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Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of Mississippi


Event Information:

  • Tue

    Seminar: Towards a Student-centered Mastery-based Online STEM Learning Environment

    4:00 pmLewis Hall 101

    Zhongzhou Chen
    Department of Physics
    University of Central Florida

    Towards a Student-centered Mastery-based Online STEM Learning Environment

    In the majority of today's STEM courses, students “march forward” at a uniform pace over the semester, regardless of their current status and previous backgrounds. Instructors teach largely the same course repetitively, with few rigorous and effective tools to evaluate the effectiveness of instruction and make significant improvements. In the student-centered, mastery-based STEM online learning environment of the future, students can proceed at different pace based on their level of mastery and background, guided by frequent self-assessment and feedback. The instructor's role will be transitioned into a designer, making data driven learning design improvements to the course. My past efforts toward creating such a learning environment can be roughly divided into three stages. First, an early prototype of online mastery-based learning modules for University physics I, was created on the open-source platform of Obojobo by UCF Center for Distributed Learning. Second, students' learning strategy and learning behavior is identified from click-stream data, and visualized using learning analytics techniques such as process mining. Third, data informed improvements of instructional design were implemented as natural experiments and evaluated using analysis methods such as “differences in differences”. Finally, my latest research focuses on creating mastery-based assessments, by harnessing the power of AI to create large isomorphic assessment problem banks. This new type of exam can be administered asynchronously, allow infinite number of attempts, openly shared and collaboratively developed, and are essentially “Chegg proof”. They will serve as stable “anchor points” for mastery-based learning environments.

    There will be refreshments at 3:45 pm in Lewis 104.