Recent News

2020-2021 Graduates Sharing Job Searching Tips

For recent and upcoming graduates looking to start their careers, the 2020-2021 job market was daunting. Looking for work during the COVID-19 pandemic meant parsing through an unusually small number of opportunities and carrying out much more of the interview process virtually. During these uncertain times, lab members Lin Lu, Nathan Hawk, and Mike Nelson were able to successfully land meaningful positions that will begin in the summer and fall of 2021. Below you can find brief profiles of them along with descriptions of their new positions. They have also provided some insights regarding what they thought helped them navigate the difficult job market. (more…)

When life schools us

Stories by Robin Chenoweth | Illustrations by Joseph Carrington

Education experts share lessons on K–12 students’ learning that will outlast the pandemic.

Seven-year-old Renee is all too aware of the challenges of learning during a pandemic. In October, with hybrid education in full swing because of COVID-19, the first-grader became so vexed with an uncooperative learning module that she chucked the family iPad across the room. (more…)

High school students tend to get more motivated over time when they feel belong


Study suggests feeling of belongingness key to improvement

By Jeff Grabmeier, grabmeier.1@osu.edu

Parents may fear that if their high school student isn’t motivated to do well in classes, there’s nothing that will change that.

But a new study that followed more than 1,600 students over two years found that students’ academic motivation often did change – and usually for the better.

Results showed that increasing students’ sense of “belongingness” in school was one key way of increasing academic motivation. (more…)

Nathan Hawk wins an Alumni Grant for Graduate Research and Scholarship

Congratulations to Nathan Hawk, a member of the Research Laboratory for Digital Learning and a PhD candidate in the learning technologies program at The Ohio State University. He has received an award from the Alumni Grants for Graduate Research and Scholarship program – an annual highly competitive program that is eligible to any graduate student across the university’s colleges. The grants “support the research and scholarship of doctoral or terminal master’s degree candidates for their dissertations or theses.” (more…)

Strive for Achievement in 2020 through Virtual Collaborations

Despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, The Research Laboratory for Digital Learning (RLDL) at The Ohio State University has continued its effort in conducting educational research and advancing the science of learning. The social distancing practice and the travel restrictions have hindered our practice of translational research where we would normally travel to schools and work with teachers and administrators to generate research questions and then use research to help inform practice.

Lab members worked collaboratively at distance. Through weekly meetings and collaborative effort, we build a cohesive team with members support each other. Again we had an exceptional year full of impactful research and teaching. Here are some highlights of our 2020 Résumé. (more…)

New Professors Share Their Experiences in 2020

The year 2020 has been a very challenging year for graduate students on the job market. In the COVID-19 pandemic, many colleges and universities had hiring freezes. The academic job market has been extremely competitive. Four former members of The Research Laboratory for Digital Learning successfully secured professor positions in 2020. They share their experiences and offer advice about how to prepare yourself for academic jobs. (more…)

4 tips for college students to avoid procrastinating with their online work


Time management and supportive learning environments are keys to avoiding procrastination.
fizkes/ iStock via Getty Images Plus

Kui Xie, The Ohio State University and Sheng-Lun Cheng, Sam Houston State University

If you take classes online, chances are you probably procrastinate from time to time.

Research shows that more than 70% of college students procrastinate, with about 20% consistently doing it all the time.

Procrastination is putting off starting or finishing a task despite knowing that it will seriously compromise the quality of your work – for instance, putting off a major class project until the last minute.

(more…)

Zilu Jiang wins Presidential Fellowship from OSU Graduate School

Congratulations to Zilu Jiang, a member of The Research Laboratory for Digital Learning and a Ph.D. student in the learning technologies program in he Department of Educational Studies, College of Education and Human Ecology. She has been awarded the Presidential Fellowship from The Ohio State University — “The most prestigious award given by the Graduate School. Recipients of this award embody the highest standards of scholarship in the full range of Ohio State’s graduate programs”.

Zilu Jiang’s research interest resides in the intersection of learning technologies and educational psychology. In her dissertation research, she proposes a study to design and examine online learning environments that support students’ psychological needs and in turn improve readiness for and success in online learning. In doing so, she plans to situate her study in the context of a fully online second language learning program for a population of high-school students. She also plans to deploy complex and innovative research methodology in her dissertation, including the experience-sampling method that supports an intensive longitudinal design. (more…)

Making the most of K-12 digital textbooks and online educational tools

Millions of U.S. students are engaged in remote learning.
Ethan Miller/Getty Images North America

Kui Xie, The Ohio State University

Whether children are currently going to school in person, learning remotely or doing a mix of both, digital tools and texts are becoming much more commonplace for K-12 education during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I’m a professor who researches the use of technology in education. I’m also the father of three children between the ages of 4 and 9 who are all learning from home. You might think it would be easy for me to get used to this new normal. Sadly, that’s not true.

Despite all my technical know-how, even I struggle to manage the large variety of digital tools and apps that my children use for schoolwork, let alone the numerous websites, accounts and passwords from their classes that my family has to keep track of.

(more…)

3 ways to get kids to tune in and pay attention when schools go virtual


By Eric Anderman and Kui Xie

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

When nearly all U.S. brick-and-mortar schools suddenly closed in March 2020 and went online, large numbers of students simply didn’t log into class. Even if they did show up, many more weren’t paying much attention or doing their schoolwork. As a new school year gets underway, is there anything that teachers and families can do to curb these problems with remote learning due to COVID-19?

Having spent our careers doing research on student motivation and learning with technology, we recommend these three strategies. (more…)