Thursday, September 18, 2008

Accelerated Learning Models

just a note....As Chapman University College considers an 8-week term along with blended learning, faculty may be interested in sharing the pros and cons of such a schedule. The blended teaching committee has begun to look at other university models for 8-week term scheduling. I'll post what we find here and we'll try to look at some visuals as think of the possibilities.
Email me if you have trouble posting comments -

CAEL - The Council for Adult and Experiential Learning
CAEL on Accelerated Programs
CAEL - Adult-Centered Implementation


Leslie said...

I taught 8-week terms for 14 years, and for most things it can be done, although it does limit what you can ask the students to learn. In a couple of cases, such as statistics, it simply wasn't enough "think time" between repetitions. We added a paid half-time position to do a 2.5 hour Saturday morning tutorial to help the uptake of that material.

And we had 5 terms, with one or two weeks in between, which meant you actually had time to assign longer, meaningful critical thinking assignments and grade them with comments to help your students move forward. I fear that these quality items would no longer be feasible with a 6-term schedule. I foresee a shift to less sophisticated forms of learning such as multiple choice tests that can be graded in the proposed timeframe. This concerns me. I'd like to have enough time to deliver the quality of teaching and learning that I have come to associate with our organization.

Dr. Michael J. McGuire said...

I tend to agree with you, Leslie. I have no particular concern with the 8 week term model. I, too, have taught in an 8 week format, and in addition, a 5 week model as well.

I'm concerned though with moving toward six terms annually. I echo the points made by of others that the quality our work will eventually suffer, and burn out for students and faculty will become an issue.

I would be interested in talking with faculty and students who work in an 8 week - 6 term model and discuss the nuts and bolts of this approach to higher education.