The ASC and the Flipped Classroom

The ASC is a long-time practitioner of the Flipped Classroom methodology, years before the Flipped Classroom approach discovered a name for itself, a half decade ago.
Curious how a great idea does not ring true until it is “my idea.”
The pedagogy of the Flipped Classroom flows nicely from the roots of Student Development Theory-to-Practice, developed and practiced throughout Higher Education since 1937.
Student Development, until recently, has been largely ignored by traditional faculty who have, until now, preferred the oldest teaching method having the least success with classroom learning—the lecture method.
The gravity using the lecture method centers around the teacher. The gravity using the Student Development approach (now with the name Flipped Classroom in the sciences) centers around students learning, and that they do.
What’s news in the science classroom is that STEM faculty finally have come around to recognize (translation, “discovered”) that the Flipped Classroom works better. As a pedagogic learning methodology it blows away completely the old school lecture method to a classrooms filled with bored, passive students.
Old school, teacher focused—new school, learner focused; flipping it is that easy, but it’s taken centuries to get here.
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Affluenza Leads to Sneaker Smackdown:

America has always been in a struggle between the pursuit of riches and simple living.

The exploration of the New World at its start was to discover roads paved with gold, however, our earliest settlements and settlers were Puritans and Quakers.

The Boston Tea Party was an attempt by colonists to thwart the money-grubbing rich back in England from living off of them no more.

George Washington might be thought of today as a “shopaholic.” The father of our nation loved the best; he was known to work in shopping to perfect Mount Vernon when his journeys allowed.

Henry David Thoreau’s very thesis in his classic book Walden was an appeal for Americans to “simplify,” a theme that continues to inspire to this day. In the eras of both Washington and Thoreau, the word consumption meant “to destroy.” Tuberculosis (TB) was known originally as “consumption.”

That Americans were first to invent and embrace the modern shopping mall is not a coincidence. American malls have well placed ATM banking machines, Multi-Mega-plex IMAX Cinemas, and gigantic food courts, all designed to create an acceptable place for the public to be, all day long and night, encouraging continuous consumption. Once teenagers love something too, it’s ‘Merican.

UCLA annually conducts a freshman college study. In 2012 the study cited three out of four freshman’s reason to go to college was: “to be able to make more money,” an all-time high (74.6%). Related, another all-time high (81.0%), the top personal goal of freshman: “being very well off financially,” freshmen qualify it too as “essential.”
The UCLA study identifies a mismatch between freshmen expectations and the reality that seniors find at graduation. A barometer that signals this affect is the freshmen response to feeling frequently “overwhelmed by all I had to do,” another all-time high response (30.4% in 2012), a steady upward trend.

What does it mean? Is there a ray of hope in a sea of worry? One positive outcome seems to be a correlation between freshmen who respond to being overwhelmed, and also that there is a “very good chance” they will “participate in practices that will help them successfully navigate the transition to college.” In other words, overwhelmed but willing to grab a life-preserver if tossed. Among overwhelmed freshmen, 41.1% reported being “likely to get tutoring,” as opposed to chilled out freshmen, who do not feel overwhelmed (26.0%).

Taken together, these findings spotlight the necessity that tutoring services, such as The ASC, be available to support and promote students’ self-efficacy, which should be essential. It follows then that students who grab the life-preserver (get tutoring), significantly raise their academic and personal performance levels, often by whole letter grades, which leads to academic, career, and personal success. A great reason to go to college. Seek out and consume that … those are shoes worth fighting over.

Posted to The Chronicle of Higher Education (got 12 likes, hooray!)

This comes in the no-good-deed-goes-unpunished category, so I think it’s on topic.

My dissertation study assumed people do community service learning for altruistic reasons, indeed, they do not. People do stuff for reasons, even when they think it is selfless. Okay, that’s understood.

The presenting article to which I’m replying puts forth the notion that “strong and silent types” get ignored and left. I would like to point to a particularly annoying aspect of punishing the good, specifically, the gulf between what we claim to honor (honesty) and the reward (gained through deceit). My glaring example is the SOP whereby an outside job offer is necessary to get a raise. To get a raise, first, one must prove their disloyalty by going out and getting a job offer from somewhere else.

I have worked at places where if the powers-that-be knew you were looking for an outside job, they would fire you on the spot; however, once you do announced you’re leaving to a better offer, the elusive pay rise to stay, suddenly, somehow, coughs up and is extended. Huh? So there was money after all.

The only way to get a raise (particularly in this climate) is to practice deceit. It is deceitful because the new place expects your arrival, having spent money on it, indeed, they’re planning it; but you do not intend to go, because you are using them to get a raise. This deceit is rewarded by your current employer, suddenly able to cough up a raise that wasn’t available earlier, often way out of proportion to what should have come at the start.

By way of example, among every millennial I have worked with, only one I know recognizes this SOP as unethical and deceitful (and he worked for me). All the rest believe it’s the SOP to get a pay rise; best have another job offer in hand, that’s SOP. We teach everyone, everywhere deceit to get ahead, then wonder why American Management isn’t trusted and in the tank.

Old school was: work hard, when your efforts are a cut above, boss notices, puts your name forward, you’re rewarded with a raise. On campuses today, you could be St. Paul and Gandhi rolled into one, when you ask for a raise, wallop, you get “the script”: “Well, you know,… the budget cuts, constraints, restraints, best return to your desk, be grateful you have a job at all.” Except after you prove disloyalty presenting another job offer that’s in hand, somehow, money that wasn’t there is after all.

In a squeaky wheel culture, the “strong and silent” types finish last.

List v. listing

I often hear these used interchangeably.

The nouns “listing” and “list” are not synonyms.

“List” describes an ordered set of items.
“Listing” describes the process of creating a list.

Use “list” when you want to describe an ordered set of items.
Use “listing” when you want to describe the process of creating a list.

At Graduation, I asked my students…

“How are you going to make the world a better place?”

Believing one ought not ask something s/he would not answer, my reply:

Existentialism is the problem of the day, so, I drill into students how critical it is to make meaning in life, particularly for their own life and the life of others; else they not find it later in life or at all. I believe as J.D. Salinger did, that people are whole when they are young, and not old. Youth is a time when the joy of life exists in experiencing and not acquiring. It is the time of youth when skillful teaching inspires the deepest learning in people’s lives before they accept the limits, lies, and illusions of huge institutions and the influences of the self motivated outside family members and friends. Perhaps because of this, students seek me out to be their mentor. Each time, the student picks me; it always happens that way (the only true mentor-ship). In return, I develop and direct their capacity for deep learning, the intent to direct them towards making a difference in the lives of others and at least one person. More than politics, this process engenders the greatest impact, for the longest time, and for the most good in this world; it speaks directly to their soul in the existential crisis of our day. Indeed, the secret door to the head and heart has always been opened through one’s soul. An examined life: make a difference, make meaning, matter.

“Deliberate Practice:” What It Is and Why You Need It



Research into the history of education (dating back several thousand years), combined with more recent scientific experiments have uncovered a number of conditions for optimal learning and improvement. Again, from K. Anders Ericsson, here are the four essential components of deliberate practice.

When these conditions are met, practice improves accuracy and speed of performance on cognitive, perceptual, and motor tasks:

You must be motivated to attend to the task and exert effort to improve your performance.

The design of the task should take into account your pre-existing knowledge so that the task can be correctly understood after a brief period of instruction.

You should receive immediate informative feedback and knowledge of results of your performance.

You should repeatedly perform the same or similar tasks.

It’s important to note that without adequate feedback about your performance during practice, efficient learning is impossible and improvement is minimal.

Simple practice isn’t enough to rapidly gain skills.

Mere repetition of an activity won’t lead to improved performance.

Your practice must be: intentional, aimed at improving performance, designed for your current skill level, combined with immediate feedback and repetitious.


Survey says!

According to a recent survey, among students who graduated from a four-year college (see link “Millennials”):

74% say their college education helped them grow intellectually
69% say it helped them mature as a person, and
55% say it helped them prepare for a job or career

The corollary* is, of course:

26% say their college education did not help them grow intellectually
31% say it did not help them mature as a person, and
45% say it did not help them prepare for a job or career

(*…assuming choices were “did/did not”)

What do we think of them apples?

Double dose your standard deviation in The ASC

Research suggests well-designed human tutoring could deliver around two standard deviations’ worth of learning performance. This is a shockingly large move; on a bell curve, an average student would move two standard deviations to the 90+ percentile of performance, and, more startling, someone at the lower quartile will move into the upper quartile of performance.

Embrace the future; double dose your standard deviation in The ASC.

On versus Off Campus

40% of full-time dependent students enrolled in public four-year institutions live on campus. Another 40% live in off-campus housing and 20% live with their parents.

Among dependent students at non-profit private four-year colleges, 70% live on campus, 17% live in off-campus housing, and 12% live with their parents.

(NCES, National Postsecondary Student Aid Study [NPSAS], 2008)

3 Tips to Save Time and Focus

1) Aim to do only 3 things each day from your long list. Doesn’t sound like much but when you aim to get only 3 things done — and move on — you’re likely to do them.

2) Pretend your internet is down. Give less time to the internet and you’ll have more of it.

3) In two months, your accomplishments are due. Is anything on your to-do list contributing to those accomplishments? No? Then maybe you ought to re-write that to-do list.

CareerBuilder, in a survey of 2,600 managers and 4,500 employers, found…

…that 29% of employees admitted to calling sick when actually, they were feeling fine. Employers are on to them:

Fifteen percent of employers have fired an employee for calling in sick when they weren’t
Twenty-eight percent of employers said they’ve checked up on an employee who they suspected wasn’t really sick.

How did employers check up on their maybe-not-so-sick workers?

Sixty-nine percent required a doctor’s note
Fifty-two percent called the employee at home when they were supposed to be recuperating
Nineteen percent had another employee call the ‘sick’ employee
Sixteen percent drove by the employee’s home

CareerBuilder also asked HR managers to cite the strangest “I’m sick” excuses they’ve ever heard.

Strangest “I’m sick” excuses:

Employee’s 12 year-old daughter stole his car, leaving him with no way to get to work.
Employee said bats got in her hair.
Employee said a refrigerator fell on him.
A truck carrying flour backed up into an employee’s convertible and dumped flour into it.
Employee said a deer bit him during hunting season.
Employee said he ate too much at a party.
Employee said he fell out of bed and broke his nose.
Employee said he got a cold from a puppy.
Employees child stuck a mint up his nose, so the parent had to accompany the child to the emergency room to get it removed.
Employee hurt his back chasing a beaver.
Employee got his toe caught in a vent cover.
Employee had a headache brought on by too many garage sales.
Employee’s brother-in-law was kidnapped while in Mexico.
Employee drank anti-freeze by mistake and had to go to the hospital.
Employee was at a bowling alley when a bucket of water crashed through the ceiling and hit her on the head.

Forget traditional success

Traditional “success” (in America) is measured by good grades, a college degree, a career, a nice home, and a solid retirement.

Definitions of success are predetermined culturally and typically not defined individually. However, picture how you make a difference and what makes you happy regardless of what others consider “successful.”

Ironically, stories from people who took the road less traveled are the ones we love yet we balk at walking our own unbeaten path because achieving only predetermined culturally defined success is powerful.

So. Define what success means to you; how you define it is the only way it’s going to mean much at your eulogy.

The ASC resources include:

*three fully comprehensive computer labs with 15 computer stations

*15 senior and grad level Tutors for popularly requested areas

*8 break-out study and activity areas (designed for personal and group use)

*wireless in each of The ASC’s 3 lab areas, buildings A & B

*workshops, publications, and learning center assistance designed to enhance your personal and academic success

Visit any one of our many Tutors, you’ll find:

*Tutoring motivates procrastinators for study

*Tutoring provides a relaxed, structured pace for learning

*Guided practice in tutoring improves the accurate understanding of academic material

*The tutoring goal is to increase comprehension

See you soon

“Just one year later,…

…2010 graduates can already see the value of studying hard, taking rigorous courses, and doing well in school — and those who didn’t already regret it,” said Trevor Packer, senior vice president for AP® and College Readiness. “Of all the work we do at the College Board, nothing is more central to our mission than ensuring that students understand the value of education and recognize its potential to transform lives. The class of 2010 clearly believes in the value of a college degree and its importance in preparing them for success in the 21st-century economy.”

Key findings of the survey include:

1) College Is Definitely Worth It: One year out of high school graduation, an overwhelming majority (86%) feel that a college degree is worth the time and money — including a large majority not currently enrolled in college (76%).

2) High School Is Not Enough: An overwhelming majority (90%) agree with the statement: “In today’s world, high school is not enough, and nearly everybody needs to complete an education or training after high school.”

3) College Is Essential for Career Success: Even in the current economy, 66% say they are very (22%) or somewhat (44%) optimistic that people in their generation will have good opportunities for jobs and careers, while 33% say they are worried about this. Seven in 10 members of the class of 2010 say that a college degree will help them a lot in fulfilling their career aspirations, and another 18% say a degree will help somewhat

4) Cost Is a Barrier: Cost was the biggest challenge faced in transition to college. Five in 9 students who attended college say that affording it was very or pretty challenging. Of those who did not attend college, 56% said affordability was a key reason.

5) College More Challenging Than Expected: A majority (54%) report that their college courses were more difficult than expected. And 24% say they were required to take non-credit remedial or developmental courses by their college, including 37% of those who went to a two-year college; 16% report they did not complete the full year of their college program.

6) Rigorous Course Work — More Math, Science, Writing: Students wish they had taken more math, science, and writing-intensive course work in high school.

7) Life Skills Are Also Important: Students wish their high schools had given more practical career readiness and more basic preparation for how to engage in a college environment — including how to manage personal finances.