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Season 2, Episode 2 - Teach & Learn

The Science Behind Effective Learning, with Norman Bier, John Stamper and Steven Moore

Join D2L for a discussion with experts from Carnegie Mellon University on the science behind designing effective learning tools.

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Welcome to Season 2, Episode 2 of Teach & Learn: A podcast for curious educators, brought to you by D2L. Hosted by Dr. Cristi Ford, VP of Academic Affairs at D2L, the show features candid conversations with some of the sharpest minds in the K-20 education space. We discuss trending educational topics, teaching strategies and delve into the issues plaguing our schools and higher education institutions today.

Episode Description

In today’s show, we’re getting into the science behind learning. We’re thrilled to welcome the winners of the XPRIZE Digital Learning Challenge, a global competition that finds the most effective learning tools and processes that improve learning outcomes.

To discuss this topic further, we welcomed Norman Bier, Director of the Open Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon University; John Stamper, Associate Professor at the Human Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University; and Steven Moore, a PhD student at the Human Computer Interaction Institute. Our guests and Dr. Ford chatted about:

  • The science behind learning and the importance of running on-going experiments in education.
  • Developing tools that allow educators to teach more effectively.
  • The benefits and challenges of using AI tools, such as ChatGPT, in educational settings.
  • The importance of collaboration and community engagement in advancing learning research and improving educational practices.
  • The Open Learning Initiative and how educators can get involved.

Show Notes

01:07: An introduction to our guests.

03:00: John Stampher and Norman Bier explain the XPRIZE Challenge.

04:59: The Open Learning Initiative (OLI) at Carnegie Mellon University.

07:57: The challenges with small sample sizes when it comes to classroom research and how our guests are overcoming that.

11:54: How adaptive experimentation and causal modeling can fit in with more traditional  double-blind controlled experiments.

14:33: Steven Moore discusses the tools educators can use to conduct experiments that determine the most effective teaching methods.

19:48: Running classroom experiments and building infrastructure at scale.

25:17: Our guests share their individual thoughts on AI tools and their use in education.

37:26: How educators and administrators can connect with the tools the OLI team is developing.

42:25: Final thoughts.


norman bier

Norman Bier

Director, Open Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon University Read Norman Bier's bio

John Stamper

Associate Professor, Human Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University Read John Stamper's bio
steven moore

Steven Moore

PhD student, Human Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University Read Steven Moore's bio
Dr. Cristi Ford

Dr. Cristi Ford

Vice President of Academic Affairs, D2L Read Dr. Cristi Ford's bio
Kathleen Grigsby
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