Comprehensive study reveals it’s less about using actual course tech and more about the preparation

coursetechresizedImplementing technology—personal devices, blended environments, et cetera—definitely comes with a learning curve in terms of functionality. But outside of knowing which apps are great for the course material, there are steps faculty can take to make sure the use of technology isn’t just a passing fad or failed experiment.

In one of the most comprehensive compendiums of efficacy studies on a technology solution for higher education, Pearson researchers discovered five best practices across 47 different case studies from courses across the U.S., Canada, the UK and Asia, on how faculty can best improve learning with their education technology implementation.

“Each successful case study provides insight into the experiences of instructors and their students,” said the over 100-page report. A team of PhD-level statisticians, experts in psychometrics, educational statistics, and journal publications learned how instructors addressed today’s most common academic challenges, including low pass and retention rates, the need to maintain course quality with fewer resources, the need for more-frequent assessment, and academic dishonesty.

“When institutions set out to implement a new education technology, they usually have the best intentions, but often times what works in theory doesn’t in real life,” said a representative of Pearson. “For real change to occur that improves learning outcomes, institutions need to follow a set of best practices.”

And though Pearson highlights 11 best practices for implementing its collection of online homework, tutorial, and assessments products called MyLab & Mastering, 5 of these best practices, painstakingly researched from courses across the globe, are relevant for any ed-tech implementation.

(Next page: 5 ways to get the most out of your tech implementation)


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