Surveying students on asynchronous and synchronous adaptations

At the end of last semester, with permission from my campus’ PHRRC, I surveyed my Fall 2020 class on the top three features of the class that were helpful for them to learn the material. The choices and the technique they represent are:

Choices for the studentsTechnique represented
Lecture videos are viewed on demandAsynchronous delivery
Lecture video broken up into shorter segmentsReduction of cognitive load by “chunking”
Post-lecture quizzesLearning by recalling
Post-lecture questions and receiving answersLearning by reflecting and recalling
Weekly review by teaching assistantsSynchronous delivery, peer teaching
Study tips shared 1-1 or to the whole classDevelopment of self-regulation strategy
Forming virtual study groupsPeer teaching
Student hours with the instructorSynchronous delivery

57% of the class responded and the result is depicted in the following diagram:

The top three choices are not too surprising. What surprised me were that post-lecture quizzes were deemed important and post-lecture questions were much lower than expected. At first, the post-lecture quizzes were used as a signal to take a break between the video segments, but this result supports the efficacy of low-stakes testing (that I didn’t catch on before). Secondly, I thought answering students’ post-lecture questions would be more helpful. Now I realize, because the nature of those questions often involve real life implications of the material, students perceive these answers as satisfying their curiosity and not affecting the testing or grades.

In conclusion, the one lesson I want to apply is to increase the amount of low-stakes testing for the upcoming semester. I want to make the post-lecture quizzes more consistent and abundant to see if that would improve student learning.

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