracy”
- Bob LaFollette, February 17, 1912 appearing in
La Follette's Weekly
Preamble from a 2008 national report by Frederick
Hess (Still at Risk: What students don’t know, even now)
Senator Joseph McCarthy investigated people
who protested the war in Vietnam, better known
as the Second World War. Fortunately, that war
was over before Christopher Columbus sailed to
America; otherwise, we might have never
experienced the Renaissance.
Based on a telephone survey of 1,200 17-year-olds:
Almost 20 % did not know who our enemy was in World War II
More than a quarter thought Columbus sailed after 1750 (2% said after
1950!)
Half did not know who Sen. McCarthy investigated
Half did not know what the Renaissance was
More history and literature misinformation from
this same survey
Almost
60% didn’t know that the Civil War
was between 1850 and 1900.
40%
didn’t know that the First World War was
between 1900 and 1950.
Almost
60% don’t know what The Invisible Man
by Ralph Ellison is about & almost 50% don’t
know what 1984 is about. Over 50% don’t
know who Oedipus is.
Geography Knowledge
(2006 poll of young adults)
 1/3rd
of respondents couldn’t locate Louisiana and 48%
couldn’t locate Mississippi.
 60%
couldn’t find Iraq on a map of the Middle East.
 47%
could not find India on a map of Asia.
 75%
were unable to locate Israel on a map of the Middle
East.
 60%
didn’t know the border between North and South Korea
is the most heavily fortified in the world. 30% thought it was
between the U.S. and Mexico.
 Less
than 30% think it important to know the locations of
countries in the news; only 14% believe speaking another
language is a necessary skill.
Science Knowledge
Over
half of all Americans don't know that the
Earth orbits the Sun once a year.
Nearly
half think that humans once lived, like
the Flintstones, alongside dinosaurs.
Take out your clickers…
Should you take an antibiotic for a cold?
A. Yes, it knocks out the bug
B. Yes, but while it won't help me, it will decrease the
spread of the bug
C. No, by the time you have cold symptoms, it's already
too late to knock out the bug
D. No, it won't have any effect
Take out your clickers…
What causes the seasons?
A. The distance between the earth and the sun during
its elliptical orbit
B. The amount of sunlight during the day
C. The angle of the earth’s axis of rotation
D. A complicated but predictable relationship between
the amount and density of ozone, moisture, and
other ionic changes in the atmosphere
Take out your clickers…
All else being equal, the relationship between attitude
change and behavior change is
A.
B.
C.
D.
Attitudes precede behavior change (i.e., you
have to first want to change)
Attitudes follow behavior change (i.e.,
attitudes change to rationalize behavior
change)
Both change more or less simultaneously
People don’t change
Let’s go old school…
Which language is spoken by the most native
speakers?
A. Spanish
B. English
C. Hindi
D. Mandarin Chinese
Including secondary speakers:
1. Mandarin Chinese
2. English
3. Spanish
4. Russian
It’s not that we’re dumb, but what's going
on here...
 We
retain what we use, and what we
teach to others
 We retain information that’s repeated
 We retain information with emotional
connections
The Learning Pyramid
Average Retention Rates for Different Teaching Methods
5% Lecture
10% Reading
20% Audio Visual
30% Demonstration
50% Discussion Groups
75% Practice by Doing
90% Teaching Others
Source: National Training Lab - Bethel, Maine
The Importance of Repetition


Within 48 hours, we forget
the majority of all
information received in the
previous 48 hours.
Repetition is critical to
reinforcing and sustaining
messages in people’s minds.
Sources: The Arbitron National In-Car Study, Arbitron, 2003; The Arbitron Outdoor Study, Arbitron, 2001;
National Public Transportation Survey, Outdoor Advertising Association of America.
The Role of Emotion:
The Confluent Model of Education
“For a long time we have known the importance of
personal involvement in learning. Educational
psychologists state that if learning has no personal
meaning, it will not change behavior. Seldom has the
converse been stated: if we add an emotional dimension
to learning, the learner will become personally involved,
and as a consequence, there will be change in the
learner’s behavior.”
Brown, 1971
Really – it’s not that we’re dumb...!
We retain what we use, and what we teach to
others
 We retain information that’s repeated
 We retain information with emotional connections

 So, what information is retained and used?
 What information should be retained and
used?
➥ And therefore, what information should we
teach, and through what kinds of experiences?
UW-Madison’s Essential Learning Outcomes
Beginning in the first year, and continuing at successively higher levels across their college studies, students
should prepare for twenty-first-century challenges by gaining

Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical & Natural World
Through study in the sciences and mathematics, social sciences, humanities, histories,
languages, and the arts
Focused by engagement with big questions, both contemporary and enduring

Intellectual and Practical Skills, including
Inquiry and analysis
Critical and creative thinking
Written and oral communication
Quantitative literacy
Information and technology literacy
Teamwork and problem solving
Practiced extensively, across the curriculum, in the context of progressively more
challenging problems, projects, and standards for performance

Personal and Social Responsibility, including
Civic knowledge & engagement
Ethical reasoning & action
Intercultural knowledge & competence
Foundations & skills for lifelong learning
Anchored through active involvement with diverse communities and real-world challenges

Integrative Learning, including
Synthesis and advanced accomplishment across general and specialized studies
Demonstrated through the application of knowledge, skills, and responsibilities to new settings
and complex problems
AAC&U’s Employer Survey: What skills
should colleges emphasize?
% saying colleges should put more emphasis on each learning outcome
Science and technology
developments
Teamwork skills in
diverse settings
Applied knowledge in
real-world settings
Written/oral communication
Critical/analytical thinking
Global issues
Information literacy
AAC&U’s Employer Survey: What skills
should colleges emphasize?
% saying colleges should put more emphasis on each learning outcome
Creativity/innovation
Complex problem solving
U.S. role in the world
Quantitative literacy
Ethics and integrity
Cultural values/traditions
Civic engagement
AAC&U’s Employer Survey: College grads aren't
well prepared in key areas
Teamwork
Ethical judgment
Intercultural skills
Social responsibility
Quantitative reasoning
Oral communication
Self-knowledge
Adaptability
Critical thinking
Writing
Self-direction
Global knowledge
Mean
rating*
7.0
6.9
6.9
6.7
6.7
6.6
6.5
6.3
6.3
6.1
5.9
5.7
Very well prepared
(8-10 ratings)*
39%
38%
38%
35%
32%
30%
28%
24%
22%
26%
23%
18%
Not well
prepared
(1-5 ratings)*
17%
19%
19%
21%
23%
23%
26%
30%
31%
37%
42%
46%
*ratings on 10-point scale: 10 = recent college graduates are extremely well prepared on each
21 quality
to succeed in entry level positions or be promoted/advance within the company
AAC&U’s Employer Survey: Grads should have
experiences that pull it all together
Very effective
Fairly effective
Supervised/evaluated internship/community-based project where
students apply college learning in real-world setting
83%
Advanced comprehensive senior project, such as thesis, demonstrating student’s depth
of knowledge in major & problem-solving, writing, and analytic reasoning skills
79%
Essay tests to evaluate level of problem-solving, writing, and
analytical-thinking skills
60%
Electronic portfolio of student’s college work, including accomplishments in
key skill areas and faculty assessments
56%
Multiple-choice tests of general content knowledge
32%
22
AAC&U’s Employer Survey: Evaluations should be
based on the comprehensive experiences
Very useful
Fairly useful
Faculty supervisor’s assessment of applicant’s student internship/ community-based
project applying college learning in real-world setting
67%
Sample of applicant’s student senior project and overview of faculty assessment of the
project
61%
Electronic portfolio of applicant’s college work, including accomplishments in key skill
areas and faculty assessments
56%
Applicant’s score on essay test to evaluate level of problem-solving, writing, and
analytical-thinking skills
54%
Applicant college’s score showing how the college compares to others in advancing
students’ critical-thinking skills
36%
Applicant’s score on multiple-choice test of general content knowledge
29%
23
Employers Find College Transcripts Of Limited
Use In Evaluating Potential
How useful do you find the college transcript in helping you evaluate
job applicants’ potential to succeed at your company?
Not sure
Very useful
Fairly useful
Not useful
Just somewhat useful
24
UW-Madison’s Essential Learning Outcomes
Beginning in the first year, and continuing at successively higher levels across their college studies, students
should prepare for twenty-first-century challenges by gaining

Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical & Natural World
Through study in the sciences and mathematics, social sciences, humanities, histories,
languages, and the arts
Focused by engagement with big questions, both contemporary and enduring

Intellectual and Practical Skills, including
Inquiry and analysis
Critical and creative thinking
Written and oral communication
Quantitative literacy
Information and technology literacy
Teamwork and problem solving
Practiced extensively, across the curriculum, in the context of progressively more
challenging problems, projects, and standards for performance

Personal and Social Responsibility, including
Civic knowledge & engagement
Ethical reasoning & action
Intercultural knowledge & competence
Foundations & skills for lifelong learning
Anchored through active involvement with diverse communities and real-world challenges

Integrative Learning, including
Synthesis and advanced accomplishment across general and specialized studies
Demonstrated through the application of knowledge, skills, and responsibilities to new settings
and complex problems
Five Teaching “Best Practices” that
Lead to Learning
Learning in Context
 Group-based Learning
 Increased Time on Task
 Increased Frequency of Feedback
 Positive Classroom Climate


Cabrera, A. F. & La Nasa, S. (2005). Classroom teaching practice: Ten lessons learned. In W. de Vries
(Ed.). Calidad, eficiencia y evaluación de la educación superior (129-151). Spain, Madrid: Netbiblo.
Learning in Context

Humanities example (Philosophy FIG): In this FIG, “Good,
Beauty, and the Meaning of Life,” students will focus on some of
the deepest, hardest, and most central questions we confront
in our lives. The class will approach these questions by reading
and discussing both classic philosophical works and some recent
studies engaged with these perennial issues. The course is
really concerned with the question of whether human
beings can have good lives and, if so, what such lives look
like. The course will consider a variety of answers: the good
life is devoted to such things as self-examination and critical
thinking, political engagement, religious devotion, renunciation
of external goods, virtue, happiness, and pleasure. Students will
consider whether life has any meaning at all, and if not, what
we do in response to such a finding. (Steve Nadler)
Learning in Context

Science example (Chem 108): In this course, you will study
real-world issues that we hope will catch your interest and
engage you over the course of the semester, if not for a
lifetime. We will consider questions such as, "How can
radiation both cause and cure cancer?", "Is global climate
change occurring?", "How clean is the air I breathe?", "Does
it matter if I eat hydrogenated peanut butter?" and "Why is it
hard to recycle certain plastics?" In order to understand and
respond thoughtfully to the issues involved, you must understand
certain chemical principles as well as be able to think through
complex issues that may not have easy answers. (Cathy
Middlecamp, Jamie Ellis)
Learning in Context


Service Learning example (Physical Therapy in Belize): Four students
and 3 instructors went on a two-week service-learning trip to Punta
Gorda, Belize during the winter break. Goals for the trip were to
provide “the opportunity to develop community education programs
on disability and to perform service projects for the community and
for families of those with disabilities.” (Center for Global Health and
SMPH)
Study Abroad example (Florence program): “The Florence program is
… is housed in the Villa Corsi-Salviati in Sesto Fiorentino, located six
miles from the center of Florence … Living in Sesto allows students to
easily explore the surrounding Tuscany countryside as well as Florence
itself … This program is ideal for students interested in studying the
humanities or social sciences … Placements in the past have
included teaching English in local schools, interning at City Hall or
working with the Sesto Recreation Department. (Int’l Acad. Programs)
Group-Based Learning




EPD 160, required intro to Engineering.
WES Program in Intro Calculus. Harder problems
done in small groups.
Accenture Leadership Center’s course (Bus 365;
Shannon Elliott).
Child Psyc (Psyc560; Jenny Saffran; 200 students).
Small groups of students develop projects working
with kids in the community, and then they upload their
ppt and/or videos to [email protected] for the rest of the
class to see.
Increased Time on Task


On-line homework (John Moore’s Chem 109)
Clickers used during lecture to keep attention (Jeff
Henriques’s Psyc 202).
 One
student’s comment:
“I do think they are very helpful… If you didn't require
students to purchase a clicker, would they pay attention
in class when you ask questions?? Probably not. The
questions are very helpful even without the clicker, assuming
that students pay attention and actually think about the
question.”
Increased Frequency of Feedback


Bob Jeanne and low-stakes lecture-prep quizzes in
Bio 151/2
Elizabeth Becker (T.A.) teaches a section of Psyc
202 for AAP and CEO (TRIO): students write and
rewrite their main paper 5 times in the semester;
Elizabeth meets with them for each rewrite. Shows
sig. increases in both GPAs and students’ academic
self confidence.
Positive Classroom Climate



Lisa Photos learning all the names of her students in
ILS 200 (Critical Thinking & Expression; about 200
students)
Alexander Shasko’s use of music at beginning of
class for Afro-Am 156 (Black Music and American
Cultural History; 240 students)
Tracy Schroepfer’s intentional social interaction in
SW457 (Human Beh & Social Env.; 100 students)
Courses and Experiences
that Put it All Together

FIGs

RLCs

Study Abroad

Capstones and Senior Theses

Emerging hybrid model for intro gateway/service
courses
☞One bad example: the syllabi for Intro to Social Work
Take out the clickers again...
Which best practice are you most familiar
with?
A.
B.
C.
D.
E.
Learning in Context
Group-based Learning
Increased Time on Task
Increased Frequency of Feedback
Positive Classroom Climate
What courses/activities did I miss??




Talk with one neighbor about a favorite course or
activity that you know about that uses one or more
of these five best practices. Take about 3-5
minutes.
Find another pair and share your course/activity
with them.
We’ll come back together in 10 minutes.
Upload your examples onto TLE.wisc.edu…
(think-pair-square-share)
Web 2.0: Google World vs. Card Catalogue World
“The Machine is us/using us” by Michael Wesch, Kansas State University
The Special Role of Technology & Web 2.0




We are living through a genuine information
revolution, from the card catalogue world to the
google world.
Our campus is organized in the card catalogue
world; our students are living in the google world.
How would we set up the university differently — how
would courses, majors, activities, services be
organized — if we started over in the google world?
Mainly, what are the skills needed to do good work in
the google world? Are we providing them?
Web 2.0 in Teaching & Learning
This is an unexplored frontier; here are some examples:
History 434: A History of American Grand Strategy (Jeremi Suri).
Digitizing historical maps and GoogleEarth to walk through historical
worlds; i.e., comparing the creation of the Trans-Siberian Railway during
the Russo-Japanese War (early 1900s) to the challenges constructing the
Japanese railroad from Thailand into Burma during WWII.

Music 151: Music Theory (for non-majors) (Jamie Henke). An application
of a garage band-like program that lets students create music and
experiment with concepts taught. ALSO, using facebook-type application
(Ning) to create social network profiles for famous composers from history.


http://engage.wisc.edu/sims_games/phaseIII/
A Cautionary Tale - even faculty aren’t
immune…
•
“Do you think Dartmouth parents would be upset about paying
$40,000 a year for their children to go here if they knew that
certain professors were looking up stuff on wikipedia and asking
for advice from their facebook friends on the night before the
lecture?”
•
Another entry: “When I’m chair, we’re all going to JOG IN
PLACE throughout the [faculty] meeting, this should knock out at
least half of the faculty within 10 min. (especially the
blowhards)..."
•
Look it up: google Reiko Ohnuma and you’ll see how quickly
this story spread…
Our Very Own TLE website
TLE.wisc.edu
Visit it—and contribute!
 How we’re using it for this conference
 Thank you John Thompson and Blaire Bundy;
Mo Noonan Bischof, Jake Blanchard and Jeff
Henriques!!

One more activity (Minute Paper)



Write down the one most important thing you
learned my presentation.
Write down the one best practice will you
incorporate into your course or educational
opportunity next year.
Write down the one unanswered question that
you would like an answer to.
 Seek
out the answer to that question through the rest of
this symposium
Thank you!!
Enjoy the conference!
Enjoy your colleagues!
Visit and contribute to TLE.wisc.edu
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From Teaching to Learning