Creating a conducive college classroom climate
does not happen by accident. It happens on purpose.
“If only my students were motivated to learn!”
Perhaps you have heard that lament. Sometimes the discussion devolves into a search for “techniques” to move our students from the edges of their sleep to the edges of their seats. It can be a slippery slope. Technique without connection, without meaning, and without understanding will not help us—or our students.
Research is wonderful (and needed); however, for those of us who work daily with students, we need the HOW! We need clear explanations about strategies and exercises that will help us engage our students—and enable our students to take more and more responsibility as they move toward their dreams.
Our starting premise must be that student success is our goal. We help students move toward their life dreams, achieve their academic goals, and care for their health and well-being.
On Wednesday (April 10) of this coming week, I will examine seven principles of student success in one of my 30-minute PDQ Webinars ™. Participants will learn how these basic principles will help us help our students move responsibly and effectively toward their dreams.
For instance, we will exam the principle of personal validation. To me this is the foundation. Without it, we will have a difficult time in class (or in the office or at home). When we validate our students, we recognize them for what they do and appreciate them as human beings. No, it does not mean we build up egos simply to build up egos. In fact, if all we do is give students meaningless compliments that do nothing to help them improve and build, then we do them a terrible disservice. When we personally validate, we make a human connection. That connection is what brings students to my office door (and to countless colleagues around the nation) to talk about issues (personal and academic) that they feel no one else understands. Why my door? Well, they tell me that they feel like they can trust me, talk to me. When we build that foundation, we have a better chance of helping them move toward their goals.
Video recommendation for the week:
What motivates you?
The second principle we will examine is self-efficacy. Simply put, how do we help our students develop (maintain) an internal locus of control. If all we do is validate—but not provide tools to develop the ability and belief that they can make an impact on their world then we have fallen short. How can we help our students (or colleagues or people we lead) believe they can have an impact on what happens in their world? How can we help them understand they need to take responsibility for their lives?
The remaining principles all help our students develop a sense of purpose, reflect on and strengthen their lives socially, academically, physically and emotionally.
These principles—like so many student success principles—are life success principles. They are instructive for business leaders as well as student leaders.
So for the teachers in the audience, what are your best practices for student success? How do you know they work—and that they are the best? How do they measure against recognized (researched) principles of student success?
Creating a conducive college classroom climate does not happen by accident. It happens on purpose.
On Wednesday, we will examine the remaining principles and give you an opportunity to reflect on your practice and your next step.
Enjoy your week—and H.T.R.B. as needed!
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©2013. Steve Piscitelli.