The College’s new research center will focus on online study skills

A trio of higher education research institutions are partnering with a new research center to assess how educators and emerging technologies can help students better manage their own learning, funded by a $10 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

According to a recent Press release, project leaders include SRI Education, a division of the nonprofit Stanford-affiliated research institute SRI International; the Community College Research Center (CCRC) at Teacher’s College, Columbia University; and Achieving the Dream, a national nonprofit organization focused on helping community college students.

The new center, which has yet to be named, will bring together several other colleges, researchers and edtech developers to study professional development strategies and create an edtech “toolkit” including information on best practices, focused on planning and goal setting.


More than a third of post-secondary students were enrolled in online courses in fall 2019, which represents an 11-point jump since 2012, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. SRI analysts say these numbers will likely continue to grow after the Increased COVID-19 Digital Learning.

The SRI press release explained that college instructors often see high-ability students struggle with assignments and exams if they lack the skills to plan and study, which can lead them to lose confidence or motivation. He highlighted how self-directed learning skills will become increasingly important with the growing popularity of online courses.

Deborah Jonas, director of SRI’s Center for Educational Research and Innovation, and Nikki Edgecombe, professor of educational policy and social analysis at Columbia University’s Teachers College, will help lead the new center.

“Together with Achieving the Dream and our partner colleges, the center will foster cross-industry knowledge sharing and national adoption of the evidence-based training resources the team will develop,” Jonas, the center’s principal investigator, said in a statement. public.

Other partners include Bunker Hill Community College in Massachusetts, Calbright College in California, Macomb Community College in Michigan, Odessa College in Texas, Palm Beach State College in Florida, Portland State University in Oregon, Tulsa Community College in Oklahoma, Virginia State University, and Wake Technical Community College in North Carolina.

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