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Active, Collaborative Learning In A Live Distance Education Class

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2000 Annual Conference


St. Louis, Missouri

Publication Date

June 18, 2000

Start Date

June 18, 2000

End Date

June 21, 2000



Page Count


Page Numbers

5.80.1 - 5.80.7



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Paper Authors

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Kandace K. Martin

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Justin Benna

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Donald R. Flugrad

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Anthony W. Hron

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Barbara L. Licklider

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3430

Active Collaborative Learning

in a Live Distance Education Class

Donald Flugrad, Barbara Licklider, Anthony Hron,

Kandace Martin, Justin Benna

Iowa State University

I. Introduction

Colleges and universities across the nation are finding themselves in the midst of several learning revolutions. Recognizing that the traditional classroom no longer meets the needs of the student, "the old telling-method" of delivering education is being replaced with a new learner and/or learning-centered platform of delivery.1 Research states that the unilateral dispensing of knowledge is an ineffective method for enhancing student learning. Supporting this finding about learning requires educators to confront how they think and to redesign what they do as a result. The shift from the lecture-based, passive-learning model to a learning-centered system of learning does not just happen. It requires a purposeful faculty development project that challenges instructors to commit to positive change. Such change in the classroom creates active involvement, student interaction, and intellectual engagement. Additionally, implementing new pedagogy will empower students to become actively involved in the class. But the active, collaborative model becomes more challenging to implement when the students are miles apart and from diverse backgrounds and experiences.

How does the instructor who has made this philosophical shift enhance communication, build community, and facilitate learning through the use of collaborative strategies in a distance education class? A mechanical engineering instructor, with the help of two Project LEA/RN™ facilitators, set out to answer this question in one distance education class. This paper describes our efforts.

II. Faculty Development

As the learning revolution slowly infiltrates college campuses, one of the keys to making a paradigm shift is through faculty involvement in an interactive development program that allows instructors to come together as learners to learn about learning.1 Another goal of faculty development is to enhance student learning by assisting faculty to investigate how and why students learn, to deepen student learning through effective teaching strategies and to incorporate effective cooperative learning methodology in the classroom. Through the commitment of the instructor, the classroom is transformed from a "telling" classroom to an active, collaborative environment. On the campus of Iowa State University, Project LEA/RN™, a faculty development effort to promote change, has directed the shift from the traditional teacher-centered classroom to a learning-centered one in which students actively transform information into knowledge. Personnel who have joined the Project have acquired the skills, expertise, and desire to apply current knowledge about learning.2

Martin, K. K., & Benna, J., & Flugrad, D. R., & Hron, A. W., & Licklider, B. L. (2000, June), Active, Collaborative Learning In A Live Distance Education Class Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. 10.18260/1-2--8157

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