November 26, 2008

Generating Reports to Show the Effectiveness of Tutoring

Originally published by Cynthia Linton and Stephen Weatworth, California State University, San Bernandino, in The Learning Center Exchange

Generating reports that show the effectiveness of tutoring is a challenge to all who coordinate tutorial programs. Though to demonstrate this definitively is almost impossible, there are ways that programs can collect data and generate reports to help show a correlation – if not causation – between tutoring received and improved academic performance.

Conventional wisdom would accept an obvious result of improved performance after receiving tutoring. However, most of us work at institutions with budget considerations where conventional wisdom is not enough. Our supervisors and senior administrators expect hard data that demonstrates the effectiveness of our programs and justifies their allocation of scarce resources. In this article, we will provide ideas on how to collect data and generate reports to highlight the usefulness of our services, justify stable funding, and guide us internally to allocate our resources to best serve students.

For more, click on the following link Generating Reports to Show the Effectiveness of Tutoring

Filed under: Academic Learning Centers,Admin/Management,Business Practices

November 19, 2008

Thinking Critically About Teaching Critical Thinking

by Zaid Ali Alsagoff, in Zaid Learn under the original title Coaching Critical Thinking to Think Creatively!


A long time ago (early 2007) in a galaxy far away (Malaysia), there was a little boy (34 years old) who happened to be me. This little boy was suddenly entrusted to transform a dying course at the University entitled ‘Critical Thinking’. Here I was leading a Learning and Teaching Unit (in the Quality Assurance department) facilitating change and improvements to our e-learning approach, and managing a University wide ‘Thinking Skills Infusion Programme’ (TSIP). Although, I had trained many lecturers, senior lecturers and professors in using technology to facilitate learning, I had ironically never had any real experience in managing an actual course at the University.

Now, one of the leaders from our academic world figured rightly out that perhaps I needed some real experience to understand what it is like to be a lecturer, before having the right to lecture to lecturers on how to teach and facilitate effective learning (which makes perfect sense!). Also, since I had been managing the TSIP programme for over six (6) months, the “Critical Thinking’ course would be the perfect challenge and opportunity to test all my untested theories and suggestions on effective learning.

In a nutshell, I was asked to lead and transform the ‘Critical Thinking’ course, which is a requirement for all undergraduate students.

Click on the following link to read more of Coaching Critical Thinking to Think Creatively!

Filed under: Coaching,Pedagogy,Training/Education

November 12, 2008

How Tutors can Help Students who may be Victims of Cyberbullying

Originally published by Resource Center: Tools and Training for Volunteer and Service Programs

As more and more students spend more time on the Internet, not only in pursuit of academic activities, but as a way to socialize, there are dangers that tutors, mentors, and parents should be aware of. This effective practice, excerpted from materials written by Vanessa Van Petten, examines the issue of cyberbullying and is from the America Learns Network of tutoring and mentoring strategies.

Use this strategy to help determine what you should do when your student tells you that she is having trouble with somebody or is in an uncomfortable situation online or via cell phone messaging.

Step 1. Understand Two Important Aspects Of Online Bullying Culture:

*Online Bullying Culture Is Instant And Ongoing

Before the widespread accessibility of the Internet, if you got into a fight at school or found out you were not invited to a party, you were able to come home, vent about it, get a snack, cool off, and have some space and time to think about how you were going to act in school during the next several days. While feelings of hurt or embarrassment may have come home with you, there would probably be a break from the action that led you to feel that way.

For more, click on the following link Preventing Youth from Becoming Victims of Cyberbullying

Filed under: Leadership

November 5, 2008

Ten Tips for Students on Avoiding Plagiarism

Originally posted by the Cal Poly Pomono University Writing Center

  1. Don’t turn in a paper written by a friend, a relative, a classmate, a fraternity brother, sorority sister, or an online research service. This is fraud.
  2. If you use the exact words of an author you read in a book, magazine, newspaper, academic journal, web site, online database, or any other source, the words should be in quotation marks and the source should be credited.
  3. Even if you change the words or the sentence structure slightly, you still need to credit the source and put any part that is still exactly the same in quotation marks. Changing the words a little does not make it yours.

For the remaining seven tips, click on the following link Ten Tips for Avoiding Plagiarism

Filed under: Academic Learning Centers


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