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FOR THOSE WHO TEACH

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Great teaching… Is it just a destination point no one can ever reach or a constant struggle to tailor pedagogy to the ever-changing times?

We’ve connected with Mr. José Antonio Bowen who’s been into examining teaching methods, faculty-student interaction, effective use of technology outside the classroom to get hold of what great teaching should be like.

Mr. José Antonio Bowen is juggling many roles, working as a scholar, educator, innovation consultant, and even musician. His book about A New 3Rs: Learning to Change through Relationships, Resilience and Reflection explores many practical opportunities for student engagement and disrupts our traditional perception of technology in higher education, which is a good point for any instructor to think about.

He favors the ability to change and shows how to benefit from it by his own example. As a former Goucher College President, Mr. José Antonio Bowen introduced video admissions for students, streamlined a process-focused curriculum letting students pursue their interests, and initiated a revitalization of the campus to better prepare students for the future jobs.

Let’s find out more about his take on the current state of higher education as well as some practical advice on the transformation needed.

What makes complex problems complex? Obviously, it’s their messy and unpredictable side. However, when we start examining it by posing the right questions and finding the answers – we’re already halfway there.

In this part-two conversation with Dr. Irene Glendinning we’re ruminating on who takes bigger responsibility in fighting academic dishonesty cases as well as the reasons pushing students to search for shortcuts.

Research and practice go hand in hand. One may give thousands of inspiring speeches on procedures for academic integrity, but some proposed solutions may be far from feasible.

Our interviewee, Dr. Irene Glendinning, has both theoretical and practical knowledge, having conducted a series of research projects into pedagogy and academic integrity in higher education. One of them, funded by the Erasmus, had been carried out throughout 2010-13 to learn effective institutional plagiarism policies and find ways to put them to good use.

Moving classes online at short notice is quite a challenging feat. But once the teaching & learning process has begun, maintaining student engagement remotely becomes the next big challenge.

While the tech side of the equation is essential for effective remote learning, we’d like to offer educators a different perspective on student engagement. Consider this: what if knowing how to get students’ attention means focusing on pedagogy, and not just fancy online learning tools?

As the University of California in Merced puts it, student engagement is crucial for ensuring your students understand what you’re teaching. From that perspective, we can see that the key to engagement lies closer to the pedagogical side of things rather than just the tech.

In this article, we’ll start by exploring some student engagement strategies.

What makes a successful scientist or academic? Research findings, contributions made, or a deep understanding of what’s being researched? It seems to be everything, and we know the type of person who can meet them.

For just under 20 years, Dr. Thomas Lancaster’s been studying academic integrity and how to nurture and preserve it. He’s been recognized for his strong commitment to inventing plagiarism detection methods as well as ways to avert the risks of contract cheating. His research led to him and Robert Clarke creating the first published material that emphasized the many dangers of contract cheating.

Dr. Thomas Lancaster completed a thesis, Effective and Efficient Plagiarism Detection, collaborated with international academic integrity councils, delivered multiple keynote presentations and webinars, and still initiates research and public activities with equal enthusiasm.

In our interview with Thomas, we ran through the most burning questions: how to ensure students feel educators’ support in the online environment, what may encourage and motivate them, how plagiarism detection has transformed, and a few more. Proceed to explore his observations.

While educators and students have been enjoying the benefits of online learning, they’ve also found that it comes with a fair share of challenges.

Among them, there’s one challenge that’s quite unexpected: having too many solutions to choose from. Yes, you can have too much of a good thing! You see, tech for online courses today is saturated with almost too many solutions and ideas.

The global e-learning industry is so big that by 2020, it’s projected to be worth more than $243 billion. This saturation includes the learning platforms available and even the teaching & learning methods used by different educators. As a result, administrators and educators alike become overwhelmed even before the learning has begun. Choosing the right solutions to deliver online education becomes a significant hurdle that’s difficult to overcome.

High schools, colleges and universities alike are slowly being allowed to reopen. While educators have previously been struggling with making the switch to online classes, now they’re trying to answer tougher questions involving schools reopening amid pandemic.

When exactly should schools reopen? Should they open to all students, or only those who need to use school facilities for their learning? And of course, the question of what safety measures need to be put in place. The answers to these questions can’t be taken lightly, as they’ll affect at least 1.4 billion students worldwide.

The traditional grading scale in learning, as we know it, is facing an existential crisis. Universities and colleges have now moved most of their activities online and are currently engaged in distance learning. As with most things in life, the reality is that education technologies come with their fair share of pros and cons.

Unfortunately, some students are finding it harder to gain an education under these circumstances. Some face technological problems, like when students don’t have equal access to computers or reliable internet connections at home. As governments enforce lockdowns, students are suddenly restricted to home environments that might not be conducive to their learning. Some are forced to balance their education with providing care for younger siblings or ageing parents. All the while, many suffer from the lack of strict schedules that once gave them stability.

Over the past five years, we have made plagiarism detection more reliable and more intuitive for more than 1,000 education institutions across the globe. 

Today, I am pleased to announce that Unicheck has joined Turnitin. Together, we will further promote academic integrity by investing in technological excellence. 

Google returns about 2,410,000,000 results for the “new normal in higher education,” which is a clear indication of how vital this question is.

Some are saying that old teaching methods will have to vanish, giving way to the tech-savvy instruction. Some predict tougher competition among higher education institutions as they struggle to grow enrollments and make admissions less demanding.

To help us avoid getting lost in this round-the-clock news stream, we’ve reached out to a highly experienced specialist in making predictions based on demographic, political, and economic data.

Meet Bryan Alexander, Senior Scholar at Georgetown University and author of Academia Next,  The Futures of Higher Education.