Learning Outcomes

Student Learning Outcomes or SLOs identify what students will know, be able to do, or be able to demonstrate when they have completed or participated in a program/activity/course/project. These outcomes are usually expressed as measurable gains in knowledge and skills and the successful integration of values and attitudes into the educational experience. SLOs enable students to articulate and quantify the learning incorporated in their co-curricular experience and select co-curricular experiences that facilitate achieving their personal development goals SLOs are aggregated under Divisional Learning Outcomes (DLOs). Taken as a whole, Divisional Learning Outcomes represent co-curricular education goals that the Division of Student Affairs and Campus Life has established for all UMass Amherst students and represent the knowledge, skills and attitudes that students obtain from engaging within the total learning environment of UMass Amherst.

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Critical Thinking

A look at some of the principles of critical thinking.


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Problem based learning

Illustration of what is Problem based learning and how PBL class would function in medical school or college,

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History PBL

Brief History of PBL Problem-Based Learning in Medical Education
Problem-based learning was first developed in medical education in the 1950s. The development of PBL is generally credited to the work of medical educators at McMasters University in Canada in the 1970s. Around the same time, other medical schools in various countries, such as Michigan State University in the United States, Maastricht University in the Netherlands, and
Newcastle University in Australia were also developing problem-based learning curricula (Barrows, 1996).

PBL was conceived and implemented in respons students’ unsatisfactory clinical performance (Barrows, 1996; Barrows and Tamblyn, 1980) that resulted from an emphasis on memorization of fragmented biomedical knowledge in the traditional health science

education. This emphasis was blamed for failing to equip students with clinical problem-solving and lifelong learning skills (Albanese and Mitchell, 1993; Barrows, 1996).

In the 1980s, the wider spread of PBL in the United States was accelerated by the GPEP report (Report of the Panel on the General Professional Education of the Physician and College Preparation for Medicine) sponsored by the Association of American Medical Colleges (Muller, 1984). This report made recommendations for changes in medical education, such as promoting independent learning and problem solving, reducing lecture hours, reducing scheduled time, and evaluating the ability to learn independently (Barrows,
1996). These recommendations strongly supported the implementation of PBL in medical education. During this period of time, some medical schools also began
to develop alternative, parallel problem-based curricula (e.g., the Primary Care Curriculum at the University of New Mexico, the New Pathways Program in
Medical School of Harvard University) for a subset of their students (Aspy et al., 1993; Barrows, 1996).

Later, a number of medical schools, such as the University of Hawaii, Harvard University, and the University of Sherbrooke in Canada, assumed the more arduous tasks of converting their entire curriculum to PBL.

In the 1990s, many more medical schools, such as Southern Illinois University, Rush, Bowman Gray, and Tufts, adopted PBL as their primary instructional
method (Aspy et al., 1993; Barrows, 1994). Since its first implementation several decades ago, PBL has become a prominent pedagogical method in medical
schools and health-science-related programs throughout the world, including North America, the Netherlands, England, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, and India.

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The Changing Classroom

A look at how the classroom has changed over the past 150 years.

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Social Media in Education – Teaching Digital Natives.mov

This video looks at digital native learners and how we can engage them, transform curriculum and impact student learning with social media.

we could harness students enthusiasm for the internet and redirect it toward great learning opportunities?

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Top 10 Reasons to Use Technology in Education: iPad, Tablet, Compute

Using technology in education  is helpful it student motivation and drive.

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What is Active Learning?

Discusses what active learning is and provides examples of how active learning can be used in both face to face and online classes.


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Problem based learning

Illustration of what is Problem based learning and how PBL class would function in medical school or college.

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Characteristics of PBL

Problem-based learning is an instructional methodology; that is, it is an problems. The primary goal of PBL is to enhance learning by requiring learners to solve problems. It is a methodology with the following characteristics:

• It is problem focused, such that learners begin learning by addressing simulations of an authentic, ill-structured problem. The content and skills to be learned are organized around problems, rather than as a hierarchical list of topics, so a reciprocal relationship exists between knowledge and the problem.Knowledge building is stimulated by the problem and applied back to the problem.

• It is student centered, because faculty cannot dictate learning.

• It is self-directed, such that students individually and collaboratively assume responsibility for generating learning issues and processes through self-assessment and peer assessment and access their own learning materials. Required assignments are rarely made.

• It is self-reflective, such that learners monitor their understanding and learn to adjust strategies for learning. 

• Tutors are facilitators (not knowledge disseminators) who support and model reasoning processes, facilitate group processes and interpersonal dynamics, probe students’ knowledge deeply, and never interject content or provide direct answers to questions.

From (http://faculty.ksu.edu.sa/Alhassan/Hand%20book%20on%20research%20in%20educational%20communication/ER5849x_C038.fm.pdf)

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