Encouraging Students to Use Research Databases

Guest contributor: Joseph Palmisano, Senior Editor at Gale, a part of Cengage Learning. As college instructors and academic librarians, you encounter it most working days: students who use free Web resources—rather than research databases—to complete course assignments. Do you ever wonder if academic research findings support your experiences? Well, let’s find out.   Based upon our survey of academic journals and trade magazines, students often demonstrate common online research behaviors. These include:

    Relying heavily on Google, Wikipedia, and YouTube, often instead of libraries’ research databases (Anderson 2011)
    Using Wikipedia because “it meets students’ needs in terms of coverage, currency, convenience and
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How to Implement Mobile Learning Activities in Your Course

Wondering how you can implement mobile learning activities in your course? Looking for some tips that can help you make smart use of smartphones (and other devices) in the classroom? Take some time to get “Lost & Found in a Wonderland of Mobile Learning”! In this presentation, recorded during our recent online workshop “Wired and Inspired!: The Intelligent Use of Technology in Higher Education,” Shelley Rodrigo, visiting professor at the University of Arizona, will introduce you to a variety of ways that you can provide your students with opportunities to engage in mobile learning. Rodrigo’s resource-packed presentation offers:

    Background information on the current state
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How to Have Energizing Online Discussions in Your Course

If you teach an online course, or if your course has an online component or LMS, you probably make extensive use of the discussion board. Online discussions can be a great way for students to connect, collaborate, and share their ideas with their fellow students. Unfortunately, student discussions often become monologues, rather than the lively conversations that you’d hope for them to be. Want to gather some fresh ideas for sparking energizing online discussions? Then watch “Reenergizing Online Discussions.” This presentation, recorded during our recent “Wired and Inspired!: The Intelligent Use of Technology in Higher Education” online workshop, offers specific Read More…

EdTech in the College Classroom: Get Wired and Inspired!

What impact has technology had on the teaching and learning experience? And how can it be used to enhance that experience while successfully meeting the academic needs of today’s students? To consider the answers to these questions, and to gather ideas about incorporating effective edtech strategies into your course, watch “Wire Me and Inspire Me—A Panel Discussion.” This presentation, recorded during our recent “Wired and Inspired!: The Intelligent Use of Technology in Higher Education” online workshop, addresses the impact of technology on the needs of today’s learners and explores ways that technology can help to maximize learning in the Read More…

The Not-So-Powerful PowerPoint®: Students Weigh the “Best” Classes Against the “Worst”

The Today’s Student project by Cengage Learning is based on original research that springs from our company’s commitment to gaining insights directly from students. We surveyed and interviewed 5,000 students—traditional and non-traditional, from four-year and two-year colleges—for their impressions of success, career prospects, technology, courses, and obstacles to achieving academic goals.

In this report, Cengage Learning explores how students define their “best” and “worst” classes and uncovers the criteria that influenced this ranking. Student comments largely spoke to the importance of active learning—using technology to complement instructor interaction.

» Download the whitepaper: “The Not-So-Powerful PowerPoint®: Students Weigh the ‘Best’ Classes against the ‘Worst’”

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Digital in the Classroom: Hearing From the Student End-User

There’s a plethora of digital tools available to today’s students… but are they using them? And to what extent?

Who better to learn from than the students themselves?

We recently spoke with Matt Bilotti, Senior at Northeastern University and a member of the panel for “STUDENTS UNFILTERED: Digital in the Classroom,” Cengage Learning’s session to take place during SXSWedu 2016. Below, Matt discusses why he believes it’s important to include students in the conversation about digital in the classroom.
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The Biggest Challenge of Today’s EdTech? Support

When you think about getting support for a product or service, you normally think of the experience as an unpleasant one. Something you paid for is not working and you need help. It happens in all areas of life: travel, shopping, and for college students, homework. With an exponential increase in the number of students using digital products in the classroom, the challenge for ed tech companies is how to provide the highest level of support for students using digital products. Think about it. There is an 8 week period twice a year when most of the college Read More…

College Students’ Use of Digital Learning Tools

By looking at students’ attitudes, habits, and behaviors, we can better understand—and address— their needs. Given the prevalence of digital learning solutions, we wanted to take a look at how, and how frequently, students made use of these tools. To do so, we turned to two recent polls conducted by our colleagues at Below, we share the results, as well as some tips that help both you and your students get the most out of your course.

How much time do students spend with digital learning tools?

The amount of time spent on assignments is not the sole indicator of Read More…

Digital in the Classroom: An Adult Learner’s Perspective

How do adult learners perceive the use of digital solutions in the classroom? Let’s find out by asking one ourselves. We recently spoke with JoAnna Zalkovsky, a student at Navarro College. Joanna, a member of the panel for “STUDENTS UNFILTERED: Digital in the Classroom,” Cengage Learning’s session to take place during SXSWedu 2016, is an adult learner in the nursing program and also serves as secretary of the college’s Phi Theta Kappa chapter. Below, Joanna discusses why she believes it’s important to include students in the conversation about digital in the classroom.  

Why is it important to hear from students

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“Tools for Today” Event: Exploring 21st-Century Pedagogy

The Tools for Today MindTap as 21st Century Pedagogy event that occurred in San Francisco, California from June 24th-26th was a huge success! Educators from different disciplines—English, History, Psychology, Criminology, Sociology, and College Success—came together under a common goal to create collaborative, meaningful discussion surrounding teaching and learning in the age of technology. The event kicked off with a Welcome Reception where fellow educators began to pave the way for community by sharing ideas about what 21st Century Pedagogy means to them and by discussing how they can learn from each other to augment student learning. Day two Read More…