Active Learning Classroom Facility - Assessment

As noted in the Project Details, one of the objectives of the Active Learning Catalyts project is to assess the overall and individual impacts of technological tools in an active learning studio classroom on the reform of STEM education. Though the project focuses largely on supporting and evaluating faculty adoption of technology-enabled active learning and on providing an appropriate active learning environment, it is also important to evaluate the impact that the learning environment has on students.

The financial cost of outfitting technology-enabled studio classrooms is significant. Evaluating the overall impact of the technology in the studio classroom will help determine the educational return on this type of investment. On a finer scale, the project is evaluating the impacts of individual technological tools. Knowing the pedagogical impact of specific tools will help determine whether their benefits justify the cost of including them in future studio classrooms.

Assessment methods include the following:

  • Interest (increased, decreased, flat) in using a technology-rich learning environment is assessed by tracking the number of STEM faculty that request this classroom space and the percentage of schedulable hours when the classroom is in use over the course of the project.

  • All faculty teaching in the classroom track which technologies are used and how much class time is dedicated to using different elements in a Daily Activity Logbook. View the logbook template.

  • Students in courses taught in the active learning classroom by Catalysts are surveyed will be surveyed to measure their attitudes about STEM courses offered in the active learning classroom using the Student Assessment of Learning Gains (SALG) online instrument . Specific questions are added to address learning gains associated with technology and its combination with active learning activities.

  • Students in courses taught by non-Catalyst faculty do not typically partiicpate in SALG, but do complete a brief end-of-semester survey on the room's impact to their learning.

In addition, the team is also monitoring the durability of furniture, dry erase surfaces, and technology over the duration. Upon completion of the project, NMU will have produced and made available a compendium of facility recommendations, with a main focus on technology but also touching on other aspects.







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Introductory Videos

These short videos, created by NMU Instructional Design and Technology student technicians, introduce the active learning classroom from a student perspective.

Classroom Overview

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Student Work Stations

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Interactive Smartboards

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Contact the Project Team