CoTL Symposium | Keynote Speaker Cathy N. Davidson | Low Memorial Library, February 22, 2018
Good. Afternoon and welcome, I'm. Jean Casarez Provost, of the University and, it's, my pleasure to welcome you here this afternoon to. The third annual. Celebration. Of teaching and learning symposium. Thanks. For coming it, should be an exciting afternoon. This. Annual event. Celebrates. The innovative, efforts of faculty. And graduate students in transforming. Their teaching and brings. Together Columbia. Faculty, students. And, administrators. To celebrate. Their accomplishments, I want. To say a word of special, thanks to. Sula Monica Cheney who is the vice provost for teaching and learning and to, Katharine Ross who is the director of. The. Center for teaching and learning at Columbia which. Is only been here three years but. Seems like it's been here forever. This. Year we are pleased to have Kathy. Davidson. Educator. And author of the new education, how, to revel eyes revolutionized. The University to prepare students for a world in flux as our. Keynote speaker. Davidson. Is the founding director of the, futures initiative a distinguished. Professor in the ph.d program in English at, CUNY's. Graduate. Center and, the. RF, the Varni professor emeritus the, interdisciplinary studies, at Duke University. You'll. Hear from her later today. Today's. Events feature presentations. By Columbia faculty and graduate student instructors, who. Will share their experiences working. To solve problems, and improving. Learning in their classrooms. We. Are also hosting. Participatory. Discussions, involving, all of you around. Kathy, Davidson's, strategies, for engaging students. In their. Learning as well. As a visual showcase, of insights, from, Columbia students. We. Have a table on college walk, it. Stopped raining for a while I don't know if it's started. Up again but. You're welcome to visit. It's, collecting, feedback from. Students on how they les learn and. We will share their observations, with. All of you today. After. The keynote talk, you. Were invited to a reception and a faculty and graduate student poster exhibit. In. Addition to events like the symposium, the. Provost's office supports, teaching, innovations. Through, funding opportunities, and since, 2014. We. Have awarded over 80 grants, and several awardees are participating, in today's events. Today. Is an opportunity to celebrate their successful course design projects. The. Office of the provost recently, launched the 2018. Request for proposals for those, of, you who are looking to integrate, new educational. Methods and technologies, into. Your classrooms, and learning environments, so. We have an exciting afternoon for you we. Hope you will take advantage of this opportunity today to explore, new ideas for your own teaching and make. New connections with a community, of inspired, teachers, and learners at Columbia and meet. Our CTL, staff as well thank. You all very much for coming enjoy, the afternoon.
You. Good. Afternoon, everyone. I'm Katherine, Ross the still. New executive. Director of the Center for teaching, and learning and I. Am just, so delighted, to welcome you here this afternoon for, what is my first, symposium. Celebration. Of teaching and learning symposium, but. These CTLs, and the Provost, offices, third. Symposium. We. Are just really. Excited. That you're all here, I'm curious, who's, all in the room do we have any undergrad. Students, joining, us today. Okay. Grad students. Yeah. And. Faculty. Yeah. Great, great. That's wonderful, so, I'm here, to introduce our speaker, Kathy Davidson, as many of you may know is known. For being an educational, innovator. And a distinguished. Scholar of the history, of technology, and higher, ed and she. Is an avid proponent of, active, learning as a tool, that helps students, to understand. And navigate the. Radically, changed, global, world in which, we now all live and work and learn. Davidson. Is Professor. Davidson, is a distinguished. Professor of, English the. Founding, director, of the futures, initiative, at, the Graduate, School at the Graduate, Center at CUNY. And she. Is the RF, devarnè II professor, emeritus, of. Interdisciplinary. Studies, at Duke, University, where. She served, as Dukes and the. Nation's, first. Vice, provost. Of for, interdisciplinary. Studies. She. Is the co-founding. Director. Now, co-director. Of haystacks. Some, of you may have heard of this this is the humanities. Arts, science. And technology. Alliance. And collaboratory. She. Is on the board of directors, at Mozilla, and served. On the National Council. Of the humanities. As an appointee, of President Barack. Obama. She. Is the 2016. Recipient of, the Ernest, J Boyer, award for, significant. Contributions. To higher education. She. Is a champion, of new ideas and methods for learning and professional development in, school. In the workplace and in everyday life in, this. Talk professor Davidson.
Situates. The modern, research university within. Its tale heurists origins. And I'll let her explain that, to you, she, asks, provocatively. What. Higher education, would look like if we were to consider. Deeply. And thoroughly. The. Kind of university, that students, need today, to prepare. Them for the complexities. Of the world in, that, they have inherited as a. Former, student of, Professor David. Since 2013. MOOC. The. History, and future. Parentheses. Of mostly. Higher. Education. I am. Especially delighted. To, present to, you our speaker, today distinguished. Professor. Kathy Davidson. Thanks. Catherine I believe you were the best student in, that in, that class. And. Thanks to everybody at Columbia, for welcoming, me today I had a wonderful, meeting price, prior, to this with the provost and a number, of faculty who are exploring, innovative. It's. Okay I don't need that right I don't need to my innovative. Teaching and it was very exciting, to hear about things that are happening here at Columbia start. With a little bit of history. Charles. Was a. Young. Man who, thought he had his future taken care of he, was one of the lucky ones he had a trust fund he didn't have to support himself with, his own. With. His own occupation, and he loved what he did he was a theoretical chemist, of the, kind that didn't make much money but maybe could change the world, then. His father lost everything in the financial, crisis, and suddenly he was faced with what my students, call a quarter. Life crisis. What. Am I gonna do. What. Am I gonna do with my life how. Am I gonna earn a living do, I like, this. Job I just not am I one of the ninety four percent of. New. Graduates according, to the cat study ninety-four. Percent of all new graduates, in new, kinds. Of jobs creating, the last decade are going to be in some form of contingent, labor meaning. Part-time work by the job, not. Benefits, not security. We. Work is I think one of the fastest growing businesses, in I'm. In a it's worldwide right, now. Quarter. Life crisis, is a celebration, of that a lament of that Adam what am I going to do except it's the Charles, I'm talking, about of course is, Charles. Eliot and the. Situation. I'm describing it's, so parallel, to, the one today, he. Was a 25, year old professor. Of theoretical chemistry at Harvard, at a, time when you, weren't expected, this voice is very strange is it okay can, everyone hear, okay. At, a time when it wasn't expected that you earned your income as a professor of. Course not because your father went to Harvard his father went to Harvard and you had, in you you are the very an honorarium, not, as salary his, father lost, the entire, Elliott, family, fortune, in the panic of 1857 the. World's first. General. Massive. Financial, crisis. In. Europe. It. Was thought that the cause of, the panic of 1857, was. America's, terrible, education, system. Because. Americans, were making, and this will sound a little familiar, we're. Making incredible. Strides in inventions, in in, technology. In industry. But. Still had a system, of higher education where the most elite. Americans. Were going to college to. Train them to be ministers, the. College system had not trained, changed, very much since the Puritan colleges, originally. Established in, the United States at, that time at Harvard which was still based on the Puritan College model only 10 to 20 percent of students actually went on to be ministers, so. What, Elliott was thinking, was that, there was a mismatch shared by pretty, much everybody in Europe between the, ambitions, of this country, and the, education, that prepared, people to actually be the professional managerial, class to, run the. New industries, that were being made. Elliott. Lucked out, here's, another grandfather.
That Passed away, and left him enough money to. Go with himself his wife and his two young children to Europe for two years and he's, went to Europe to study the. German, system of education that had gone through remarkable. Changes, in, the 19th, century the humboldt university was. Specifically, designed to. Train, a new professional. Managerial class, so. Elliott studied that university, he went to france and study the very different, french university and he came back and had a job at. One of the first new upstart. Universities. Based on the german system a little university, called MIT. MIT. Actually paid its its faculty. A living wage because, it thought of itself as a new modern university, not just an inheritance. While. He was at MIT. Charles. Eliot wrote an essay called the new education, he's, still my title. The. New education, appeared in 1869. And it appeared in two issues, of the Atlantic, Monthly Magazine and. Was. One of the most, read, and controversial. Essays. To appear at that time and basically he, said there was nothing. Suitable. About the current system of education and everything, needed to be changed. Unfortunately. I usually read these slides and I'm gonna have a little bit of difficulty reading them from here I'm afraid. Maybe. I. Might. Have to come down and cuddle, with one of these slides. It. Requires, courage, to quit the beaten paths in which the great majority of well-educated men, have walked and still worked, conservativism. Is never more respectable, than an education, for, know where are the risk greater. For. Educating, people's, children. The. Parents, of those children went. To school in. A different system right, in an older system it. Was good enough for me why isn't it good enough for you so you have many, cultural, constraints, telling. You why you can't change higher education even in the, face of something like the panic of 1857. Where. You have a worldwide financial, crisis. That's being reported on Morse code faster, than anyone can can, cope with the challenge. Astonishingly. Harvard. Won had gone through three presidents, in quick succession and, they called Charles, Eliot 34, years old said, how would you like to be our president. He. Said yes and he, served as Harvard's president, for an unprecedented, 40. Years. During. That time he, or one of his friends or one of his students, transformed. Pretty much everything, about, higher education his, idea, was if K to 12, the new compulsory. System of higher of public, education, k12. Compulsory, education, was to design factory. Workers. Farmers. To be factory, workers and everything. About this. Of Education, was to instill, the values of, the factory, in farmers. Anyone. Here remotely, come from a farm background. Okay. Not very often right. The. Key part of being of farmers are constantly, making decisions yourself you. Have to if. You like a mental, to-do list that you have to fix the fences that day I'm from Chicago, so. I learned about being a farmer through a marriage. To somebody, whose family were actually ranchers it was like so, interesting. But. If you're a farmer or a rancher and, you have a list it says you're going to fix the fences. That day and you ride out into the field and you find that your prized cattle are caught, up in the fences and bleeding. You're. An idiot if you take the time to fix the fence rather than to deal with, the cow. Or the horse that's bleeding you're, constantly, making changes, if it rains you do something, if it's, sunny you do something summer, you do some things in winter you do other things the, factory, is about regularity.
It's, About time so that's somebody, else telling you what to do it's about hierarchy and it's. About never, using. Your own brain to question the efficacy of the job you're doing. Eliot. Believed, that. What America most, needed was an infrastructure. Of professional. A professional managerial. Class that. Could train, and be. At another management. Level for, those, kinds, of industrial factory. Systems. He. Was very very much influenced, by the, great labor theorist of the 19th century Frederick. Winslow Taylor who. Believed, that outputs, and productivity, should and could and must be measured and let's. Look at some of the things that Eliot put into Eliot. His colleagues, his friends, or people he influenced putting this into higher. Education during. His 40 years. Mandatory. Public secondary, school in K through 12 curriculum requirements, land-grant. Universities, research, universities, majors. Minors electives, divisions. Certification. Graduate. School collegiate. Law school nursing. School Graduate. School of Education collegiates. Business School degree. Requirements, credit, hours grades. Statistics. Imported. To higher education, Stan. And actually invented as a field, standard. Deviation spreadsheets, blueprints. Return on equity punch clocks IQ test giftedness. Learning. Disabilities, multiple-choice. Tests, college. Entrance exams, multiple-choice. College. Entrance exams, SATs, are fully in place by 1925. Tenure. Sabbaticals. Faculty. Pensions, school. Rankings, donor. Named chairs, corporate. Sponsorship, of research. Adolescence. And failure. I. Don't. Think there's anything on that list. List. That was fully in place by 1925. That I have to define for anybody here why, because it's the world we live in right. It's the educational, system we have right now there's. Two things in red and I, actually did. This work for my last book which was a more based on cognitive neuroscience, and focused on K through 12 but it's such a great story I love telling, it and that's, a grades and failure. The. First college. In the, United States to deviate from the standard, way of grading which was either by conversation. With a professor or long discursive. Grades was. A women's college Mount, Holyoke why. A women's college because. This was a time when women were thought to finally be educated at Barnard, his rate is created. Around the same time. And. It. Was thought that you could sell, the Industrial Age by convincing women that, their we that the Industrial Age was really about labor saving, devices so. Mount Holyoke, was going to train the modern women and go to this amazing. New productivity, system, where you took all the, complex, things students learn and don't, learn in a semester you reduce them to one letter. Grade. If. You go to the archives, at, Mount. Holyoke you. Find out the huge debate, at Mount, Holyoke. Was. What. About an e a B. Seedy, don't. Stand for anything he. Shouldn't, but. They were terrified. If you gave someone an e that someone would think they, were excellent. Rather than failing. So. There's a whole debate about the importance, of, not. Giving an e but. Using the scientific, system of ABCD, non referential, and F failure. What's. Fascinating by that two things one, within. A year, of the, in the. Assuming. Of the F as a failure. There's. A whole study, among the brand-new field of psychology. And sociology about, what is a failure, right. We go not from you, didn't pass a course to, who is a failure what, type of person, is a failure who, fails. Right. There's a whole sociology. And out of that comes, giftedness. And learning, disabilities as fields. Second. Interesting thing, the. Second, major organization, after Mount Holyoke to say hey ABCDF. That's a kind of an interesting thing let's, let's think about adopting, that for our field is the American meat packers Association. And. If. You go to the archives, in American meat packers Association.
They. Don't argue about ABCD. And what, happens if we give a name, they're. Worried about how you can take something as complex, and subtle. It's. The difference between sirloin, and Chuck and, reduce, it to something as brainless. And simplistic. As a letter, grade. So. To, this day actually my own research on this is about a decade old but at a decade, ago I actually went to the American meat packers Association and interviewed, people and it. Turned out that. At. Least 10 years ago and probably to this day every, piece of meat. Travels. With its own metadata. Metadata. Is all of that stuff behind anything, that's represented, and, for. Example who. Gave an ABCD, F grade. What. Other grades did that person give what. Were those written comments, that. Resulted. In a grade, meanwhile. Oh. For higher education, in k-12 people. Abandon discursive, grades and go quite quickly without that kind, of debate and discussion to ABCDF, grading, now, a footnote, here and I'm not going to talk about this today this enraged, many, people in the whole progressive, movement in education you know some of the names Montessori. And doing being the most prominent but there are many others is, outraged, at that and that's in fact one of the things that causes the progressive, movement in education but. Great. Numbers. Reducing. The complexity. Of all the different ways we learn in a classroom. Is. Adopted, almost everywhere. In higher education. The. Other thing that's interesting about this time and I'm not going to read this I think you can every I hope everyone can see same. Time that the grading, changes and the, one of my friends Fred Moton the great after UFO, futurist poet and theorist said fewer, Martian, and came down to America, and looked at American educational, system case your professional, school you'd say ah I. Get it too. Seeing this phenomena, I'm looking at is about people. With power telling, people with less power and how bad they are. It's. Kind of sad but. In fact I don't, think there's a website of any university in America it doesn't say what their. Average. SAT score, is we. Worry about great inflation, there's all of these kinds of issues that we, read about that are about grading. Interestingly. The, professions. And Charles, Eliot is right in there developing, these professions, are being created, at the same time, that. Higher education is going to this output Orion and productivity, level so, the people who are creating the standards, for higher education are, also creating, the standards, by which to judge one another. Virtually. Every, major, professional, Association. Is being created, at the same time including. The, set the standards, for accrediting. Universities. Are created at the same time that the universities are going through these changes. Interestingly. Even, though there's a wide, range of universities Harvard. One, of those is a picture of one of the first land-grant, universities. 70%. Language universities, had presidents, who came from Harvard. Or the Ivy League's many, them students of Charles Eliot, and, Juliet Community College which actually was one of the first places I ever taught at one, of the first junior, colleges in America started. By the president of the University of Chicago in constant, consultation, with Elliott and other leaders at the time interestingly. Even, though each of those institutions, has a radically. Different mission, they're, all being judged by a hierarchy. That basically, goes back to.
What's, Being established by the professions, and what's being established by Harvard. So. If we have a system, that's a kind of circular, self-reinforcing. Airtight. System, of outputs. Infrastructure. Grading, values. Are. You a failure aren't you a failure are you gifted or. Do you have a learning disability. But. All of that was specifically. Overtly. Hundreds. Of letters about this, created. Elliott. Was also charged ahead of the committee of ten by the way which sets up national, standards for high school so. We're talking about a pervasive, influence. And change but. If you're setting that up for. A world of. The. Telegraph. The. Model T. The. New industrial world what. Happens, if you live in a world of contingent. Labor that. We're living in now in a world that I like to think changed. On this date April, 22nd. 1993. This. Was the date, that. A number of professors, who, taught. At the University of Illinois. Champaign-urbana. At the National Center for supercomputing applications. Came. Out to the world with one, piece. Of paper and, said. We are about to give you an unimaginable. Gift what's. On this piece of paper is a list of every, website in, the world. There. Were about 20 and, the. Gifts they gave us on that day. Was. The mosaic, 1.0, browser a very. Simple, browser that. They define, as giving. You the ability if you have an internet connection that, you could interact with anybody, else with an interconnected, internet connection you. Could go to any of those incredible. Full-page, of websites, around the world without. An editor. Without. A publisher, you. Could. Contribute. Not. Just received. But contribute, to that world, it's. A very very, different model. Of productivity. Than, the tailor its model, of one, person, telling, you what, to do one to do and how to do it and measuring, an output, as a thing, as, something that could be reduced to an ABCDF, grade there. Have been a lot of I think really, heinous. Ideas. About higher education that. Supposedly, are going to prepare us for the. World we live in now this, world where anybody, with an internet connection can, interact, without a censor or a publisher to anyone with anybody else with an internet connection, one, of the ones that was, going around for at least a decade and still is the the, operating. Theory. Behind the defunding of public education the, public, defunding. A theory behind the public defunding of publication, public, education all over the United States something, that was called unbundling. That. The university, had all these frills, and really.
We Don't need any of those anymore all, we really need our skills, and so, there was an emphasis on getting rid of the Women's Studies program, no, ideology involved, in that or. The Black Studies the program, again no ideology involved, in that or humanities, or even social science in Japan. For example the Ministry of Education, decided. That they were going to cut down shut down 26. Humanities. Into Social. Studies departments. In. The, public. Education in Japan and actually there was a lot of pushback that didn't happen but that's the thinking the, ideas you just spoke on skills cuz that's where the jobs are. Two. Important, studies one project oxygen, and one project. Aristotle. Done. By, by. Google. Itself right, God Google. Showed. That in fact the people who promote are promoted. Google who. Rise up the ranks and Google this is these are the largest human. Resources data, crunching studies, ever undertaken, all, hiring, promotion. Rejection. All. Data, from. Both from Google from its beginning to the present just, to see what words came up what, things came up turns out technical, skills were. The last of the 8 qualities, on the, list that came out the. Things that got managers, promoted, at Google were. Collaboration. Critical. Thinking, creative. Thinking an ability to synthesize information, from, complex, sources, and apply. Those, project. Management, ability. To get, along well with others, that was the second study the follow-up study project Aristotle. Was about teamwork. Google. Famously, as teams are sometimes called a teams they're, not official, but they're the smart people at Google the, people at Google X right. And those, teams are always put together where the smartest, person in each sub field basically. Set to fight. Against each other for the best ideas that's, competition. Turns. Out almost none of the major discoveries at Google have come out of the so, called a teams they. Come out of the other project, teams that are put together by affinity, not. Necessarily, affinity, of field, but affinity, of people and the. Number one, thing that came up with the most successful most. Productive, most, profitable, and the longest, and interestingly those, are overlap. Teams. At Google was. No bullying. It's. Not being the smartest person in the room that counts, it's being able to hear, the person whose voice may. Not be the loudest but, who may have the most important, idea, nothing. About. ABCDF. Quantified. Productivity. Output, oriented, education, it's about hearing, every. Voice in the room including. The quiet voice. The. Suppressed, voice the. Minority. Voice. The. Cognitively. Different voice, right. But, it turned out that what. Was winning, at, Google Google. Has changed its hiring algorithms. Studies, to their credit they're still I'm not gonna be a defender, of Google but, interestingly, they, did make changes in their hiring algorithm, so you can at least get past the first first, sort at. Georgetown, University there's, a something called the red house and it literally is a little red house, where. They're thinking about the university not is something that you unbundle. Not, where you get rid of frills, not. What you're get rid of skills but. In fact you get rid of the whole idea that some things are frills and some things are skills and you use all of the incredible resources. We have at our universities, to rethink. Problems. In complex, new ways for the world we're in now that. Means all of those things I've listed for Elliot majors, minors credit, hours all those things are being rethought, literally. And. Randy. Bass who's the head of the red house and likes to ask not just what. Forms are of a higher education are possible now but what forms of higher education, are only possible, now to. Challenge, anyone can propose something new at the red house anyone. Can do come up with something different and, the university supports it it's basically a think tank for innovation. That. Set, apart from all of. Georgetown. But in fact pervades. Many. Parts of Georgetown, all in fact all of it all the professional.
Schools The departments everything, what. I'm going to talk about now are various, rebonding, programs, that are happening around the country and my argument is, one. We, have incredibly. Inspiring, models, everywhere, I love. To talk at diverse institutions. So. Last week there was a morning, I was at borough of Manhattan Community College, and I was at Middlebury that afternoon and. Then. I was at. Georgia. Tech and then I was at Agnes Scott College today, I'm here I'm going to Yale in a few days I'm going University, so in other words these are vastly, different universities. Vastly. Different audiences and interesting. Things are happening everywhere how. We go though from, that idea. Of small. Innovative. Exceptional. Opportunities. To remaking, the university with that whole kind of infrastructure, that we saw with Eliot and rethinking. All of those parts together, again now is the challenge but, for now I'm going to talk about some inspirations, and you. All have pencils and paper. At your table in part three of this talk it'll be your turn that's not just swag you're actually gonna be doing something but that'll that comes later, now, some models. Randy. Bass likes to say that for all universities. That are looking in innovation. These are the kinds, of questions not the only ones but the kinds we should be asking what. If curriculums, were redesigned, around problems or issues not disciplines. What. If digital, literacy, are what's being called by the New York City Council ethical, tech we're. Taught is foundational. What. If grades and test scores were, not the chief measures for success, what. If classrooms, were active, student-led. Beyond, the lecture or the seminar, what, if teaching and curriculum were not tied to credit hours or academic, calendars, what. If students could work on bachelor's, and master's degrees, at the same time, what. If universities, created partnerships, across diverse. Institutions. What. If purpose. Was not just workforce, ready but. World readiness. When. I was at Georgia Tech all my students, I was talking to were. Aerospace. Engineers, computer science engineers and I was in a meeting with about 70, undergraduates, and several, administrators, I said, to students write down on your card and then we're gonna have you read it we're gonna do the same exercise, here but. Their question I said what, thing do you really, think is important. For you to learn at Georgia Tech that will make, a huge difference in your life beyond Georgia Tech now. One person said jobs. Now. One student, said money they. Asked questions like how. Do I figure out what, I want to do with my life how do I figure out how to have a purpose I'm, on aerospace, engineering how do I figure out how that can, contribute to society, what. If I don't want the biggest salary, but the most meaningful work how do I do that, the. Administrators, were floored, in a million years they didn't think that this group of sort, of hand selected super smart students, we're going to go to really. Deep questions, about meaning. Of my life, but. I think I I. Don't think Columbia, students are any different, I think. The twenty the whole, idea of the quarter life crisis, is, sometimes, you get job you really want the, perfect job you've trained your whole life for and you're like wow this is not what I want. In. The model institutions, that are asking, those kinds, of big questions, this, one I found out after I finished my book and in, Sime gonna be talking, to them at. Length later on this semester but. In some ways it surprises, me most because Yale, didn't have to change a thing about its history department, it. Produces, more professors, of history than any other university in the country by, four times the. Next. Placement. In history. But. They'll. Use history major used to be the number one made major at. Yale. And hasn't been since 2000, economics. Is now that was, I'm. Giving away my punchline was, that had. Become the number one major, historians. At Yale said what if we remake, our program, because we believe, history's important, what, if we remake it so.
That There's one major you can take if you're planning to go on to graduate school a pre-professional degree, going under graduate school to be a history professor like your professors at Yale. And. What if we make another history major for, anybody, in any field who thinks it might be useful to. Have. A complex. Comparative. Historical. Perspective. On, really. Really difficult problems, so. They did that now. Any. Historian sir. Wow. The. Two gods. Of history, are periodization. And nation. Your. Historian, what do you do oh I work on the American Civil War 1865. Yeah right that's. What a historian does they, got rid of those and they, said every, course in this. Non-professional. Major had. To talk about phenomena. With. In, a global, context, and. Had. To talk about the causes leading into it and leading out of it beyond periodization, what, that meant was conversation. Every. History professor had to talk to other history professors. They. Also adopted the cohort, model I'm not gonna get into this unless you want me to in the qat not. The core model a cohort, model a, cohort. Model means you define, a cohort, and people, within that cohort share, kinds, of certain kinds of knowledge that's. Different, from people in another cohort so, if you're in the class of 2020. You. Take a class with every, history major in the class of 2020 your freshman, year your sophomore year your junior year but, the subject, matters changes, and it's different then. The subject matter learned by the, class of 2021. What. I'm talking, to people at Yale, about is they're even thinking of having some kind of a, competition. Where. Students, who graduate, from the program help. Come up with the next year the syllabus. For the next year's cohort that's. Pretty cool that's, a pretty interesting. Model, and we've got lots of work from. Study. Groups at Harvard to inner-city, kids in Chicago on, how, cohorts. Help with retention. Motivation. Interest, setting, the bar even higher all kinds, of things cohort models work. Interestingly. The. Same historians, that redid the non professional. Major got, bored with their professional, major and they said well since we're number one, let's. Change it so they've actually gone back and now are changing the pre-professional, major, as well and punchline. Yale, is now the number history, is now the number one major at Yale again. I. Would. Not have guessed oh it's, also part of something by the American Historical, Society, called tuning, the history discipline that, 123. History departments have taken taken part in many much. Smaller things but they're all thinking in those terms. Another. One. That. Internet that got invented that got made available to us in 1993. Is. A little problematic, these days. If. You, googled. The name David Howe two days ago the, first thing that came up and that he's the young man who was in the shooting victim in Florida who's been so eloquent, two, days ago if you if you googled. Him the first thing that came up was a fake. Thing that said he an actor not a student that. Was the first thing in the Google search terms that got, reported in the news it. Was the number-one. Click-through, item. On YouTube, it's how fake news gets reported now if you google david hope you'll, find a correction, he is not, but. For 24, hours a lot of people were believing, that, the horrible, shooting in Florida and this one young man who's been so eloquent, were all fake, literally. That it was all a fake thing by George Soros. One. Of my favorite critics of the Internet's. Zeyneb. Tofurkey says. Web point. 11.0. Was it's all about information yeah, we have information, at our disposal. Then. Let's go social, now. We're kind of in this third-world weaponized. Monetized, fraud BOTS and trolls organized, attention, manipulation, uber eyes unregulated, labor, algorithmic. On accountability. End. Of net neutrality internet, of fake things and she says I love this line we're building a dystopia, just, to make people click, on ads, wow. That's depressing, this, cartoon by the way I found I still.
Haven't Found out who did it the original cartoon appeared, in the New York or in 1993. And the original a caption. Was on the internet nobody knows you're a dog and it was a celebration of anonymity you, can do anything on the internet nobody knows who you are and so in they you know here's this dog saying hey on the internet nobody knows your dog this. One I'm the Internet nobody knows you're a democracy, we're. In a much more dire. Situation. Now than. We were in 1993. My, favorite, one of my favorite programs model, programs though. That, addresses, these kinds, of issues is a digital sociology, program run. By Tracy. McMillan. Caught him at Virginia, Commonwealth University, public. University, where, people who are full professionals. And jobs that are stressed. By. Internet, changes take a masters degree where they learn key important. Concepts. Of sociology. And apply. Those to their stress lives and their learning code and they're, learning what's in an L, and they're learning about the working conditions of their own. Company, as, they're still working in those fields that are going through stresses, me that's a really brilliant brilliant. Program, another. One is at, Arizona. State a program. In arts. Media and engineering. Where. Students take complex. General. Education, requirements, around not, the, smorgasbord distribution. But around a problem. That requires, them to think across many disciplines and they, pose a question each year to the incoming students, it's really hard, for any one discipline to understand my favorite, is what, will life be like in Phoenix when there's no more water. Needless. To say you, probably already Cape Town's about ready to run out of water and people say Phoenix is number two on the list as a major city about China we. Run out of water no problem we'll buy it what, if you're too poor to buy it hmm. That's an ethics and a social justice issue not just an hydrology, issue right. It's, a complex, problem that requires, you to use your learning. All, your learning Reeb, undle to think about current, and urgent problems and in a deep way how, other people talked about resource, distribution how's. That happened historically what, are the philosophical. Issues involved, in that as well as the scientific ones. Interestingly. Another. One the tyranny of testing, Hampshire, College which is known for being inventive, and funky and interesting, decided, why, are we collecting SAT scores we're not gonna do it anymore that. May, not sound so brave but it means it can never be in rankings and they. Spent years talking, to accreditors about could they still be a creditor if they didn't give didn't. Collect, didn't. Collect. Literally. Do, not have any record, of a CT or SATs, source they. Found that it improved, the kind of students, they want to recruit as well as their their, recruitment rate and their selectivity.
And. Then. One. More and then I'm going to turn this over to you the. Lecture, and. Seminar. What. We know from. Educational. Sociologists. Is, that faculty tend, to think everybody. Contributes, when 20%. Of students talk in a class. The. People who talk in class tend to most replicate. The, characteristics, of, their, professor. So. This, is interesting Samuel, Delaney went to Bronx school of science, he. Was gay and as soon as he graduate from high school he ran to the West Village. And. He published his first known novel, at age 20 and. Never. Went to college right in. The. 1970s. He had an opportunity to teach it well at Wesleyan, and had, this fantasy, of what college was gonna be like many. People say he's the greatest autodidact. In America, his, library is like low library, I mean it's an astonishing. He's an astonishingly. Learned at human being he. Asked. A question, and. Was shocked when those three Smarties. RAZR, we're most usually happy if we ask a question in three smart kids raised their hand right Tracy smart Spencer he, was appalled. That's. Not his idea this, utopia, of higher education. So. He said don't. You realize, that every. Time you don't answer a question you're, learning something you're. Learning how to make do with what you've got and you're learning how not to ask for a raise you're. Learning how to take it that's not good so from, now on whatever I ask a question everybody's. Got to put their hand up I don't, care whether you know the answer or not you have to put your hand up I'm gonna call on you and if you don't know the answer I want you to say nice and clear I don't, know the answer to that professor Delanie but I would like to hear what that person, has to say and, we'll pass it on I don't care whether. You know or not you. Need to teach people they, are important, enough to say what they have to say in. The same video he says not knowing, should be the goal, of higher education. We're, not aiming high enough if people. Know we. Should be testing, people so they don't know and one learn how they, know so. For about the last 10, or 15 years ivory, made all my classrooms. So. My students make the class. My. Students create syllabi, I'm happy to talk about this in many different ways they, set the, requirements. For the class. In, both of these classes and, one, of the students, who, was in one of those classes. New. Director, of digital. Projects. At the at, Columbia, University. This. Group of students said we don't want to write dorky, term papers, we want to write a book about active, learning, now. If you don't think that's ambitious, for students to write collectively. Write a book it's. Also had about 30,000. Visitors, in its various forms, most. Academic, books do not have 30,000. Readers. And. The Graduate Center year-and-a-half, ago I had another group of students said we want to do we want to update that book we've got some other things to put in that book and they, wrote a book in.
Both, Cases the bar I set, was hi. I'm Kathy Davidson, I'm your professor I'm gonna leave now, and when I come back I want, you to have designed a class that's gonna change all of our lives. I've. Been doing this rub 15 years and everyone says oh they're gonna get away with but I've, never had the students set the bar lower than I would have said in fact, if there's any problem, with this kind of teaching, it's. Saying dial, it back you're. Taking four classes you. Can't fail the other classes come on let's be reasonable here, we've got to do some project management but. If you let students, do something, meaningful you, don't have to worry about banning laptops, and banning cellphones, they're. Going to be engaged and, in, fact. We're gonna do something now, that will illustrate the, most basic, most. Basic, technique. Of all. It's. Going to take very little, time the first part it's a three part exercise, the. First part is. 90. Seconds I'm gonna set it timer and. That's. Everybody please, 90. Seconds, take the card and a pencil if you. Ran. Columbia. University, it, was yours, and you. Could change three, things right. Now and you can make a magic wand that would happen what. Would you do to revolutionize, Columbia, University, 90 seconds totally, low-stakes or they'll, make it legible because, you, may not be the last person reading this. 90. Seconds, go for it. So. This is an exercise I learned from a second-grade teacher but. It's also the. Basis, of, some. Practices, in medical school, the, one in medical school is a way, you learn surgeries, oh this is really old school. See. One. Do. One teach one. It's. The basic, basic, basic, lesson. Of active, learning I never. Have a class it's also called an inventory method, because unlike selectivity. Where people raise people. Three, people ask. Questions everybody. Gets to and be involved also. Another another. Figure. That haunts me is. We, have again educational, sociologists, saying about 20 according. To this, study, that's. Been. Replicated, in various, versions between, 20 and 25 percent of students say when they leave college. They've. Never answered, a question unless. They've, been specifically. Asked, it so they've never heard their voice in the classroom. So. The pair part of this is I want you now and, we're gonna do a little bit like, a big group do, a little bit of a variation here two. Things and what your work in pairs. Very. Structured. One. Person, reads don't extrapolate, just reads the three things on your card the. Other person listens, very quietly. No interruption, then, switch, so. With that this is everybody, gets an opportunity to listen also. Underrated, most. People listen to the lecture to the professor, don't ever know, what's happening. They're peers, there's. Also figures, that are very depressing, I don't have the exact number of people, being an even classes, with 10 or 12 students and graduating without ever knowing the name of anybody else in the class. So. You're not, really paying attention to all the talent in a row you're paying attention to what's happening here and your grade right I don't think that's a big surprise so. 90. Seconds find a partner one person reads the three things the other person listens then you switch then. We're. Going to do a little, variation on share so you're gonna do. Every. Table is gonna do two things pair a person, one reads one listens one listens one reads, then. Come up with a question that your table can ask the whole group so first, it's a pair and then you're gonna collaborate and tell, each other and you only have 90, seconds to do it super low stakes go for it. And you, should be now writing down something, that you're gonna summon from your table is going to read to the whole group. Okay. Does everyone have every table has something, they're ready to share with the group. Does, everyone have something, you're gonna share with the group can, I have your attention please. Excuse. Me can I have your attention please. Excuse. Me please. That's. My favorite, moment in every talk where. I have to fight for your attention. Right. Because with active, learning you. Have something, far more important. And more an urgent to say. Than. What I'm talking, about a pair and we've got lots of research, on this a year from now if somebody, says that Davidson, you went to a Davidson talk what did you learn that what did you talk about that day the thing you're most likely to say is the thing you wrote on your card or. The. Thing you came up with in your group it.
Involves, All of it you, get to for. The shy person, there's some magic, that happens when you can write something on the card and read it as opposed to talking extent. People. In the field of public speaking say, the oldest saw in the field of public speaking is that most people a majority of people would rather be in the coffin rather than giving the eulogy at a funeral. Public. Speaking is terrifying, to most people if. You write something on have somebody write have to take the time in a quiet environment to write something and then just read it somehow. It D personalizes, it makes it possible so everybody can contribute. Sharing. With somebody else is a hearing exercise, that helps you improve, your own thinking and then, synthesizing. It into something you're going to share with the group is an incredibly, important. Collaborative, skill these, are all meta, skills, that. We do in college we rarely talk about them they're. Probably the most important, thing you can learn in the university, but, also we know that meta-level, the synthesis, level is, where, learning happens, right. Not, just when you hear something we've had the ebbing, house experiments, that go all the way back to 1888, the so called forgetting curb if. You have a major of, exam. You're studying for. Within. A week after that exam, you're. Likely to have forgotten up to 75%, of the material, you study for that exam so. Either my, friend Fred Melton is right that exam that our, whole educational lab, this is about how you do how you're graded or. We, have to think about better. Ways of learning that lasts beyond the, week one. Week a. Very, famous elite. $70,000. Year private, prep school that I'm no longer allowed to name by name. Did, a study, a great, study about five years ago where, they had every. Student. In September. Take. The same exact. Exams, they had taken in May. The. Average, grade best, one of the top five schools on every list. Fanciest. Schools and of every list. Average. Grade in May. 88. Average. Grade in September, same students, same exams 55. That's. What attention, is that's. What learning is and what, you remember is what's meaningful to you. What. You synthesize, what you talk about what you discuss, with somebody else what you work through those. Are the things that matter to us and those are that's what learning is.
But. It's a choice and, we're about to go around the room with a, with. Microphone, so you can tell us what you'd revolutionize, about the university but, tomorrow. These. Inventory. Techniques, are techniques that you can use in any classroom, I also, used them at the business meetings for my group of fellows and apprentice teachers who are learning these methods I had, a graduate student at a totally. Failed department, meeting raise her hand and say to the professor a new chair who, was utterly, despondent, because nobody would contribute. Anything meaningful in this department meaning, of maybe 85, people a graduate. Student one of our fellows said what. If we just turned to somebody and workshopped, an idea and then you went around the room and saw, suddenly. The room was alive with ideas, he thought people were hostile, it's just the. The paralysis. That happens in a group when. You don't have a method for finding out what real ideas, are and those two or three noise noise knows EEP noisy, people, monopolize. The conversation we. All know who they are right you. Go to a meeting you know who's gonna ask the long question, that the usually begins like I don't know if this is really a question. Maybe. I'm the only one who's been in that audience, what. We're gonna do now is we've got two microphones were just rapid-fire, gonna go around to. Each table and have you shout out what you would revolutionize, first about the institution. Trying. To tackle the issue of siloed thinking, between departments, and schools, we. Have a terrible, echo in here can you say that again yes try to tackle, the, problem, of siloed, thinking, creating, a structure, that would, work giving, facilitating. Students to cross over more effectively, thank you silos. Wow I mean that's really a hard one many. Universities are trying to tackle that it's, a hard way and, we have to we have to the world is not silos, anymore those silos were invented, for a reason and a purpose in, a time period, yes. Next. One. How. Can we foster online. Collaborative learning across disciplines, schools and national borders. Fabulous. Thank you. Everyone. Can hear these right okay. Someone. From the table better take that Mike great thank you it's. Incentivize. Slash. Not, punish collaboration. Among, teachers I. Just. Was in an hour-long meeting with your Provost and a committee that was talking about how, you do that how you incentivize, that huge. Clearly, a matter we're all concerned about thank. You. Provide. You types of physical space for interaction. Collaboration and, other needs to be defined built. Built, environments, yes thank you. Figure. Out a way to have. Teaching. Across disciplines. Where. The, prop at the core, is finding, problems. Excellent. This. Is exactly what the Provost meeting I was in just an hour, ago was about a thing that was sort of like how can we build interdisciplinarity.
Without, Departments, so, I guess we now know I think we've got a thing going on here right. Good. Just. Read on the card. We. Talked I think we had a common element in the. Idea of stimulating. Student. Agency. I'm. Sorry there I'm in a pretty stimulating, student agency how this could be done yes. Great thank you. Probably. A bit wishful, but I'm also thinking how, do we. How. Do we rethink how we assess, learning without numerical. Grades. Again. I could. Hear the last part rethink. Assessing. Learning without using, numerical, grading yeah. That's. A project you, know it's interesting we. Can assess, and evaluate everything. In our society, tinder, does a better job than we do I. Don't. Know what that is I don't know what that Yelp. Does a better job. Right. You, know we're using a system. Multiple-choice exam the first one was invented in 1914. Because. There was a teacher shortage, and this, was going to help lower. A test lower order thinking for, quote-unquote it's not a term I would use the lower orders, and now, that. Tests if I put that test up on a screen you would think it was written for the SATs yesterday, weird. We've got all these, ways of testing, for multiple. Complex, qualities, and we still are using. This system. That was invented, a long time ago. How. Do we facilitate. Inter-department. Inter-school. Communication. Across. Faculty, and students, excellent. Silo. Silos, an assessment, student. Agency these, are really deep key issues I have, a somewhat unfair advantage because I have designed a university, from scratch and the key point was go. To the one class at a time block, system will you take four courses in a row instead of four courses simultaneously yeah, excellent. Change. I won't great insisting, so we're more like Hampshire College, so. We're more like I didn't hear the last word Hampshire, College. Recognition. Of the Graduate Workers Union I. Was. In a school that oh I'm not gonna even say it I'm in a union high school now and I'm a very happy person but. I know that that's not a beloved, point. Of view, how. Do we revamp, the curriculum, so students, take only two multidisciplinary. Courses, per semester. So. A common theme on our table, was. Communication. As. A student, here a lot, of the departments work compartmentalized. And just. Basic, communication, would. Be quite. Helpful and less arduous for students. And. I hope that by going back and looking at the history you, realize it's not some capriciousness. Of Columbia. This, is a system, it's, an infrastructure. It was designed. My. Pet peeve is people say, you can't change higher education, because. Higher education, hasn't changed since Socrates. Walked, the floor of the Academy to that over 2,000 years ago actually, not, education. Was carefully. Structurally. Systematically. Block-by-block. Redesigned. In order, to make a professional, managerial class for. The, age of the Model T in the telegraph right. Also. Came worker, rights. Labor. Regulation. I keep saying you all know what the book the jungle is published, in 1906, that created a huge movement. Where people started thinking about all the different related, points of technology, and what was happening with industrialization we desperately need, the jungle for now, right. Where, labor. Attention. Silo's. Assessment. Selectivity. I'm. Trying to think of some of the other things credit, hours. Imposed. Structures, that might not have anything to do with actual. Knowledge production. Right. We.
Don't Learn outside. Of school if, you have to really do some learn something challenging outside, of school you. Never. Might, my. Nine-month. Old. Be, - on walking today we don't do that right. External. Summative. Measures do not work, all, they work for. Is to do better on that external summative, measure. But. We have a whole system that was based on a world. That has changed radically and, what. I loved about the comments, that you all made is clearly, we are all thinking, together and, now and deeply. About. Those issues now. We have to go from those places that give us inspiration. And. When I tried to do in my book with an ethnography, of all kinds, of different universe different, colleges, universities community, colleges community. Organizations. They're using, these methods and actually making some kinds, of change but how we go from that to a systemic. Systemic. And. Systematic. Structural. Change I'm, afraid we probably don't have we. Have changed worked oh we have time we have three minutes does anyone bravely want to ask a question and the, three minutes we have left. If. Not, okay, yes thank you I. Really. Appreciated, this and, one. Of the questions I want to ask is the. Relationship, between education, and industry a little bit more you. Know because there's of course the feedback loop between the. Current. Education system we have optimizing, for itself and, I'm. Curious, if you have any thoughts on changes. To education, that could happen. Not. Just from education, but from practice. Or from discipline, on to, education because of course the feedback loop onto education works both ways right, feedback. Loop starts. In. New York I think it starts in the cradle, I'm, in the crazy crazy system, of Education, we have in this, city and selectivity and this system. I think that if I were gonna change something I would actually, it sounds counterintuitive we'd. Start with assessment. Because. Until you changed, what the out of the way you measure an outcome. Everything. Else flows from that to get rid of that, as an outcome, tip. College, student, now in America, America tests earlier and more often gives, high-stakes summative tests earlier and more often than any other country in the on. The planet and a, typical. Student. By the time they get to college it's had 112. Of those, exams, where somebody says this is going to go on your permanent record, so. The feedback loop, is not just discipline, an institution. It's, in your head right. It's a Maya failure, am I, gonna succeed is just. Learning it's, not learning is, this degree gonna get me a job and if, and or am I gonna starve to death a weird. Bunch, of polarities, that. Are deep deep, polarities, we now know for example. We. Didn't know this for the last decade humanities, majors get just as many jobs and have just as much job satisfaction as, people. In stem just. Recently maybe a month ago Pew revealed, a huge longitudinal. Study on it there is a difference, people. In stem have a higher income level, than, people in the humanities maybe. I don't want to spend money enough to have that huge income maybe I would like to be a chef. It's. Values. Reward, systems, outputs, disciplines. All of that is it I love your term a feedback, loop it's a constantly. Self-replenishing. Feedback. Loop and how you break that loop and, you get out of the system that's. That's the mandate we all have thank. You that was a fabulous question dad done thank you think, we can end there thank you very very much for being here thank you. You. You.