BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY


Dr. Milt Hakel (left) congratulates Chuck Spontelli and Lisa Kidd, both VCT, on winning an award for the success of their student achievement assessment plans.

Dr. Milt Hakel (left) congratulates Chuck Spontelli and Lisa Kidd, both VCT, on winning an award for the success of their student achievement assessment plans.

Where did the learning go? Fair promotes learning that lasts

“We teach and we teach, and then we wonder where the learning went,” said Dr. Diane Halpern in her keynote address at the Teaching and Learning Fair March 14. A cartoon showing a mortar-boarded graduation speaker telling students, “Gradually, imperceptibly, you will forget everything you ever learned in this institution,” is unfortunately close to reality, Halpern said.

How to create durable learning, or learning that lasts, was the theme of her talk and of the fair, which featured more than 50 faculty members and graduate assistants sharing what they have found to be effective teaching and learning practices.

“It’s what the learner does that affects what and how much is learned. Teaching is more about directing the student’s experience,” said the professor of psychology at Claremont McKenna University and past president of the American Psychological Society.

If learning does not transfer to other settings and tasks, it is not really usable, she said.

Halpern offered several resources to faculty on effective teaching practices that lead to longer-term retention and transfer. They can be downloaded at the Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology site at http://www.bgsu.edu/ctlt/page44237.html. Go to the bottom of the page.

Assessment awards presented
Also at the fair, the Student Achievement Assessment Committee recognized units that have successfully used teaching and assessment tactics that contribute to durable learning. Dr. Milt Hakel, Ohio Eminent Scholar in psychology and a co-author and collaborator with Halpern, presented the awards.

Winning were nine departments and programs whose program assessment reports showed the strongest evidence of promoting student success. The program assessment process has four steps: 1) specifying learning outcomes, 2) conducting assessments, 3) analyzing and interpreting the findings and 4) taking action to improve the program. 

The winners were selected from 20 nominated programs and departments. Selected by a four-judge panel from the areas nominated by SAAC members, they are: Adolescent/Young Adult Integrated Language Arts; Adolescent/Young Adult Science; American Culture Studies Program; Bowen-Thompson Student Union; the Career Center; English; Music Education; the Student Health Service, and Visual Communication Technology.

The program assessment reports of all nominees are on the SAAC Web site, www.bgsu.edu/offices/assessment.


March 24, 2008