Visible Learning

Visible Learning

Visible Learning is a term introduced by John Hattie, Professor of Education and Director of the Melbourne Education Research Institute at the University of Melbourne, Australia. Hattie undertook the largest ever meta-analysis of quantitative measures of the effect of different factors on educational outcomes. His book, Visible Learning, is the result of this study.

Wikipedia, John Hattie. Retrieved from:

According to Hattie’s findings Visible Learning occurs when teachers see learning through the eyes of students and help them become their own teachers. Hattie found that the ten most effective influences relating to student achievement are:

  1. Student self-reporting grades
  2.  Formative evaluation
  3. Teacher clarity
  4. Reciprocal teaching
  5. Feedback
  6. Teacher-student relationships
  7. Meta-cognitive strategies
  8. Self-verbalisation/ questioning
  9. Teacher professional development
  10. Problem-solving teaching

One of the largest effects we have on the learner is in Formative Assessment;

  • What is the goal?                                                         Feed-up
  • Where is the learner in relation to the goal?                 Feed-back
  • What can the learner do to close the gap?                   Feed-forward

And the largest effect the learner has on their learning is to ask themselves the same questions, through Self-Assessment.

“The big idea is – know thy impact! Expert teachers are not wedded to specific teaching strategies – rather, they regularly focus on evaluating the effects they have on students, and adjust teaching methods accordingly.” – John Hattie


By having empathy and understanding how my learner is learning will help me improve myself as an educator. By using assessment tools, and then utilizing the information found as feedback will be a resource to make improvements. By implementing Hatti’s 10 most effective influences relating to student achievement list, I can increase engagement, motivation and improve the learners level of learning and thinking.




According to Barkley (2010) motivation is “the feeling of interest or enthusiasm that makes somebody want to do something”.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs tells us that an individual will not be motivated to strive for higher level goals such as education, until lower level needs have been met (Maslow, 1970)


Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

The following nine strategies can move the student from a reluctant learner to an engaged learner that is intrinsically motivated:

  1. Encourage students to draw on past experiences and facilitate a dialogue of discussion with regular active participation.
  2. Encourage students to share their own learning expectations and goals related to the course content
  3. Provide announcements and emails with information about the resources available for struggling students (i.e., mentorships, coaching, or counseling services).
  4. Provide real life applications through simulations, case studies, and role playing activities.
  5. Provide visual aids or even field trips that enhance the students learning and application of learning outcomes.
  6. Invite guest speakers that are experts in the field. Experts can pique students’ interests and highlight relevance of the learning concepts being taught.
  7. Talk with students about how the class assignments are relevant to future careers.
  8. Teach students to reflect and take control over their own learning by using weekly reflections (anonymously, if you like) to solicit feedback about their own performance and where they need to improve.
  9. Empower students by teaching them where to find materials and how to use resources in an online college platform that will help them in areas where improvement is needed.

See more at:


As an educator by applying the nine strategies for a reluctant learner will help motivate the learners. By creating  a positive respectful environment where I get to know the learner will help with motivating the learner. Finding out why the learner is learning will help the educator understand the motives of be a learner. Also, discovering what the learners passion  will help educators understand more about the learner therefore strategize instructional methods to motivate the learner. Using various exciting instructional methods will keep the learner motivated too.

Classroom Management

Classroom Management

Information from PIDP 3250 Classroom Management Forum

As Tyler Offer wrote on the forum Classroom Management is how an instructor guides the pace, flow and dynamics of the learning environment.

Classroom management is a multi-faceted activity. It extends beyond some of the more traditional behavior management techniques frequently recommended to deal with students with disruptive behavior.  Specifically,  teachers should do the following:

  • develop caring, supportive relationships with and among students;
  • organize and implement instruction in ways that optimize students’ access to learning;
  • use group management methods that encourage student engagement with academic tasks;
  • promote the development of student social skills and self-regulation; and
  • use appropriate interventions to assist students who have behavior problems.

Evertson, C.M. and Weinstein, C.S. (2006). Handbook of Classroom Management:Research, Practice and Contemporary Issues. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Top 10 classroom rules

  1. Student engagement strategies keep students on task.
  2. Use classroom procedures to create consistency.
  3. Always check for understanding.
  4. Create a safe classroom environment using respect.
  5. Use classroom consequences to correct wrong student behavior.
  6. Use the tone of your voice and body language to communicate information.
  7. Academically challenge every student.
  8. Know how to easily get your students’ attention.
  9. Use a classroom seating chart.
  10. Increase participation by using collaborative learning and group projects.


Classroom Management Theorists and Theories/William Glasser

Choice Theory® is the basis for all programs taught by the Institute. It states that all we do is behave, that almost all behavior is chosen, and that we are driven by our genes to satisfy five basic needs: survival, love and belonging, power, freedom and fun. In practice, the most important need is love and belonging, as closeness and connectedness with the people we care about is a requisite for satisfying all of the needs.

Choice Theory

Relationships and Our Habit

Seven Caring Habits Seven Deadly habits
Negotiating differences
Bribing or rewarding to control

Lesson Movement by Jacob Kounin‘s theorist, is essential for a teacher to have an effective connection between management and teaching. Lesson Movement is achieved through a teacher doing five things well:

  1. with-it-ness – knowing what’s going on in your classroom at all times – or students think you do!
  2. overlapping – essentially multi-tasking by the teacher
  3. momentum -the flow of the lesson and ability of the teacher to keep it going when there are distractions and disruptions
  4. smoothness -keeping on track and not getting diverted
  5. group focus – getting the whole class focused and interested in a question or activity is essential for a teacher to have an effective connection between management and teaching. Lesson Movement is achieved through a teacher doing five things well:
  6. with-it-ness – knowing what’s going on in your classroom at all times – or students think you do!
  7. overlapping – essentially multi-tasking by the teacher
  8. momentum -the flow of the lesson and ability of the teacher to keep it going when there are distractions and disruptions
  9. smoothness -keeping on track and not getting diverted
  10. group focus – getting the whole class focused and interested in a question or activity


As an educator I would set ground rules, and communicate these rules at the beginning for the course. I then would expect the students to be responsible and mature throughout the course. I would apply the  7 caring habits by Glasser, and apply emotional intelligence in my classroom management skills. By applying all of the mentioned strategies, I would hope to be a good role model for the students. If any disruptive behaviour occurs I would immediately deal with it, and or with the individual causing the disruptive behaviour to maintain the behaviour in the classroom.

Ten Effective Classroom Management techniques Every Faculty should know

Methods for Conflict Management

Emotional Intelligence:

Emotional intelligence and teacher effectiveness: An analysis.
Essays best practices: Preventing and managing challenging classroom situations. Currents in teaching and learning

Setting Personal Boundaries

Mycorrhizal networks and learning. Iterating toward openness.
Classroom Management Strategies: Top 10 Rules, Organization Plans

Classroom Management

Active Listening

Gamification for Learning

Gamification for Learning

At EDUCAUSE, shared statistics:

  • There are 1 billion gamers worldwide who spend at least an hour a day playing a game.
  • Gallup engagement research in 2012 revealed that 71 percent of workers are not engaged.
  • The lack of workforce non-engagement costs $300 billion annually in lost productivity, Gallup estimates.
  • The longer children stay in school, the less engaged they become: 76 percent of elementary students are engaged, which drops to 61 percent in middle school and down to 44 percent in high school.

McGonigal said “Gamification in higher education is going to be a lot more than what you’re seeing today,”McGonigal shared three examples of new games now advancing a variety of fields of study, and offered hope that such techniques could be applied to revolutionize the ways through which higher education is delivered or assessed.

1. Foldit

The University of Washington’s Foldit game enables anyone to contribute to scientific research through virtual protein folding. The university’s game developers posit that human gamers’ propensity to not give up on a gaming task – resiliency – make them much more adept at solving complex protein structure prediction and design than supercomputers. And in some ways, they’ve already proven that to be so. Foldit game participants have been named in several published scientific journal articles, including one that describes how a protein structure could be solved and used in the treatment of HIV.

2. Urgent Evoke

The rich, interactive universe of Grand Theft Auto was the inspiration for this game, developed for The World Bank as a way to teach Sub-Sahara African youths to solve social problems in ways that also could provide a sustainable living. The platform is free and available online and can be used by schools to teach social entrepreneurship. A graphic novel serves as the game’s centerpiece, and players build out their gaming profiles as a comic or graphic novel might retell a superhero’s origin story. Participants complete projects in real life to solve real problems, such as securing a community’s food supply or establishing a sustainable power source, then progress through levels of the game. Those who successfully complete their 10-week missions ultimately earn certification from the World Bank Institute. In 2010, 50 student participants saw their entrepreneurship models funded by the World Bank, including Libraries Across Africa (now Librii), a franchise operating in Ghana.

3. Find the Future: The Game

Not all games must be played out in a virtual space. This game – developed by McGonigal with Natron Baxter and Playmatics – combines real-world missions with virtual clues and online collaboration, resulting in young people working together overnight in the New York Public Library to write and publish a book of personal essays about what they learned.

“The game is designed to empower young people to find their own futures by bringing them face-to-face with the writings and objects of people who made an extraordinary difference.”

Participants spend a night wandering throughout the library’s stacks and research materials, scanning QR codes to prove they found and interacted with the objects of their clues or missions. One 2011 participant, upon discovering the library’s early draft of the Declaration of Independence wrote an essay called a “Declaration of Interdependence.”

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Gamification, can be digital or non digital. It can be simple as applying a game as a method to teach in a classroom, role playing methods  and to even a larger concept such as a virtual education environment. It can in some circumstances create immediate feedback for the learners, and then the learners can retry to understand and complete the task assigned. Gamification is not completely a concept that is recognized as the primary instructional method for education- however, I foresee the opportunities that can occur with this concept. Gamification will open up so many educational opportunities globally for all learners.

Military Simulator:


Horizon Report 2014:

Horizon Report 2015:

Group Work

Group Work

To create success for group work, setting up and explaining the expectations for the group work prior to assigning the task and groups.

Guidelines for groups

Have respect for each other – Respect each other’s ideas – Respect the other group members – Don’t interrupt each other   – Everyone’s opinion should count  – Be honest with each other

All group members should do an equal amount of work – Everyone should share the responsibility of the tasks  – Don’t take over and don’t let others take over

Your group should have a common understanding of goals that need to   be achieved – Help each other to understand all concepts

Be open to compromise.- Be willing to cooperate with others on their ideas   – Keep an open mind   – Vote on disagreements

Effective communication.   – Make sure everyone is able to be vocal about their ideas and problems   – Give ideas no matter how “off” you may think they are   – Listen effectively   – Don’t be critical

Time management.   – Attend and arrive on time to all group meetings   – Be flexible about meeting times   – Keep on task (limit talk about non-related events)

Be happy in the group you are in.

Grading Methods for Group Work

Instructor Assessment of Group Product

Assessment Option



Shared Group Grade

The group submits one product and all group members receive the same grade, regardless of individual contribution.

  • encourages group work – groups sink or swim together
  • decreases likelihood of plagiarism (more likely with individual products from group work)
  • relatively straightforward method
  • individual contributions are not necessarily reflected in the marks
  • stronger students may be unfairly disadvantaged by weaker ones and vice versa

Group Average Grade

Individual submissions (allocated tasks or individual reports) are scored individually. The group members each receive the averageof these individual scores.

  • may provide motivation for students to focus on both individual and group work and thereby develop in both areas
  • may be perceived as unfair by students
  • stronger students may be unfairly disadvantaged by weaker ones and vice versa

Individual Grade – Allocated task

Each student completes an allocated task that contributes to the final group product and gets the marks for that task

  • a relatively objective way of ensuring individual participation
  • may provide additional motivation to students
  • potential to reward outstanding performance
  • difficult to find tasks that are exactly equal in size/complexity
  • does not encourage the group process/collaboration
  • dependencies between tasks may slow progress of some

Individual Grade – Individual report

Each student writes and submits an individual report based on the group’s work on the task/project

  • ensures individual effort
  • perceived as fair by students
  • precise manner in which individual reports should differ often very unclear to students
  • likelihood of unintentional plagiarism increased

Individual Grade – Examination

Exam questions specifically target the group projects, and can only be answered by students who have been thoroughly involved in the project

  • may increase motivation to learn from the group project including learning from the other members of the group
  • may diminish importance of group work
  • additional work for staff in designing exam questions
  • may not be effective, students may be able to answer the questions by reading the group reports

From Winchester-Seeto, T. (April, 2002). Assessment of collaborative work – collaboration versus assessment. Invited paper presented at the Annual Uniserve Science Symposium, The University of Sydney

Key benefits of group work in the classroom and the workplace



I have always enjoyed group work. As an educator I have to recognize that not all learners enjoy group work. Therefore, group work alone should not be a primary educational method to teach. In addition with other methods, group work can be a fun, and collaborative method for the learners to integrate what they have learned with other learners. Group work can be difficult to control, monitor and grade. Guidelines and grading methods are strategies the educator would put in place prior to the assigning the group work.

Digital Learning

Digital Learning

Teachers need to be skilled in the use of productivity tools, not just because they are the best tools for teaching, but also — and more importantly — because they are excellent tools for learning.

TROUBLESHOOTING Every teacher should be able to troubleshoot technology-related problems that commonly crop up in the classroom. For example, you should know that when a computer is behaving oddly in any way, the simplest solution often is to turn off the computer and then turn it back on. Sometimes plugs work loose from their sockets or disks get stuck in drives. Technology-using teachers should know how to do those and myriad other basic computer troubleshooting tasks.

TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE Every teacher should know where to go for technical assistance. Sometimes technical problems arise that are beyond a teacher’s competence. Good schools will have responsive and skilled technical staff available full time. The technology-using teacher should establish a good working relationship with tech staff and know how to get in touch with them when the need arises.

WEB RESOURCES Every teacher should be familiar with what’s available on the Web in his or her subject area. The Web is a magnificent resource for teaching and learning — and getting better by the day. Conscientious technology-using teachers take time to research what’s available so that they can enrich the learning experience for their students. Web sites such as Education World are good places to start.

SEARCH SKILLS Every teacher should have well-honed Web searching skills. Searching the Web has become an essential skill for all computer users. Teachers today spend a lot of time online looking for multi-media resources as well as for general informational material to use with students. Almost anything you can imagine is available on the Web — if you only know how to find it.

INTEREST AND FLEXIBILITY Every teacher should be open to new ways of doing things. That is so important today! Almost on a weekly basis, technologies become available that can change — and sometimes utterly transform — the way teachers teach and children learn. Good teachers maintain an avid interest in new technologies with a view toward improving the effectiveness of their teaching. Robert Kennedy’s famous line (quoting George Bernard Shaw) captures the essence of that recommendation: “Some men see things as they are, and say ‘Why?’ I dream of things that never were, and say ‘Why not?’ ” Good teachers should be constantly on the lookout for ideas about how to do a better job in the classroom. One of the best ways to do that is to join an online discussion group, where teachers get together in an open e-forum to share ideas about teaching and learning. One excellent discussion group is the EDTECH listserv — and it’s free to join. With approximately 3,500 subscribers internationally and about 8000 readers, EDTECH plays an influential role in determining the future direction of education technology. – See more at:

Digital Educational Tools for Adult Learners

DropboxDropboxFile Sharing

As an educator keeping up with technology is essential. Learners are more in tune with technology and are using technology as educational tools. Therefore, educators need to consistently keep up with their skill development in this area. With so many options to use , it would be wise to narrow down selected most commonly used digital technology tools to use for delivery methods.

More on Questioning Techniques

More on Questioning Techniques

Asking good questions motivate reflection, inquiry and create interest to further research.

The good or essential questions have several common characteristics, including:

  • relevance to the learner
  • open-ended and higher-order (have no right or wrong answer)
  • answers are not already known
  • multiple possible answers
  • not too personal
  • cannot be answered without careful and lengthy research—answers have to be more than simple facts
  • able to be researched given the available resources—must be answerable
  • make learners question their basic assumptions
  • promote further inquiry

Harvey, S. and Daniels, H. (2009). Comprehension & Collaboration: Inquiry Circles in Action. Heinemann Educational

As educators we can enhance our questions to create higher level thinking.  

Listed are some questioning techniques in a classroom environment.

 1. Pose the question first, before asking a student to respond.

2.  Allow plenty of “think time” by waiting at least 7-10 seconds before expecting students to respond.

3.  Make sure you give all students the opportunity to respond rather than relying on volunteers.

4.   Hold students accountable by expecting, requiring and facilitating their participation and contributions.

5.   Establish a safe atmosphere for risk taking by guiding students in the process of learning from their mistakes.


The Spirit and Principles of Socratic Questioning

Content from

While there are numerous ways in which Socratic Questioning can be effectively executed in the classroom, there are a set of principles, which guide a Socratic dialog. In this section, these principles are laid out in the form of directives.

Teachers Engaged in a Socratic Dialog Should:

  • Respond to all answers with a further question (that calls upon the respondent to develop his/her thinking in a fuller and deeper way)

  • Seek to understand–where possible–the ultimate foundations for what is said or believed and follow the implications of those foundations through further questions

  • Treat all assertions as a connecting point to further thoughts

  • Treat all thoughts as in need of development

  • Recognize that any thought can only exist fully in a network of connected thoughts. Stimulate students — through your questions — to pursue those connections

  • Recognize that all questions presuppose prior questions and all thinking presupposes prior thinking. When raising questions, be open to the questions they presuppose. (See the section on logically-prior questions.)

Teachers engaged in Socratic dialog should systematically raise questions based on the following recognitions and assumptions:

Focusing on The Elements of Thought

  • Recognize that all thought reflects an agenda. Assume that you do not fully understand the thought until you understand the agenda behind it. (What are you trying to accomplish in saying this? What is your central aim in this line of thought?)

  • Recognize that all thoughts presuppose an information base. Assume that you do not fully understand the thought until you understand the background information that supports or informs it. (What information are you basing that comment on? What experience convinced you of this? How do we know this information is accurate?)

  • Recognize that all thought requires the making of inferences, the drawing of conclusions, the creation of meaning. Assume that you do not fully understand a thought until you understand the inferences that have shaped it. (How did you reach that conclusion? Could you explain your reasoning? Is there an alternative plausible conclusion?)

  • Recognize that all thought involves the application of concepts. Assume that you do not fully understand a thought until you understand the concepts that define and shape it. (What is the main idea you are putting forth? Could you explain that idea?)

  • Recognize that all thought rests upon other thoughts (which are taken for granted or assumed). Assume that you do not fully understand a thought until you understand what it takes for granted. (What exactly are you taking for granted here? Why are you assuming that?)

  • Recognize that all thought is headed in a direction. It not only rests upon something (assumptions), it is also going somewhere (implications and consequences). Assume that you do not fully understand a thought unless you know the implications and consequences that follow from it. (What are you implying when you say that? Are you implying that . . . ?)

  • Recognize that all thought takes place within a point of view or frame of reference. Assume that you do not fully understand a thought until you understand the point of view or frame of reference which places it on an intellectual map. (From what point of view are you looking at this? Is there another point of view we should consider?)

  • Recognize that all thought is responsive to a question. Assume that you do not fully understand the thought until you understand the question that gives rise to it. (I am not sure exactly what question you are raising. Could you explain it?)

Systems and Contexts For Thought

  • Recognize that all thought has three possible functions: to express a subjective preference, to establish an objective fact (within a well-defined system), or to come up with the best of competing answers (generated by competing systems). Assume that you do not fully understand thinking until you know which of the three is involved. (Is the question calling for a subjective or personal choice? If so, let’s make that choice in terms of our personal preferences. If not, then, is there a way to come up with one correct answer to this question (a definite system in which to find the answer)? Or, finally, are we dealing with a question that would be answered differently within different points of view? If the latter, what is the best answer to the question, all things considered?)

  • Recognize that all thought has emerged within a human context. Assume that you do not fully understand the thought until you understand the context which has given rise to it. (Tell us more about the situation that has given rise to this problem. What was going on in this situation?)

How To Prepare To Lead a Socratic Discussion

One of the best ways to prepare to lead a Socratic discussion is by pre-thinking the main question to be discussed using the approach of developing prior questions. Prior questions are questions presupposed by another question. Hence, to settle the question “What is multi-culturalism?” I should be able to first settle the question, “What is culture?” and, to settle that question, I should be able to settle the question “What is the basis of culture?” that is, “What are the factors about a person which determine what culture he/she belongs to?”