The college prep threat

Multitasking as college prep threat.

Multitasking as college prep threat. Photo by Beezum (Benton Greene) http://www.flickr.com/photos/beezum88/2220050655/

Recent studies show that multitasking is a major threat to learning. When it comes to homework, frequent social media use spreads student attention too thin. This is troubling news for parents of the college-bound.

College prep is homework that will determine college options from choosing the right schools to getting grants/scholarships to help pay the college bill. The choice impacts student lives from the friends they will make, the courses they will study, and the career path they will follow.

Studying for standardized college admission tests, researching colleges, applying for scholarships and preparing admission/financial aid applications require full strength concentration. Halfhearted efforts can lead to costly mistakes.

Read on for the studies and the college-bound tech plan solution.

*POCSmom’s Insight: New Way College Professors Teach

Cliché: Old school.    
POCS Reality: College professors use new methods and social media to enhance learning.      

 

What’s the best way to learn? According to this research, it’s not the lecture way most of us have been taught:

http://americanradioworks.publicradio.org/features/tomorrows-college/lectures/rethinking-teaching.html

The teacher standing in front of the class and writing on the board is so old school because it relies on short-term memory.

To maximize conceptual thinking, peer teaching is a new approach.

It’s teach by questioning, not teach by telling.

Here’s how peer instruction works:

  1. Students read class material before class and answer questions including what confuses them
  2. In class prof gives brief explanation of material and asks a question
  3. Students answers go directly to prof’s laptop via mobile device
  4. Students talk/instruct to each other about the question
  5. Prof asks students to answer the same question again
  6. Repeat process

Watch the video about Harvard Physics Professor Mazur and his interactive teaching method.

POCSmom’s Insight: What’s old is often new again in the teaching world. The Socratic Method, named after Greek philosopher Socrates, used questions to encourage critical thinking and enlightenment.

The important thing is for students to get their money’s worth from their college education. That means they are interested, excited, and motivated to learn and the professor is willing, able, and understands how best to communicate his knowledge.

*POCS: Parent Of a College Student