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MODULE 6. Learning Experiences using Contextual Learning. 3rd. 2nd. 1st. Learning Objectives. What is the purpose of using Contextual Learning ? How to use Contextual Learning in a course? How to create and use: Service Learning Activities Place-Based Learning Experiences

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slide1

MODULE 6

Learning Experiences using Contextual Learning

3rd

2nd

1st

slide2

Learning Objectives

  • What is the purpose of using Contextual Learning?
  • How to use Contextual Learning in a course?
  • How to create and use:
    • Service Learning Activities
    • Place-Based Learning Experiences
    • Lab-Based Learning Experiences
    • Work-Based Learning Experiences
slide3

LCT Approaches

LCT strategies were grouped into three approaches:

slide4

Contextual Learning

Creating a learning space in a place!

Integrates:

Classroom instruction

Real-life situation

Reflection

Building:

Human Capital

Social Capital

Cultural Capital

Professional Capital

slide5

Why it is important?

The best way to learn abstract concepts!

Research shows that not all people learn best abstractly. In fact, most people learn best through informal, contextual experiences (Caine and Caine, 1991, Gardner, 1983, Kolb, 1984).

It makes reality relative to self!

slide6

Contextual Learning

Learning in real-life situations!

Contextual Learning is:

Reality-based experience

outside-of-the-classroom

Done within a specific context:

Context serves as a catalyst for students to utilize their disciplinary knowledge

Context presents a forum for further formation of their personal values, and professional development.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contextual_learning

slide7

Why it is important?

"According to contextual learning theory, learning occurs only when students process new information or knowledge in such a way that it makes sense to them in their frame of reference (their own inner world of memory, experience, and response). (Hull, 1993)

Contextual Learning assumes that the mind naturally seeks meaning in context--that is, in the environment where the person is located--and that it does so through searching for relationships that make sense and appear useful." (Hull, 1993)

slide8

Why it is important?

It is the best way to:

  • Help students to make sense of what is being taught by converting abstract knowledge into real understanding
  • Make individual lessons be understood as interconnected pieces that build upon each other
  • Help teacher to communicate effectively the reason for, the meaning of, and the relevance of what it is being studied

http://www.texascollaborative.org/WhatIsCTL.htm

slide9

How to use Contextual Learning?

Engaging students in a real situation!

Service Learning

Place-Based Learning

Lab-Based Learning

Work-Based Learning

slide10

How to use Contextual Learning?

Learning is constructed by having a relationship with:

People and Community

Physical Locality and Local Experts

Learning as a

Group

Service Learning

Place-Based Learning

Part of course curriculum

Two-way benefit:

Students & Others

Mostly one-way benefit:

Students will learn from the place

Build human, social, cultural and physical capital through volunteer community service

Build deeper technical and understanding of a specific locality

slide11

How to use Contextual Learning?

Learning is constructed by having a relationship with:

Physical Locality and Local Experts

(Apprenticeship + Mentoring)

Learning as an Individual

On-Campus Lab-Based Learning

Work-Based Learning

Out of course curriculum

Build Academic Expertise

(develop ability to study and research)

Build Professional Expertise (develop application skills and interpersonal relationships)

slide12

Examples of Contextual Learning:

Service Learning

Place-Based Learning

  • Science class about pollution complemented with an activity of collecting trash in an urban area
  • Growing corn: from planting the seeds until harvesting
  • Study-abroad programs
  • Field study trips: learn history, nature and environment

On-Campus Lab-Based Learning

Work-Based Learning

  • Research Assistant
  • Individual Research Projects
  • Lab Assistant
  • Internships or Co-ops
  • Job Shadowing
  • School-Based Enterprise
slide14

What is it?

Community Service + Curriculum

Service learning is a teaching approach that engages students to learn and develop through thoughtfully organized community service(Brown, 1998; Swick, 2001).

It applies knowledge in real-world , addressing community needs and turning students into responsible citizens

slide15

How it works?

Class Instruction

Application at Community

C

O

N

C

L

U

S

I

O

N

S

Collecting trash

Building community gardens

Repairing and painting damage areas

Organizing charity events

Teaching basic professional skills to community

Performing your professional work to community

REFLECTION

slide16

How to create one?

Ten Steps for Bringing Service to Your Classroom !

1

Define Specific Learning Objectives for your course

2

Assess the Needs and Resources of Your Community and School

3

Form Community Partnerships

4

Select a Project and Begin Preliminary Planning

Learning

Objectives

Community

Need

PROJECT

Identify your needs to implement the project:

Resources? People? Time?...

slide17

How to create one?

Ten Steps for Bringing Service to Your Classroom !

5

Plan Your Project in Detail

Timeline and schedules, budget, roles, assessment tools etc.

6

Acquire Necessary Funding and Resources

7

Implement and Manage Project

8

Organize Reflection Activities

9

Assess and Evaluate Your Service Program. Use Rubrics!

Achievements

10

http://www.studentsinservicetoamerica.org/guidebook/classroom.html

slide18

How to create one?

Some tips!

Plan for a minimum of 40 hours activity over a school year

Work with students in order to draw the connections between what the students are doing and what they should be learning

Give time to reflect on their service. That may involve asking students to keep a journal, or having teachers and organizers lead discussions or coordinate activities that get participants to analyze and think critically about their service.

Give students leadership roles in all phases of the project. Students should have a role not only in executing the service project, but also in making decisions about its development.

Grade students based on what they learned.

http://www.studentsinservicetoamerica.org/guidebook/classroom.html

slide20

What is it?

It is a concrete way of learning abstract concepts!

It assumes that learning is rooted in the uniqueness of a place - history, environment, culture, economy, literature, art etc. Students learn through real interaction by investigating, exploring and taking action in their local area.

Students will

be there, see it,

touch it, feel it

and internalize it!

slide21

How it works?

The real context brings learning to life! (Yeager, 2003)

Class Instruction

Application at a place

C

O

N

C

L

U

S

I

O

N

S

Exploring a watershed

Visiting a museum to learn about a specific historical issue

Learn about the implications of different soil types by visiting different geographical locations and exploring the differences among them

REFLECTION

slide22

How to create one?

1

Define Specific Learning Objectives for your course

2

Select the objectives that:

- Are based on abstract concepts

- Would be better achieved by having a closer contact with the subject (students would understand better by seeing, feeling, touching ….)

Search for places that would help achieve the learning objectives

3

Develop learning activities to be done at such place

4

5

Plan and execute the trip

6

Discuss and summarize conclusions

7

Celebrate Achievements!

slide23

How to get started with

Service Learning and

Place-Based Learning?

Opportunities can already exist or be created!

There are identified communities’ needs or places of interest!

Start with the desired outcomes

Next Slide

Analyze what students will gain through this activity and see if it applies to the course curriculum

slide24

How to get started with

Service Learning and

Place-Based Learning?

Start with the end in mind!

Objectives

& Learning

Goals

Nature

of the

Content

Learning

experiences

LESSON

PLAN

Communicate with community

Communication needs interaction

Service Learning

Students will teach elderly to use internet

Explain the implications of soil erosion

Soil erosion is one form of soil degradation

Place-Based Learning

Students will visit natural and eroded areas and observe the impacts of erosion

slide25

On-Campus

Lab-Based Learning

slide26

What is it?

It is an opportunity to practice science much in the way professionals do

Students will learn to be a researcher by developing their own experiments or assisting a professor

It is provides a clear idea of the academic career!

http://www.queensu.ca/ctl/goodpractice/lab/why.html

slide27

How it works?

It is a learning experience outside of the course curriculum!

Can be done in the summer or during the semester

Student can be member of a research group

Student can be assisting a professor (assistantship)

Student can be developing an independent project (Honors project)

slide28

How it works?

Students will:

Define the problem and formulate hypothesis / theories

Design their own experiments

Execute the experiments

Make observations, measure results & analyze data

Communicate results

Confirm conclusions by repeating the experiments or designing new ones

Discuss results & make conclusions

slide29

How to create one?

Define the field of study

1

Develop a project proposal

2

  • Project's objectives and activities
    • Principal Investigator
  • Students to be recruited and their role in the research
  • Other organizations involved in the project's operation
  • Timeline: summer activity? academic year?
  • Project evaluation and reporting, etc.

3

Submit to a funding organization

http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2007/nsf07569/nsf07569.htm#prep

slide30

What professors should do to create opportunities?

Professor’s role is to:

Indentify university job positions that could be occupied by students

Include students in your projects

Advise, mentor or guide students while they are developing and implementing their research projects

slide31

Ten Time-Saving Tips for Undergraduate Research

1

Design a simple project with clear goals

2

Provide hands-on supervision

3

Ensure good communication and explanations

4

Involve students early

5

Sign a student-mentor contract (clarify expectations)

6

Maintain well-written protocols

7

Establish student research communities

8

Capitalize on inexperience

9

Create a template file for student posters

10

Increase retention

http://www.eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/custom/portlets/recordDetails/detailmini.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ERICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=EJ756062&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&accno=EJ756062

slide32

Tips for Research Mentors

1

Assess your student’s interests, knowledge, and abilities

2

Explain the project at the outset and students’ contribution

3

Clearly define your expectations for the student

4

Develop a schedule of regular meetings with the student (Review the student’s research products and give feedback)

5

Keep and share notebooks and other lab records

Outline your student’s daily tasks and responsibilities in the lab (if possible, in writing)

6

7

Communicate about overall project progress

Make an effort to get to know your student on an informal basis (it will encourage a comfortable relationship)

8

http://www.engineering.cornell.edu/student-services/learning/undergrad-research/tips-mentors.cfm

slide34

What is it?

It improves school-to-work transition!

Work-based learning occurs when a youth acquires knowledge, skills, attitudes, and habits needed for a particular occupation in a workplace environment

Interning at a workplace provides a firsthand look at what skills are needed, how knowledge learned in school is put into action in the workplace, and informs the student about career choice

It provides a clear connection between future career and class work!

http://dpi.wi.gov/cte/workbase.html

slide35

How it works?

School and/or professor will provide opportunities to student interact with future employers:

There are many types of work-based activities:

Internships or Co-op

Job Shadowing

School-Based Enterprises

slide36

How it works?

Internship or Co-op

It is an workplace experience in which students complete a series of activities or project(s) and achieve a set of learning objectives designed to give a broad understanding of a business or occupational area

It may be highly structured or not

It may be paid or not

It may be for credit or not

It may be done in the summer or during the semester

Wisconsin Work-based Learning Guide

slide37

How it works?

Job Shadowing or Practicum

It is a workplace experience (typically three to six hours per week) during which a student spends time, one-on-one, with an employee observing daily activities and asking questions about the job and the industry. Students are also given the opportunity to do hands-on activities at the workplace.

It can also be an activity in which students will interview a professional and learn about his routine and work activities

It is usually done within a course and for credit

http://www.usoe.k12.ut.us/ATE/wbl/Manual/Apprenticeships.htm

Wisconsin Work-based Learning Guide

slide38

How it works?

School-Based Enterprises

School-based enterprises allow students to put into practice what they learn in the classroom by running an actual small businesses. While participating in these activities, students learn overall business operations such as managing costs, ordering supplies, working under pressure, conserving supplies and maintaining facilities

It is an extracurricular activity in which students will provide services to companies, like a consulting company, and use the proceeds to fund the group activities

Clubs can also be considered a School-Based Enterprise

http://www.usoe.k12.ut.us/ATE/wbl/Manual/Apprenticeships.htm

Wisconsin Work-based Learning Guide

slide39

What professors should do to create opportunities?

Professors’ role:

Be a networker:

- Be in contact with companies, promote partnerships and connect students to work opportunities

Be an advisor or counselor:

  • Help students to understand what would be the benefits of each opportunity; help them to choose

- Support students during work experience by clarifying concepts, giving behavioral orientation….

slide40

How to get started with

Lab-Based and

Work-Based Learning?

The decision to do it is usually up to the students!

Professorsand School Administration will work together to create work opportunities:

At Campus:

Lab-Based Learning

At Companies:

Work-Based Learning

Professorsand School Administration will guide students in their decision and give support throughout the experience

Students will choose according to their learning goals!

slide41

Summary

Contextual Learning bring knowledge to life!

It engages students in real-life and outside-of-the-classroom experiences, which prepare students to face professional and civic life

Service Learning

Place-Based Learning

Contextual learning

Lab-Based Learning

Work-Based Learning

slide42

Learning Objectives

  • What is the purpose of using Contextual Learning?
  • How to use Contextual Learning in a course?
  • How to create and use:
    • Service Learning Activities
    • Place-Based Learning Experiences
    • Lab-Based Learning Experiences
    • Work-Based Learning Experiences
slide43

References

  • Contextual Learning:
    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contextual_learning
    • http://www.texascollaborative.org/WhatIsCTL.htm
  • Service Learning:
    • http://www.studentsinservicetoamerica.org/guidebook/classroom.html
  • Place-Based Learning:
    • http://dpi.wi.gov/cte/workbase.html
slide44

References

  • On-Campus Lab-Based Learning:
    • http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2007/nsf07569/nsf07569.htm#prep
    • http://www.queensu.ca/ctl/goodpractice/lab/why.html
    • http://tep.uoregon.edu/resources/librarylinks/articles/lab.html
    • http://www.eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/custom/portlets/recordDetails/detailmini.jsp?_nfpb=true&_&ERICExtSearch_SearchValue_0=EJ756062&ERICExtSearch_SearchType_0=no&accno=EJ756062
    • http://www.engineering.cornell.edu/student-services/learning/undergrad-research/tips-mentors.cfm
  • Work-Based Learning:
                  • Wisconsin Work-based Learning Guide
                  • http://www.usoe.k12.ut.us/ATE/wbl/Manual/Apprenticeships.htm