The P.O.W.E.R. Framework
What makes P.O.W.E.R. a unique tool for the classroom? A major challenge in developmental courses is that students at this level struggle with basic study skills and habits. Maybe this is one of their first college courses or perhaps they are adults returning to school after a long absence. Either way, many of the individuals taking this course don’t know how to be good students. Instructors often don’t have the time, the resources or the expertise to teach success skills AND the math concepts. The new team of Messersmith, Perez and Feldman offer a scientifically based approach to meet this challenge. The P.O.W.E.R. Learning Framework was developed by successful author, psychologist, student success instructor and researcher, Bob Feldman. It is a method of accomplishing any task using five simple and consistent steps. Prepare. Organize. Work. Evaluate. Rethink. This framework is integrated at every level of the text to help students successfully learn math concepts while at the same time developing habits that will serve them well throughout their college careers and in their daily lives.
Making Connections – Sherri Messersmith is recognized for preparing her students for success by refreshing their knowledge of arithmetic. By helping students see the connection between arithmetic and algebra, Sherri found that her students were more confident in their abilities as they progressed through the course. This classroom tested practice was integrated into the texts so that both instructors and students could benefit. Messersmith accomplishes this by including arithmetic examples for most sections before the use of algebraic examples. Also, the author has developed through classroom use a series of Basic Skills Worksheets that can easily be integrated into the classroom.
Presenting Concepts in “Bite Size” Pieces – By breaking down the sections into manageable pieces, the author has identified the core places where students traditionally struggle and then assists them in understanding that material to be successful moving forward. For details on how the author has done this, check out the TOCs for Intro Algebra, PreAlgebra, Intermediate Algebra and the combo book PreAlgebra and Introductory Algebra.
Mastering Concepts--With the textbook and Connect Math hosted by ALEKS, students can practice and master their understanding of algebraic concepts. Messersmith is rigorous enough to prepare students for the next level yet easy to read and understand. The exposition is written as if a professor is teaching in a lecture to be more accessible to students. The language is mathematically sound yet easy enough for students to understand.
Assessment and Learning in Knowledge Spaces is a Web-based, artificially intelligent assessment and learning system. ALEKS uses adaptive questioning to quickly and accurately determine exactly what a student knows and doesn't know in a course. ALEKS then instructs the student on the topics she is most ready to learn. As a student works through a course, ALEKS periodically reassesses the student to ensure that topics learned are also retained. ALEKS courses are very complete in their topic coverage and ALEKS avoids multiple-choice questions. A student who shows a high level of mastery of an ALEKS course will be successful in the actual course she is taking.