What is the best way to teach so that all students can use and retain information? How can a teacher communicate effectively with students who wonder about the relevance of what they study?
These are the challenges teachers face every day—the challenges that a curriculum and an instructional approach based on contextual learning can help them successfully address. The contextual approach recognizes that: Learning is a complex, multi-faceted process that goes beyond drill-oriented, stimulus-and-response methodologies. Learning occurs when learners process new information in such a way that makes sense to them in their own frame of reference.
The mind naturally seeks meaning in context, in relation to a person's environment, doing so by searching for relationships that make sense and appear useful.
What is Contextual Learning? CORD, A contextual approach supports best practices for reaching adult learners. A contextual approach:. Are You Teaching Contextually? CORD, [updated ]. Curricula and instruction based on contextual learning should be structured to encourage five essential student engagement strategies: Relating, Experiencing, Applying, Cooperating, and Transferring.
Relating - Learning in the context of one's life experiences or pre-existing knowledge. Experiencing - Learning by doing, through exploration, discovery, and invention. Cooperating - Learning through sharing, responding, and interacting with others. Explore contextual lesson design elements by reviewing these contextual lesson templates. Use the templates to practice the development of lessons that allow students to relate, experience, apply, cooperate and transfer as they learn.
The students work individually on assignments, and cooperation is discouraged. Such teacher-centered instructional methods have repeatedly been found inferior to instruction that involves active learning, in which students solve problems, answer questions, formulate questions of their own, discuss, explain, debate, or brainstorm during class, and cooperative learning, in which students work in teams on problems and projects under conditions that assure both positive interdependence and individual accountability.
Felder's research on active and collaborative learning and exploring strategies for implementation. Bonwell and James A. Why use contextual strategies? Adult students don't want to learn in a vacuum. Understanding real-world connections to course content increases student engagement which often leads to increased persistence and successful transitions.
Contextual Classroom Environment A contextual approach supports best practices for reaching adult learners. A contextual approach: Encourages design of learning environments that use multiple teaching modalities and incorporate different forms of learning experiences. Allows learners to discover meaningful relationships between abstract ideas and real-world applications. Provides ongoing feedback that promotes further learner interaction with content.
Engages learners and motivates them to persist. Are you teaching contextually? Take this self-test and see. Characteristics of learner engagement with the REACT strategy: Relating - Learning in the context of one's life experiences or pre-existing knowledge.
Applying - Learning by putting skills to use.The concept coined CTL was implemented to teaching and learning subject matter to relate real world situations to subject matter content; permitting a connection between knowledge and its application that may be applied by the learner of said subject matter to real world situation in their community, families, and as members of a work force as well as in business.
Contextual Teaching and Learning integrates such strategies into learning activities as: problem solving, self-directed learning, learning from peers, learning in real situations and authentic assessments; the six characteristics to its integration are as follows and can be incorporated into teaching activities, practicums, theoretical material, capstone projects, dissertations and to Online course material and Synchronous and Asynchronous Blackboard learning.
Social responsibility provides a basis for the quality of decision making and apprentice behavior and are important in teaching and learning outcomes measures Duckworth, these items may be incorporated into rubricsscoring guides and to teaching material and practice activates in course material that are guided towards the production of diverse workforce and disciplines; such as Bossiness management, leadership, Social sciences, Health care professional, Political Science and many others; some of the indicators of social responsibility adoption and achievement and retention are a Accountability b Transparency c Respect for stakeholder interest d Ethical Behavior e Respect for the rule of law f Respect for human rights.
Because weight loss occurs during the learning process; particularly when new learning material are introduced to a student we can measure apprentice achievement through both physical and psychological changes in pre and post course induction as well as finalization A lowered BMI occurs during the process of active learning Luc, because student activity level are enhanced and physical resources such as convection, respiration, and adjustments in sleeping pattern these physical adjustment are all physically modified to meet the demands of learning new material, learning complex material; as well as engaging in active learning; this modification in physical appearance can be observed and measured physiologically, moreover psychological maturity and capacity are measured through psych morphology.
Psych morphology are structural facial changes resulting from bilateral facial misalignment which results from restlessness, squinting, frowning, grimacing and guarding; they are a manifestation of neuropsychological byproduct resulting from role discomfort Resnik, and relate directly to personal meaning and individual and collective learning experience.
Evaluation and measure of apprenticeship can be performed through observation of social responsibility and are observed qualitatively prior to course completion and post course performance; these traits acquired are demonstrated by the apprentice dominion of the above mentioned traits and relate directly the apprentice interpretation of multiple meanings from one single learning experience.
Ms Leticia Cruz enjoys teaching, sports, and scientific writing as well as mentoring and coaching students; Ms Cruz is the first generation Master and Doctoral student and also enjoys mentoring family and community. She obtained her Bachalaurett in Nursing Science from Interamerican University, and also obtained her Masters in Medical Surgical Nursing from Interamerican University both universities based in Puerto Rico; she obtained her Doctor of Nurse Practice from Walden University and her MPH from Capella University, she is an avid nurse researcher and social science researcher and holds expertise in research design, performance appraisals, healthcare quality assurance, and formative and summative measures.
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Characteristics of CTL Contextual Teaching and Learning integrates such strategies into learning activities as: problem solving, self-directed learning, learning from peers, learning in real situations and authentic assessments; the six characteristics to its integration are as follows and can be incorporated into teaching activities, practicums, theoretical material, capstone projects, dissertations and to Online course material and Synchronous and Asynchronous Blackboard learning.
Impact and Rational Because weight loss occurs during the learning process; particularly when new learning material are introduced to a student we can measure apprentice achievement through both physical and psychological changes in pre and post course induction as well as finalization A lowered BMI occurs during the process of active learning Luc, because student activity level are enhanced and physical resources such as convection, respiration, and adjustments in sleeping pattern these physical adjustment are all physically modified to meet the demands of learning new material, learning complex material; as well as engaging in active learning; this modification in physical appearance can be observed and measured physiologically, moreover psychological maturity and capacity are measured through psych morphology.
Name required. Email will not be published required. Close Add to Cart. Close OK.What is the best way to teach so that all students can use and retain information?
How can a teacher communicate effectively with students who wonder about the relevance of what they study? These are the challenges teachers face every day, the challenges that a curriculum and an instructional approach based on contextual learning can help them successfully address. Many students have a difficult time understanding academic concepts such as math concepts as they are commonly taught that is, using an abstract, lecture methodbut they desperately need to understand the concepts as they relate to the workplace and to the larger society in which they will live and work.
Traditionally, students have been expected to make these connections on their own, outside the classroom. Contextualized learning is a proven concept that incorporates the most recent research in cognitive science. It is also a reaction to the essentially behaviorist theories that have dominated American education for many decades.
The contextual approach recognizes that learning is a complex and multifaceted process that goes far beyond drill-oriented, stimulus-and-response methodologies. According to contextual learning theory, learning occurs only when students process new information or knowledge in such a way that it makes sense to them in their own frames of reference their own inner worlds of memory, experience, and response.
The mind naturally seeks meaning in context by searching for relationships that make sense and appear useful. Building upon this understanding, contextual learning theory focuses on the multiple aspects of any learning environment, whether a classroom, a laboratory, a computer lab, or a worksite.
In such an environment, students discover meaningful relationships between abstract ideas and practical applications in the context of the real world; concepts are internalized through the process of discovering, reinforcing, and relating. Take this self-test and see. These standards appear to some degree in almost all texts.
But contextualized instruction is rich in all nine standards:. Are new concepts presented in real-life outside the classroom situations and experiences that are familiar to the student?
Do students gather and analyze their own data as they are guided in the discovery of important concepts? Are opportunities presented for students to gather and analyze their own data for enrichment and extension? Do lessons and activities encourage students to apply concepts and information in useful contexts, projecting students into imagined futures e.
Are students expected to participate regularly in interactive groups where sharing, communicating, and responding to the important concepts and decision-making occur? What Is Contextual Learning? Are You Teaching Contextually? But contextualized instruction is rich in all nine standards: Are new concepts presented in real-life outside the classroom situations and experiences that are familiar to the student?
Are concepts in examples and student exercises presented in the context of their use?
Are new concepts presented in the context of what the student already knows? Do examples and student exercises include many real, believable problem-solving situations?We do not think ourselves into new ways of being. Rather, we act ourselves into new ways of thinking and being. InMeadville Lombard significantly changed the way we organized and delivered our curriculum.
We moved from a residential format to a low-residency, integrated education model rooted in contextual learning—learning by doing.
This approach is followed and informed by many different philosophical, religious, and cultural traditions the world over, including feminist theory, engaged Buddhism, and many Indigenous cultures, which teach that transformational learning is not grounded in thought, but in action. So our curriculum integrates theory with practice, providing opportunities to study theology while leading worship, learn best practices in pastoral care while tending to souls, and deepen understandings of human diversity while actively engaging with others across lines of difference.
Our students benefit from academically rigorous coursework, immersion learning, and the support of a student cohort, faculty, and teaching pastors and mentors. Each student is matched to a site that stretches them to cross boundaries, to learn to be of service, and to experience different styles of leadership.
Students in the MDiv program also complete a basic unit of Clinical Pastoral Education in their first year, and then serve at a congregation as an intern for two years for 20 hours a week, learning the bedrock of congregational ministry from being immersed in it and doing hands-on work. Request Info. Select Language English Spanish Japanese. Search Submit. Our Programs Expand Navigation.
Master of Divinity. MA in Leadership Studies. MA in Religion. Global Initiatives. Course Offerings. Academic Calendar. Contextual Learning. Signature Courses. Student Cohorts.Include Synonyms Include Dead terms. Download full text. Transition Highlights.
Issue 2. Contextualized Teaching and Learning CTLalso known as Contextualized Instruction, is defined as a "diverse family of instructional strategies designed to more seamlessly link the learning of foundational skills and academic or occupational content by focusing teaching and learning squarely on concrete applications in a specific context that is of interest to the student" Mazzeo,p.
In other words, CTL is a process built on the recognition that some students learn more effectively when they are taught in a hands-on, real-world context rather than in an abstract manner.
About Contextual Learning
The primary goal of CTL is to utilize the "context supported by traditional academics to drive instruction" thus engaging students in active learning to assist them in making meaning N. Badway, personal communication, August 1, Cross-curriculum integration is an important part of CTL that connects academic and career and technical education CTE.
Office of Community College Research and Leadership. Tel: ; Fax: ; e-mail: occri uiuc.Sign-In Register Sign-Out. For technical assistance with the Contextual Learning Portal, contact Jennifer Leonard at jleonard skillslibrary. Contextual learning projects engage students in academic work applied to a context related to their lives, communities, workplaces or the wider world. Projects may range in length from a single class period to a semester-long exploration.
Projects may take place in after-school or summer programs or in work-based learning programs as well as in a regular classroom.
For example, contextual learning projects might connect to a summer or school-year job or internship. Students working in summer internships in a musuem or zoo may create new exhibits or display boards for visitors, applying research, writing and illustration skills to the task.
Students working in a day care center, day camp or activities program in a nursing home may create activities, including researching, writing and teaching the activity. Students working in a health club may read about exercise programs and learn about how new members are oriented to the health club activities. Students working in a bank may learn to create spreadsheets for analyzing financial information. Contextual learning might connect classroom learning to community service opportunities.
Students might research an issue in the community and make a presentation about their findings at a city or town meeting. Students might create informational materials about a topic of interest to the community. Students might apply their skills to provide a service in the community.
Contextual learning might also connect classroom learning to career interests. Students might use algebraic formulas or geometric grids in a computer programming project. Students might apply business math skills to an entrepreneurial project.
Students might apply data analysis, graphing and statistical skills to a community project. Projects are often student-driveninspired by student suggestions or evolving from other activities that students wanted to dig more deeply in. One of the most valuable teaching skills is the ability to capture students' interests and passions and help them convert them into activities.
Contextual Learning Model
Projects may also be inspired by an opportunity in the community, classroom or workplace. Teachers may gather ideas for projects through teacher externship experiences or through business and community partnerships.
Projects highlighted in this website are standards-basedfocusing on the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks as well as 21st Century Skills and Work-Based Learning Skills.
Contextual Learning provides an opportunity for students to build academic skills and begin to apply these skills in the workplace, community and world outside the classroom. According to the New Commission on the American Workforce:. The website provides a searchable list of frameworks and skills. This list, which brings together the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks, 21st Century Skills, and Massachusetts Work-Based Learning Skills, can be used as a tool for brainstorming instructional ideas and designing projects as well as for presenting completed projects.
Each contextual learning project should be designed to build skills and competencies, consistent with the learning goals of the class or program. Instructors can seek opportunities to design activities and incorporate appropriate tools i. Instructors can seek opportunities to incorporate new types of technology, explore different styles of writing, apply mathematic formulas or models, and more. The intent of this website is to provide an opportunity and a space for school districts, community organizations, non-profit educational groups, and other youth serving agencies to share projects and lessons to support contextual teaching and learning for both teachers and learners.
This project based learning website is a tool for programs serving struggling learners, students with disabilities, English language learners and other in and out of school youth as they strive to meet the high standards of secondary education, post-secondary education and high performance workplaces. Why Standards-Based?
According to the New Commission on the American Workforce: "Strong skills in English, mathematics, technology, and science, as well as literature, history, and the arts will be essential for many; beyond this, [students] will have to be comfortable with ideas and abstractions, good at both analysis and synthesis, creative and innovative, self-disciplined and well organized, able to learn very quickly and work well as a member of a team and have the flexibility to adapt quickly to frequent changes in the labor market as the shifts in the economy become ever faster and more dramatic.
About the Contextual Learning Portal The intent of this website is to provide an opportunity and a space for school districts, community organizations, non-profit educational groups, and other youth serving agencies to share projects and lessons to support contextual teaching and learning for both teachers and learners. This website is for: Programs serving students in grades K Programs with a specific academic focus on mathematics, English language arts and science, technology and engineering education Programs focusing on out of school time Programs attempting to crosswalk and bridge various educational and workforce development initiatives Programs that want to share promising practices between schools and other organizations serving youth.
What are the rules? All content in courses provided for this website should be in the public domain and free from copywritten materials, these material can be reference but must meet copyright laws.
While the primary focus is mathematics, English language arts and science education, programs are encouraged to incorporate other frameworks into the instructional modules. Plans for the website include an interactive flavor, including features such as space for responses, recommendations, feedback and real-time content editing.While lately, there has been an increased appreciation of the use of contextualized learning activities in adult education, the fact is that the concept itself is not novel.
Even in our everyday lives, we appreciate the effects of contextualization — behaving in one way in one situation, while using another set of behaviors in a different context — although we may not be actively conscious of it. Anyone who works in a team will understand the social stigma associated with people whispering when they are in a group setting. However, when considered in another context — of say, a hospital, or a gathering like a funeral — then whispering may be deemed acceptable. So, what exactly are contextualized learning activities, and how do they impact learning outcomes?
Researchers and academics Berns, Robert G. The underlying theme behind the use of contextual learning activities is simple. It recognizes that by embedding instructions in contexts that adult learners are familiar with, learners more readily understand and assimilate those instructions. Click To Tweet. This realization is grounded in constructionist learning theory, which holds that people learn better when encouraged to construct relevance between the instructions they receiveand interpretations of those instructions within the context of their own environments.
For any teaching and learning approach to be adopted as an acceptable pedagogy, it must demonstrate that its core principles are in keeping with the broader body of pedagogical findings.
Contextualized teaching and learning approaches have been proven to be grounded in:.
The following best practices should be considered when designing your contextualized approach to learning and training your corporate staff:.
There are a number of contextual learning strategies that you can implement, including Knowledge-based, Skills-based and cognitive approaches. For example, while a skills-based approach might work in one context, in another it might ignore the practical application required to effectively transfer knowledge regarding a specific learning objective. You need to design activities that also teach the procedurs, processes and discipline on how and when to apply those skills and that knowledge in a given context.
Often, when an employee moves from one position to another horizontally, laterally or even externally, to another organizationthey need to be able to transfer their skills, knowledge and experiences to that new environment.Contextual Learning: The Big Picture Helps You Learn Languages
A research-based publication of the Commission on Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education National Research Council found that much greater transfer of knowledge takes place when information is organized in a conceptual framework. When that happens, learners were found to be more adept at applying what they learned to newer situations in the workplace. Therefore, it is important that you design your contextualized learning activities in a way that learners are able to adapt and transfer them to newer contexts, as opposed to relating them to just one specific context.
The typical workforce today is highly multicultural, with employees coming from different ethnicities, cultural and social backgrounds. In some cultures, for instance, it may not be appropriate for male and female colleagues to participate in two-person activities. In such a situation, slightly changing the makeup of the learning team, perhaps into a small group configuration as opposed to one male and one femalemight create a better context for learning to be transferred more effectively.
Compared to traditional approaches, contextual learning involves a slightly different approach to designing learning activities. You can then build supporting contextual learning activities that focus on the basic skills and knowledge required to effectively carry out those broad activities. The most successful contextual learning strategies are those that are designed with groups of learners in mind — as opposed to focusing on individual learners.
By designing your contextual learning activities with groups of interdependent learners in mind, you stand a better chance that learning will mimic the real world where these individuals will subsequently interact. When designing your contextualized approach to learning, you should evaluate learners based on authentic assessmentsinstead of measuring their command of remembering or blindly performing specific activities. Jon Mueller, Professor of Psychology, defines authentic assessment as assessments where learners are required to show their command of what they learned, by applying that knowledge and those skills to real-world tasks.
Assessing the outcomes of contextualized learning activities based on authentic assessment will ensure that transfer of learning has actually occurred and that employees are well equipped to put the skills and knowledge learned to effective use in their workplaces. Contextualized learning is real, and it works! Improve your employee, partner and customer training with our enterprise-ready learning management system.
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