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Learning Communities Presentation conducted at the College of Southern Maryland in September, 2009.

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  • 1. Communities of Learning Rick Dollieslager and Dawn Hayden Thomas Nelson Community College
  • 2. What are learning communities? Formal versus informal
  • 3. Our Goal
    • To promote a learning-centered culture of shared responsibility for student learning
      • To increase student engagement
      • To promote participation in student support services
  • 4. Our Demographics
    • 70% Women
    • 30% Men
    • 80% Minority
    • 75% 18 -21 Years Old
    • 40% Transfer
    • 60% Occupational/Tech
  • 5. Creating a positive learning environment
      • Responsibility coupled with high expectations
      • A sense of belonging/community
        • Safety, trust, and respect
        • Positive self-image/self-confidence
        • Frequent feedback
  • 6. Required Components
    • Supportive Administration
    • Flexible Faculty
    • Strong Student Services and Academic Advising Programs
    • Continuous Assessment
  • 7. Required Components
    • Strong Professional Development Program
    • Master Learner Course (ENG 109)
    • Active /Cooperative Learning
    • Natural Human Learning Process
    • Learning Coaches
  • 8. Learning Coaches
    • One-on-one
    • Small Group
    • Whole Class
  • 9. Master Learner Course
    • Built upon Skip Downings On Course textbook and student responsibility principles
      • On Course: Strategies for Creating Success in College and in Life
      • On Course Web Site Student Success Strategies
    English 109, the Lifeline English 109 class web site , Spring 2009
  • 10. Natural Human Learning Process
    • Based on Rita Smilkstein : Were Born to Learn: Using the Brains Natural Process to Create todays Curriculum
      • Born to Learn in a nutshell, condensed by Smilkstein for presentations: http://www.borntolearn.net/pdf/guidelines.pdf
    • Growing dendrites = learning. Its a biology thing!
    • Contemporary brain research shows us why all the old adages about learning are true
  • 11. Natural Human Learning Process The Three Brain Divas
  • 12. Master Learner Course
    • Built upon Skip Downings On Course textbook and student responsibility principles
      • On Course: Strategies for Creating Success in College and in Life
      • On Course Web Site Student Success Strategies
    English 109, the Lifeline English 109 class web site , Spring 2009
  • 13. Cooperative Learning
    • Structured small group activities
    • Requires students to share resources
    • Teaches responsibility
    • Learning retention is at highest levels
    • Develops leadership skills
  • 14. Cooperative Learning
    • Cooperative Learning Basics: http://edtech.kennesaw.edu/intech/cooperativelearning.htm
    • Jigsaw: Learning MLA Parenthetical Citation Conventions: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/MLACitations_jigsaw.htm
    • Summer 2007 project schedule and results, June 12-June 19: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/dailysum07.html
    • Summer 2008 project schedule, June 16-18: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/dailysum08.html
  • 15. Why do I really use Cooperative groups?
    • If I find something boring to teach,
    • I make the students teach it!
    • Summer 2007 punctuation and grammar consultants: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/experts_sum07.html
    • Fall 2008 Eng 109/ Eng 01/ Eng 05 learning community: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/dev_punc_groups_mwf.html
    • Semester-long collaboration and Cooperative Learning can have remarkable results!
    • Becoming a Master Learner Fall 06 learning community class project: http://community.tncc.edu/faculty/dollieslager/masterlearner.html
  • 16.
  • 17. Excellent Professional Development Programs
    • Develop learning communities for faculty
    • Promote creativity and growth
    • Provide opportunities for non-professional activities (getting to know one another)
    • Share learning experiences that support shared learning and teaching goals
  • 18. COL Teaching Cadre Development
    • Developing learning communities for faculty
    • Promoting creativity and growth
    • Providing opportunities for non-professional activities (getting to know one another)
    • Sharing learning experiences that support shared learning and teaching goals
    Meet, compare, adjust, improve
  • 19. Faculty Development
    • Rita Smilkstein, Born to Learn
    • Parker Palmer, The Courage to Teach
    • The Johnson Brothers Cooperative Learning Institutes
    • Skip Downings On Course Workshops
    • Tidewater Regional Center for Teaching Excellence
    Seminars, workshops, institutes, discussions
  • 20. Nuts and Bolts
    • Schedule Building
      • Linked courses
      • Academic Success Communities
      • Career Communities
  • 21. Communities for Academic Success English Elite (12 credits): ENG 109 MWF 9:009:50 SDV 100 M 10:0010:50 ENG 5 TR 9:0010:40 ENG 1 TR 11:0012:40
  • 22. Career Communities
    • First Year Composition for Majors
    • ENG 111 for Pre-Nursing
    • ENG 111 for Science & Technology
    • ENG 111 for Liberal Arts
    • +
    • Faculty Mentor: Field expert
  • 23. Assessment and Evaluation
    • Growth of COLS
      • Enrollment
      • Student and Faculty Growth of involvement
    • Increase in retention rates
    • Improvement in success rates
      • Productive versus Non-productive grades
  • 24. Number of COL Classes
  • 25. Faculty Invol

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