Balancing technology and innovation in undergraduate business courses to improve student performance

Concurrent Session 3

Session Materials

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Brief Abstract

In Colorado Technical University’s (CTU) undergraduate business program, technology and innovation is being used to improve student outcomes. Lower level courses are delivered using 100% Adaptive Learning technology. As a contrast, upper level courses are being deployed with Beyond the Book Library Guides and Debate-Centered Discussion Boards.

Presenters

Dr. Tony R. Lyons is Dean for Colorado Technical University’s College of Business and Management and Doctoral Studies. Dr. Lyons is a passionate educator with 30 years of experience in business and higher education leadership and innovation.

Extended Abstract

In Colorado Technical University’s (CTU) undergraduate business program, lower level (100-200 level) courses are delivered using 100% Adaptive Learning technology. As a contrast, upper level courses (300-400 level) are being deployed with Beyond the Book Library Guides and Debate-Centered Discussion Boards. This approach to implementing curriculum using a balanced integration of technology and innovation contributes to noticeable improvements in:

  • Student outcomes

  • Student engagement

  • Faculty engagement

  • Student retention and persistence

We were motivated to deliver courses using these techniques in part because we found that many text books were not meeting the needs of our students with the format of our courses. The Beyond the Book Library Guides allows us the opportunity to provide relevant targeted course content that is aligned to course and program learning outcomes. Our Adaptive Learning technology provides a method for us to demystify student learning through science by finding out what students already know, what they don’t know, and where we need to provide targeted teaching and learning opportunities. Students are provided individualized learning paths based on real-time knowledge state, continuous feedback, and increased interaction with faculty, leading to overall improved pass rates, persistence, and lower drop rates. Introduction of the debate-centered discussion board also led to improved student and faculty engagement, with students overwhelmingly excited about the new format to course discussions. An example of student feedback follows:

“This was also the first class that I have taken that had a debate aspect built into the discussion boards. It was very interesting to read the different point of views that everyone had on the Topics. It was also interesting to be assigned a point of view to defend that differed from my personal point of view, it really makes you open your mind to looking at things a different way”.

Implications for quality assessment are demonstrated using course data analytics and faculty engagement tracking.

Session Outcomes:

  • Demonstrate how technology and innovation in curriculum design can impact student outcomes

  • Examine how an Adaptive Learning solution has been effectively applied to achieve course learning outcomes

  • Highlight strategies for ensuring student and faculty engagement focused on depth and quality of