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Today’s Students. The Nation Goes to College. “A college degree has in many ways become what a high school diploma became 100-years ago-the path to a successful career and to knowledgeable citizenship.” (AAC & U, 2002, p. viii). Today’s Students. “Traditional” college student

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the nation goes to college
The Nation Goes to College

“A college degree has in many ways become what a high school diploma became 100-years ago-the path to a successful career and to knowledgeable citizenship.”

(AAC & U, 2002, p. viii)

today s students4
Today’s Students
  • “Traditional” college student
    • White male, 18 to 20 years old
    • Attending a four-year, liberal arts college
    • Full-time, and living on campus
  • Is now the minority in higher education

(Magolda & Terenzini)

today s students5
Today’s Students
  • Majority of undergraduates are women
  • 28 % of undergraduates are from under-represented groups
  • Vocational emphasis valued over learning for learning’s sake
  • “Overwhelmed and more damaged”

(Magolda & Terenzini)

today s students6
Today’s Students
  • Consumer mentality
  • Diverse and divided
  • Pragmatic, career oriented, and committed to doing well
  • Optimistic about personal/collective futures
  • Desperately committed to preserving the American dream

(Levine & Cureton, 1998, p. 156-157)

today s students7
Today’s Students
  • 75% of full-time students are employed
  • 46% of those work at least 25 hours per week & 20% at least 35 hrs per week
  • Work hurts students grades (42%), limits their class schedules (53%) and choice of classes (38%)
increased access
Increased Access
  • 75% of high school graduates continue their studies
  • 90% of high school seniors expect to attend college
  • Growing number of college students are over age twenty-five

(AAC & U, 2002, p. 2)

different attendance patterns
Different Attendance Patterns
  • 58% of bachelor’s degree recipients attend two or more colleges
  • 28% of undergraduates attend part-time
  • 73% of undergraduates are non- traditional students

(AAC & U, 2002, p. 2)

today s students10
Today’s Students
  • Learning styles & preferences
    • Motivation & students’ learning styles
  • Visual & Kinesthetic
  • Positive view of technology & their ability to use it
  • Reading & the web
    • “slow, painful and torturous” vs. “ease & speed”


today s students11
Today’s Students
  • Need to see “Big Picture” before disaggregating
  • Mass customization
  • Low threshold for boredom
  • Multitasking
  • They learn from each other

Kate Manual

today s students12
Today’s Students
  • Aliterate
  • Random access of information, less linear, likes graphics
  • Self focused
  • “Prove it to me” mentality
  • Wants something in exchange

Susan Eisner

today s students13
Today’s Students
  • Independent
    • employment & discretionary income
  • Bypasses mainstream media
  • Relevance is important
  • Experience without obvious payoffs are frustrating
  • Responds well to “coaching”

Susan Eisner

today s students14
Today’s Students
  • Effective efforts focus on students’ learning styles & preferences
  • Before “buying-in” students must see tangible benefits, in terms of their needs
  • High need for clarity, low tolerance for ambiguity (directions clear & succinct)

Brown, Murphy & Nanny

today s students15
Today’s Students

Higher education may be a part of students’ lives,


in many cases it is


the central focus of their lives.

preparation lags
Preparation Lags
  • Only 47% of HS graduates complete a college prep curricula
  • Only 40% of HS teachers hold performance expectations that result in college-ready students
  • 53% of all college students take remedial courses (AAC & U, 2002, p. xxx)
college reading readiness
College Reading Readiness
  • Only 51% of 2005 ACT tested high school graduates have college-level reading skills
  • Reading readiness– over a 75% chance of a C or better, a 50% chance of a B or better in reading-dependent first-year courses
  • Reading readiness peaked at 55% 1999
rising to the challenge
Rising to the Challenge
  • 40% of HS graduates are not prepared:
    • 39% of college students & HS graduates report gaps in their skills and abilities
    • 35% of college students & 39% of HS graduates have large gaps in at least one crucial skill; 86% of both groups have some gaps.
    • College instructors---42% of their students are not adequately prepared.
    • Employers---39% of HS graduates are not prepared for their current job & 45% are unprepared for advancement.
most grads cite gaps in at least one skill
Most Grads Cite Gaps In At Least One Skill

35% of college students report large gaps in at least one area,

86% report some gaps in at least one area.

Oral communication/public speaking



Doing research

Quality of writing that is expected

Reading/understandingcomplicated materials

12% large gaps/struggling15% large gaps/struggling






employers instructors dissatisfied with high schools skills prep

College instructors

Employers/Instructors Dissatisfied With High Schools’ Skills Prep


25% very dissatisfied

22% very dissatisfied

24% very dissatisfied

20% very dissatisfied

Reading/understandingcomplicated materials

Quality of writing that is expected

Doing research


Oral communication/public speaking


employers instructors dissatisfied with high schools skills prep21

College instructors

Employers/Instructors Dissatisfied With High Schools’ Skills Prep


29% very dissatisfied

22% very dissatisfied16% very dissatisfied

17% very dissatisfied

Thinking analytically

Work and study habits

Applying what is learned in school to solving problems

Computer skills

How do you know your students & graduates have the information skills they will need?

Learning ObjectivesBehavioral ObjectivesInstructional ObjectivesPerformance ObjectivesCompetencies Objectives

align your outcomes
Align your Outcomes


Institutional outcomes

Program outcomes

Course outcomes

Class outcomes

questions to facilitate learning
Questions to Facilitate Learning
  • What do you want students to be able to do?
  • What do students need to know in order to do this well?
  • What activity will facilitate their learning?
  • How will students demonstrate their learning?
  • How will I know students have done this well?

Debra Gilchrist

learning objectives
Learning Objectives

A statement in specific and measurable terms that describes what students will know or be able to do as a result of engaging in a learning activity.

Their purpose is to communicate expectations.

learning objectives28
Learning Objectives
  • Communicate expectations in terms of student learning
    • Audience Students will be able to…
    • Behavior Specific observable actions,
    • Condition Circumstances, tools,
    • Degree Performance level, standard
learning objectives29
Learning Objectives

A statement of what students will be able to do when they have completed instruction

Objectives are:

  • Related to intended outcomes, Not processes
  • Specific and measurable, Not broad and intangible
  • Concerned with students, Not faculty

Arreola, 1998, p2

why learning objectives
Why Learning Objectives
  • Makes teaching and learning efficient
  • Focuses on students
  • Describes what students are expected to achieve as a result of instruction
  • Students know what is expected of them
  • Makes assessment of learning easier
why learning objectives31
Why Learning Objectives
  • Knowing where you want to go, increases the chances of getting there
  • Guidance for the planning and delivery of instruction as well as the evaluation of student learning
  • Provides a focus for students
  • Allows for analysis in terms of the levels of teaching and learning
cognitive level of objectives
Cognitive Level of Objectives
  • Bloom’s Taxonomy
    • Evaluation
    • Synthesis
    • Analysis
    • Application
    • Comprehension
    • Knowledge
cognitive level of objectives33
Cognitive Level of Objectives
  • Bloom’s TaxonomyLevel
    • Evaluation Application
    • Synthesis Application
    • Analysis Application
    • Application Application
    • Comprehension Understanding
    • Knowledge Knowledge
bloom s taxonomy of objectives
Bloom’s Taxonomy of Objectives

LevelLearning Verbs

  • Evaluation Criticizes, compares, concludes
  • Synthesis Creates, formulates, revises
  • Analysis Differentiates, diagrams,
  • Application Demonstrates, computes, solves
  • Comprehension Explains, summarizes, classifies
  • Knowledge Identifies, defines, describes
learning verbs for bloom s taxonomy
Learning Verbs forBloom’s Taxonomy
  • Compare & contrast,

critique, justify


  • Adapt, combine, compare, contrast, design, generate



  • Correlate, diagram, distinguish, outline, infer


  • Determine, develop, compute, utilize
  • Classify, explain, discuss, give examples, summarize



  • Define, describe, list, reproduce, enumerate
when writing objectives
When Writing Objectives

Avoid imprecise verbs open to interpretation:








effective learning objectives
Effective Learning Objectives
  • Consistent with curricular goals
  • Clearly & unambiguously stated
  • Clearly observable & measurable
  • Realistic & doable
  • Appropriate for the level of students
  • Relevant & worth doing
  • Challenging & interesting
writing learning objectives
Writing Learning Objectives
  • Identify what students are to learn
  • Identify what students are to do
  • Draft & revise as necessary
  • Are specific and clear
  • Are observable & measurable
  • Strive for higher order thinking
how to write learning objectives
How to Write Learning Objectives
  • Express them in terms of observable behavior
    • Facilitates assessment of learning
  • Objectives should answer these questions:
    • What must students do to prove that they have learned?
    • What should students be able to do as a consequence of their learning?

Familiarize students with research articles.

Students will be able to read a research article.


Students will be able to identify the elements of a research article and explain the purpose of each element.


In order to write more effective literature reviews, students will read and evaluate reviews written by other students. Using a rubric, students will note what features of a review make it good and what features make it less good.