Good Practice Communicates High Expectations


Good Practice Communicates High Expectations
Expect more and you will get it. High expectations are important for everyone — for the poorly prepared, for those unwilling to exert themselves, and for the bright and well motivated. Expecting students to perform well becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

New technologies can communicate high expectations explicitly and efficiently. Significant real-life problems, conflicting perspectives, or paradoxical data sets can set powerful learning challenges that drive students to not only acquire information but sharpen their cognitive skills of analysis, synthesis, application, and evaluation.

Many faculty report that students feel stimulated by knowing their finished work will be “published” on the World Wide Web. With technology, criteria for evaluating products and performances can be more clearly articulated by the teacher, or generated collaboratively with students. General criteria can be illustrated with samples of excellent, average, mediocre, and faulty performance. These samples can be shared and modified easily. They provide a basis for peer evaluation, so learning teams can help everyone succeed.

Communicates high expectations

Research has shown that learners are motivated to reach high expectations. One expectation that is almost a “buzzword” in today’s training and education circles is that of “learner centred learning.” One aspect of learner centred learning is that of giving learners responsibility for their own learning. The Internet makes it possible for learners to expand their learning experiences beyond the confines of any single textbook or even a single library to libraries, schools, companies and museums throughout the
world.

Giving learners more control and responsibility for their own learning is one way in which educators can communicate high expectations to learners. However, if the learners are expected to meet high expectations then they should be given tools that make success possible. Some of the ways in which the Internet can help do this include:

  • The ability to develop vibrant engaging content
  • The provision of communication and collaboration opportunities
  • The availability of vast resources for in-depth study and research

Challenges: The development of engaging content and interesting collaborative activities for online study requires skill and creativity. It may also require skilled resources.

Have you had an online learning experience that was exceptionally good or exceptionally bad that you would like to share? If so, click on “View or leave feedback” to tell us about it.

Seven Principles in Practice

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