9 05, 2018

Three Qualities of a Great Content Writer

By | 2018-05-22T02:22:02+00:00 May 9th, 2018|Course Writers, curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Today’s headlines seem to focus on everything that’s wrong with education. “American Schools vs. the World: Expensive, Unequal, Bad at Math”–The Atlantic “Wake-Up Call: U.S. Students Trail Global Leaders”–nbcnews.com “Obama Administration Spent Billions to Fix Failing Schools, and It Didn’t Work”–The Washington Post The list of objectives for educators at all levels seems to have no end: increasing access to high-quality education closing achievement gaps raising graduation rates preparing students to excel in a globalized economy keeping pace with rapid educational reform Creating new educational content to enhance choice, keep students engaged, and measure growth is vital. But if they are continuously asked to do more with less, how can educators keep pace? One answer is, simply, with help. Professional educational content writers use their expertise to develop tools that any superintendent, curriculum manager, and content developer can use. The objective is to facilitate educators in reaching their goals. And it’s those in the field who have had experience with successful students that know how to help students succeed. These writers can develop courses, curricula, and [...]

25 04, 2018

How to Create Bias-Free Educational Course Content

By | 2018-05-22T16:00:22+00:00 April 25th, 2018|Course Writers, curriculum, Curriculum Planning, editing, Instructional Design|0 Comments

It is impossible to be completely objective. Our experiences and beliefs create a lens through which we view the world. This lens can subconsciously create biases. A bias occurs when we favor one thing or one person over another for unfair reasons. When we create content for education, the material will be in the hands of learners. It is important during copyediting to be able to identify a bias and remove it. When educational content is written with biases, a learner is given an unfair advantage. We need to make the content inclusive for all learners. Below are several best practices to help you create bias-free content. Cultural diversity The inclusion of diversity in the language we use is critical. Text for students should use a variety of names from different cultural backgrounds such as Juan or Li. It is empowering for minority students to see their background represented in educational materials. When looking through your content, track the names and cultural practices that are written and detect if there needs to be more diversity. Stereotypes [...]

18 04, 2018

eLearning and Interactive Assessments: Increasing Student Engagement

By | 2018-05-27T15:24:34+00:00 April 18th, 2018|assessment, curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Instructional Design, interactive, Interactive Learning|0 Comments

With the advance of technology, students and educators have options outside of the traditional classroom experience. Online learning, or eLearning, is a fresh educational setting that provides more opportunities for engagement and sets the stage for an inviting learning experience. Interactive assessments through eLearning are also transforming the way learners and educators exchange information. An effective online course ensures that varied learning styles are considered so that the learner remains engaged enough to complete the course. Since there is usually no instructor to guide the day-to-day activity, both the content and the related assessments must be engaging. Interactive assessments are assessments that involve interaction on part of the learner. This can be as simple as an immediate response that displays “Correct!” or “Good Job,” but the most effective interactive assessments require the learner to participate in the learning process. When this is done effectively, learners not only engage in the processing of content but are able to test their knowledge of the content almost simultaneously. Examples of interactive assessments in eLearning include the following: Drag and [...]

11 04, 2018

Why are Developmental Editors Important?

By | 2018-04-11T19:37:34+00:00 April 11th, 2018|curriculum, design, editing, education, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Content development involves more than researching the specified area and deciding which components of that area are worth developing into a deliverable, whether that be a course, a blog, an editorial, a handout, etc.  It involves a team dedicated to the delivery of a quality curriculum. A developmental editor (DE) is an essential member of the development process. The DE ensures the content being delivered is free of bias and meets the required specifications and guidelines. The DE is the ultimate proofreader.  The DE has no investment in the piece being delivered. With no investment in the piece, there should be no conflict of interest in ensuring writers implement their edits. As many projects call on instructional designers or writers to put together initial versions of content, it is the developmental editor who takes those initial versions and checks for relevance, accuracy, and completion. If a piece needs revisions, it is the DE who sends recommendations for improvement to all vested parties. As part of their editing responsibilities, an effective DE may: Point out obscure or [...]

5 04, 2018

Writing Items at Different Bloom’s Taxonomy Levels

By | 2018-04-20T16:44:22+00:00 April 5th, 2018|Blooms Taxonomy, curriculum, Instructional Design|0 Comments

Bloom’s Taxonomy is the hallmark of learning models used today. In fact, most people utilize the strategies outlined in Bloom’s without even knowing it. Through early school experiences, we are taught to function through remembering, understanding/applying, and analyzing, which are the very tenets of Bloom’s. We take the most basic key points and develop or retrieve more information depending on how much we want to deduce. Let’s take a closer look at Bloom’s Taxonomy fully for clarification: Remembering: the basic recall of information presented through various methods. When we “remember” something, we are able to name it, locate it, define it, etc. We are able to take the content and paint a visual for the learner. Understanding: the demonstration of what we remember. When we “understand” something, we are able to apply that knowledge in a myriad of ways. We may compute, illustrate, or show others how we interpret that particular concept. Applying: the solving of problems associated with basic understanding: When we “apply” something, we try to understand its relevance in new situations. Analyzing: the [...]

22 03, 2018

Why Instructional Designers Are Important

By | 2018-03-22T19:26:20+00:00 March 22nd, 2018|curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Instructional Design, math, Social Studies|0 Comments

Why is it important to use Instructional Designers (IDs)? The curriculum development process involves many moving parts that work to create material that compels the learner. This process includes a team of graphic designers, web developers, writers, copy editors and instructional designers. The instructional designer (ID) plays an important role in the curriculum development process. An ID is an expert in the learning process and advocates on behalf of the learner throughout the curriculum development process. The ID’s role To get a better understanding of what an ID does, let’s look at tasks they complete in the curriculum development process. An ID: Conducts a needs assessment to determine what the learner needs to know and what gap of knowledge exists. Identifies the learning environment and existing equipment available for the learners. Asks questions such as: Do the learners have access to Microsoft Word? Do the learners view the material on their phones or on a laptop? Works with a subject matter expert to collect information based on the needs of the learner. Writes learning objectives with [...]

15 03, 2018

Writing Curriculum Goals and Objectives

By | 2018-03-15T15:27:54+00:00 March 15th, 2018|Course Writers, curriculum, Instructional Design|0 Comments

Effective curriculum goals and objectives should have two major outcomes. First, students should acquire the same knowledge from the same courses, regardless of teacher. Second, the students should finish a course ready to move on to the next course, year, or life stage. These goals and objectives aim to standardize learning objectives for all students and simplify outcomes for teachers. That said, constructing straightforward, achievable goals and objectives can be a lofty task. Here, we will discuss these processes so that you can more simply focus on constructing a holistic curriculum that benefits all parties. Curriculum Goals Curriculum goals are general, broad statements that lead towards long-term outcomes. These goals are typically designed to be met by students after a longer period of time such as a year of schooling or a series of courses in a discipline. Specifically, goals are always farther-reaching than objectives, and as such are usually based on the idea that they lead students towards being better able to be productive members of their societies. Here are some ideas to consider when [...]

1 03, 2018

Major Steps in the Process of Curriculum Design

By | 2018-05-09T19:36:21+00:00 March 1st, 2018|Course Writers, curriculum, Curriculum Planning, education, Instructional Design|0 Comments

The curriculum design process takes information from a subject matter expert and, through much iteration, creates instruction. But how does information from an expert get translated into educational content that is effective for learners? It goes through four steps of design. In each step are important team members including project managers, instructional designers, writers, copy editors, and subject matter experts. The team works together to create effective content. Let’s have a look at the four steps in the curriculum design process. Gathering Information The first step of the design process involves planning and determining who the learner is and what they need to get out of the material. The team begins by initially identifying what the scope is. This involves asking questions like: Who will take the course? What does the learner already know? What is their attitude towards the subject? Instructional designers then work with the subject matter expert and obtain the necessary information by asking many questions. With information in hand and a clear idea of the audience, the team moves on to the [...]