Friday, September 18, 2015

The Possibilities and Challenges of Dual Enrollment for Assessment and Beyond

By Dan Hickey
My colleague James Willis was kind enough to introduce me to Emily Swafford who is the Programs Manager at the American History Association.  I emailed Emily about our several promising forays into history education, including our work with Chris Hitchcock to develop new participatory online courses at Indiana University High School and our initial discussion of the Dual Enrollment courses supervised by Indiana University's Advance College Project.  It just so happens that the current issue of the AHA's news magazine Perspectives on History just published a timely special issue on dual enrollment that was full of ideas we care about here at RMA.  In particular, it illustrated the complex challenges that emerge for assessment around dual enrollment in general and in particular when states mandate things like DE and get directly involved in school curricula.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Resource and Repository for Open Badges

by James Willis

We are pleased to announce a repository for open badges projects, articles, case studies, and links to additional resources. Our website, Open Badges in Higher Ed, has launched and is now searchable on Google and other web browsers. This site is an on-going effort by the collaborators of the OBHE project at Indiana University.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Calculus PLAnet: Promising First steps in Participatory Supplemental Instruction in Mathematics

by Suraj Uttamchandani, Tristan Tager, and Daniel Hickey

We discuss our recent pilot of networked online approaches for providing supplemental instruction for learners in Calculus. This work responds to the raging debate over how to respond to underprepared college entrants who are at high risk for failing "gateway" introductory courses, particularly in STEM and composition. Placing such students in remedial Developmental Education (DE) courses generates tuition revenue and fits within the existing course structure. But decades of research show that this approach does not work and that many of these student never move from this "remedial ghetto" into credit-bearing courses, and fewer still go on to graduate. Most now argue for providing peer-assisted Supplemental Instruction (SI) to support all students in challenging gateway courses. But because SI does not generate tuition, it draws from existing instructional resources. Additionally, SI requires space, scheduling, and supervision that many schools struggle to sustain. In this blog post we introduce an alternative approach to supplemental instruction that draws from recent advances on participatory and networked approaches to online learning.