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  1. Sep 2020
    1. Conclusion

      This conclusion addressed aspects of the results of the item correlations that were not included in earlier sections.

    2. previous research has demonstrated that achievementguilt can be reduced by asking the student to reflect on a previous incidentwhere they helped a family member in some way, thereby cognitively reaffirmingone’s value to their families (Covarrubias & Fryberg, 2015). While this type ofintervention appears promising, future research should examine whether reflect-ing on the benefits of college to the family as a whole (e.g., how the students’college education may help the family in the future) alleviates academic guiltwhile also reinforcing the students’ dedication to his or her program of study.

      This is a solution at a student-level to address negative emotions about not contributing to the family by directing the student to reflect on a time they have helped his or her family in the past.

    3. One solution may be to integrate interdependent social norms into universitycampuses, thereby decreasing the obstacles faced by FGCS.

      This is a solution that could be developed into an intervention, as noted in Future Research and Intervention.

    4. Although the FGCS experience varies widely, it is important to understandthat the struggle faced by these students is the result of a unique life trajectorynot experienced by non-FGCS.

      This section discusses stereotype threats experienced by first-generation college students.

    5. Universityof Oklahoma, where commitment to improving retention has led to a record90.4% freshman-to-sophomore retention rate for the current year (McNutt,2016). Several key programs contributed to this success, such as the implemen-tation of mandatory midterm grade reporting, tremendous efforts by key facultywho frequently engage with first-year students, and a highly responsive advisingteam. The University has also improved its offering of Gateway (first-yearexperience) classes and has continued to increase tutoring programs acrosscampus.

      There are positive contributions from the University of Oklahoma that should be highlighted in other parts of the article.

    6. Risk Factors in FGCS

      The first risk factor traditionally associated with first-generation college students is financial security, followed by academic competence, and social belonging.

      The three page tables of listed items started with finances, as well. The later sections of the paper follow the topics in the tables.

    7. Perceived Academic Competenc

      The next section about perceived academic competence focuses on the first-generation college students.

    8. Students were classified as FGCS if neitherparent had earned a 4-year college degree (23% of the current sample). Keyquestionnaire items are presented in Table 1, along with item-by-item correla-tions with first-generation status and first-year retention variables

      The group comparisons for first-generation college students are not fair comparisons, with only 700 students in the first-generation college student in a sample of 3,118 students. The argument of having the percentage of first-generation college students as approximately 20 to 23% of the class, the group sizes do not allow for reliable inferences about college students.

    9. The current article extends previous findings by (a)providing a brief review of the main topics addressed in FGCS research, (b)comparing past findings with a large university dataset collected by the authors,and (c) discussing potential directions for future research and intervention pro-grams for FGCS

      The description of the current study usually marks the end of the introduction in a paper in education.

    10. three tracks of research on retention in FGCS

      The three tracks of research on retention are 1) demographic characteristics and variables associated with high school preparation, 2) high school to college transition, and 3) motivation and persistence associated with degree attainment.

    11. 20% are first-generation college students

      The problem statement begins with a large statistic about the proportion of first-generation college students in the United States. The trends reported in the following paragraphs are based on barriers, adversities, and poor preparation for first-generation college students.

    12. Should I Stay or ShouldI Go? Retention inFirst-GenerationCollege Students

      This is the first article published by this journal. The target audience may to be fellow college administrators and education policy researchers. The design of the article was an item-by-item correlation study with a data set from a first year class of 3,118 in 2014, though it was published in 2017.

    13. Journal of College Student Retention

      The Journal of College Student Retention is designed to connect research, theory, and practice. This article addresses all of these principles.

    1. 1. Considering the advancement on learner-centered syl-labus design (e.g., Richmond, Slattery, et al., 2016), towhat degree are Project Syllabus syllabi learner-centered?2. Considering the work on length of syllabus (e.g., Savilleet al., 2010) and use of images (e.g., Harrington &Gabert-Quillen, 2015), to what degree are Cullen andHarris’s (2009) factors of learner-centeredness corre-lated with one another and other known factors of syl-labus design (e.g., length and images).3. Considering the lack oflearner-centered syllabireported by Habanek (2005), over time, has the numberof learner-centered principles in Project Syllabus syl-labi changed?

      Statistics Needed to Answer These Questions Research Questions 1: Chi-Square Goodness-of-Fit, Bonferroni Correction, Cohen (1988) interpretation of phi for effect size

      Research Question 2: Bivariate Correlation Analysis

      Research Question 3: Independent t-tests, Bonferroni Correction, and Cohen's d for effect size

    2. Project Syllabus: An Exploratory Study of Learner-Centered Syllabi

      The target audience is teachers in psychology and similar social sciences. The authors encouraged using the learner-centered model of instruction and conveying this information in the syllabus. The principles discussed in the text may not generalize to the traditional course structure and content found in other disciplines. The author moves from theoretical characteristics of learner-centered education to the applications in conveying this information in course syllabi. Each syllabus was assessed wtih a modified rubric from an established measure. The structure is organized by the three research questions.

    3. A few examples from this work are included; how-ever, readers are encouraged to see Richmond (2016) for amore detailed description

      Tips for Making a Learner-Centered Syllabus

      • Provide a sense of community in the syllabus
      • Discuss the roles of collaboration
      • Provide ways for students to reach the instructor beyond office hours (email, brief meetings in Microsoft Teams, Skype, or Zoom)
      • Evaluation and assessment may have formative and summative mechanisms for evaluation
      • Provide clear guidelines for grade determination
      • Consider opportunities for students to revise and resubmit assignments
    4. Limitations and Future Directions

      This study focuses on the teaching of psychology, using syllabi from the Project Syllabi respository created by the Society of Teaching of Psychology (APA). The results in this study may not generalize to other disciplines. Future directions for this study would be to study the differences in the format of the class (face-to-face, online, vs. hybrid), type of institution (2-year vs. 4-year), or a student's year in school.

    5. Discussion

      The syllabi from Project Syllabi were disproportionally learner-centered. There may be selection bias for the inclusion of teacher-centered syllabi in the Project Syllabus repositiory. The learning objectives have likely changed from 1999 to present. Longer syllabi are associated with learner-centered design, though it may be the tone and discussion of the course content in the syllabus that makes the course appear to be learner-centered.

    6. Since Chickering and Gam-son’s (1987) first description of learner-centered teaching prac-tices, researchers have attempted to measure and assess theimpact of such teaching strategies (e.g., Richmond, Slattery,et al., 2016).

      The theoretical explanation for learner-centered teaching practices should guide the measurement and assessment of these teaching methods; see Habanek (2005), DiClementi and Handelsman (2005), and Saville, Zinn, Brown, and Marchuk (2010).

    7. Learner-Centered Syllabus Design

      Having a way to assess syllabi to see if they meet the criteria for being a learner-centered syllabus can be established by using a rubric. This study used Cullen and Harris (2009) and studied exemplar syllabi from the Society of Teaching of Psychology's Project Syllabus. This provides evidence that the researcher is using an established rubric to assess syllabi from exmplar professors that are recognized by the American Psychological Association (APA).

    8. Chickering and Gamson (1987), forexample, suggested seven principles were central to suchteaching: encouraging faculty/student contact, developing reci-procity and cooperation among students, using active learningstrategies, offering rapid feedback, emphasizing time on task,communicating high expectations, and respecting diversetalents and ways of learning.

      Chickering and Gamson's seven principles were the foundation for learner-centered education (1987).

      1. Encouraging faculty/student contact
      2. Developing reciprocity and cooperation among students
      3. Using active learning strategies
      4. Offering rapid feedback
      5. Emphasizing time on task
      6. Communicating high expectations
      7. Respecting diverse talents and ways of learning

      Habanek's (2005) descriptive study of learner-centered syllabus design.

    9. A learner-centered syllabus requires that you shift from what you,the instructor, are going to cover in your course to a concern forwhat information and tools you can provide for your students topromote learning and intellectual development. (p. xi)

      A course syllabus is a mechanism for communication of expectations for tasks and student engagement in the course.

      Definition of learner-centered syllabus. e.g., O’Brian, Millis, & Cohen,2008; Richmond, 2016). According to Diamond (1997)

    10. learner-centered, syllabus design, scholarship of teaching and learning, syllabus assessment

      The keywords for this study are learner-centered, syllabus design, scholarship of teaching and learning, syllabus assessment

    11. Considerable research indicates that college students are bothmore likely to persist and to perform at high academic levelswhen they perceive themselves to be members of a cooperativeand supportive learning community (Kuh, 2009; Tinto, 2006;Zhao & Ku, 2004)

      For another study, being a member of a cooperative and supportive learning environment may moderate the rates for persistence and academic performance in college.

    12. we assessed the learner-centeredness of 109 syllabi sampled from Project Syllabus

      Each syllabus is a sample from Project Syllabus, hosted by the Society of Teaching of Psychology.

    13. g learner-centered principles may increase students’ perceptions of theirinstructor on the characteristics of rapport, caring, helpfulness, willingness to seek help from the instructor, and studentmotivation. Typically, a learner-centered syllabus is one that presents a positive tone at the point of a student’s first contact with acourse and describes collaborative opportunities, repeated opportunities for formative assessment, and a sense of ownership ofthe learning experience. I

      Summary of the literature in the role of the course syllabus in forming students' perceptions of their instructor. A course syllabus is an ambassador for the instructor.

    1. The present study demonstrated that there are differences between the quantity and quality of handwritten and electronic feedback

      The takeaway messages are the first with experimental evidence for the benefits of electronic feedback for coursework, electronic feedback is an adequate way to provide feedback, and the courses in COVID-19 will be an example of whether electronic feedback is adequate for strong academic performance.

    2. Discussion

      When the three hypotheses are reviewed in the first paragraph of the Discussion section, each hypothesis has a separate paraphaph. The limitations include instructor-related characteristics and experiences with electronic feedback, data collection over multiple semesters, and student-related characterteristics and experiences.

    3. We made three hypotheses before collecting data. Hypothesis 1 was supported: Instructors were more likely to make longer comments and comment on both content and mechanics (as opposed to either content or mechanics) when using electronic as opposed to handwritten feedback. Hypothesis 2 was not supported: Instructors using electronic feedback were less likely to rewrite student phrases and more likely to use observational comments than instructors using handwritten feedback. Hypothesis 3 was supported: Students who received electronic feedback saw greater improvement in their second draft than students who received handwritten feedback.

      Hypotheses 1, 2, and 3.

    4. Figure 1. Illustration of the interaction between format of the feedback on the first draft and draft number. Possible scores could range from 0 points to 32 points.

      This figure is key to understanding the statistical analysis for the feedback on the first draft. The crossover pattern indicates an interaction between the variables.

      The amount of improvement across drafts 1 and 2 differed in a statistically significant way. The grade on the essay was higher on the handwritten version for draft 1, but lower than the electronic feedback for draft 2.

    5. Results

      The sequence of events in the study were the inclusion criteria, sample description, procedure, statistical analyses conducted, and output.

    6. To evaluate the number and types of comments made by graders in the two types of feedback format, 20 graded papers of each type (electronic and handwritten) were randomly selected, and the comments made by graders were coded as described in the Method section.

      This would be more helpful in the Method section.

    7. Independent Variable Manipulation

      Independent variable manipulation is the hallmark of experimental design.

    8. Coding Scheme for Comments

      The process of coding is transparent and detailed. The explanations for the first coding dimension of observation, rewrite, rewrite with explanation, the second dimension as content versus mechanics, and the third as the length of the comment (more than or less than 10 words)

    9. Students were encouraged to write their papers in three installments (1) introduction, (2) method, and (3) results and discussion and to submit each installment for feedback prior to submitting a complete final paper.

      In research methods courses, this structure for writing a research paper in psychology is common. The expectation is clear for each step, with many opportunities for revision.

    10. Course and Students

      This study has a robust sample size that will be adequate for the statistical analyses. The experimental design is clear, with the manipulation of the independent variable as the grading format as handwritten or electronic.

    11. empirical and qualitative evidence suggests that students prefer to have writing feedback delivered electronically.

      This information about student and instructor preferences for submitting coursework online or in person provides the starting point in the argument for providing feedback to students electronically, rather than coming to class with a paper copy and receive handwritten notes on the paper copy.

    12. Writing proficiency is an essential learning outcome for undergraduate education as a whole and, specifically, in postsecondary psychology education. The American Psychological Association (APA, 2013) explicitly names effective writing as a goal in its guidelines for psychology majors,

      Effective writing is a core principle in education, emphasized by the most noted national psychological associations (APA; American Psychological Association). The following sections outline efforts to streamline the methods used instructor to student feedback for essays in a psychology class.

    13. Format of Instructor Feedback on Student Writing Assignments Affects Feedback Quality and Student Performance

      This article targets instructors who are developing effective ways for students in large classes to receive beneficial feedback on course assignments. This would be helpful for the professional development of teaching assistants and their supervisors.