Idaho Integrates Khan Academy with Classroom Instruction

Source: Information Week, Feb 2013

As Khan Academy’s online reputation has grown, one of its major initiatives has become seeking better ways of integrating online instruction with the classroom experience. 

The Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning at Northwest Nazarene University will support implementation of the Khan Academy program and will conduct research focused on using the videos to improve math instruction. “We want to know that it’s not just a fad but does improve student achievement,” said center director Eric Kellerer. “In some of the smaller pilot studies Khan has done, they’ve seen dramatic results in 90 days. We’re going to have a whole year to work with them.” The program will start in the fall, although many Idaho teachers are already getting a start on it on their own, he said.

Math instruction is also challenging for instructors, given that in a seventh-grade class there might be some students performing at a third-grade level and others at a tenth-grade level, Kellerer said.

It’s common for a third of the students to be keeping pace with the class, a third to be tuning out because they are so far behind, and a third to be bored because they are so far ahead, he said. Teachers do the best they can to serve all these students, but self-paced tutorials provide a way of helping struggling students catch up, while those who are excelling can work ahead, …

“Teachers told us about students who were able to race ahead while other students took time to finally fill in unique ‘Swiss cheese holes’ or gaps in knowledge from previous years.

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