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Active Learning Academy (ALA) Community of Practice: RA Theory and Development

The ALA guide is designed for faculty as a repository of active learning strategies, assignments, videos and link, as well as information re Reading Apprenticeship, Habits of Mind and threshold concepts.

Getting Started with Reading Apprenticeship (RA) and Metacognitive Reading Strategies Across the Disciplines

This purpose of this guide is to provide tips, resources, support, and community for SAC faculty interested in building metacognitive reading practices into their existing curriculum. This guide emphasizes the Reading Apprenticeship (RA) framework supported by the college, which faculty from many college and university campuses find to be helpful for developing metacognitive, critical thinking, and authentic learning experiences for their students across the disciplines.

Reading Apprenticeship (RA) Metacognitive Framework

Reading Apprenticeship Framework

"Reading Apprenticeship instructional routines and approaches are based on a framework that describes the classroom in terms of four interacting dimensions that support learning: Social, Personal, Cognitive, and Knowledge-Building.

So, for example, teachers work with students to create classrooms where students feel safe to share reading processes, problems, and solutions. Students develop sturdy reader identities. They learn how to monitor their comprehension and how to restore it when it breaks down. And they use schema they have as they build new knowledge."

-The Reading Apprenticeship Framework (WestEd)

Metacognition: Thinking about One's Thinking

"Metacognition is, put simply, thinking about one’s thinking.  More precisely, it refers to the processes used to plan, monitor, and assess one’s understanding and performance. Metacognition includes a critical awareness of a) one’s thinking and learning and b) oneself as a thinker and learner.

Initially studied for its development in young children (Baker & Brown, 1984; Flavell, 1985), researchers soon began to look at how experts display metacognitive thinking and how, then, these thought processes can be taught to novices to improve their learning (Hatano & Inagaki, 1986).  In How People Learn, the National Academy of Sciences’ synthesis of decades of research on the science of learning, one of the three key findings of this work is the effectiveness of a “‘metacognitive’ approach to instruction” (Bransford, Brown, & Cocking, 2000, p. 18).

Metacognitive practices increase students’ abilities to transfer or adapt their learning to new contexts and tasks (Bransford, Brown, & Cocking, p. 12; Palincsar & Brown, 1984; Scardamalia et al., 1984; Schoenfeld, 1983, 1985, 1991) ... " Read More

- From "Metacognition" (Center for Teaching, Vanderbilt University)

Introducing Reading Apprenticeship (RA) - Reading for Understanding Across the Disciplines

Includes the history of Reading Apprenticeship, it's metacognitive framework, and how faculty are applying it across the disciplines.

Ways to Contribute to RA Community

  • Present at your department meeting
  • Answer questions from a new RA practitioner
  • Visit another faculty's classroom to demonstrate RA techniques for students or to give feedback

Why Reading Apprenticeship?

Nika Hogan, College National Coordinator of Reading Apprenticeship (WestEd) Explains the Importance of RA Strategies for Community Colleges