Archive for December, 2018

Preparing Students To Do Research Interviews And Oral Histories

December 7th, 2018

BY DAVID GUTIERREZ

When we talk about the skills college students need to succeed, we tend to emphasize writing, algebra, research skills, and time management, and it’s true that all of those skills are important. If you take some time to read the academic literature from different fields, however, it quickly becomes clear that this list is missing something important: the art of the interview. From history and anthropology to psychology and even economics, research interviews are vital to academic work in a variety of disciplines.

Understanding The Research Interview

Research interviews fall into two main subsets: open-ended oral histories and qualitative interviews that aim to answer specific research questions, and each type has its own approach. For either type of interview, though, students need to begin with a firm grasp on the research process. It takes a lot of preparation to conduct a successful interview. That research will be reflected in the interview guide.

The Interview Guide

An interview guide is, at its core, a document containing the questions you plan to ask during the interview, but before students formulate any questions, they’ll need to do research on the primary topics involved. For an oral history, this might involve researching publically available information about the interview subject, or researching relevant time periods or social movements. When preparing for a qualitative interview, on the other hand, research typically focuses on existing scholarship so that the student can develop a clear research question. In both cases, though, the interview guide should emphasize open-ended questions that encourage the subject to share the most information possible.

Organizing The Research

It’s important for students to use reference management software to organize their sources during the research process because research interviews can take a long time to complete. Reference management software helps to ensure that all the necessary information is accessible later, especially if the course aim goes beyond the art of the interview.

Interview Technology

To perform a successful interview, students need to do more than simply switch on a tape recorder, and mastering the technology is – at least for some – the hardest part of the process. That’s why students are encouraged to repeatedly practice using their technology of choice, whether they’re using simple interview recording software or a variety of microphones and cameras. If at all possible, students should use separate microphones to ensure the highest possible audio quality and make it easier to listen to and transcribe the interview later.

After The Interview

After performing an interview, there are several possibilities. In some cases, specifically for targeted qualitative interviews, students simply need to listen to the interviews and record key information. After performing an oral history, however, it’s generally expected that students will transcribe the entire interview. Some choose to do this by listening to the recording and typing along with it, which can be time-consuming, while others use transcription software so that they can speak along with the recording. Original recordings should be preserved along with the transcription.

If students are going to graduate from college with a firm grasp of the research process, then learning to conduct an interview should be part of their education. When students have an opportunity to interface directly with interview subjects, their education comes to life. And that’s when a topic goes from an interest to a passion.

David Gutierrez has worked in the field of web design since 2005. Right now he started learning Java in order to get second occupation. His professional interests defined major topics of his articles. David writes about new web design software, recently discovered professional tricks and also monitors the latest updates of the web development.

 

Techniques and Strategies For Problem-Based Learning At College

December 6th, 2018

BY KRISTIAN KRISYK

Problem-based learning is not a new thing by any approximation, but the truth is that both teachers and students often fail to properly understand it and use it to the full extent of the method’s possibilities. Problem-based learning, also known as student-centered education, is based on the idea that the teacher is not the provider of knowledge but the facilitator of learning. However, PBL is much more complicated than just simply providing the learners with a problem and waiting for them to solve it. One needs to understand how PBL works if he wants to attain enough self-sufficiency to study using it successfully. In this article, we will cover some of the ways teachers implement this approach so that you better understand what is expected of you and how to work when learning under PBL

1.    Brainstorming

The first few class meetings following problem-based learning should be built around brainstorming sessions covering the main issues of the course. They should set up the required attitude among the students and teach them to express their own opinions on the subject of their studies instead of waiting for input on the part of a teacher.

2.    Open-ended problems

One of the most important principles of problem-based learning is the use of open-ended or, to put it in another way, ill-structured problems. This means that, contrary to what one is used to in traditional learning, a problem shouldn’t have a single obviously correct solution. Students have to employ a number of different methods before they choose any particular one, and alternative approaches should be just as viable as any other. Therefore, according to experts from Trafficora, such problems require more information than is available at the beginning (meaning that students have to do their own research to find working solutions and that they are not limited to the data provided by the teacher at the start). Finding a correct decision may even require the use of rapid prototyping services even for a simple idea of custom boxes to see if a working solution can be built.

3.    Problems first

Another core principle is that problems should be set in front of students before any formal instruction on the topic is done. This teaches them to rely only on themselves and encourages out of the box thinking, facilitating original approaches and independent decision-making.

4.    Collaboration

Students should work on problems in groups, usually from 3 to 8 students in each. The sizes of the groups are determined by the overall number of students in the course and the number of tutors. The important thing here is to understand that the work on the problem isn’t limited to school time – students should learn to organize themselves for independent group work outside of school; therefore, problems should be built in such a way so as to make it impossible to find solutions within the school hours viable. Another important aspect (and one of the most crucial responsibilities of the tutor) is to ensure that every member of the group takes part in problem-solving.

5.    Tools

Another responsibility of the tutor is to give students the tools they are going to need in their work. Although problem-based learning is built around the principle of dealing with problems independently, the teacher should first familiarize the students with the tools necessary to do their work (library references, online services, apps, databases, etc.). In addition to that, it is important to point out common misconceptions and mistakes that can take too much time to figure out by themselves.

Problem-based learning is much more complicated than one may have been led to believe judging by its core principles. We hope that after reading this article, you understand it a little better.

BY LINE–Kristian Krisyk had been working in the field of web design for 7 years before becoming an entrepreneur in 2014 in design and marketing. His professional interests and hobbies defined major topics of his articles. These days Kristian runs his business and looks for new development opportunities. Follow him @KristianKrisyk or contact at kristian.krisyk@gmail.com

 

 

 

Guide to Turning Your Passion into Your Profession

December 5th, 2018

BY LESLIE WILDER

Passion is hard to describe. It makes you come alive and gives you the strength to walk that extra mile, even without you being aware of it. Have you experienced something like this? If you don’t feel passionate about the job you do, life becomes miserable, to say the least. Let’s just say that your work becomes a compulsion, more of a burden, that you need to carry in order to pay your bills, and not something which makes you feel proud and happy.

If you don’t wish to experience the latter, then first of all, don’t freak out. It’s not too late. Take charge of your own life and make smart and informed plans so as to turn your passion into your profession.

If you find happiness in playing the drums, do it, if you wish to be a hairdresser, then nobody should be able to stop you. If you enjoy doing corporate headshot photography more than fashion photography, what the heck! Go ahead with it.

Happiness is all that matters at the end of the day, along with channelizing your passion and talent in the right direction.

Here are a few tips from experts that would help you do so.

  • Discover and Identify your passion

Your passion should be something for which you would be naturally inclined to. Now, here it is important to note and remember that passion and hobby are two absolutely different things and it is absolutely pivotal that you clearly differentiate between the two, before you plunge into your career options. For example, only because you like to paint would by no means mean that you would become a great painter. It might happen that you have a much natural aptitude for graphics designing, which incorporates some elements of painting. So, be smart, keep an open mind, and explore your capabilities to the fullest.

 

  • Do a thorough research

Here some hard work and smartness is required from your end. Conduct a detailed research once you figure out what you are meant for. Find out what exactly would you have to do – step by step, in order to propel your career in the field of your choice. Find out if you’ll need to purchase any specialized equipments or tools, what degrees you can choose from, whether you’ll be needing any additional certification or training – and so on. In order to reduce the hurdles later, find out everything you can right at the beginning.

A great way to do this would be to interview people, who have established themselves in this career, asking them about their journey and struggles.

 

  • Get Qualified

There’s no two ways about the fact that knowledge and education are two most powerful assets of any individual. Qualification here also includes trainings or special certifications that are relevant to your field. You might know a lot, but unless you have a formal document to prove your genius, you wouldn’t be taken seriously.

 

  • Be prepared to face failure while walking along this path

Just like the popular quote says, failure is indeed the stepping stone for success. So don’t be afraid or defeated by failures. In order to learn, grow and polish your thought process, it is crucial that you face failures. And to be honest, you will be facing quite a few of them. We all have.

But, the magic lies in not giving up, and keep moving ahead with utmost dedication. During this course, do not hesitate to seek help from superiors or even peers if required. Keep an open mind and accept all criticism and negative feedbacks in the right spirit. There might be times when you feel that all is lost. That’s when you need to pick yourself up and keep trying until you succeed.

 

Take Inspiration from a few true stories:

Stories are always interesting isn’t it? – Furthermore, if they are true. So, here’s a lout shout out to these rich and famous personalities who followed their passion and made their lives awesome.

J.K Rowling

We all must have heard this remarkable story at some point in our lives. This woman wrote whatever she felt like – whatever made sense to her. This courage and determination made her the icon she is today. But, her life has not always been a bed of roses, as we all are aware. But, she discovered what she’s meant for, and kept working towards it. That’s what changed her life.

Steve Jobs

This name makes us all think he is someone from a different category of mankind altogether. But no. it’s not true. He is just like any of us. His immense confidence in his own capabilities and the determination to do whatever it takes to achieve his goals is what makes him what he is today. He knew what he wanted right from when he dropped school and throughout since then.

Although passion is important, it is not absolutely enough, when it comes to making you successful. Any success requires hard work, and even if you are following your passion, you can’t simple escape hard work. But the difference lies in the fact, that working for something that you enjoy, would make the efforts seem worthwhile and fun, and your fiery passion, would always keep you two steps ahead of others in your field.

So gear up and build wonderful lives for yourselves.

 

Leslie Wilder a creative writer & blogger, who is residing in Nashville the capital of U.S. state of Tennessee, I’m also a self-proclaimed happiness junkie, and someone you would generally consider confident and well balanced.

Colleges Need To Expand Health Care Programs To Meet Student Demand

December 4th, 2018

BY DANIKA KIMBALL

America has long faced  a shortage of healthcare professionals. It’s a problem that is likely to worsen in years to come. As an example, it’s expected that nearly 33 percent of working nurses in the country will hit retirement over the course of the next 10 years. At the same time, the nation’s population is aging rapidly, requiring more intensive and long-term care. Simply put, American hospitals will not be able to keep up with the demand unless we train an alarming number of new healthcare professionals.

It’s not due to a lack of interest from students. In fact the opposite is true.Part of the problem does lie in the education system. Medical programs actually reject thousands of applicants a year despite the shortage of those in the healthcare field.

Without implementing changes at the university level, it’s likely that these shortages are only going to become more exacerbated in years to come. In short, to solve the healthcare staffing crisis, we need more healthcare educators at the university level. This problem has become the most visible in the nursing community.

“There’s tremendous demand from hospitals and clinics to hire more nurses,” Robert Rosseter, a spokesman for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, told CNN Money. “There’s tremendous demand from students who want to enter nursing programs, but schools are tapped out.”

This has the potential to become a huge problem, if the trend persists. There are currently 3 million nurses working in the United States. In order to fill current healthcare gaps, U.S. colleges are going to have to produce one million more graduates by the year 2022.

Though it’s easy to assume that the problem only exists in the nursing profession, the same is true in many other professions in the healthcare field. Recent research has shown that we will have a shortage of 100,000 doctors by the year 2030. Another report notes that overall, we will have to hire 2.3 million new health care workers by 2025 in order to meet demands.  

Despite this, most healthcare programs are underfunded and unable to train new applicants. In 2017, for example, nursing programs across the country turned away over 56,000 nursing students. Many of those students more than met the qualifications for the program.

“Some of these applicants graduated high school top of their class with a 3.5 GPA or higher,” Rosseter said. “But the competition to get into a nursing school right now is so intense.”

The same is true for those applying to medical school. Between 2006 and 2016, the number of applicants to medical schools increased by over 35 percent. But the number of available spots to study remains stagnant, leaving many aspiring physicians with nowhere to turn.

In fact, the problem has become so severe that even applicants who have previous experience in the healthcare field are being rejected.

CNN Money profiled one such applicant, Erica Kay, a 35-year-old certified surgical technician and medical assistant. Kay has taken two admissions tests and applied to three different schools without success.

“One school responded in a letter they had 343 applications and only accepted 60 students,” Kay said. “Another school had 60 slots for 262 applications…It shocks and upsets me that there are so many hurdles to get into nursing school when we have a nursing shortage.”

Nursing in particular is a popular profession, largely due to the fact that there is great potential for growth and change throughout your career, and due to the enormous need. Those who graduate from nursing programs are presented with an entry-level living wage with which most are able to support themselves and their families. And in many states, where shortages are less severe and mandatory overtime is not a requirement, schedules are flexible.

While there may be different reasons to become a physician, or a health administrator, the availability of training is still scarce.

At this point, colleges  simply aren’t able to keep up with demand. Many institutions struggle to hire and maintain instructors who are qualified to teach. It’s a problem that many colleges and universities are trying to solve through educator recruitment.

Until the problem is addressed at its core, many universities have come up with creative ways to increase the number of students they are able to accept into their programs.

Many statewide initiatives are underway that aim to address the shortage of healthcare staff in the country. The University of Wisconsin, for example, announced a $3.2 million Nurses for Wisconsin initiative, which would provide fellowships and loan forgiveness for future nurse faculty who agree to teach in the state after they graduate from college.

Others schools have partnered with large hospitals in order to have their nursing students learn from nurses in the field. For example, Arizona State University recently partnered with the Mayo Clinic in order to provide training and networking opportunities for their students.  

There are many ways that the issue can be addressed. In order to do so, however, universities and hospitals are going to have to come up with actionable solutions, and quickly.

Danika is a writer and musician from the Northwest who sometimes takes a 30 minute break from feminism to enjoy a tv show. You can follow her on Twitter @sadwhitegrrl

Renting Property as a Student: What You Should Know

December 3rd, 2018

BY SYLVIA KOHL

Although renting a property for yourself may be fascinating, the truth is that many students know very little about their rights and duties in this respect – which is a sure way to trouble. In this article, we will tell about some of the basic things you should know.

1.    The landlord cannot enter the rented property whenever he wants

Contrary to what you may have heard, neither the landlord nor the people acting on his behalf have the right to enter the rented property without providing some form of reasonable notice. Reasonable notice is loosely defined to some form of official contact providing reasonable time frames to accommodate the landlord coming over to inspect or make repairs or show the property to future renters or buyers. The only situation in which the notice isn’t necessary is an emergency – for example, in case of fire or water damage.  The landlord is within their right to have routine safety inspections and many perform them quarterly to check smoke detectors and also electrical, water and mechanical.  Most landlords will often send an email or text to all tenants living in the building or specific unit that they will be coming over during a several hour time window to perform a route inspection.  Nearly all landlords provide one day notice for routine maintenance inspections as they are often scheduled well in advance.

2.    Fire and general safety are mostly the landlord’s responsibilities

Legally, the landlord should make sure the property has an adequate means of a fire escape and, at the very least, appropriate smoke alarms on every floor. For landlords of apartments in Boston  smoke alarms are often a big concern because many tenants constantly take them down when they are cooking and often forget to put back the batteries or pull out the hardwire.  For landlords it often seems like an endless game of whack-a-mole as many landlords are often replacing many smoke detectors either broken or lost by tenants. There should also be an appropriate amount of carbon monoxide detectors depending on the size of the property. If there isn’t one, it may be a good idea to request a meeting with the landlord to remedy the issue in an immediate manner.  Landlords have run into issues where one tenant will take down the smoke detectors but not let the other tenants know they have done so.  So make sure you talk with all your roommates to make sure that you are not the cause of the problem.

3.    The landlord cannot just evict you without a good reason

There is a whole lot of reasons why a landlord may have a legal right to evict you. For example, if you are regularly late with your payments, have breached the tenancy agreement or take part in illegal activities. However, this works backward as well: if there is no court order seeking eviction, a landlord can’t demand you must vacate if you have a lease and you are in good standing.  Your lease protects you from a landlord evicting you without cause.

4.    The landlord can ask you to move out earlier than the agreed upon lease term

The landlord can certainly ask you if you would like to end your lease earlier than the agreed upon time frame; but they can’t make you without some other form of violation or serious safety repair that must completed without tenants being present. In nearly all instances, minus violations and serious habitability problems, the landlord can only ask you to move out if you agree to leave – otherwise, he is bound to let you stay on the property until the end of the agreed-upon period. The same goes for you-you cannot move out before this period ends unless the landlord agrees. Otherwise, you will still have to pay the rent for the rest of the period.  But if you would like to move out early, it is always a good idea to talk it over with your landlord and see if you can sublet or help rerent the place so that landlord doesn’t lose any money.  In this case many landlords are very willing to help you as it didn’t cost them any money per-se; just a little bit of their time.  Most landlords are always willing to help good tenants.  So make sure you are good tenant; because you never know when your dream job shows up in another city or a couple of your roommates need to move out and you are interested in a change of venue.

We hope that these tips will be of help to you the next time you decide which flat to rent – there are many other nuances to it, but we’ve covered the ones that cause students the most problems.

Sylvia Kohl is an IT teacher with more than 8 years of professional experience. Her main spheres of interest are e-education and she convinced that learning process doesn’t stop after years in school and university.