LInC Online

Fermilab Leadership Institute Integrating

Internet, Instruction, and Curriculum

Engaged Learning & Tech I


Aurora University

OEDS 5959

Engaged Learning and Tech I

2 semester hours graduate credit

Catalog Description

This course facilitates educators through the process of building a foundation for integrating engaged learning and technology in their curriculum. Core elements of engaged learning and best use of technology are introduced and analyzed. Then educators are asked to apply this learning by developing a project idea for use in their classroom.

Course Overview

This course is intended for educators who are already connected to the Internet and want ideas and support for integrating it effectively into their existing curriculum. They will communicate and collaborate with other participants and course facilitators as they design and start to develop a project-based "engaged learning" curriculum unit using Internet tools.

We believe that the skills and strategies students need to be successful today and in the future are effectively taught through engaged learning projects. These projects are structured in such a way that students are responsible for their own learning. The projects are collaborative, student-driven, and are technology-dependent. When skillfully applied, technology can enhance learning in new and powerful ways.

Course topics include: Investigating Engaged Learning; Exploring Effective Strategies for Integrating Telecommunications in Education; Finding Information on the Internet; Aligning learning goals with local, state, or national standards; and Designing an Engaged Learning Project.

Student Learning Objectives

The purpose of the course is to teach the participants to:

Create an engaged learning project proposal and start developing a project that effectively uses technology including the Internet.

Apply engaged learning indicators* in project design by:

Identify engaged learning indicators by:

Use technology to support development and implementation of engaged learning projects by:

*There are additional indicators found in Plugging In: Choosing and Using Educational Technology, 1995 that are not listed. The listed items are key components used in assessment of projects. It is assumed that the other indicators will be included.

Teaching Methods/Class Format

This course will be offered in a face-to-face, online, or partial-online format. If there are no face-to-face meetings or very few, there will be substantial interaction online. Participants will use online course materials and online discussions to communicate and collaborate with other participants and course facilitators. Online participants will use e-mail, mailing lists and discussion forum software. Participants will be required to be available for electronic meetings at designated class times established by course facilitators.

The program incorporates engaged learning, effective technology integration, a participant project, and electronic document authoring. Participants will experience a variety of learning techniques including: facilitated and independent computer use, projects, discussions, and individual and group work.

Texts and Required Reading

Core course materials ( are published on the Fermilab Education Office Web server. Supplemental readings may be assigned by URL or handed out as hard copy. For example, students will be required to read the indicators of engaged learning from Plugging In: Choosing and Using Educational Technology, 1995. Some flexibility is required due to the constant flux of current, relevant information.

Units of Work

Topics of study fall into three basic areas: Engaged Learning, Technology Integration, and Technology Resources and Skills. The units will be woven together as participants produce a project proposal and start developing their project. The Engaged Learning component will provide the backbone structure for the class. Technology Resources and Skills are units that are flexible and covered as the need arises for their project work. Technical topics may be instructor-facilitated or self-guided.

The following engaged learning and technology integration units of work are included:

The following engaged learning issues and technical skills will be discussed as needed/requested by participants as they develop their projects:

The following other activities will also be included:

Class Assignments

There will be assignments on the topics discussed above. The assignments will culminate in the completion of an engaged learning project proposal that effectively integrates technology and a page for students to use to begin work on that project. Participants will be expected to complete assignments by the due date established by their course facilitators. Assignment completion may be adjusted to the needs and abilities of the participants of the course.

For more information, see the assignments page for your course. Examples of typical assignments are:

Evaluation and Grading Procedures

Participants will be graded based on the quality of their work with components weighted as follows: project proposal (40%), page for students (30%), and participation (30%). Grades are differentiated on the basis of quality. Quantity alone is not a significant factor for grade differentiation.

A total of 100 points are possible in the course. Final grades will be:

Participants' work will be assessed based on their incorporation of engaged learning, effective integration of technolgy, and demonstration of technical skills. Please see the rubrics below for a detailed description of the criterion. These rubrics are included in this document in appendices A and B. If the class includes an online component, participation is assessed based on participation in all modes of communication that may be used such as class meetings, chats, bulletin board, listservs, e-mail and course evaluation forms.

Course Task

Percentage of Grade
Project Proposal

Project Page for Students



A (4 quality points per course unit) Excellent. Denotes work that is consistently at the highest level of achievement in a graduate college or university course.

B (3 quality points per course unit) Good. Denotes work that consistently meets the high level of college or university standards for academic performance in a graduate college or university course.

C (2 quality points per course unit) The lowest passing grade. Denotes work that does not meet in all respects college or university standards for academic performance in a graduate college or university course.

F (0 quality points per course unit) Denotes work that fails to meet graduate college or university standards for academic performance in a graduate college or university course.


Bibliographic references are incorporated into the online materials for each class which are on the Fermilab Education Office Web server at Course materials are continually being revised based on participant feedback and new technology developments.

Attendance Policy

Participants are required to attend all class meetings, to give a presentation of their proposal and project, and to participate in all discussions and activities.

Academic Honesty and Integrity

Participants are expected to maintain academic honesty and integrity as students at Aurora University by doing their own work to the best of their ability. Academic dishonesty (cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, etc.) will result in the participant receiving a zero for that test, assignment or paper.

Final Examination Policy

Participants will give a presentation about their technology-supported engaged learning project to the facilitators and class. Participants will use the computer to display their electronic documents. The content of these presentations will include a project proposal, assessment plan, Internet resources for the project, and a page to guide students in starting their investigation for the project.

American Disabilities Act

In compliance with ADA guidelines, students who have any condition, either permanent or temporary, which might affect their ability to perform in this class are encouraged to inform the instructor at the beginning of the term. Adaptations of teaching methods, class materials, including text and reading materials or testing may be made as needed to provide for equitable participation.

Appendix A: Proposal Rubric

Project Name:

Project Authors:





Not Present
Learner Outcomes  
Connected to local curriculum, contains items focused on subject areas being taught

Identifies what students should know and be able to do after completing the investigation

Easily and reliably measured

Authentic Task  
Matches the learner outcomes

Meaningful, requires higher level thinking skills

Issue relevant to student

Has opportunity for multiple solutions

No predetermined or obvious course of action to produce a solution

Grade-level appropriate

Offers an authentic problem or issue that piques student curiosity in the project (invitation to learn)

Motivates students to come up with questions, concerns, issues, hypotheses, or problem-solving suggestion; Creates a need for them to pursue the project investigation

Offers an inviting, open- ended challenge

Student Direction  
Provides opportunities for students to determine the topic, aspect of topic, problem, or issue about topic to be investigated

Provides opportunities for students to create a product to reflect their learning; the student decides upon an appropriate product that effectively matches his goal

Provides opportunities for students to ask and answer their own questions related to the problem and issue

Provides opportunities for individual students or groups of students with similar interests to make their own choices for how to proceed and engage at their own pace

Best Use of Technology  
Students use the Internet for project research to find new or frequently changing information or for information that is not easily accessible via print resources

Students use technology to communicate with students in other places. Collaborators have different skills, knowledge, experience, perspective, data or geography than exists locally. Collaborators may be sharing, analyzing, and synthesizing results or working on a joint-product.

Students use technology to communicate with experts. It would not be feasible to communicate and collaborate with these experts without the use of technology.

Students use technology to publish original work to a wider audience.

Appendix B: Rubric for Student Page(s)

Project Name:

Project Authors:





Not Present
Offers an authentic problem or issue that piques student curiosity in the project (invitation to learn)

Clearly describes the overall project investigation framework, but not a sequence to follow

Provides oportunities for student choice and student direction

Authentic problem or issue is relevant to students

Electronic document is written for the student audience and is grade appropriate

Project facilitates students in communicating with experts and other students.

Project facilitates students in using technology for project research.

Page is visually attractive and readable.

Observes copyrights and citations.

Performance-based, authentic

Students are provided ongoing feedback.

Students have the opportunity to reflect on their own progress.

Function correctly

Have good descriptive names and are annotated

Are useful to students for the project investigation