Marisa Bluestone

How are the Next Generation of Digital Products Being Designed for Greater Student Success? Macmillan Learning Shares Learning Science Blueprints

Blog Post created by Marisa Bluestone on Jul 1, 2019

Macmillan Learning released under a creative commons license four new research reports that provide guidelines for designing next-generation learning experiences. These “Learning Science Foundations” build on the company’s previously published core principles for learning design and learning models (active, problem, and project) and together make up the blueprints of experiences that drive better student outcomes.

While these foundations underpin the design of Macmillan Learning’s next-generation of products, they are shared freely with the education community that’s helped create them and provide educators and instructional designers with guidelines on how to apply the best of learning science to build research-based educational experiences that benefit students anywhere. The four new papers provide a glimpse of the “learning engineering” behind Macmillan Learning’s emerging technologies, and cover Learning Objectives, Assessment Strategies, and Analytics for Instructors and Students.

The collection is being released together because of their deeply interrelated nature -- the learning objectives drive assessment, and analytics enable insight into performance on those assessments and against those objectives. Although concise, they are based on a rigorous, expert-reviewed synthesis of “what works” from educational research and cognitive science and provide references to all the supporting primary literature.

“The next generation of learning technology has the ability to provide highly personalized learning experiences and powerful insights, but both are only as good as the underlying content, data, and pedagogical models they support,” said Dr. Adam Black, Chief Strategy & Learning Officer at Macmillan Learning. “We’ve been fortunate to work with a remarkable panel of leading researchers, practitioners, and students to develop these principles.”

By releasing the research to the education community, Macmillan Learning hopes to advance the scholarship on how learning works and open our own research up to constructive critique and ongoing improvement.

The four foundations released today are based on Macmillan Learning’s Six Key Principles for Learning Experience Design, previously released research which shared the company’s approach to learning and the principles that inform how the company’s dig@ital products are designed. Building upon these learning experience design insights, the blueprints released today provide best practices for:

 

The Learning Science Foundations are developed through a comprehensive and rigorous research and refinement process, including critiques by Macmillan Learning’s Learning Research Advisory Council and our Student Codesign Group.

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