As we look forward to the end of the semester and SIT, we wanted to share some of our favorite posts and resources from the Learning Scientists Blog. Here’s what we’ve been reading:

  • Rose’s pick: Let it Go– the Benefits of Mind Wandering
    • With fresh spring weather now here, I love going for a walk and just letting my brain think about whatever it wants to. In this blog post. Dr. Kaminske reviews an article that demonstrates that letting your mind wander can actually improve creativity and problem-solving. While lots of “think pieces” lately have focused on improving attention and minimizing distraction, I really appreciate this look into how to support creative thinking!
  • Amanda’s pick: Creating Effective Presentations
    • This digest includes five resources on utilizing learning science principles to create effective presentations. I particularly enjoyed the first resource, “Make the Presentation Count” (also from the Learning Scientist blog). It has some great tips for designing slides to ensure learners are not overwhelmed and can process the essential information of the presentation. I often teach graphic design and research poster workshops at the Library and look forward to integrating some of these tips! 
  • Angela’s pick: Pedagogy vs. Andragogy: What’s the Difference?
    • Lifelong learning has been on the rise, even before the pandemic shifted plans and priorities for many students, both traditional and non-traditional. With the increase of adults returning to higher education to finish degrees, re-credential themselves for new roles, or to obtain a degree for the first time, this post provides a great introduction and refresher on the different needs, pain points, and motivations of younger students versus adult learners, many of whom are supplementing their full-time working lives with their educational pursuits. Understanding these differences and preferences can help instructors and learning designers build more engaging and effective learning environments for all.
  • Racine’s pick: Designing Effective Instructional Videos
    • While the majority of classes are now being taught back on campus, instructional videos can still play a vital role, whether you’re flipping the classroom, providing supplemental content asynchronously, sharing videos with students who couldn’t make it to class, etc. This blog post includes learning theories and learner demands to keep in mind when creating videos, as well as highlights principles for effective instructional videos. Are you on the right track with the design of your instructional videos or could some slight tweaks make a big impact?

What are you reading now? Let us know in the comments!

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