Online Learning Update

May 31, 2015

A Simple DIY Approach to Tracking and Improving Student Learning Outcomes

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:10 am

By Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

As the director of institutional research and then dean of performance excellence at San Antonio College, David A. Wood, Jr. had the capacity to use all kinds of sophisticated modeling and statistical tools and techniques to help measure and influence student learning outcomes. Now that he’s back to teaching astronomy at the college (a move he’s “ecstatic” about), he has turned to a self-created Excel spreadsheet to manage the data he needs to improve learning outcomes for the students in his own classes. Wood’s basic approach has increased scores on tests by five to 10 points, he said. More importantly, the quality of the types of questions students are asking in class suggests they’re understanding more about the topics being covered. Best of all, his technique is easily replicable by any instructor who cares to test it out. Those who have tried are big fans.

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