Exploring Learning Analytics..

The National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education had a symposium on Learning Analytics (LA) last week (http://www.teachingandlearning.ie). It was informative, useful and a sincere Thank You to the organisers who ensured the day was successful. The symposium presentations topics included first principles, ethics, student experience, application of LA, original research,…

Females in Mathematics, Technology and Engineering disciplines – the role models

The lack of women in the engineering, technology and mathematics fields has been well documented: from the low percentage of female first year students who enter these courses to the subset who persist to graduation, to the few who pursue postgraduate study in the area, and finally, to the infinitesimal number who desire and succeed…

Undergraduate Learning..?

In essence students at higher-level education have only limited choices in how they learn: they can attend lectures or not, they can work hard or not; they can seek further knowledge or not – but teachers provide, encourage and make available the choices to them. It is the lecturer’s responsibility to create the conditions in…

Prior Learning

In Higher Education it is vital that the students prior knowledge is encompassed into the teaching. Prior Knowledge is also referred to as declarative knowledge, refers both to the quantity of knowledge (what is known) and the quality of knowledge (how well it is known i.e. its organisation and structure) (Pintrich, 1993). There is disagreement…

Learner Centred – A Challenge?

Lectures are much criticised as an effective teaching method, as critics often see lecturing as a one-way method of communication, which does not involve significant participation. However, a paradigm shift is currently occurring at all levels of higher education. Educators are moving from an instructional approach to a learner-centred approach. “A college’s purpose is not…

Maths anxiety and improved performance – a snapshot!

Various intervention strategies have been employed for the reduction of anxiety and the consequent effect on academic performance. In a study conducted by Naven-Benjamin, relaxation and desensitization training were found to be most helpful in reducing anxiety and in increasing academic performance for those high test-anxious students who possessed good study habits (Naveh-Benjamin 1991). Subsequent…