Required Equals Results: Margaret Butcher, Purdue North Central




“Students began to engage better with the technology because everything was right there in Connect.”


What impact did requiring digital have on your students’ success?
Students began to engage better with the technology because everything was right there in the Connect course. SmartBook and LearnSmart help them engage with the materials and pinpoint areas where extra work is necessary.


Which digital tools do you use in your class?
I use SmartBook, LearnSmart and Speech Capture in my class.


When did you begin using digital tools in your classes and what did it replace, if anything?
We started working with McGraw-Hill Education about three years ago to create a site where our students could record and post their speeches without going through public sites such as YouTube and Photobucket.


When did you decide to require them as part of the course grade?
When Speech Capture became available and we could sync with Blackboard, I began to require them as part of the course grade.


What percentage of your course grade is made up by digital tools like Connect and LearnSmart?
About 40% is made up by digital tools.


Why is it important to require digital rather than make it optional?
Students live in a digital world and ‘forcing’ students to engage with the technology helps them realize the advantages the programs offer.


What advice do you have for instructors who are incorporating digital into their courses for the first time?
Ask questions and work through all the areas of the digital product you are using. Go through the faculty view and the student view to get a feeling of how everything works. Take the quizzes and do the tasks to make sure that instructions you post are clear and easily understood by students. Finally, have FUN with it. I was surprised how much I enjoyed working through the items as a student learner. It makes me a better professor.


What are you able to do now that you couldn’t before you required digital?
I don’t have to search for links for speeches and remind students to make the links public or to invite me to view their work. It is all in one spot and saves me time and frustration.


Check out the full Required Equals Results series to hear from other instructors about their experiences.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  November 11 2013

Required Equals Results: Dr. Murad Odeh, South Texas College




“Students are more engaged, more prepared and having fun.”


What impact did requiring digital have on your students’ success?
Requiring digital had a tremendous impact. Students are more engaged, more prepared and having fun. It increased student retention rate and helped them complete their courses.


Which digital tools do you use in your class?
I use LearnSmart, LearnSmart Labs, SmartBook and Tegrity.


When did you begin using digital tools in your classes and what did it replace, if anything?
I began using digital tools in 2006. It replaced reading traditional books and creating tests and homework.


When did you decide to require them as part of the course grade?
I have required them as part of the course grade since I started using them. Students will NOT do anything for free 🙂 . If there is a credit, they will do it.


What percentage of your course grade is made up by digital tools like Connect and LearnSmart?
20% of my course grade is made up by digital tools.


Why is it important to require digital rather than make it optional?
I believe that LearnSmart and SmartBook are essential for student success. They help them learn, understand, think critically and execute well.


What advice do you have for instructors who are incorporating digital into their courses for the first time?
My advice is to be patient. Start easily and slowly and then build on as you go through the semesters. Attend workshops and be on the lookout for what’s new as far as updates or new products.


What are you able to do now that you couldn’t before you required digital?
Make students READ before coming to class. Now they are reading the material and doing LearnSmart prior to my lectures because my assignments are due prior to my lectures.


Check out the full Required Equals Results series to hear from other instructors about their experiences.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  November 11 2013

Required Equals Results: Carol A. Keller, San Antonio College




“I’m able to have fun with students in a face-to-face environment and have the pleasure of watching online students be more engaged with each other and the course content.”


What impact did requiring digital have on your students’ success?
Requiring digital resulted in better preparation for face-to-face classes and online discussions, as well as higher quality learning. Grades are definitely higher and retention is better. I attribute this to the flipped classroom one day a week where students run the class and I facilitate. LearnSmart is due the night before and they must post their provocative question for peers in Canvas by midnight. Each student then reads and promotes discussion for their question during the face-to-face session. Each student provides information on how they framed those questions and what they learned. In the Discussion Forum they insert maps and images from their ebook to illustrate their focus. It’s very exciting for me and I look forward to the class.


Which digital tools do you use in your class?
I use LearnSmart and SmartBook Connect activities delivered in Canvas LMS for online and web-enhanced on-campus sections.


When did you begin using digital tools in your classes and what did it replace, if anything?
I began using digital tools after I took a public policy graduate course on the Internet that changed my teaching life. I was the only volunteer to teach a survey US course in the college’s first computer classroom and thanks to helpful technology and the lessons learned in my public policy course, everyone was challenged and invigorated. When our college launched its online program using WebCT in 2000, I was ready. Since that time we have transitioned through three different LMS and I have remained loyal to McGraw-Hill (first used Davidson text, “Nation of Nations,” as it had the best online support) and the students who pass through my classrooms continue to thrive using Connect.


When did you decide to require them as part of the course grade?
I decided to require them as part of the course grade from the first introduction of digital. I have required and graded all digital work, from the early web activities in Davidson and OLC up to today’s LearnSmart with SmartBook.


What percentage of your course grade is made up by digital tools like Connect and LearnSmart?
40% of my course grade is made up by digital tools.


Why is it important to require digital rather than make it optional?
Students want to earn a grade and they serve as a peer group to inspire others. Few students come to class without posting a question based on their reading and completion of LearnSmart the night before.


What advice do you have for instructors who are incorporating digital into their courses for the first time?
1) Take digital learning one step at a time, 2) Make sure you are comfortable with the process, 3) Ask for and LISTEN to student feedback during the process.


What are you able to do now that you couldn’t before you required digital?
I’m able to have fun with students in a face-to-face environment and have the pleasure of watching online students be more engaged with each other and the course content.


Check out the full Required Equals Results series to hear from other instructors about their experiences.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  October 28 2013

A&P Instructor: “SmartBook is a win-win for my students and myself”

Professor Patrick Cafferty says that before SmartBook, he knew that most of his students did not read the textbook. He started using SmartBook and LearnSmart in his course to create an adaptive learning experience for students, to engage them and help them learn the material. What he found was pretty impressive.


SmartBook really works. My students can more easily identify passages of the text that require further attention and discussion. In addition, when students have used SmartBook, I can more easily identify where they are encountering difficulty. I enjoy pulling up the reports and seeing an individual student’s work within SmartBook during my office hours with them. SmartBook helps to maximize both my students’ time and my own.”


Professor Cafferty assigns LearnSmart modules for 10% of his course grade and was pleased by his students’ reactions. “My students enjoy working within a text rather than sitting and passively reading a standard textbook. They particularly enjoy the feature allowing them to move back and forth between a challenging question and the corresponding textbook passages. I feel that students will find this tool invaluable towards the end of the course as they review material for the cumulative final exam. Students feel encouraged and empowered as they see mastering throughout the course of their studying, rather than waiting until an assignment or exam for a grade. Using SmartBook is a win-win scenario for my students and myself.


Learn more about SmartBook here, and join the Connect Community to chat about your experience with other instructors!


     Patrick Cafferty teaches large (>100) sections of human physiology      at Emory University, and was looking for a way to motivate and      provide an incentive for students to complete course readings,      monitor their progress, and make available a wealth of practice      questions and tools to assist with his students’ studies. Together,      LearnSmart and Smartbook have helped meet the needs of his      students who come into his class with a diverse range of      preparedness, study habits, and time management skills.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  October 09 2013

Using SmartBook This Fall


In May, we introduced you to SmartBook, the first and only adaptive reading experience to help your students be successful in their courses. Here are two QuickStart guides to help you access and make the most of SmartBook in your Connect course this fall:


How to Access SmartBook as an Instructor


How to Access SmartBook as a Student


In order to assign SmartBook for your students, you will continue to assign LearnSmart within Connect. For those students who have ConnectPlus accounts, they can access your assignment by using LearnSmart, SmartBook, or they may toggle between the two. All of their work is automatically transferred between LearnSmart and SmartBook. If a student has a Connect account, they will use LearnSmart to access your LearnSmart assignment.


Got questions? Join the Connect Community to ask us and to chat with other instructors about how they are using SmartBook.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  August 01 2013

Students, SmartBook is Here!

You’ve been hearing a lot about a Learning Revolution… Now we are delighted to announce that SmartBook is available! If you are using ConnectPlus, you can experience SmartBook, the first and only adaptive reading experience, for the rest of the semester.


What is SmartBook? SmartBook is the first and only adaptive reading experience. It’s fueled by LearnSmart, the most widely used and intelligent adaptive study resource available today. By blending LearnSmart with an interactive eBook, SmartBook is designed to help you maximize your study time.


How can I get SmartBook? If you’re using ConnectPlus, there will be a SmartBook button available as soon as you enter LearnSmart. (Check this list of available titles to see if your title has SmartBook.) You can play around with it, or use LearnSmart as usual without clicking the SmartBook button – the choice is yours!


How does SmartBook work? SmartBook collects the same data points that LearnSmart uses (e.g. confidence rating, degree of correctness, time on task, etc.) and then determines what material you need to read the most. Just like LearnSmart, SmartBook is designed to help you make the most of your study time.


Preview – You’ll see a thumbnail view of the chapter and get an understanding of the basic organization of the material.


Read – Your eBook has been “highlighted” to show the most important content you should focus on. No more wondering what’s important or highlighting every sentence!


Practice – This section is just like LearnSmart. You’ll get questions to solidify your mastery of the content and identify areas you need to focus on.


Recharge – SmartBook is so smart, it knows what information you’re going to forget and when you’re going to forget it. Recharge shows you that content at the exact right time to help you keep it fresh.


What do I do first? You can Preview the content first to build a foundation. Then you can Practice (LearnSmart) or Read. After spending some time with SmartBook, you can Recharge. But the path you take is up to you.


Is the regular e-Book going away? No. The current eBook will remain and function as is.

The Connect Team

By The Connect Team  |  April 30 2013

THE CREW
The Connect Team

The Connect Team
mayacohen

mayacohen
Eileen

Eileen
sashapaulino

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