Boosted Learning Initiative Piloted at Stevens Wins Top Innovation Honor in Higher Education
(Hoboken, N.J.– 7/22/2022) – Stevens Institute of Technology earned the top innovation in higher education honor for its Boosted Learning initiative, a program originally developed for corporate training modules that Stevens adapted for the classroom to help students retain key course concepts throughout the year. The honor was awarded by the United States Distance Learning Association, a leader in distance and digital learning education.
“Our goal was to engage students between semesters and add to their learning experience in a new and meaningful way,” said Robert Zotti, Stevens’ assistant dean of WebCampus.
Adapted from a BizLibrary corporate training module, the Boosted Learning initiative focuses on helping students remember key concepts from their classes. The program allows an instructor, at timed intervals, to automatically send a series of emails with curriculum questions to students throughout the semester. This leads up to final exams, and after the semester is over. They monitor what information is being retained and what information is not sticking. By comparing results from the same classes over time, instructors are able to make adjustments to the curriculum for a better overall learning experience, with students engaging more with course material and retaining more information.
In 2017, Stevens created a pilot program to explore Boosted Learning. The pilot’s goals were five-fold: to determine ways to increase student engagement; increase student retention of core course content; add extra value to the online learning experience; provide instructors additional data points for course improvement; and enhance academic program assessments for accreditation. Fifteen semesters of data have been collected since the pilot began and all five goals were met.
“BizLibrary is proud to partner with Stevens Institute of Technology and support them in their innovative and creative approach to helping improve learning retention,” said Per Paul Eschen, BizLibrary’s vice president of marketing.
“Stevens Institute of Technology has been extremely innovative in their use of our BizLibrary e-learning technology, specifically in the area of learning retention,” said Kate Walsh, BizLibrary’s chief client officer. “Stevens is our only university/educational client applying our technology solution with such intention and creativity. Their efforts are applauded and should be shared and recognized as a best practice for all with a desire to learn and grow!”
Stevens’ use of the boosted learning theory was based on studies in the employee training sphere, which found most trainees tend to forget up to 90 percent of what they have learned within a week of finishing their classes.
Stevens’ surveyed both the students receiving the Boosted Learning questions and the instructors to better gauge the success of this initiative. Of the students surveyed, the majority felt these after course emails aided their retention of core course concepts, better prepared for them for their next course and made them feel more connected to Stevens. The instructors felt the feedback from the Boosted Learning questions provided useful feedback to guide any appropriate course revisions, plus would be valuable for other instructors to use.
The number of classes using Boosted Learning has been growing since the beginning of the initiative. The 2017 pilot included 204 students in eight courses; in 2021, nearly 3,000 students in 83 courses were exposed to Boosted Learning.
Stevens media contact: Thania Benios, 917-930-5988, [email protected]
About Stevens Institute of Technology
Stevens Institute of Technology is a premier, private research university situated in Hoboken, New Jersey. Since our founding in 1870, technological innovation has been the hallmark of Stevens’ education and research. Within the university’s three schools and one college, 8,000 undergraduate and graduate students collaborate closely with faculty in an interdisciplinary, student-centric, entrepreneurial environment. Academic and research programs spanning business, computing, engineering, the arts and other disciplines actively advance the frontiers of science and leverage technology to confront our most pressing global challenges. The university continues to be consistently ranked among the nation’s leaders in career services, post-graduation salaries of alumni, and return on tuition investment.
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