Chapter 2-1 “DAY 2 Is Filled with Important Topics! I Had to Divide the Long Article into Two…”
I was supposed “to shorten the length from the next article on DAY 2” as I wrote in the last post, but DAY 2 was extremely rich in content as the instructor Dr. Kurita herself said. I tried to summarize the points briefly, but “extremely rich content” literally means that there are no points to be omitted…so I decided to divide the article into two parts!
(1) Reflection on making research presentations
The class began with participants sharing their thoughts (in groups of three) on the assignment of DAY 1 (i.e., filming and submitting a 1-min video on their research presentation). This activity is to let the participants recall what they learned in the last session and helps them output their thoughts online; it must have been not so difficult to put into words their own experiences. In that sense, it worked as an icebreaker for DAY 2, but “giving a research presentation” itself is an important component that is linked to the next topic. I’d like to talk about that later on.
(2) Goals and objectives / Where are we?
These are shown in every class as the key components of the “class structure.” Please refer to the past article in “Nabetan Journal” for more details on what “class structure” is.
(3) Work: “Students don’t like statistics?” Let’s give advice to the professor.
Participants were given an assignment in the last session to advise an imaginary professor who was in trouble. They watched a video “Motivation: Expectancy-Value Theory” and thought of one or more pieces of advice from three viewpoints: expectancy, value, and environment. They wrote down their individual thoughts on sticky notes on a Google Slide shared by each group, followed by a group activity to organize the members’ ideas and see if there were any other points to be added.
This activity also worked for participants to experience a “Flipped Class,” which appeared at the end of the session. It aligned with the “class structure” that enabled learners to experience the essence of a topic first before learning about that topic in a lecture format. This activity also worked as an introduction to “motivation,” which was one of the major themes for DAY 2.
The lecture slide said, “Encouraging and maintaining students’ motivation are essential to their active learning.”
[Just talking to myself] Through my involvement with the environment of education until today, I encountered a lot of situations that made me think that whether you are really taking the above sentence seriously as a premise makes all the difference in becoming a good teacher. I’d like to talk about this topic with teachers at elementary/secondary schools.
(5) A model of motivation “expectancy/value/environment”
Following the above activities and showing the “premise,” “expectancy/value/environment” was explained as one of the models of motivation. (Link 1/Link 2) The lecture was conducted in a limited time, but the participants were already knowledgeable enough to receive the information thanks to their preparation before the class. As described in the last slide of the section titled “What educators can do,” “Think of what would hold high value for students,” “Figure out some ways to enhance students’ expectancies,” and “Create a cooperative environment” are the three points based on the premise and will work as a basis for designing lectures for microteaching sessions.
There are various models of motivation, and another one is called the ARCS model. Here is a video clip you can refer to.
[Just talking to myself] I always kept the learners’ motivation in mind as a teacher, but I did not use such a specific list of items for describing motivation then, so what I did at school must have been somewhat vague. And without such a list, I had no criteria to reflect on my classes, so I think I could not work on my class reform from the perspective of motivation. If I have a chance to teach a class once again, I would like to clarify the items related to motivation. Teachers at elementary/secondary schools, how about you?
(6) Significance of class design
A class refers to every session, and a course refers to a series of classes as a whole. Speaking of this course, UTokyo FFP (with a total of eight classes) is considered a course, and DAY 1, 2… are classes.
The significance of class design was described as follows:
・It allows efficient use of limited time. ・It enables you to choose instructional methods suitable for goals and objectives. ・It makes it easier to improve your classes. ・It makes it easier to share your ideas on class design with others. ・It motivates students.
[Just talking to myself] When I discussed with the teachers at elementary/secondary schools what the significance of class design is and who it is significant for, the following four perspectives came out:
a- An efficient use of class time (for learners/teachers)
b- Planned utilization of instructional methods (for learners/teachers)
c- Sharing of knowledge and skills (among teachers)
d- Effective identification of the target when working on class reform (among teachers)
The fact that “a” and “b” are considered to be significant for learners seems to reflect the current need for teachers “to emphasize classes as a place where learners learn rather than a place where they teach.” It simply states the obvious, but most classes I have seen before were those where the teacher only knows the class design and the learners just try to catch up with what the teacher presents, and it also applies to my own classes in the past…
Our discussion further developed, and one of the elementary school teachers proposed the following idea:
“Speaking of ‘d,’ in light of the fact that classes are a learning space for the learners, identifying the target of class reform should be done through an exchange between the learners and teachers (who designed the classes). Under the trend of emphasizing learning from each other, it also must be done among learners themselves in terms of learning how to learn.”
Therefore, I would like to revise the item “d” into the following expression:
d- Effective identification of the target when working on class reform (among teachers, between teachers and learners, and among learners)
I regularly joined the class observation at the elementary school where the proponent belonged. When the teacher proposed the unit design to the students, I saw them expressing their ideas such as, “Why are you planning to allot three classes for that activity? Deciding from the classes so far, I think two are enough.” “Learner-centered” has now become a word that frequently appears everywhere, but I believe it is such an exchange between the teachers and learners that truly realizes the word in terms of creating the classes together through their mutual respect.
(7) The ADDIE model (a model for instructional design)
The next point is, “What should we specifically do for designing a class?” The ADDIE model was shown as one of the models for class design.
It proceeds in the order of A (analysis), D (design), D (development), I (implementation), and E (evaluation), and as described as “CLOSE THE LOOP!”, E is linked with A again and the cycle is repeated like ADDIEADDIEA… It is sort of a growing/changing spiral model rather than a repetitive cycle. For more details, please refer to the video by clicking the above link. Another point is that this is not a one-way direction. It requires going back and forth constantly between each phase, and E (evaluation) is conducted not only at the end of a class or a course but also in each phase of ADDI as necessary. (Self-evaluations, student ratings, and external reviews were shown as examples of evaluation in the session, but we will further delve into “Evaluation” as the main topic in DAY 4.)
[Just talking to myself] I introduced this ADDIE model during the above-mentioned discussion with the teachers at elementary/secondary schools on class design, and almost everyone mentioned as follows:
“Speaking of ‘Development,’ we call it ‘Material Development’ and spare quite a long time for that, and regarding ‘Implementation,’ we call it ‘Instructional Technique” and take it up as a topic in teacher training. We realized that we already have taken good care of these two aspects, but we were not taking time to work on ‘Analysis’ and ‘Design.'”
“If ‘Analysis’ and ‘Design’ are insufficient, it is likely to end up just delivering a self-satisfied class no matter how much you take good care of ‘Development’ and ‘Implementation.'”
“‘Evaluation’ tends to focus on whether the learners’ outcome is good or bad, and in the latter case, we do review ‘Development’ and ‘Implementation,’ but that’s all. I think that’s because ‘Analysis’ and ‘Design’ are insufficient in the first place.”
They said that they would like to reflect on their own class design from the perspective of the ADDIE model, especially from ‘Analysis’ and ‘Design.’
Therefore, I am holding an informal meeting to introduce the ADDIE model to school teachers and discuss the topic with them. If you are interested, please feel free to contact me. The ADDIE model in fact has already become one of the topics for in-school training at the above-mentioned elementary school. I’m excited to hear the outcomes!
(8) The first step to creating a class design sheet: work on “setting objectives”
The next activity was “setting objectives” as the first step to designing a class for the “microteaching session” (DAY 6 and Day 7). By the way, the topic of the microteaching session is “A 6-min class on a topic in your field.” The participants must bring up the “research description” they wrote in the application document again here, after refining it through self-introduction and creating a video. According to Dr. Kurita, “six minutes for explaining one topic” is the minimum unit that includes the components of a class. There is a wide variety of microteaching styles and research on microteaching, but that amount of time and content seem to be the best option that fits the course design of UTokyo FFP (in terms of the learning environment with a limited amount of time and people).
There was a lecture on “Goals and objectives,” which are important in designing a class (and in the ADDIE model) prior to this activity. I also explained these topics in the past article in Nabetan Journal. Please also refer to Bloom’s taxonomy and Fink’s taxonomy of “significant learning” which appeared in the lecture as related topics.
Furthermore, Gagné’s nine events of instruction and systematization of knowledge through presenting a graphic syllabus and actively associating one’s knowledge were shown as tips for structuring a class. By the way, speaking of the active association of one’s knowledge, the topics in DAY 1 and 2 were linked to one another in this UTokyo FFP course, and all the topics will further develop and connect with one another in DAY 3 and following sessions. Stay tuned!
DAY 2 then moved on to the next topic “Active Learning,” but that’s all for this long article (perhaps because of too many “talking to myself”!). To be continued in Part 2.
See you next time! (I’m fully determined to post Part 2 before DAY 3!)
For more details on the course materials and AY2020 course schedule, please click the following links!
(Official) UTokyo FFP Website
UTokyo OCW “Teaching Development in Higher Education” (UTokyo FFP AY2020)
Interactive Teaching (Video Clips)
Research Support Staff (FFP)
Center for Research and Development of Higher Education