Principle of Engagement Sustaining Effort & Persistence Criterion 4

When developing a course using the third principle
of Universal Design for Learning, there are three specific guidelines to assist us. The second, Sustaining Effort and Persistence
addresses maintaining focus and determination. Criterion 4 of this guideline advocates that
we increase mastery-orientated feedback. Feedback is critical for successful learning
and is the fourth principle of Chickering and Gamson’s seven principles for good practice
in undergraduate education. When the feedback is relevant, accessible,
constructive, and timely, the feedback is both more productive and critical for sustaining
motivation and effort crucial for learning. Mastery-oriented feedback guides learners
towards master rather than a narrow and fixed view of performance and compliance. It focuses on top tier learning in Blooms
taxonomy while emphasizing the learners’ effort and practice as important factors for
successful long-term habits and learning practices. This empowers learners with a sense of agency
and treats learning as improving a skill, instead of a fixed target. The latter notion often adopts the notion
that some students, particularly those with disabilities, may be constrained from meeting
these fixed goals, and thus impedes motivation to persist. When trying to meeting this criterion, consider:
o View learning as improving, and focus on effort, improvement, and achieving a standard. o Supplying feedback that promotes perseverance,
the development of self-awareness, and encourages the use of strategies that will assist the
learning when they face challenges. o Providing timely feedback
o Offering frequent and specific feedback o Adopting strategies or models that will
ensure that the feedback will be more substantive and informative, instead of comparative or
competitive. o Within your feedback, include how learners
can incorporate the feedback to help identify patterns that promote errors so that they
can self-correct in the future. o The feedback should also include positive
strategies for further success. By following these suggestions, your course
will assist students communicating and expressing their knowledge, as well as being in line
with the Principle of Engagement in the Theory of Universal Design for Learning.

Michael Martin

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