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The Buffet Model

  • Customizes the learning environment for each student based on background, learning preference, and academic/professional goals.
  • Requires an online assessment of student's learning styles and study skills.
  • Offers students an assortment of individualized paths to reach the same learning outcomes.
  • Provides structure for students through an individualized learning contract which gives each student a detailed listing, module by module, of what needs to be accomplished, how this relates to the learning objectives, and when each part of the assignment must be completed.
  • Includes an array of learning opportunities for students: lectures, individual discovery laboratories (in-class and Web-based), team/group discovery laboratories, individual and group review (both live and remote), small-group study sessions, videos, remedial/prerequisite/procedure training modules, contacts for study groups, oral and written presentations, active large-group problem-solving, homework assignments (GTA graded or self-graded), and individual and group projects.
  • Uses an initial in-class orientation to provide information about the buffet structure, the course content, the learning contract, the purpose of the learning styles and study skills assessments, and the various ways that students might choose to learn the material.
  • Modularizes course content.
  • May allow students to earn variable credit based on how many modules they successfully complete by the close of the term, thus reducing the number of course repetitions. Students complete the remaining modules in the next term.
  • Eliminates duplication of effort for faculty who divide tasks among themselves and target their efforts to developing and offering particular learning opportunities on the buffet.
  • Enables the institution to evaluate the choices students make vis a vis the outcomes they achieve (e.g., if students do not attend lectures, the institution can eliminate lectures).

Ohio State University: Introductory Statistical Concepts

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