Online Classes: Meet your Learners’ needs

During the current Pandemic,  education is moving toward the online model. Most educators are finding it challenging to ensure that students are learning what they are supposed to learn. The online model creates various types of noise (acoustic, electric, internet-related). The very nature of online renders communication to be one-way – the learners are passive participants.  We are trying to fill the gap with assigned readings, quizzes, assignments, etc. But research shows that in such models, the learning is very little in terms of remembering and using the information they are absorbing.  Although I completely agree that there is a vast difference between In-person education and online learning, let’s look into some pointers which we can include to ensure we meet each learner’s needs.

Research shows that human beings, regardless of gender, age, and culture, learn best when they are involved actively in the learning process. They learn best when it is self-directed when they feel useful and meaningful and in a motivating, hands-on learning environment. Regardless of their age, each individual has their ideas to contribute. Before we get into the choices educators have when designing and developing their next presentation, training or class, let’s understand a little about the six preferred learning styles of individuals*

1) Visual. Visual learners need to see simple, easy-to-process diagrams or the written word. PowerPoint presentations and flip chart graphics are beneficial to these learners.

 2) Aural. Aural learners need to hear something so that it can be processed. They may prefer to read aloud if presented with written material. They enjoy lecture format learning.

 3) Print. Print learners process information by writing it down. They take a lot of notes, notes that they may never look at again.

 4) Tactile. Tactile learners need to do something to learn it. They are likely to avoid written instructions and dive right into a hands-on attempt to work it out. 

 5) Interactive. Interactive learners need to discuss learning concepts. Breakout discussions and Q&A formats support this type of learning.

 6) Kinesthetic. Kinesthetic learners learn through movement. Training exercises and role-plays help. Giving people the flexibility to stand and move about the classroom also helps these learners.

The above can be the guidelines for an educator to cater to the needs of different learners. So how can we include them in our online classes?

  1. Understand your learning style: Your preference will influence your way of delivery. Knowing your style will help you develop your delivery method my mixing up other forms of learning. Be creative.
  2. Find out what your learners know: If possible, know your learners by giving them time to discuss what they know or have heard about a particular topic. A session can begin with a quiz. Older learners can access material in advance or watch a presentation or video before the class.  
  3. Create a friendly environment: Research proves that giving learners a friendly, informal learning environment helps them learn better. Some liberty in terms of allowing them to speak in the class by taking turns, or present their views through screen share, etc. can give them a good feeling. It may be a worthwhile idea to provide snacks or beverage breaks.
  4. Create a Strategy: Involve learners, so they get to
    1. See: Include charts, graphs, diagrams, videos, pictures, or experiments in your presentations.
    2. Hear: Hear your insights as well as the insights of the peers by allowing them to either discuss their views in the classroom or giving them assignments that they can compile and share. Videos of famous people, subject experts, and opinion-makers can also be shared.
    3. Write: Either make them write critical points during the lecture or encourage them to take notes.  Allowing and encouraging learners to use color pens, highlighters, even colored papers, etc. can make learning fun.
    4. Experiment: Quiz, Assignments, Projects, etc. can help tactile learners to learn better.
    5. Talk about: The interactive learners learn best when given a chance to speak.  Encourage learners to share comments, ideas, insights, and opinions with the whole group. Each class can have a fixed allotted time for the learners to share their views or learnings or just a quick question and answer time.
    6. Move: Let the learners repeat the concept using some movements, exercises, role plays – these can work wonders for the kinesthetic learners.
    7. Choose: Let them decide what they choose to do. You can encourage learners to make videos of their learnings or just record discussions and share them with the group. Various methods can be,
      1. paired or small group discussions,
      2. large group discussions,
      3. quick collaborative games,
      4. presentation with personal views or learnings,
      5. making and taking quizzes,
      6. projects,
      7. role-plays, etc.

The big question – What technology should I use?: Technology is the gateway to virtual education. The success of virtual learning depends on the extent to which learners can actively participate. It is tempting to use free software to deliver content. Such an approach is a recipe for disaster. Please invest in a proprietary technology that facilitates the inclusion of real-time interaction, raising of hands, questions, assignments, discussion forums, and feedback. The keyword is an investment – after all, the future of a generation rests on the decisions we make now.

*(taken from http://www.managingamericans.com/Workplace-Communication-Skills/Success/Six-preferred-learning-styles-for-adults-424.htm):

Doing What Matters in Times of Stress. Part 1 Grounding

Work taken from: Doing what matters in times of stress: an illustrated guide. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2020. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.

Disclaimer: This presentation was not created by the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this presentation. The original English edition shall be the binding and authentic edition.

Doing What Matters in Times of Stress. Part 1 Grounding (Hindi)

Work taken from: Doing what matters in times of stress: an illustrated guide. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2020. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.

Disclaimer: This translation was not created by the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this translation. The original English edition shall be the binding and authentic edition.

Introduction: What is Stress and How does it affect us (Hindi)

Work taken from: Doing what matters in times of stress: an illustrated guide. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2020. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.

Disclaimer: This translation was not created by the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this translation. The original English edition shall be the binding and authentic edition.

Introduction: What is Stress and How does it affect us (English)

Work taken from: Doing what matters in times of stress: an illustrated guide. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2020. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.

Disclaimer: This presentation was not created by the World Health Organization (WHO). WHO is not responsible for the content or accuracy of this presentation. The original English edition shall be the binding and authentic edition.

The Debris of Lessons Not Learned – 1

FORTUNE magazine named Henry Ford as Businessman of the Twentieth Century.

In the late 1960s, the Ford Motor Company decided to introduce a sub-compact car. The design team led by Lee Iacocca had the task of meeting the “2000 and 2000 challenge.”

The car had to cost no more than $2,000 and weigh no more than 2000 pounds.

The Ford Pinto was a spectacular commercial success.

The first trouble for the Pinto occurred in 1972. A lady was driving the Pinto with her thirteen-year-old daughter as the other passenger. Another car traveling at 30 miles an hour hit the Pinto from the rear. The gas tank exploded. The lady died and the daughter suffered devastating injuries. In the suit that followed, the court awarded the family $560,000 and the injured daughter $2.5 million in compensatory damages.

A few years later, the Pinto was in the news again. A truck allegedly carrying prohibited substances hit a Pinto from the rear. The gas tank exploded. All three women in the car died.

The Problem

What came out during the trials was a design flaw in the Pinto. The positioning of the gas tank was such that it was susceptible to explode in a rear collision.

The Solution

Prevention is better than cure. Designers could easily enhance the Pinto’s safety by a relatively simple alteration costing $11 per car. As Ford’s internal records showed, the alteration never happened.

Cost-Benefit Analysis

In deciding not to carry out the $11 alteration, the managers at Ford relied on a tool widely used in the industry and being taught even today in business schools across the world – cost-benefit analysis.

Exhibit – Ford’s use of cost-benefit analysis in the Ford Pinto

Benefits and Costs Relating to Fuel Leakage

Associated with the Static Rollover

Test Portion of FMVSS 208

Benefits

Savings:  180 burn deaths, 180 serious burn injuries, 2100 burned vehicles

Unit Cost:  $200,000 per death, $67,000 per injury, $700 per vehicle

Total Benefit:  180 x ($200,000) + 180 x ($67,000) + 2100 x ($700) = $49.5 Million

Costs

Sales: 11 million cars, 1.5 million light trucks

Unit Cost: $11 per car, $11 per truck

Total Cost: 11,000,000 x ($11) + 1,500,000 x ($ I 1) = $137 Million

From Ford Motor Company’s internal memorandum: “Fatalities Associated with Crash­-Induced Fuel Leakage and Fires.” Source: Douglas Birch and John H. Fielder, THE FORD PINTO CASE: A STUDY IN APPLIED ETHICS. BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY. p. 28.1994.

Subsequent analysis of the cost-benefit shows that Ford’s “break-even” point was $3.96 per car. Scale economies might well have achieved this level.

Disturbing Questions

While some judicial pronouncements accept the reasoning behind the cost-benefit approach, others don’t. In one instance, a jury awarded punitive damages of $135 million.

The case is a reminder of the limits of economic reasoning while dealing with human lives.

1.  Is it morally and ethically acceptable for any organization to place a pre-determined dollar value on human life and injuries?

2.  How do you measure the trauma and possible life-long suffering that affected families undergo?

3.  Can a justice system that places a mighty cash-rich corporation and a middle-class customer with limited means on an equal footing be fair?

What Next?

Fifty years down the line, we still do not have definitive answers to these questions.

What have we learned?

Nothing.

Negligence in quality and safety continue to plague practically every industry.

We will examine these in subsequent columns.

Meanwhile, I will leave you with this thought to ponder over:

In a survey covering 3,500 senior executives from 29 industries and 70 countries, the skill that recruiters are least interested in graduating students happens to be microeconomics.

For all the tall talk of preparing leaders of tomorrow, has any business school stopped teaching microeconomics? Or cost-benefit analysis? At the very least, are faculty aware of the limits of such models?

If you have an answer, I would love to hear from you. Before you post anything, please read all about the Ford Pinto. Thanks to the ubiquity of information, the entire story is available online.

लक्ष्य निर्धारण भाग 4. लक्ष्य प्राप्त करने में समस्याएँ और कुछ उपाय

लक्ष्य निर्धारण, अच्छी योजना और कड़ी मेहनत करने के बाद भी कई लोग लक्ष्यों तक पहुंचने में सक्षम नहीं हो सकते हैं। इस वीडियो में हम लक्ष्यों को प्राप्त करने में लोगों की कुछ समस्याओं और लक्ष्य तक पहुँचने के लिए यदि आवश्यकता हो तो course correction कैसे कर सकते हैं इस पर चर्चा करेंगे ।

7-Eleven, Japan example is sourced from: https://sloanreview.mit.edu/article/w…

Goal Setting Part 4 – Problems in achieving goals and some solutions

For many people even after doing goal setting, good planning and hard work, they may not be able to reach the goals. This video will discuss some of the problems people face in achieving the goals and how you can change course if required to reach your goal.

7-Eleven, Japan example is sourced from: https://sloanreview.mit.edu/article/w…