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Faculty Development Workshops

Exploring Ways To Increase The Performance and Retention Of At Risk Students By Using Technology To Increase Student Centered Learning

This workshop will explore ways to improve the performance and retention of at risk students. Student centered learning activities, as described in the AAHE’s Seven Principles of Good Undergraduate Education, will serve as the basis for the workshops. Use of technology as an aid for at risk students will be the overall focus for the faculty development day.

Research by Vincent Tinto and others has clearly shown that student retention is fostered when students make connections with people within an institution. The workshops will explore ways in which the institution currently encourages students to make connections with faculty, students' peers, administration, staff, college organizations and clubs, etc. through technology and non-technology related activities and develop additional strategies designed to increase student performance and retention.

Introductions- Pair- interviews

        *How would you describe your teaching style/approach?
        *How do you help your students become active participants in the learning process (in or out of class)?
        *Do you use technology to supplement or enhance your teaching?

Workshop #1- Who are your at risk students and what are they like?

Think-Pair-Share exercise- work in pairs to develop a list of descriptors for your at risk students.

*What are their academic backgrounds, are they employed, what outside pressures do they deal with that might affect their college work etc.

*What level of technical expertise do your at risk students have (email, chat rooms, instant messaging, discussion groups, web searching, word processing, etc)?

            Work in groups of four to generate a single list of descriptors

            Whole group discussion- Round-Robin- Each group will offer one descriptor at a time going around the room until
                all the individual lists are completed

Workshop #2- Using the 7 Principles of Good Undergraduate education to explore ways of increasing student performance and retention by building learning communities. (We will look at the general concept of community building first and follow this workshop with an afternoon workshop that focuses on adapting technology to incorporate the seven Principles into our learning structures)

Pair-reading-Explaining- participants read the 7 principles individually then work in pairs where they take turns paraphrasing in their own words, for their partners, what the principles mean to them.

Jig-Saw- Participants will work in smaller groups to become "experts" on a single principle. Each expert group will then identify what programs and activities currently in use at the institution fit into the 7 principles. This will be followed by the expert groups developing additional suggestions for activities or programs that will aid student performance and retention.

Whole Group Discussion- Jig Saw experts will share their results with the whole group.
In an academic Jig Saw the experts (students) would go back to their base groups and teach the concept they learned to their group members.

Lunch- Round Robin discussions- "What experiences and suggestions do you have about using technology in your courses?"

Workshop #3- Using the 7 principles to evaluate technology in courses

Pair-reading-explaining- An AAHE article (referenced below) on using the 7 principles to focus on technology will serve as the basis for a discussion on adapting technology to enhance student learning.

Whole Group Discussion- How can technology be used to encourage your at risk students to make connections within the institution?

Workshop Summary and wrap up- Where to go from here?
Continuing the interaction process

        *Consider forming a faculty/staff support group for members who work with at risk students
        *Create an email discussion group for faculty and staff to continue the dialogue
        *Schedule periodic forums for faculty and staff to meet and review the progress of newly implemented

                           Helpful web sites

From a book written by Arthur W. Chickering and Zelda F. Gamson

The following is a brief summary of the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education as
compiled in a study supported by the American Association of Higher education, the Education
Commission of States, and The Johnson Foundation. These Seven Principles are also presented in
Chickering and Gamson's book entitled "Applying the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate
Education" (1991).

Adopted in 1990 as a pedagogical model for Winona State University, the Seven Principles
for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education provide a common ground for faculty and
students in their quest for meaningful learning

Implementing the Seven Principles: Technology as Lever by Arthur W. Chickering and Stephen C. Ehrmann
Since the Seven Principles of Good Practice were created in 1987, new communication and information technologies have become major resources for teaching and learning in higher education. If the power of the new technologies is to be fully realized, they should be employed in ways consistent with the Seven Principles. Such technologies are tools with multiple capabilities; it is misleading to make assertions like "Microcomputers will empower students" because that is only one way in which computers might be used.

Student, faculty and institutional inventories developed to help focus on and evaluate the
success of implementing the 7 principles.

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