Fall 2008 Collegium Conference

November 21-23, 2008
Monmouth College

Overview of the conference

The weekend conference, from Friday evening to Sunday noon, moved from a broad overview of the research on how students learn to more practical applications on how this research informs teaching at liberal arts institutions. Throughout the conference, campus colleagues had opportunities to work together.

Friday, November 21

The Collegium Conference began Friday evening with a keynote address by Patricia M. King, Professor of Higher Education at the University of Michigan. Professor King's keynote offered a broad overview of new cognitive research on learning and the brain, with particular focus on metacognition.

Dr. King's teaching and research focus on the learning and development of late adolescents and adults, especially college students. She is interested in approaches to student development that explore the intersections among developmental domains, such as intellectual, identity and social development, and how these affect a range of collegiate outcomes, such as intercultural maturity, citizenship, and character development. Her current work focuses on liberal arts education and the kinds of educational experiences that lead to self- authorship; this project, the National Study of Liberal Arts Education, is sponsored by the Center of Inquiry in the Liberal Arts at Wabash College. She has co-authored two books, Developing Reflective Judgment (with Karen Strohm Kitchener) and Learning Partnerships: Theory and Models of Practice to Educate for Self-Authorship (with Marcia Baxter Magolda). She served as the founding editor of the national magazine, About Campus: Enriching the Student Learning Experience.

See the Conference Agenda for Dr. King's keynote slides.

Saturday and Sunday, November 22-23

Saturday sessions featured more detailed considerations of metacognition, including issues of novice/expert learners, self-reflection, conscious control of learning, analyzing the effectiveness of learning strategies, identifying preconceptions and misconceptions, and transfer of knowledge issues.

The conference focused on practical application of the research to teaching:

  • What difference does this research make for the ways we teach?
  • What do we want to know about what our students know and how they are learning, especially as it relates to the metacognitive practices we are considering?
  • How do we move from the research to classroom assignments?
  • How do we know if our teaching practices are making a difference?

The conference concluded with a Sunday morning workshop session aimed at developing concrete next steps in this multiple-year project.

Conference Agenda