The Center for Geographic Analysis offers technical workshops in geographic information systems and curriculum support services for instructors seeking to integrate spatial concepts into their courses.
A meta-analysis of 53 studies compared classrooms that did and did not use student response systems (e.g., mobile polling, clickers), finding significant effects on learning outcomes both cognitive (e.g., measures of knowledge transfer) and non-cognitive (e.g., participation).
Arthur Applbaum, Adams Professor of Democratic Values, Quinton Mayne, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, and Christopher Robichaud, Lecturer in Ethics and Public Policypiloted the new University-wide learning management system, Canvas, in their spring 2015 courses at the Harvard Kennedy School.
The benefits: Digital teaching and learning tools enable new approaches and modernize existing techniques to engage students:
Applbaum asked “three daily questions” in online discussion forums to give his students more immediate feedback and pre-seed classroom conversations.
Mayne built an integrated page for each class session to involve students in the vision, goals, and pre-work expectation of that meeting, to get them excited about the upcoming conversation, and to free up class time for in-person discussion and interaction
Robichaud captured outside-class conversations and interactions between students by creating online dialogue via blog posts, news items, chat functions, and “reflections” postings, which had the added benefit of encouraging participation by shy students.