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Making Connections with Students

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Presentation on theme: "Making Connections with Students"— Presentation transcript:

1 Making Connections with Students
Johnnie Terry, Philosophy Professor, Sierra College Anne Argyriou, Basic Skills Committee, De Anza College ASCCC Student Success Institute: Basic Skills Across the Curriculum February 25, 2011

2 Why are we presenting on this topic???
Introductions Who are we??? Why are we presenting on this topic??? Perhaps we can just quickly state what we teach and why we’ve noticed this is important in teaching/learning. In 3 minutes, of course. 

3 Brainstorm Moment of connection Reflect Who was involved? Topic?
How did people connect? Why? Reflect What factors may have contributed to that connection? How do you think that connection affected everyone involved (any change)?

4 “Connections” & the Classroom
What would these connections look like? What would the effects of these connections be? Connections: Student-Teacher, Student-Student First—Why? Then—How?

5 Why do connections work?
Establish a social identity Positive, academic self Create one to replace any negative academic identity Strengthen existing identity (neutral or insecure) Social identity crucial for learning to occur Individually Collaboratively

6 Social Identity Before After Nothing I can do… I’m just a bad writer.
My grade will never change, so why put in effort? I just need to do x, y, z! This is difficult, but I think I’m getting better. I just need to work harder so my grade will increase… Upon receiving a low grade on an assignment/exam. The “before” student resembles the identity of many basic skills students, who frequently utter similar comments. Generally, these students have not achieved a high level of academic success, for reasons that they may not clearly realize or understand. To them, this school business is a bit of a mystery. The “after” student may more closely resemble a typical transfer student, who has already established a strong, positive identity after previous success in school.

7 Attribution Theory Attribution: to establish reason(s) to explain why something happened (assign a cause). Specifically applies to lay people (non-psychologists) Weiner: Three main axes underlie attributions Locus (internal—external) Stability (variant—invariant) Control (influence—no influence) Note that the first choices for each axis align as depicted on the slide (internal, variant, influence) and (external, invariant, no influence).

8 Identify: Axes of Attribution
Review the “Social Identity” slide (no. 6) Can you identify the axis for each statement? Return to the slide and ask audience to point out… Order is: Locus, Stability, Control, listed in order presented 

9 Identity Learning How does social identity affect how we learn?
How do we change from the “Before” to the “After”? Note—the influence of social identity on learning applies to basic skills students and to all students, but stronger students may have already established a positive academic identity, so they may be less dependent on their peers or surroundings to learn.

10 What changes identity? Teachers Can you identify the three axes?
Reasons why assignment not successful Show steps necessary to learn How to achieve those steps Can you identify the three axes? Students (peers) How do students affect a student’s identity? Modeling, direct instruction, verbal reassurance Note that Students also influence identity through the same ways Teachers do. The three axes as listed are: Locus—what student did (or not) ; Stability—ways to ensure a better, desired outcome *consistently* for future assignments ; Control—student can clearly influence future outcomes, rather than hoping for an “easy” exam or having a “good” day. Second bullet under students focuses on self-efficacy concepts students do when working in groups. Students: Own insights—you forgot to do x,y,z Point out what steps the target student omitted Demonstrate how (what they did) to complete assignment

11 Learn through others? Learning is individually constructed (Piaget)
We create schema of the world Conflict is the catalyst to create or shape schema Schema are assimilated or accommodated Stages: Sensori-motor, Pre-op., Concrete-op., Formal-op. Social-cultural constructivism (Vygotsky) Construction occurs during interaction with others Interaction  Internalization (how experts perform task) Zone of Proximal Development: the level at which a student can succeed only with assistance Independence  ZPD  Potential Maybe review the 4 developmental stages of Piaget? Maybe if audience is not aware of them… also because many basic skills students have trouble shifting from Concrete to Abstract and General to Specific. Stages are: (1) sensori-motor, (2) pre-operational, (3) concrete-operational, (4) formal operational. The stages are frequently domain specific. Ages may vary from the ages Piaget delineated. Sensori-motor (0-2) is when the child progresses from reflex activities to goal-directed ones, “action schemes”. Object permanence develops. Pre-operational (2-7) is when child develops language and ability to think using symbols. Understanding of the world becomes more generalized and less based on a specific example. Can think through operations (thinking through actions, rather than physically performing them), but only in one direction (cannot reverse steps in a task). Have difficulty adopting viewpoints other than their own in analyzing concrete tasks (cannot decenter yet). Do not have Conservation yet. Concrete operational (7-11) is when the child can think through the reverse steps of an operation, but usually with physical, concrete tasks. Formal operations (11-adult) is when adolescents can use variables and think through various hypothetical situations. Source for notes: Woolfolk.

12 Construction: Nuts and Bolts
How does this constructed learning work? Scaffolding (Bruner) Narrowing the possible choices to accomplish a task so the student can concentrate on the skill itself, rather than deciding what to do… Highly Structured  No Structure (as student progresses) Create an “external” consciousness that student gradually absorbs to spontaneously use later (internal) Source for Slide: Mercer, Neil and Staar Kleinemann, Judith, Lecture notes, Feb. 7, 2007

13 Learn  Identity How does socially constructed learning transform a student from “Before” to “After”?

14 Self-Efficacy Definition: beliefs a person holds about capabilities, but may not accurately reflect actual capabilities… “Do I belong here?” “Can I do this? Will I be successful at it?” Source: Webb, Jane, Lecture notes, Jan. 22, 2007 Without a strong self-efficacy, difficult to accurately assess one’s own abilities and accomplishments, particularly what one lacks or needs to develop. Desire to continue, and change, in face of difficulty. Source: Dweck

15 Mindset (Dweck) Fixed Growth Nothing I can do… I’m just a bad writer.
My grade will never change, so why put in effort? I just need to do x, y, z! This is difficult, but I think I’m getting better. I just need to work harder so my grade will increase… One of the best descriptions of self-efficacy, and it neatly sums up the distinction between the before and after. Remember the 3 axes? Note that Dweck does not focus on the 3 axes in her book (called Mindset).

16 Facilitating Connections

17 Faculty/Student Connections
Listing office hours is not enough. Build connection into course (see handout): So that I can get to know who you are and associate a personality with your name, you can receive five points extra-credit toward your first exam score by calling me during my office hours tomorrow, Thursday, February 3, 2011, from 12:40-2:00. When you call me during my office hours, I'll be subjecting you to a quirky and weird set of survey questions. I'm using these survey questions to "mine for quirkiness." If I find something quirky about you, it will help me to remember who you are. The questions are non-offensive but if you'd prefer, you may always say "pass.“ 

18 Faculty/Student Connections
Listing office hours is not enough Survey Questions 1. Where did you go to high school? City/State/Country? 2. What was your favorite class in high school or what has been your favorite class thus far in college? 3. Pets? Children? Both? Neither? 4. Are you a first, last or middle child? 5. When you aren’t in school or completing school work, what do you like to be doing?

19 Student/Student Connections
What is the goal? Forming groups to use throughout the semester. Fruits: Candy Bars: Vegetables: Animals:

20 Student/Student Connections
What is the goal? Ice-breakers—First day(s) of class: What signals do we send? Post cards for math anxiety. What grade can you expect for this class? Your favorites?

21 Student/Student Connections
What is the goal? Not just once. Evaluating personal ads for Philosophy of Women in Western Cultures Group problem solving for Symbolic Logic

22 Student/Student Connections
What is the goal? Not just once. Archaeological Expedition: Mythology Stations around the room Your favorites?

23 Conclusion Questions? Comments? —What surprised you? Interested you?
Please contact us if you need more info., ideas, etc. Johnnie Terry— Anne Argyriou – Thank you for attending 

24 Johnnie’s References Barkley, Elizabeth F. Student Engagement Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2010. Barkley, Elizabeth F. Collaborative Learning Techniques: A Handbook for College Faculty. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2004. Fink, L. Dee. Creating Significant Learning Experiences: An Integrated Approach to Designing College Courses, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2003. Gabriel, Kathleen. Teaching Unprepared Students: Strategies for Promoting Success and Retention in Higher Education. Sterling: Stylus Publishing, 2008. Kuh, George. Student Success in College: Creating Conditions that Matter. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2010.

25 Anne’s References Dweck, Carol S. (2006) Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Ballantine Books. Fincham, Frank and Hewstone, Miles. (2003) Attribution Theory and Research: from basic to applied, in M. Hewstone, and W. Stroebe, (Eds) Introduction to Social Psychology (3rd edition) (Chapter 7). Oxford, UK: Blackwell. Vygotsky, Lev. S. and Kozulin, A. (ed.) (1986) Thought and Language. Boston: MIT Press. Weiner, B. (1986) An attributional theory of motivation and emotion. New York: Springer Verlag. Woolfolk, Anita. (2001) Educational psychology (8th edition). Boston: Allyn and Bacon. Lecture Notes from Courses in MPhil Psychology and Education, University of Cambridge. We should probably list references in the power point, just in case attendees want the sources.

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