To explore the relationship to academic performance i

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To explore the relationship to academic performance, I compared final grades for the quarter in which the research was conducted with past grades for NES Seminar students. Steps Taken to Implement the Strategy: Prior to conducting the action research project, I introduced the elements of critical thinking and the course theme of sustainable landscaping to the Seminar students during the fall quarter of the 2009-2010 academic year, and students did some preliminary work related to these topics during that quarter. During the winter quarter, I provided the critical thinking handout for the students to use as they continued to develop complete and present their class projects. Assessment Methods Used to Evaluate the Results: At the end of the winter quarter, I employed a student survey involving the critical thinking rubric for assessing the students' final projects and to assess students' perceptions regarding the method and its relationship to their engagement and learning. This survey allowed students to assess their own work using the same criteria employed by the instructor. Results: Six respondents completed the winter 2010 survey as indicated below: Part 1: Assessment of Student Performance Using a Critical Thinking Rubric This part of the survey included a simple rubric for assessing critical thinking, where five basic elements of critical thinking (combined with Lummi values and beliefs) were linked to a three-part system of criteria for rating purposes. The elements, criteria and results are summarized below (where the most frequent responses are shaded): Elements of Critical Thinking Assessment Criteria (with response percentages) Missing or unclear in the final project. Present but may be somewhat incomplete or ambiguous. Present and expressed with clarity and appropriate detail. 1. Core Question or Purpose: The main question (or issue or problem) and the main goals or 0.0% 16.7% 83.3% 8e01f48200de908360bdbb57d5d682b7fff311c7.doc- Brian Compton-7/26/2010 page 2 of 11
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objectives are… 2. Concepts and Information: The ideas used to make sense of things are… 0.0% 33.3% 66.7% 3. Point of View: How you are seeing what you are looking at is… 0.0% 33.3% 66.7% Conclusions and Implications: What you figured out and its meaning are… 0.0% 0.0% 100.0% 5. Assumptions: What may have been taken for granted is… 0.0% 33.3% 66.7% Student Comments Regarding Critical Thinking: Core Question or Purpose: The main question (or issue or problem) and the main goals or objectives are… 1. Seminar students together learn, teach, guide and support each other as we pursue our educational endeavors while learning & implementing ideas into action in our specific areas of interest. 2. Almost at the very end of the quarter, we finally all came together as one and defined each student individually what their part in the seminar class is. Hopefully next quarter we will be able to pick up where we left off and complete the goal we are aiming for.
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