How the College of Human & Health (ROC van Twente) stimulates student ownership of learning journeys
In spring 2021, a pilot of StudyCoach was implemented at the educational program College of Human and Health of ROC van Twente. StudyCoach was implemented in Canvas to enable students to take ownership of one's own learning journey.
The ultimate goal of the implementation was to make students in charge of their own progress towards their educational goals. StudyCoach provided a dashboard in line with this goal to let as well coaches as students gain insight into the student's progress. Moreover, StudyCoach facilitated a communication platform to work together to improve a students' learning journey.
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ROC van Twente provides secondary vocational education and adult education in the region Twente of the Netherlands. ROC van Twente is aiming to stimulate the curiosity of students to motivate and prepare them for the future ahead.
The educational program College of Human and Health forms education in the spirit of JILL, an abbreviation for 'Jump In & Love to Learn'. In line with the vision of JILL, College of Human and Health is particularly focussing on stimulating the intrinsic motivation of students. Students graduating of College of Human and Health have learned how to take ownership over their own learning journey, which will prepare them for a lifelong learning perspective on their careers.
The ultimate goal of implementing StudyCoach for College of Human and Health was to enable students to take ownership over their own learning process with the help of StudyCoach. Moreover, StudyCoach was implemented to give students and their mentors a course-transcending overview of the students' progress. For mentors, this overview serves as a starting point of pro-active and just-in-time help.
- Lack of an integrated platform for student guidance in line with the JILL-vision: students need to be able to take control themselves over their own learning process in the online learning environment.
- Lack of an overview of the progress of students on course-transcending learning goals.
- Integrated platform in Canvas for monitoring a students' progress on course-transcending learning goals.
- A platform for students to actively take the initiative to gather and monitor the data of teachers and mentors to shape their own learning process.
- A consistent and integrated platform for communication and for a course-transcending overview of the students' progress on curriculum-wide learning outcomes.
The StudyCoach 4-step cycle
StudyCoach provides coaches with superpowers by following the 4-step cycle:
Step 1: Identify
At ROC van Twente students have several Reflection Meetings structurally spread throughout the school year in which they discuss their own learning progress together with their mentor. Prior to each Reflection Meeting students are going to gather information themselves about their own learning progress. Students take the following actions:
- The students actively ask specific teachers of various courses to assess them on some specific course-transcending learning outcomes. An example of such a curriculum-wide learning goal is "The student is able to independently check whether the results conform to the plan. The student can indicate which points should be done differently next time". The teachers assess these learning goals in 'Outcomes' in their Canvas courses. The results of these learning outcomes of various teachers and courses are then gathered in the 'Learning Outcomes Overview'.
- The student prepares a Reflection Document, as shown in the example below:
N.B.: This example is fictional due to privacy reasons and only established for the purpose of this page.
After the student has taken these actions, the mentor starts to identify the available information about Rens, the student of this example. In this way, the mentor is preparing himself for the upcoming Reflection Meeting. The mentor starts to generally identify which information is available:
- Which teachers of Rens left a learning outcome assessment?
- What did Rens write himself in the Reflection Document?
- What were the conclusions of the evaluation of the last Reflection Meeting?
✨ Tip: Student-centered documents such as Reflection Documents can be saved in files. In this way the documents are saved in a structured way for both the coach and the student. Moreover, the files stay stored over the years and thus can be easily tracked back.
Step 2: Zoom in
When the mentor has identified which information is available about the student, the mentor is going to zoom in. At College of Human and Health the mentor particularly zooms in on the 'Learning outcomes overview'.
In the above example the mentor notices the following matters:
- The learning outcome 'Share Knowledge' is positively graded in the Exam Training Course, although the goal is not reached yet in PT704. Why does this difference occur? This can be an informed question for a mentor to enter the conversation.
- The learning outcome 'Work in a team' is only assessed in Nursing Course and PT704, but not in the Exam Training Course. Why didn't the student ask a teacher of the Exam Training Course to assess this specific learning outcome? This can be an informed question for a mentor to enter the conversation as well.
Moreover, the lecturer focuses on the prior Reflection Documents and the evaluation of the last Reflection Meeting to zoom in on the students' information.
✨ Tip: The Learning Outcomes Overview is of a particular higher quality in StudyCoach when Learning Goals are formed in a curriculum-wide overview and used actively by multiple teachers across courses in the same way. These Learning Outcomes can be embedded in the Canvas environment in the following way to create a uniform student-centered journey in one platform.
Step 3: Engage
After the mentor has identified the information and zoomed in closely, the Reflection Meeting takes place. In this meeting StudyCoach is used as a medium to enter the conversation in an informed way.
Step 4: Collaborate
After the Reflection Meeting takes place, the student leaves a note to the mentor and himself. In this note the student adds a file with a summary of the actions points which were agreed upon. Moreover, the student writes a Personal Development Plan and adds this one to the file structure in files, as well as in the messages & notes.
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