The inevitable shift of classroom technology from teacher-centered to student-centered has begun with Collaborative Learning Systems like gotFeedback
In K-12 classrooms, the predominance of Learning Management Systems (LMS) has been a defining feature for years. Originally developed for university settings, LMS platforms have been adapted for use in K-12 education, primarily to streamline the distribution of content and the collection of assignments. This technology has proven effective in higher education and has been a significant aid for K-12 teachers, especially during online teaching periods in the pandemic, to communicate with their classes. However, these systems, with their inherent teacher-centered design, often fall short in addressing the diverse and evolving needs of individual students. This discussion advocates for a paradigm shift towards student-centered learning platforms, with a specific focus on the emerging category of Collaborative Learning Systems (CLS), exemplified by gotFeedback. This shift represents more than a technological upgrade; it is a fundamental rethinking of the interaction between teaching and learning in the classroom.
The journey of Learning Management Systems began in higher education (CourseInfo/Blackboard at Cornell and WebCT at the University of British Columbia), designed to assist in the management of large classes and diverse course offerings. When these systems migrated to K-12 settings, they brought along a design philosophy that emphasized administrative efficiency and content dissemination. This design continued with K-12 specific LMS’s being introduced. While they streamlined certain aspects of teaching, they did not necessarily align with the pedagogical needs of K-12 students, who require a more nuanced and responsive approach to learning.
Traditional Learning Management Systems (LMS) adopt a one-size-fits-all methodology, which can be inadequate in addressing the diverse learning needs and requirements of all students
Student-centered learning fundamentally shifts the educational focus from a generic teaching approach to one that prioritizes the unique experiences and needs of each student. This method is characterized by its emphasis on personalization, meeting students at their individual learning levels, and fostering enhanced interactions between students and teachers throughout the learning process. In contrast to this tailored approach, traditional Learning Management Systems (LMS) adopt a one-size-fits-all methodology, which can be inadequate in addressing the diverse learning needs and requirements of all students. Platforms like gotFeedback, designed with the principle of catering to individual student needs, stand in stark contrast to conventional LMS platforms. gotFeedback specifically facilitates this personalized approach by enabling adaptive teaching methods and supporting continuous, tailored interactions between students and educators, thereby aligning more closely with the ethos of student-centered learning.
The CLS is a new breed of educational platform that focuses on co-creating and capturing learning as it happens through daily interactions between students and teachers
The CLS is a new breed of educational platform that focuses on co-creating and capturing learning as it happens through daily interactions between students and teachers. It uniquely compiles this learning into a comprehensive student record, allowing teachers, parents, and other stakeholders to observe and understand the student's growth in real-time. Unlike the LMS, which centers on content distribution, CLS platforms like gotFeedback emphasize capturing and curating learning evidence, providing ongoing and timely feedback, and reflective learning practices. This approach not only fosters a deeper understanding of subject matter but also cultivates essential skills like critical thinking, complex problems solving, collaboration and self-assessment.
gotFeedback offers a holistic view of a student’s learning journey, incorporating involvement from not just a student’s teacher, but from the students themselves, as well as teachers, learning specialists, counselors, school administrators, and family members
gotFeedback stands out as a CLS designed specifically for the K-12 environment. It offers a holistic view of a student’s learning journey, incorporating involvement from not just a student’s teacher, but from the students themselves, as well as teachers, learning specialists, counselors, school administrators, and family members. This inclusive approach provides a more comprehensive picture of student progress, moving beyond traditional metrics like grades and attendance to include tangible learning evidence.
Student-centered platforms like gotFeedback are often linked with significant improvements in student engagement and educational outcomes. It’s observed that when learning is customized and interactive, students tend to show ownership of their learning, a deeper understanding of the subject matter, and demonstrate growth over time. The CLS approach utilized by gotFeedback resonates with these trends, indicating its potential to markedly reshape K-12 education.
While the shift to a CLS like gotFeedback is promising, it is not without challenges. Schools need to assess their readiness and willingness to embrace a student-centered approach. This includes evaluating their technological and pedagogical preparedness for such a shift. Key components of this transition should include a focus on providing continuous feedback, building student ownership of learning, and incorporating metacognition strategies into their instructional plan.
The need for a new type of teaching and learning platform in the classroom is clear. As education continues to evolve, so too must the tools we use to facilitate learning
The need for a new type of teaching and learning platform in the classroom is clear. As education continues to evolve, so too must the tools we use to facilitate learning. A shift towards platforms like gotFeedback, which embody the principles of Collaborative Learning Systems, represents a significant step forward in meeting the individual needs of students. It is an opportunity for educators and administrators to redefine the classroom experience, making it more inclusive, dynamic, and effective.
Visit the gotFeedback Help Center for webinars, how-to videos and teaching strategies.