We would like to announce a change in management for our popular online course. After nearly six years during which Optimize Learning offered “Significant Learning by Design” (SLD-I and SLD-II), Linda Jacoby is shifting her organization towards new directions. We are grateful for her work designing and expertly facilitating these courses for many years!
We are thrilled to announce that, beginning in January 2020, Bridget Arend and her company, Intentional College Teaching, will be taking over management and facilitation of the course.
Linda and Bridget have worked closely to create a smooth transition and ensure there will be no pause in the offering of these courses. The courses will still have the same learning outcomes and structure (using the model of Integrated Course Design, of course), and will also be updated with current resources.
Bridget has 20 years of experience supporting teaching and learning in higher education. She is the former Executive Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning at the University of Denver (DU) where she continues to teach part time. Bridget is co-author of a comprehensive book about instructional practices, Facilitating Seven Ways of Learning: A Resource for More Purposeful, Effective and Enjoyable College Teaching. She also continues to pursue research interests around teaching strategies in higher education, encouraging critical thinking in discussions, the role of reflection in learning, and alternative ways to evaluate teaching.
Dee Fink was interviewed in early 2019 by Anna Sabramowicz, a person who posts lots of material on YouTube about instructional design, higher education, and training. In this case, she interviewed him for ~1 hour on the general subject of “Active Learning and Learner-Centered Design.”
Much of the discussion is about the origin and significance of the ideas in his book, Creating Significant Learning Experiences (orig. ed., 2003; Updated ed., 2013). Fink comments in some depth about the Taxonomy of Significant Learning and the model of Integrated Course Design, as well as the reaction of people to these ideas since the publication of his book.
During the last few years, the cost and work associated with offering the National Workshop made us re-think this form of working with faculty. In addition to being a major effort on our part, it was costly for participants: they had to pay for travel and lodging in Chicago, in addition to the Workshop registration fee.
As a result, we decided this summer to not offer the National Workshop any more, but instead to direct interested people to our online course on “Significant Learning by Design”.
In 2015, Dee Fink licensed Linda Jacoby to offer his course through her company, Optimize Learning. He wrote the content for the course and she put it into a form that works excellently as an online course.
This course has participants do essentially what they did at the National Workshop:
Participants read about each of the steps involved in Integrated Course Design.
They then perform each step, one at a time.
They get feedback on each portion of their work from peers in a cohort of other participants AND from an experienced Facilitator.
By the end of the course, they will have completed the 3-column table and begun thinking about the weekly schedule.
The total time spent in the online course is about the same: ~15 hours in the National Workshop; in the online course it averages 18-21 hours.
However the time in the online course is distributed over a period of two weeks. This allows people more time to think about each of the course design steps they are working on.
But there are three other major benefits with the online course compared to the National Workshop:
The online course is offered every month. Hence it is easier to work into one’s schedule.
The cost of the online course is much less: $395 rather than roughly $1,300 for most participants.
The online course also works really well for educating adjunct professors.
They can do it with a flexible schedule and, as noted above, it costs much less than sending them to the National Workshop.
To get more information about the online course or to sign up for it, you can visit Linda’s website: www.optimizeleanring.org
On May 25-27, 2016, Dee Fink & Associates will again offer their National Workshop on “Designing Courses for Significant Learning” in Chicago, IL.
This year Loyola University Chicago is co-hosting the Workshop with us. We will hold it at their Water Tower Campus located on the near north side of downtown Chicago. Some participants might want to take advantage of this and stay over a few nights to explore the fun city of Chicago!
Special Option: This year there will again be an optional, half-day workshop at the end of the regular workshop, on “Leading Your Own Workshop on Integrated Course Design”.
In February of 2015 Dee Fink visited Catholic University of Uruguay to give a course design workshop. While there he gave a presentation for campus leaders, i.e., chairs, deans, and provost office personnel, about what they could and would need to do to make their institution more “learning-centered”. There where simultaneous translators at work for those in the audience who needed or wanted it.
Ajyal International School, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
This is a new, international school that will open this fall in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. Michael Gholam has been a major leader in this project. Given his familiarity with the ideas of designing instruction for significant learning, the whole school has been organized to support and promote the full range of significant learning.
Jossey-Bass published an Updated Edition of Fink’s book this past August. The structure and central ideas of the original book remain the same, but many of the examples and references have been updated. This allows readers to see the current connection between Integrated Course Design and the new ideas continually being produced in the scholarship of teaching and learning.
For information about HOW this site is organized and how to find what you want, go to the “About This Site” tab at the top.
We hope you will visit the website often, communicate with others often, and contribute often!
Related Website: “Dee Fink & Associates” have a website with information about workshops and online courses that they provide for faculty on how to design significant learning experiences: www.deefinkandassociates.com