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6 Creating High-Quality Learning Environments: Guidelines from Research on How People Learn John B ran sfordt, Nancy Vye, and Helen Bateman ~ Not long ago, our local newspaper announced that the state university system was going to offer a number of college degree programs over the Internet. Some people scoffed at the idea and made statements like "here come the diploma mills." However, for a large number of individuals, this was genuinely exciting news. Some had attended college but did not get a chance to finish because they needed to go to work full-time now they had a chance to get a degree. Others never had the chance to attend college now they could do so without having to move from their present location. Even if it turns out that many of these people don't have the time to take enough courses to graduate, it can be a wonderful sense of accomplishment to have taken a college course or two. We applaud the increased access to educational opportunities that new technologies are making possible. Nevertheless, we have been asked to focus on the issue of educational quality rather than access. Ultimately, people need access to high-quality learning opportunities. Issues of quality are important for face-to-face learning environments, totally online environments, and hybrid environments that include combinations of both. We organize this chapter into three major sections: John Bransford is Centennial Professor of Psychology and codirector of the Learning Technology Center at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. Nancy Vye is senior research associate and codirector of the Learning Center at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University. Helen Bateman is presently a research fellow at the Learning Technology Center, Vanderbilt University. This chapter is based on research funded by the National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Education. 159

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An overview of different ways to think about educational quality. A discussion of ways that information about how people learn can guide the design of environments that support high-quality learning. An examination of some of the special challenges and oppor- tunities for high-quality learning that accompany new technologies. SOME WAYS TO THINK ABOUT ISSUES OF EDUCATIONAL QUALITY People who want to improve educational quality often begin with a focus on teaching methods. We have been approached by a number of professors and K-12 teachers who heard that lectures (whether live or online) are a poor way to teach. "Is this true?" they ask. "Is cooperative learning better than lecturing?" "Do Ecomputers, labs, hands-on projects, simulations] help learning?" For Web-based instruction, we are often asked to identify the most important technology features needed for success, including the relative importance of threaded dis- cussions, chat rooms, availability of full motion video, and so forth. Questions about teaching strategies are important, but they need to be asked in the context of whom we are teaching and what we want our students to accomplish. The reason is that particular types of teaching and learning strategies can be strong or weak depending on our goals for learning and the knowledge and skills that students bring to the learning task (e.g., see Jenkins, 1978; Morris, Bransford, and Franks, 1977; Schwartz and Bransford, 1998~. The Jenkins Tetrahedral Mode} A model developed by James Jenkins (1978) highlights important constellations of factors that must be simultaneously considered when attempting to think about issues of teaching and learning. (See Fig- ure 6-1. We have adapted the model slightly to fit the current discussion.) The model illustrates that the appropriateness of using particular types of teaching strategies depends on (1) the nature of the materials to be learned; (2) the nature of the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that learners bring to the situation; and (3) the goals of the learning situa- tion and the assessments used to measure learning relative to these goals. A teaching strategy that works within one constellation of these variables may work very poorly when that overall constellation is changed. One way to think about the Jenkins model is to view it as highlighting important parameters for defining various educational ecosystems. A particular teaching strategy may flourish or perish depending on the overall characteristics of the ecosystem in which it is placed. Attempts to teach students about veins and arteries can be used to illustrate the interdependencies shown in the Jenkins model. Imagine that the materials to be learned include a text, which states that arter- ies are thicker than veins and more elastic and carry blood rich in 160 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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Nature of content Modality (text, visual, 3-D) Degree of connectedness Engagement Etc / Teaching and Learning Activities Lectures Simulations / Hands-On Problem Solving Etc. FIGURE 6-1 : Jenkins Tetrahedral Model. SOURCE: Adapted from Jenkins ( 1978~. \ Characteristics of the Learner Knowledge Skills Motivation Attitudes Etc. Criterial Tasks Recognition Recall / Problem solving and transfer Effectiveness of new learning Etc. oxygen from the heart. Veins are smaller, less elastic, and carry blood back to the heart. What's the best way to help students learn this information? The Jenkins model reminds us that the answer to this question depends on who the students are, what we mean by "learn- ing" in this context, and how we measure the learning that occurs. Consider a strategy that teaches students to use mnemonic tech- niques. For example, they might be taught to think about the sentence "Arttery) was thick around the middle so he wore pants with an elastic waistband." The Jenkins framework reminds us that the ability to use this particular technique presupposes specific types of knowledge and skills on the part of the learners (e.g., that they understand English, understand concepts such as elasticity and why they would be useful in this situation, etc. ). Given the availability of this knowledge, mnemonic techniques like the one noted above "work" extremely well given particular assumptions about what it means for something to "work." JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 161

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Mnemonic techniques "work" for remembering factual content. If asked to state important characteristics of arteries (e.g., thick, elastic), the preceding statement about Art~ery) can be very helpful. If our tests assess only memory, we tend to say that our students have learned. But suppose that we change the goal from merely remembering to learning with understanding. The Jenkins framework reminds us that a change in learning goals and assessments often requires a change in teaching and learning strategies as well. In order to learn with understanding, students need to understand why veins and arteries have certain characteristics. For example, arteries carry blood from the heart, blood that is pumped in spurts. This helps explain why they would need to be elastic (to handle the spurts). In addition, arterial blood needs to travel uphill (to the brain) as well as downhill, so the elasticity of the arteries provides an additional advantage. If they constrict behind each uphill spurt, they act as a type of one- way valve that keeps the blood from flowing downhill. Learning to understand relationships such as why arteries are elastic should facilitate subsequent transfer. For example, imagine that students are asked to design an artificial artery. Would it have to be elastic? Students who have only memorized that arteries are elastic have no grounded way to approach this problem. Students who have learned with understanding know the functions of elasticity and hence are freer to consider possibilities like a nonelastic artery that has one-way valves (Bransford and Stein, 1993~. Overall, this example illustrates how memorizing versus under- standing represents different learning goals in the Jenkins framework and how changes in these goals require different types of teaching strategies. The details of one's teaching strategies will also need to vary depending on the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and other charac- teristics that students bring to the learning task. For example, we noted earlier that some students (e.g., those in the lower grades) may not know enough about pumping, spurts, and elasticity to learn with understanding if they are simply told about the functions of arteries. They may need special scaffolds such as dynamic simulations that display these properties. As a different kind of example, imagine that we want to include mnemonics along with understanding and one of the students in our class is overweight and named Art. Under these conditions, it would seem unwise to use the mnemonic sentence about Art~ery) that was noted above. The Importance of Working Backwards The Jenkins model fits well with a recent book by Wiggins and McTighe entitled Understanding by Design (1997~. They suggest a "working backwards" strategy for creating high-quality learning experiences. In particular, they recommend that educators (1) begin with a careful analysis of learning goals; (2) explore how students' progress in achieving these goals; and (3) use the results of to assess 162 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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1 and 2 to choose and continually evaluate teaching methods. (Assumptions about steps 1 and 2 are also continually evaluated.) When using a "working backwards" strategy, one's choice of teaching strategies derives from a careful analysis of learning goals, rather than vice versa. In the discussion below, we attempt to clarify the importance of working backwards by discussing some imaginary universities that each set different goals for their students. These different goals have strong effects on what and how the universities teach. Father Guido Sarduci's Plans for Education One example of working backwards from a well-defined set of goals is illustrated in a wonderful four-minute comedy routine by Father Guido Sarduci from the television program "Saturday Night Live." Father Sarduci begins by looking at the knowledge and skills that the average college graduate remembers five years after he or she graduates. He accepts these five-years-later memory performances as his standard and proposes a new kind of university that will have the same outcomes. His innovation is "The Five-Minute University," which will cost only $20. Father Sarduci notes that $20 might seem like a lot for only 5 minutes, but it includes tuition, books, snacks for the 20-second spring break, cap and gown rental, and graduation picture. Father Sarduci provides examples of the kinds of things students remember after five years. If they took two years of college Spanish, for example, he argues that five years postgraduation the average student will remember only "`,Como esta usted?" and "Muy bien, gracias." So that's all his Five-Minute University teaches. His eco- nomics course teaches only "Supply and Demand." His business course teaches "You buy something and sell it for more," and so forth. A video of Father Sarduci's performance demonstrates how strongly the audience resonates to his theme of the heavy emphasis on memorization in college courses and the subsequent high forget- ting rates. Competing with Father Sar(luci: Reducing Forgetting A competitor to Father Sarduci's Five-Minute University might establish the goal of reducing the amount of forgetting that typically occurs five years after students graduate. The competitors' univer- sity will have to last longer than five minutes, but the increased retention of what was learned in college should make it worth the students' time. In order to accomplish this goal, the competitor will introduce students to a number of memory techniques. We saw an example of a memory technique in our earlier discus- sion of veins and arteries. A teacher in the competing university might introduce it as follows: "OK class. Here's a way to remember the properties of arteries. Think about the sentence ART(ery) was THICK around the middle but he was RICH enough to afford pants JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 163

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with an ELASTIC waistband. This will help you remember that arteries are thick elastic and carry oxygen-rich blood. In a minute I'll give you a different sentence for remembering information about veins." There is a great deal of research about the power of memory techniques and about ways that strategically spaced reminders can decrease the rate of forgetting (e.g., Bjork and Richardson-Klavhen, 1989; Bransford and Stein, 1993; Mann, 1979~. The competitor to Father Sarduci's university would probably use these studies as evidence for the "research-based teaching methods" that her school provides. Another Competitor: Learning With Understanding A third competitor proposes to move beyond the goal of simply increasing retention. Her university emphasizes the importance of learning with understanding. This not only can help remembering, it can also provide a basis for transfer to new problems that need to be solved. (e.g., National Research Council ENRC],1999a; Bransford and Stein, 1993; Judd, 1908; Wertheimer, 1959~. We noted earlier how learning with understanding applies to the veins and arteries example. From this perspective, students need to understand why veins and arteries have certain characteristics. The benefits of learning with understanding include a more flexible ability to transfer to new situations (e.g., to design an artificial artery). The downside is that learning with understanding typically takes more time than simply memorizing. Students need to understand something about the circulatory system and the body as a whole in order to understand the structure and functions of veins and arteries. So our third university is going to have to be longer than the other competi- tors. But the results should be worth this extra time. Still More Competitors We could continue to add more competitors to our existing trio of universities. In addition to a focus on learning with understanding, several competitors might also emphasize problem solving. However, there are many ways to define "effective problem solving," and we would eventually expect new universities to differentiate themselves within this category. For example, one might prepare students to deal with realistic, open-ended problems rather than simply prepare them to solve the kinds of well-specified word problems that are often used in school settings (e.g., see Bransford, 1979; Cognition and Technology Group at Vanderbilt ECTGV], 1997; Hmelo, 1995; Williams, 1992~. This will require a change in the kinds of assessments used to demon- strate success (i.e., the use of open-ended rather than simply well- scripted problems). Still another competing university might promise to accomplish all the preceding goals plus tailor the educational curriculum to the strengths, needs, and desires of each learner. This would include the development of self-understanding (metacognition) as an important 164 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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goal of learning. There is a considerable amount of data that supports the value of a metacognitive approach to instruction (e.g., see Brown, 1978; Leonard, Dufresne, and Mestre, 1996; Lin and Lehman, 1999; Pressley, 1995; White and Frederiksen, 1998~. It includes an emphasis on learning with understanding and on problem solving, but part of the emphasis is on understanding the cognitive and emotional processes involved in these kinds of activities. Summary: Issues of Education Quality We began this section by noting that some people approach the high-quality learning by focusing exclusively on ~ ~ r r ~ Issue of defining teaching methods and asking, "which ones are best?" An alternative (and we argue more productive) approach is to focus on what we want students to know and be able to do, and to then work backwards (Wiggins and McTighe, 1997~. We discussed the strategy of working backwards in the context of (imaginary) competing universities that try to differentiate themselves by focusing on different learning out- comes. Their choice of outcomes had a major impact on their choice of teaching strategies including the length of time that students need to spend in their school. The Jenkins model (Figure 6-1) reminds us that a change in learning goals is only one of several factors that should have an impact on our choice of teaching methods. Other factors include whom we are teaching and what they already know. If we are teaching plate tectonics to novices, or veins and arteries to novices, we probably need to include visuals preferably ones that show the dynamics of the systems. If our students already know the core workings of the subject, they may well be able to generate the necessary images on their own (e.g., see Schwartz and Bransford, 1998~. Ultimately, the ability to design high-quality learning environ- ments requires that we move beyond a procedural description of strategies such as working backwards (Wiggins and McTighe, 1997) and diagrams such as the Jenkins tetrahedral model. All these authors would agree that we also need to understand the kinds of skills, attitudes, and knowledge structures that support competent performance, plus understand the literature on ways to develop competence and confidence. We turn to these issues in the discussion below. USING INFORMATION ABOUT HOW PEOPLE LEARN During the past 30 years, research on human learning has exploded. Although we have a long way to go to fully uncover the mysteries of learning, we know a considerable amount about the cognitive processes that underlie expert performances and about strategies for helping people increase their expertise in a variety of areas. Several committees organized by the National Academy of Sciences have summarized much of this research in reports published by the National Academy JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 165

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FIGURE 6-2: Four lenses that together make up the How People Learn (HPL) frame- work. Press. Some of the key publications that inform our current discussion are How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience and School (NRC, 1999a) and How People Learn: Bridging Research and Practice (NRC, l999b). These two individual reports have recently been combined to produce an expanded edition of How People Learn (NRC, 2000~. A more recent report, Knowing What Students Know (NRC, 2001), which builds on How People Learn, is also relevant to this discussion. Its focus is primarily on assessment. An organizing structure used in the How People Learn volumes (hereafter HPL) is the HPL framework (see Figure 6-2). It highlights a set of four overlapping lenses that can be used to analyze any learn- ing situation. In particular, it suggests that we ask about the degree to which learning environments are: Knowledge centered (in the sense of being based on a careful analysis of what we want people to know and be able to do when they finish with our materials or course and providing them with the foundational knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed for successful transfer); Learner centered (in the sense of connecting to the strengths, interests, and preconceptions of learners and helping them learn about themselves as learners); 166 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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. Community centered (in the sense of providing an environ- ment both within and outside the classroom where students feel safe to ask questions, learn to use technology to access resources and work collaboratively, and are helped to develop lifelong learning skills); Assessment centered (in the sense of providing multiple opportu- nities to make students' thinking visible so they can receive feedback and be given chances to revise). We discuss each of these lenses below. Knowledge Centered it seems obvious that any learning situation whether informal or formal; whether face-to-face, online, or a hybrid involves the goal of acquiring new knowledge (we include skills within this category). The HPL framework helps us think more deeply about this issue by reminding us to take very seriously questions about what should be taught and why. Consistent with our earlier discussion of Under- standing by Design (Wiggins and McTighe, 1997), an important first step is to ask what we want people to be able to know and do at the end of a course or learning experience. Or at a broader level, what do we want them to know and be able to do once they graduate? Information about how people learn provides important guide- lines for deepening our thinking about knowledge-centered issues. For example, learning goals should not simply be viewed as a list of disconnected "behavioral objectives." A key is to emphasize connected knowledge that is organized around foundational ideas of a discipline. Research on expertise shows that it is the organization of knowledge that underlies experts' abilities to understand and solve problems (see HPL [NRC, 1992b], especially Chapter 2~. Bruner (1960) makes the following argument about knowledge organization: The curriculum of a subject should be determined by the most fundamental understanding that can be achieved of the underlying principles that give structure to a subject. Teaching specific topics or skills without making clear their context in the broader funda- mental structure of a field of knowledge is uneconomical.... An understanding of fundamental principles and ideas appears to be the main road to adequate transfer of training. To understand some- thing as a specific instance of a more general case which is what understanding a more fundamental structure means is to have learned not only a specific thing but also a model for understanding other things like it that one may encounter. (pp. 6, 25, and 31) An emphasis on knowledge organization (as opposed to a mere list of behavioral objectives) has important implications for the design of instruction. For example, Wiggins and McTighe (1997) argue that the knowledge to be taught should be prioritized into categories that range from "enduring ideas of the discipline" to "important things to JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 167

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know and be able to do" to "ideas worth mentioning." Thinking through these issues and coming up with a set of "enduring connected ideas" is an extremely important aspect of educational design. Our earlier discussion of veins and arteries provides a simple con- trast between a mere list of fact-oriented behavioral objectives (e.g., be able to list the features of veins and arteries) and an attempt to develop a more coherent, enduring model that explains why veins and arteries have certain properties. As Bruner (1960) argues, taking the time to develop an understanding of key concepts and models is more efficient in the long run (see also Bransford and Schwartz, 1999) because it facilitates subsequent learning. He also states: "One of the principal organizing concepts in biology is the question, "What func- tion does this thing serve?" This question is premised on the assump- tion that everything one finds in an organism serves some function or it probably would not have survived. Other general ideas are related to this question. The student who makes progress in biology learns to ask the question more and more subtly, to relate more and more things to it (Bruner, 1960, p. 280~. Bransford and Schwartz's (1999) discus- sion of "preparing students for future learning" provides additional examples of this point of view. Many courses are organized in ways that fail to optimally prepare students for future learning. For example, texts often present lists of topics and facts in a manner that has been described as "a mile wide and an inch deep" (e.g., see NRC, 2000~. Taking the time to define and teach the "enduring ideas of a discipline" is extremely important for ensuring high-quality learning. Making this choice is often described as choosing "depth over breadth," but in the long run it is not an either/or proposition. Learner Centered There are many overlaps between being knowledge centered and learner centered, but there are differences as well. From the instructor's perspective, an important aspect of being learner centered involves recognition of "expert blind spots." Instructors must become aware that much of what they know is tacit and hence can easily be skipped over in instruction. For example, experts in physics and engineering may not realize that they are failing to communicate all the informa- tion necessary to help novices learn to construct their own free body diagrams (Brophy, 2001~. The reason is that many decisions are so intuitive that the professors don't even realize they are part of their repertoire. Studies of expertise (e.g., NRC, 2000) show that experts' knowledge helps them begin problem solving at a higher level than novices because they almost effortlessly perceive aspects of a problem situation that are invisible to novices (e.g., Chi, Feltovich, and Glaser, 1981; deGroot, 1965~. Shulman (1987) discusses how effective teachers need to develop "pedagogical content knowledge" that goes well be- yond the content knowledge of a discipline (see also Hestenes, 1987~. 168 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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A learner-centered approach includes an understanding of how novices typically struggle as they attempt to master a domain and an under- standing of strategies for helping them learn. Related to the idea of expert blind spots is the notion that students are not "blank slates" with respect to goals, opinions, knowledge, and time. The HPL volume summarizes a number of studies that demon- strate the active, preconception-driven learning that is evident from infancy to adulthood (see also Carey and Gelman, 1991; Driver, Squires, Rushworth, and Wood-Robinson, 1994~. In many cases, students develop preconceptions based on their everyday experiences that are at odds with the basic assumptions that underlie various disciplines (e.g., modern physics). If these preconceptions are not addressed directly, students often memorize content (e.g., formulas in physics) yet still use their experience-based preconceptions (which are often miscon- ceptions from the perspective of mature disciplines) to act upon the world. Other components of being learner centered involve honoring students' backgrounds and cultural values and finding special strengths that each may have that allow him or her to connect to information being taught in the classroom. Unless these connections are made explicitly, such strengths often remain inert and hence do not support subsequent learning. An article written in 1944 by Stephen Corey provides an insight- ful look at the importance of being learner centered and attempting to help students connect school learning with other knowledge and skills that are available to them. Entitled "Poor Scholar's Soliloquy," the article is written from the perspective of an imaginary student (we'll call him Bob) who is not very good in school and has had to repeat the seventh grade. Many would write Bob off as having a low aptitude for learning. But looking at what Bob is capable of achieving outside of school gives a very different impression of his abilities. Part of the soliloquy describes how teachers don't see Bob as a good reader. His favorite books include Popular Science, the Mechanical Encyclopedia, and the Sears' and Ward's catalogs. Bob uses his books to pursue meaningful goals. He says, "I don't just sit down and read them through like they make us do in school. I use my books when I want to find something out, like whenever Mom buys anything second hand, I look it up in Sears' or Ward's first and tell her if she's getting stung or not." Later on, Bob explains the trouble he had memorizing the names of the presidents. He knew some of them, like Washington and Jefferson, but there were 30 altogether at the time and he never did get them all straight. He seems to have a poor memory. Then he talks about the three trucks his uncle owns and how he knows the horsepower and number of forward and backward gears of 26 different American trucks, many of them diesels. Then he says, "It's funny how that diesel works. I started to tell my teacher about it last Wednesday in science class when the pump we were using to make a JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 169

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(from automatic homework graders). Opportunities for asynchronous discussions with fellow classmates and professors can be very benefi- cial as well. However, there are also downsides of working online. One includes breakdowns in the equipment (this can be very frustrating) or very slow responsiveness due to too much bandwidth for the media and too little for one's Internet connections (also very frustrating). Other dif- ficulties include an inability to get immediate answers to questions because others are not online at the moment or do not have the time to respond. Perhaps the largest obstacle to effective online learning is the loss of personal interactions with professors and fellow students (e.g., see Hough, 2000; Palloff and Pratt, 1999~. Since online discussions are usually text based, there is less personal information available (gestures, smiles, tones of voice) than is typical in face-to-face interactions. This means that people often misinterpret others' intent. Even failures to get responses to one's e-mail can be interpreted negatively. Students who receive no answer to a message can easily assume "no one cares" or "my thoughts must have been stupid." In actuality, people may simply have been too busy to respond. Interacting with people we do not know can exacerbate the diffi- culties of interacting electronically. In The Social Life of Informa- tion, Brown and Duguid (2000) argue that interactive technologies appear to be more effective in maintaining communication among established communities than in building new communities from scratch. Online courses also often require a level of personal skills of time management that are not as necessary in face-to-face settings when course schedules tend to provide an outside pull that keeps students on track. Keeping students informed that their absences are noticed by the professor (and ideally other members of the community) is very important for successful online learning. Technology such as "knowbots" (J. Bourne, 1998 personal communication, August 10, 1998) have been used successfully to contact students when they have missed an online deadline and ask about their welfare. New versions of course management systems such as Web CT also have the ability to send "personalized" letters to students who need special help. The person- alized letters are actually batch processed (e.g., the entire list of students doing poorly on an exam can be put in one batch) hence saving instructors a great deal of time. Overall, existing research on how to build and sustain face-to-face learning communities has a number of implications for creating high- quality online courses (Baseman et al., 1999; CTGV, 1994~. The data suggest that online learning environments should be designed to enable community elements such as: (a) addressing the learning needs of all participants, (b) enabling participants to be active members in the community, (c) enabling all members to have influence in community processes, (~) enabling all participants to feel important and valued as 188 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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members of the community, and (e) over time facilitating emotional connections between members of the virtual community. OVERALL SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS We began by noting that opportunities for Web-based learning are increasing people's access to educational opportunities, and this is an extremely positive development for people's lives and for our nation. We applaud efforts to increase access. By the same token, the goal of our paper is to go beyond issues of access and ask how we might improve the quality of education in any format be it face to face, Web based, or a combination of both. In the first section of the chapter, we discussed different ways to approach the issue of high-quality learning. We noted that many people begin with a focus on teaching (e.g., is cooperative grouping better than lectures?) but that it seems more fruitful to focus on learning. We introduced the Jenkins model as depicting some important char- acteristics of educational "ecosystems" in which teaching and learn- ing strategies operate. The same teaching strategy may be good or poor depending on the rest of the ecosystem. Especially important are the goals for learning and methods of assessing it. We connected the Jenkins model to the idea of "working backwards" in order to design effective educational environments (Wiggins and McTighe, 1997~. And we discussed a number of imaginary universities that might compete with one another based on their ultimate goals for their students. Farther Guido Sarduci's "Five-Minute University" was one competitor. He set as his goal the ability to replicate what most college students remember five years after they graduate. Competing universities increasingly raised the bar with respect to what they wanted their graduates to know and be able to do. Next, we discussed the How People Learn framework (NRC, 2000) and showed how it connects to the Jenkins model and to the idea of working backwards (Wiggins and McTighe, 1997~. It is a very general framework that leaves a great deal of room for flexibility, which is both its strength and its weakness. Nevertheless, the framework is useful because it reminds us to analyze situations at a deeper and more complete level than we might do otherwise. In particular, it reminds us to examine the degree to which any learning environment 1S: Knowledge centered (in the sense of being based on a careful analysis of what we want people to know and be able to do when they finish with our materials or course and providing them with the foundational (connected) knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed for successful transfer); . Learner centered (in the sense of connecting to the strengths, interests, and preconceptions of learners and helping them learn about themselves as learners); JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 189

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Community centered (in the sense of providing an environ- ment where students feel safe to ask questions, learn to use tech- nology to access resources and work collaboratively, and are helped to develop lifelong learning skills); Assessment centered (in the sense of providing multiple oppor- tunities for formative assessment and revision and providing summative assessments that are carefully aligned with one's learning goals). The third section of the paper focused on special challenges and opportunities provided by new technologies. We noted that putting courses online has the advantage of making issues of teaching and learning more visible. We also noted that most online courses have tended to look much like "porting" existing classrooms onto the Internet. From the perspective of HPL, neither traditional face-to-face courses, nor their online cousins, represents environments where opportunities for high-quality learning are consistently strong. We organized much of our discussion in this section around a short lecture-based lesson on density. We have informally asked a number of people to redesign the lesson and found that they can usually make suggestions for improvement. However, for most of them the general lesson format (lecture) remains invariant. When asked to imagine the lesson online, they tend to port their classroom model to the Internet. Many are able to pinpoint some definite advantages to the Internet-based format like the ability to review the lecture, engage in asynchronous discussions, and get instant feedback on practice problems. Interestingly, very few engaged in the kinds of rigorous "working backwards" strategies that are recommended by theorists such as Wiggins and McTighe (1997~. With some trepidation, we attempted to illustrate how the HPL framework might provide a guide for more fully redesigning the density lecture. We say "with trepidation" because none of us is truly an expert in the area of density. We know something about the concept, but not enough to be truly confident that our decisions are optimal. in, , ~ ~~ ~ r ~ , , ~ ~ ~ r ,~ , 'l'he need tor deep content knowledge Is one ot the most Important features emphasized in NRC (1999a,b). Especially important is knowledge of key concepts and models that provide the kinds of connected, orga- nized knowledge structures and accompanying skills and attitudes that can set the stage for future learning (e.g., Bransford and Schwartz, 1999; Bruner, 1960; Wiggins and McTighe, 1997~. In proposing our redesign, we decided that the best way to make this point was to illustrate that we need this kind of expertise in order to ensure a high- quality lesson. Effective design requires collaboration among people with specific kinds of expertise (content knowledge, learning, assess- ment, technology). We also discussed a simple technique for captur- ing expertise that has proven to be very helpful in our work. We do audio interviews with content experts and place them on tapes or CDs so that they can be studied to better understand content issues. They require only about 20 minutes of an expert's time (we can record from 190 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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the telephone) and provide a starting point for getting back to experts about key ideas and concepts. The experts can hear the other experts as well. Our (tentative) redesign of the density lesson began with an attempt to say what we wanted students to know and be able to do. The goal of the original density lecture seemed to be "to compute the density of various materials." We wanted students to develop a more funda- mental understanding of the power of using concepts of density to explain a range of mysteries in the world. Our redesign involved a transformation from a lecture-based format to a challenge-based format. We used the term "challenge-based" as a general term for a variety of approaches to instruction that many have studied this includes case-based instruction, problem-based learning, learning by design, inquiry learning, anchored instruction, and so forth. There are important differences among each of these, but important commonalities as well (e.g., see Williams, 1992~. For our density lesson, we created a challenge around The Golden Statuette where a gold-painted statuette was presented to a proprietor as being "solid gold." The proprietor did some measurements, checked some charts, and ended up offering the person 10 cents for the statuette. The challenge for viewers became: Was she right? And if so, how did she know? We used the HPL framework as a set of lenses for guiding the redesign of the lesson. The Golden Statuette challenge was designed to be both knowledge centered and learner centered because it set the stage for understanding the power of understanding concepts of density, and it engaged the students. The challenge was also designed to identify preconceptions about gold, measurements, and other issues. This emphasis on making preconceptions visible was assessment centered as well. Community-centered issues included the development of a climate of collaboration and inquiry where students felt comfortable saying what they didn't know and what they further wanted to understand (e.g., "What does grams stand for?" "Why did she put the statuette in that cylinder of water?". The HPL framework was used to guide not only the development of our challenge but also the overall instruction that surrounded the challenge. Particularly important were opportunities to make students' thinking visible and give them chances to revise. We also noted the importance of provided opportunities for "what if" thinking, given variations on the challenge (e.g., if the statuette had actually been zinc rather than lead) and for new problems that also involved the concept of density (e.g., explaining the significance of Archimedes' "eureka" moment). Attempts to help people reflect on their own processes as learners (to be metacognitive) were also emphasized. In addition, we discussed issues of effective summative assessments including the possibilities of moving from mere "sequestered problem-solving" assessments to ones where we track students' abilities to learn to JOHN BRANSFORD, NANCY VYE, AND HELEN BATEMAN 191

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solve new problems because they have been prepared to learn (Bransford and Schwartz, 1999~. Our density lesson is just a small example of the processes involved in rethinking traditional approaches to instruction in order to make them higher quality. A major issue is to help students develop the kinds of connected knowledge, skills, and attitudes that prepare them for effective lifelong learning. This involves the need to seriously rethink not only how to help students learn about particular isolated topics (e.g., density) but to rethink the organization of entire courses and curricula. An excellent model for doing this appears in a book entitled Learning That Lasts (Mentkowski et al., 1999~. It is not highly technology-based. Nevertheless, it explores issues of high- quality learning that are highly compatible with discussions in NRC (1999a,b), and with new ways to think about transfer as "preparing students for future learning" (Bransford and Schwartz, 1999~. All of these issues are relevant to attempts to enhance learning through the effective use of new technologies. REFERENCES Adams, L., Kasserman, J., Yearwood, A., Perfetto, G., Bransford, J., and Franks, J. (1988~. The effects of facts versus problem-oriented acquisition. Memory and Cognition, 16, 167-175. Alexopoulou, E., and Driver, R. (1996~. Small group discussion in physics: Peer interaction modes in pairs and fours. Journal of Research in Science Teach- ing, 33~10J, 1099-1114. Barron, B.J., Schwartz, D.L., Vye, N.J., Moore, A., Petrosino, A., Zech, L., Bransford, J.D., and CTGV. (1998~. Doing with understanding: Lessons from research on problem and project-based learning. Journal of Learning Sciences, (3-4J, 271-312. Barrows, H.S. (1983~. How to design a problem-based curriculum for the preclinical years. New York: Springer. Bassok, M. (1990~. Transfer of domain-specific problem solving procedures. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 15, 153- 166. Bateman, H.V. (1998~. Psychological sense of community in the classroom: Relation- ships to students' social and academic skills and social behavior. Unpub- lished doctoral dissertation, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN. Bateman, H.V. (in press). Understanding learning communities through students' voices. In A. Fisher and C. Shonn (Eds.), Psychological sense of community: Research, applications, and implications. New York: Plenum. Bateman, H.V., Bransford, J.D., Goldman, S.R., and Newbrough, J.R. (2000, April). Sense of community in the classroom: Relationship to students' academic goals. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA. Bateman, H.V., Goldman, S.R., Newbrough, J.R., and Bransford, J.D. (1998~. Students' sense of community in constructivist/collaborative learning environments. In M. Gernsbacher and S. Derry (Eds.), Proceedings of the twentieth annual meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 126-131~. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Bateman, H.V., Newbrough, J.R., Goldman, S.R., and Bransford, J.D. (1999, April). Elements of students' sense of community in the classroom. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Montreal, Canada. 192 CREATING HIGH-QUALITY LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS

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Saul Fisher The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Email: sf~mellon.org Antoine M. Garibaldi Educational Testing Services Email: agar~baldi~ets.org Evelyn Gazglass National Governors Association Email: eganzglass~nga.org Michael Goldstein Dow, Jones & Albertson Email: mgoldstein~lalaw.com David Goodwin U.S. Department of Education Email: david.goodwin~ed.gov James A. Griffin Office of Science and Technology Policy Email: jgriffin(~ostp.eop.gov Janet S. Hansen Committee for Economic Development Email: janet.hansen~ced.org Lucy Hausner National Alliance of Business Email: hausnerI~nab.com Gregory Hensche] U..S. Department of Education/OER} Email: gregory.henschel~ed.gov Ricardo Hernandez U.S. Department of Education Email: r~cardo.hernandez~ed.gov Margaret Hilton The National Academies Email: mbilton(~nas.edu John Jackson National Science Foundation Email: jajackso~nsf.gov Janet Javar U.S. Department of Labor Email: jjavar~doleta.gov The Knowledge Economy and Postsecondary Education: Report of a Workshop Appendix B Julie Kaminkow CISCO Email: jkaminko~cisco.com Paula Knepper U.S. Department of Education Email: paula.knepper~ed.gov Jay Labov The National Academies Email: j~abov~nas.edu Mark A. Luker EDUCAUSE Email: miuker~educause.edu Angela Manso American Association of Community Colleges Email: amanso~aacc.nche.edu Hans Meeder National Alliance of Business Email: meederh~nab.com Jeanne Narum Project Kaleidoscope Email: pkal~pkal.org Erin Nicholson National Alliance of Business Email: nichoisone~nab.com Samue! Peng U.S. Department of Education/NCES Email: samuel~eng~ed.gov Ronaid Pugsley U.S. Department of Education Email: ronaid.pugsTey~ed.gov Sahar Rais-Danai U.S. Department of Labor Email: srais-dana~doleta.gov Jane Richards ~ternational Labor Affairs Email: nchardsjane~clol.gov Stuart Rosenfeld Regional Technology Strategies, Inc. Email: rosenfeld~rtsinc.org 198