Breaking the Adaptive Learning Black Box

by: Tyton Partners | Tools and Infographics |May 12th, 2016

The Bottom Line

Adaptive teaching is breaking the black box of adaptive learning. What is it and why does it matter?

Tyton Partners_Adaptive Teaching Graphic

Beyond the Black Box – Adaptive Teaching

Tyton Partners’ long-standing evaluation of adaptive learning models and adoption dynamics in higher education has revealed many gaps and opportunities. One critical evolution in the space has been “adaptive teaching”, which empowers faculty to leverage technology to guide individual learner pathways to direct and re-direct learning outcomes.

In adaptive teaching models, instruction becomes:

  • Active, insofar as it leverages technology to enhance faculty members’ roles as instructors who shape the learning “journey” and outcomes for students;
  • Relational, as faculty simultaneously work as subject matter experts, coaches, and guides alongside students who are progressing through an adaptive curriculum or assessment;
  • Involved through the use of digital features and functions that enable faculty to direct learners through a module, course, or program and to stage interactions and interventions as needed; and
  • Insightful at scale based on analytics, dashboards, and learning maps that provide faculty with greater transparency into student progress, and the availability of automated indicators or flags to suggest potential interventions to improve the likelihood of student success

These principles reflect adaptive teaching as a practice enabled by technology. And they shift the focus around “adaptivity” from a black-box set of algorithms to the practices pursued by instructors on behalf of students. It provides an architecture from which to position the use of adaptive technology, and a way to make personalized learning less of an ideal and more of a reality for all stakeholders involved.

To Learn More…

Tyton Partners’ recent publication builds on adaptive learning findings and market dynamics we have been following since 2011. Most recently, we hosted conversations with nearly two dozen institutional leaders regarding their adaptive learning experiences and gathered feedback from more than 30 suppliers of adaptive solutions.

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