I am very open to collaboration, as I enjoy learning about other areas, and sharing what I have learned. It is also a way to avoid "re-inventing the wheel" and getting the highest-quality work done. Feel free to contact me if you
do research on online education that brings together basic scientific research with practical benefits for students. My target is to develop theories of learning that allow the identification of simple, actionable steps that practitioners can take to improve education.
- Developing or identifying web-based homework assignments based on sound learning principles and proven to work for students. Teachers, parents, and students can then simply use these "off the shelf". E.g. Adaptive-learning programs and cognitive tutors like those developed at the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center, assistments.org, Khan Academy, and the Online Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon.
- Brief interventions that are crafted to change student beliefs or teach them easily implementable learning and reasoning strategies, which can be shown to have a sizable impact. E.g. The Project for Education Research that Scales (PERTS) has shown that teaching students a Growth Mindset/that intelligence is malleable (just two 45 minute, web-administered lessons) can impact class grades and GPA at the end of a semester. Is there a way to condense proven interventions like Reciprocal Teaching and Formative Assessments into forms that are as easily implementable?
- Analogously, brief interventions that have similar benefits by changing teacher beliefs or introducing them to new instructional strategies. E.g. Web-delivered professional development lessons or introduction to self-sustaining online communities, if these can be shown to have measurable benefits.
Please feel free to contact me if you would like to:
- Disseminate practical tips from cognitive science research from online education to teachers, students, and other educators, or have expertise in doing this.
- Collaborate on evaluating whether conveying information like this has a positive effect.
- Foster closer ties between basic research and practical environments, such as by consulting or collaborating on online education projects so they can communicate what practical problems educators need solved, at a stage in the research where experiments can then be directed more closely at answering those questions.
For example, any people who work at organizations that are especially interested in disseminating research, in professional development, in teaching students study skills. People in policy who are more interested in figuring out how to transmit best practices to teachers and good strategies to learners, than traditional policy topics.
I am also happy to be in touch with people who do work in districts or with populations where it is easy to do these kinds of minimal interventions (e.g. online schools, web-based homework programs, e-learning for teacher professional development). Also, in contexts where data is collected automatically or very easy to obtain – e.g. they run many longitudinal studies with schools, or work with districts where all this data is automatically put online and it isn't a nightmare to be able to link an intervention run with some students to their later grades.