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Face the reality of student learning

Face the reality of student learning
This is session four of Optimal Outcome Precepting. Strategies for bringing out the best in every student. I’m Dr. Daniel Brown, Professor of pharmacy practice and director of faculty development at Palm Beach Atlantic University in west palm beach. Also visiting professor at Taipei Medical University. The previous sessions I’ve been showing you slides from west palm beach. Now I’d like to show you a different part of the United States. It’s Sedona, Arizona, which happens to be the place I like to take vacations with my wife. For many areas of the United States, Sedona, Arizona is probably the most beautiful area of the country with beautiful red rock mountain. That’s why we most like to vacation.
I also like to share some photos with you of my pets. this is my black Labrador mix named Glade, and our golden retriever named Lacey. I show you my two dogs because one of the subjects that I’m going to discuss today is the principles of dog training. Because ironically enough, there are the principles of dog training also apply to influencing human behavior. And those principles can be applied to interacting with our students to improve their performance. I showed also include my cat since we have seven cats. This is just one representative. This is Snowman. It pretty much sleeps all day. But the dogs have undergone some training that I will discuss with you as we go along.
Flashback to our super preceptor talk, that originated this series is six steps to becoming a super precentor. In this session, we’re going to explore the sixth step of being super precentor which is inspiring a desire to learn and grow. We’re gonna be focusing on how to motivate students. To want to learn what it is that we’re trying to get them to learn. Going back to our model of learning outcomes being the center focus of all education. We’re setting a target of learning outcomes. Now in first three sessions of this series, we’ve been focusing on the methods, assessment and content. And how to utilize those in ways that optimized learning.
Today we’re going to change gears, we’re going to focus on the left side of this slide, and the relationship between the students and the preceptor. How can the preceptor optimize that relationship to enhance the learning of the student? Preceptors must realize that is a definite reality student learning. This was expressed by Herbert A. Simon, who received the Nobel Prize for economics in 1978. He is very insightful expressed that learning results from what the student does and thinks and only from what the student does and thinks. He said the teacher can only advance learning by influencing what student does to learn. Great preceptors don’t give students knowledge to drink. They make students thirsty for knowledge.
Student needs to desire to obtain the knowledge. Another saying that I found applicable is that Some students drink from the fountain of knowledge, other students just gargle. With good precepting, we want to motivate students to have such a thirst for knowledge that they will want to drink vigorously from the fountain of knowledge. The first principle in this session is that motivation is the driving force behind learning. Susan Ambrose in her book, “How Learning Works,”
at the following statement: “Student motivation generates, directs, and sustains what they do to learn. Motivation is a critical element of learning. How we consider what it takes to motivate students to learn? This relationship was identified by Elizabeth Barclay, in her book, “Student Engagement Techniques.” What Elizabeth Barclay said was that there’s two components that affect the students motivation to learn. The first is, whether they value the topic, whether they have an interest in the topic, that’s going to influence whether they desire to learn about the topic. The second component is do they have expected see of accomplishing the learning outcomes. Do they have confidence that they can actually learn that subject?
If we put together the value and the expectancy if they have an interest in the subject and they expect that they can master the subject. They will have motivation to learn the subject. So this can be viewed as an equation, value times expectancy equals motivation to learn. Emphasize that it is a product and not a sum. If the value is low if they don’t have much interest in running the topic. Even if they’re confident they can learn the topic, their motivation will be low. Likewise, if they have a strong value, strong desire to learn the topic but they don’t have confidence that they can actually learn. Their net motivation might be low.
So the preceptor has to focus on making sure that the students value what it is he was than to learn, and also has content expectancy, that they can accomplish the desired learning. Elizabeth Barkley took this six step further. She broke motivation up into a matrix. Which the top axis of the matrix is whether or not students expect to learn students expect to learn and do not expect to learn. The matrix as an axis on the left side that’s focused on the students perception of value of the rotation. The value of what it is that the preceptor want students to learn.
Now, if the student expect to learn and the student values what they’re trying to learn, that student is very likely to be motivated to actively engage in learning. However, if the student expect to learn what does not value what it is the preceptor wants them to learn. Students are less likely to put in minimal or at least less than optimal effort in learning it. Because they don’t think it’s worth their while. If the student does not expect to learn, but values what it is they want to learn. There might be a tendency to avoid putting full effort in simply to save face.
For example, if the students ask the question, and they realized that the topic of the question is important but they don’t think that they can answer it accurately. They don’t have confidence that they understand enough to correctly answer the question. The student might refrain from answering at all, simply to save face. So they don’t look bad. Lastly, if the student does not expect to learn and does not value what it is they’re asked to learn. That’s the worst-case scenario. That student is likely to resent or resist the learning activities. And this is the type of student that’s most likely to develop some type of behavioral problems, because they’re resistant to whatever the preceptor is asking them to do.
Let’s ponder a question, what can preceptors do to motivate students to become dedicated patient care providers ? If you think about this for very long, we’re going to realize there’s not much that the preceptor can do the motivated student intrinsically. However, if a student encounters only even one patient, which they have a significant impact on patient. Or he has one encounter with a physician. That’s very significant and the physician accepts and appreciates their input. That one episode can totally change students attitude, from being unmotivated from seeing little value and what it is we want them to learn, to seeing extreme value. Because they suddenly realize that they can make a difference.
Now this is difficult because the preceptor can’t exactly engineer such interactions. What the preceptor can do is put the student in a situation and having experiences to set up the potential for that type of a monumental interaction. Because it only takes one, it totally changes the student attitude about the value of what it is we want them to learn.

Good preceptors don’t give students knowledge to drink. They make students thirsty for knowledge.

Motivation is the product of value and expectancy; not the sum. In this video, Prof. Brown will present a motivation matrix and to analyze how challenging it is.

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