engagement

Don’t Let the Tech Take Over: Master Mindfulness

Does this scenario sound familiar? You’re in a department meeting. As you lift your eyes to listen to the department chair, you look around the room and see that everyone has their eyes fixed on the screens of their electronic devices, with fingers busy typing, scrolling, or swiping. Two minutes later, your own phone buzzes to alert you about an incoming text message – and you can’t get your mind off of it. Clearly: everyone at this meeting is physically present, but where are their thoughts? Now, picture yourself having a lively conversation with a friend over a meal. You’re literally Read More…


Conquering Distraction In and Out of the Classroom

For all its benefits, our use of technology has introduced certain challenges into our modern lives, including an increased sense of distraction and information overload. Of course, technology in and of itself is not the problem. In order to keep from feeling overwhelmed, we must master technology, rather than allowing it to master us. Many of the students who enter your classroom are “digital natives” quite accustomed to communicating and finding information online — and also quite attached to their technology devices. Fortunately, you as an instructor can play a role in raising these students’ awareness of how they can use this Read More…


Making a Difference in Computing Courses

An Interview with Cheryl Costantini, VP, Brand Management, Cengage Learning. When business productivity applications were first launched in the early 1980’s for the brand-new personal computers that had been introduced by companies like IBM, Compaq, DEC, and NEC, software was delivered in a box that contained a packet of floppy disks and two manuals – a references manual and a user manual. Most users learned how use the products on their own, with both manuals open on their desks, next to their computers. There were training classes available, but many professionals simply did not have time to attend classes. The Read More…


Hot Technologies and Cool Applications for Your Classroom

Whether you teach history or human physiology, accounting or architecture, there’s a way for you to bring the latest technologies into your classroom in an engaging and entertaining way. In this presentation from Cengage Learning’s 18th Annual Course Technology Conference, Mark Frydenberg and Corinne Hoisington demonstrate how you can use a variety of technologies and applications to get your students involved in and excited about the topics you’re covering in class that day. You’ll see a variety of low- and no-cost tools that allow you to share and collaborate over online content, build dynamic timelines, create interactive images, “publish” your own Read More…


Strategies for Improving Student Retention Rates

It’s no secret that the issues of post-secondary student retention and persistence are areas of national concern. If you have been working in the field of education for any length of time, your institution has probably experimented with or implemented a variety of solutions designed to improve the retention rate for first-to-second year students, which currently hovers at approximately 72%, according to the most recent data from ACT®. If your institution believes – as many do – that retention is the job of everyone on campus, you may have explored or implemented an early warning and tracking system that collects Read More…


Creating a Learning Experience that Sticks with Students

“When we’re talking about relevance, we have to be thinking about making what we’re doing, or tying what we’re doing, to [students’] future.” — Christy Price “What we must understand is that we have to make the learning experience streamlined, we have to make it lean, we have to simplify it. Focus on the key things that you want your students to learn.” — Carey M. Roberts As an instructor, you likely encounter the frustration of distracted and passive students — as well as the thrill of seeing students become excited about and involved in what they’re learning. Undoubtedly, you have your Read More…


Cultivate an Engaging Online Learning Environment via TEC-VARIETY

“Education extends to wherever we happen to be. Learning’s wrapped all around us.” — Curt Bonk It’s no secret: education can happen anytime and anywhere a person wants it to happen. Though it’s easy enough to pick up some information by simply reading a website or watching a video, people are embracing more formal settings for online learning in greater and greater numbers. Whether they’re enrolling in a MOOC simply to satisfy their curiosity on a topic, or they’re matriculated in an online degree program at a traditional university, we can see that people around the world recognize the power Read More…


Using 3D Virtual Worlds to Improve Outcomes and Engagement

An Interview with Nicole Yankelovich, CEO of WonderBuilders, Inc., Executive Director of the Open Wonderland Foundation, and Visiting Scientist, Center for Educational Computing Initiatives, MIT. You probably know at least a few professors who have successfully integrated 3D virtual worlds, like those enabled by Second Life, into their courses. On the other hand, you probably know many more who have not yet taken that leap. Fortunately, the technology behind immersive 3D virtual environments continues to evolve, with new capabilities, toolkits, and applications that help to lower the bar for adoption within the education space. The Open Wonderland Foundation, launched in Read More…


Embracing Life-Wide Learning via Emerging Technologies

“It’s mainly a matter of getting beyond the ‘old wine in new bottles’ attitude and recognizing that these mediasocial media included—are a more effective way of doing something different, rather than a way of automating the same old stuff that we’re used to doing now.” — Chris Dede Do you remember the first cell phones? The ability to reach out, and be reached, wherever you went meant that an expected phone call no longer tethered you to your home or office. As the technology evolved – and the humble cell phone’s power increased from simple voice and text messaging, Read More…


Empowering Students to Take Charge of Their Learning Opportunities

“What is our role? To provide conducive situations that allow students to engage in creating effective Personalized Learning Environments by organizing and managing their own learning experiences.” — Nada Dabbagh
How can you, as an educator, engage digital natives in the learning process and build a desire for life-long learning? What role do you play in helping students develop the twenty-first century skills that lead to personal and professional success? In this video from Cengage Learning’s Engage 2013 conference hosted by SXSWedu, Nada Dabbagh of George Mason University addresses the Personalized Learning Environment (PLE). The PLE allows students to customize, Read More…