What we have learned in the teaching & learning experience

Teacher helping young student working on a laptop computer in a classroom

In an August 2015 blog post, I shared the structure we have set up at Pearson to examine the teaching and learning experience we support with our learning technologies. As part of our process, we create white papers and case studies about actual product implementations, including teaching models such as flipped learning and other active learning models. This shared partnership with educators has proven beneficial to both parties, and I hope other instructors, as they learn from their peers’ observations regarding the impact on learning and learner outcomes.

Our data-driven implementation case studies are co-developed by fellow educators and our team. Each case study documents the journey educators take as they implement educational technology, quantify the results of their implementation (taken holistically), and share insights from their teaching and learning experiences, as well as observations from the learners. Findings from these case studies help us understand and communicate to other users the observations, best practices and results of educators’ implementations. It is also important to note that to maintain the integrity of the study, we do not compensate case study participants.

This collaboration has been integral to our work for more than ten years. We continue to learn from the successes as well as pitfalls and apply what we have learned to improve the customer experience and the product development process. We deeply appreciate that no two customers are alike, and we learn from every single educator who partners with us on this opportunity. To that end, we recently met with a wide range of educators to understand the utility of the information that we co-develop and the best way to share the findings about teaching and learning impact as well as improvements in learning outcomes. Some of the biggest takeaways from our conversations with faculty last year that will inform our educator case study reporting in 2016 are:

  1. You want us to share honest admissions of both successes and failures including how faculty overcame obstacles, what implementation changes they made along the way, what they did not see coming, and what they did anticipate. It is clear that our customers want to understand the WHYs behind the successes we report.
  2. Further, you want to know the impact or material effect that the study had on the instructor using a Pearson product, i.e., what the case study findings meant to that instructor and what, if anything, they are now doing differently because of these findings. One instructor using MasteringA&P and MyReadinessTest now offers a new recitation class–in particular for students who score below 70% on the diagnostic test–because the data analysis in his case study revealed the need to implement an early intervention strategy to help these students succeed.
  3. You greatly appreciate sales representatives calling attention to specific insights in a case study that are relevant to your particular institution, situation, and challenges. You believe these insights can offer effective just-in-time learning moments for instructors, as well as blueprints for helping your students achieve mastery in academic, life, and career skills.
  4. You want Pearson to support you as you develop the most strategic, effective plan both to implement your digital program and to measure its impact on course outcomes, goals, and student achievement.
  5. You want easy access to white papers and case studies. We are creating an improved Results Library due to launch summer 2016. Even still, our current Results Library offers hundreds of case studies that are easily searchable by region, state, product, institution type, and implementation model.

These partnerships are the best part of what I do here at Pearson. I really look forward to conversations with teachers, administrators, and students hearing their insights, ideas, and observations about what is working and what is not. Each school is unique, but from all of these different case studies we have been able to identify best practices and ways of working that can be implemented by other educators with positive results. As we continue this journey together, I believe we will continue to help chart a path to more effective teaching and learning experiences helping learners reach higher achievement levels and creating new opportunities for their future.


About the Author
John Tweeddale, SVP

John Tweeddale, SVP

John Tweeddale is senior vice president of efficacy and quality at Pearson North America. John has spent his entire career in educational publishing and technology. He started his career as a higher education sales representative, became sales manager, and then director of marketing for Prentice Hall Engineering/Science/Math/Computing. In 2003, he moved to London to take a role as director for higher education and professional education publishing and became the national sales manager for Allyn & Bacon/Longman, and then for the higher education humanities/social studies team. After a year as senior vice president/director of marketing strategy for the Arts & Sciences group, he accepted an assignment as chief customer experience officer for higher education.