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Course Title
Strategies for Empowering Students to Become Active, Responsible Learners (Pre-requisite: completion of an On Course I Workshop) This course is offered online by the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, Fall semester only.
Course Description
This course focuses on practical strategies for empowering college and university students to become active, responsible learners. Participants in this course learn a variety of highly effective learner-centered methods that not only appeal to various learning preferences but also motivate students to take charge of their own learning. These methods are drawn from best practices in psychology, education, business, sports, and personal effectiveness. Additionally, participants learn to apply the seven domains of influence by which educators can guide students to achieve greater  academic success. This course is appropriate for college faculty from all academic disciplines, instructors of college success courses, counselors, student affairs staff, TRIO personnel, and administrators seeking strategies for improving student academic success and retention. (3 Graduate Credits)
Course Objectives
Students in this course will…
A. Learn and implement proven strategies for empowering students to become active, responsible lifelong learners who are self-motivated, self-managing, interdependent, self-aware, emotionally intelligent, and self-confident.
B. Learn and implement effective learner-centered strategies. These strategies fall into one or more of seven domains available to educators for influencing the stated and collateral learning of students: 1) College and Classroom activities, 2) Assignments, 3) Evaluation and Feedback, 4) Modeling, 5) Environment, 6) Policies and Rules, and 7) Programs and Curricula.
C. Engage in a discussion-board conversation with classmates, exploring and evaluating the effectiveness of their implementation of learner-centered educational practices for empowering college and university students.
D. Interact with an international community of nearly two thousand college educators (via the On Course Ambassadors’ Listserv), exchanging best practices for improving student academic success and retention.
E. Write three articles that present their experiences and outcomes of implementing learner-centered educational strategies for empowering students. Articles of appropriate quality will be published in the On Course e-Newsletter, an Internet publication with more than 50,000 subscribers from colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, and around the world.
Successful students in this course will…




Attend an On Course I Workshop in its entirety (21 hours). Highly Recommended: Attend the 3-hour optional evening session.


Write and submit to your instructor a Schedule of Personally Chosen Deadlines for your ten Journal Entries and three Articles. All assignments must be completed by the end of the semester.


Write and post on your personal class home page a Personal Introduction.


Write and submit to the instructor Journals 1-10 from the most recent edition of On Course: Strategies for Success in College and in Life. (10 points each)


Write and submit to the instructor an article about the implementation of a learner-centered strategy from an On Course resource (i.e., On Course I Workshop, On Course Facilitator’s Guide, or On Course Web Site), following the article format provided by the instructor.


Write and submit to the instructor an article about the implementation of a learner-centered strategy from a source OTHER THAN an On Course resource; that is, a strategy the student learned from any source other than On Course or one the student designs him/herself, following the format provided by the instructor.


Write and submit to the instructor an article about the implementation of a learner-centered strategy found in either an On Course resource or any other source, following the format provided by the instructor.


Write and post on the course DISCUSSION BOARD your constructive Feedback regarding Articles posted by your Success Team members, following the feedback guidelines provided by the instructor.


Total Possible Points

A: 500-450 points
B: 449-400 points
C: 399-350 points
D: Not Given
F: 349-0 points (Course Requirements Not Met)
Required Text
Downing, Skip. On Course: Strategies for Success in College and in Life (most recent edition). Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.
Students with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills are encouraged and have the re­sponsibility to contact the Office of Continuing Education toll free 888-281-9472 regarding reasonable accommodation needs. Students requiring reasonable accommodation needs must be registered as a student with a disability.

Course Bibliography:

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  • Brandon, Nathaniel. The Psychology of Self-Esteem. Jossey-Bass, 2001.
  • Burka, Jane B., and Lenora M. Yuen. Procrastination. DeCapo, 2008.
  • Burns, David, M.D. Feeling Good. William Morrow & Company, 1980.
  • Buzan, Tony. Make the Most of Your Mind. Simon and Schuster, 1977.
  • Cappacchione, Lucia. The Creative Journal. Newcastle, 1989.
  • Ciarrochi, Joseph. Emotional Intelligence in Everyday Life. Psychology Press, 2001.
  • Covey, Stephen R. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Simon and Schuster, 1989.
  • Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly. Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. Harper & Row, 1990.
  • Davis, Martha, Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman, and Matthew McKay. The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook. New Harbinger, 2000.
  • deBono, Edward. deBono’s Thinking Course. Facts on File, 1982.
  • Doidge, Norman. The Brain That Changes Itself. Penguin, 2007.
  • Dweck, Carol. Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. Random House, 2006.
  • Fieori, Neil. The Now Habit. Tarcher, 2007.
  • Firestone, Robert W., Lisa Firestone, Joyce Catlett, and Pat Love. Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice. New Harbinger, 2002.
  • Frankl, Viktor E., M.D. Man’s Search for Meaning. Washington Square Press, 1959.
  • Garfield, Charles. Peak Performers. Avon Books, 1986.
  • Gladwell, Malcolm, Outliers: The Story of Success, Back Bay Books, 2011.
  • Glasser, William. Reality Therapy. Harper & Row, 1978.
  • Goleman, Daniel. Emotional Intelligence. Bantam Books, 1995.
  • ___. Working with Emotional Intelligence. Bantam Books, 2000.
  • Griessman, B. Eugene. The Achievement Factors. Omni Media, 1987.
  • Harmon, Willis, and Howard Rheingold. Higher Creativity. J.P. Tarcher, 1984.
  • Harris, Thomas. I’m OK, You’re OK. Harper & Row, 1967.
  • Helmstetter, Shad. Choices. Simon and Schuster, 1989.
  • Herrmann, Ned. The Creative Brain. Brain Books, 1989.
  • Holden, Robert. Success Intelligence. Hay House, 2009.
  • Howard, Pierce J. The Owner’s Manual for the Brain. Bard Press, 2006.
  • Iyengar, Sheena, The Art of Choosing. Twelve Publishers, 2010.
  • James, Muriel, and Dorothy Jongeward. Born to Win. Addison-Wesley, 1978.
  • Jensen, Eric. Enriching the Brain. Jossey-Bass, 2008.
  • Keirsey, D., and M. Bates. Please Understand Me. Prometheus Nemesis Books, 1978.
  • Kernis, Michael. Self-Esteem: Issues and Answers. Psychology Press, 2006.
  • Lehrer, Jonah. How We Decide. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009.
  • Leyden-Rubenstein, Lori. The Stress Management Handbook. Keats Publishing, 1998.
  • Mandino, Og. A Better Way to Live. Bantam Books, 1990.
  • Matsumoto, David and Linda Juang. Culture &Psychology. Wadsworth, 2008.
  • Mazlow, Abraham H. Toward a Psychology of Being. Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1968.
  • McKay, Matthew, Patrick Fanning, Carole Honeychurch, and Catherine Sutker. The Self-Esteem Companion. MJF Books, 2001.
  • Merlevede, Patrick E., Denis Bridoux, and Rudy Vandamme. 7 Steps to Emotional Intelligence. Crown House, 2001.
  • Merrill, A. Roger. Connections: Quadrant II Time Management. Publishers Press, 1987.
  • Moule, Jean. Cultural Competence: A Primer for Educators. Wadsworth/Cengage, 2012.
  • Myers, David G. The Pursuit of Happiness. Avon Books, 1992.
  • Myers, Isabelle. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. Consulting Psychological Press, 1962.
  • Ostrander, Sheila, and Lynn Schroeder. Super-learning. Dell, 1979.
  • Peck, M. Scott, M.D. The Road Less Traveled. Simon and Schuster, 1978.
  • Peterson, Brooks. Cultural Intelligence: A Guide to Working with People from Other Cultures. Intercultural Press, 2004.
  • Progroff, Ira. At a Journal Workshop. Dialogue House Library, 1975.
  • Restak, Richard, M.D. The Mind. Bantam Books, 1988.
  • Rosenberg, Marshall B., Nonviolent Communication. PuddleDancer Press, 2005.
  • Satir, Virginia. The New People-making. Science and Behavior Books, 1988.
  • Schiraldi, Glen R., Patrick Fanning, and Matthew McKay. The Self-Esteem Workbook. New Harbinger, 2001.
  • Segal, Jeanne. Raising Your Emotional Intelligence. Henry Holt, 1997.
  • Seligman, Martin. Learned Optimism. Alfred A. Knopf, 1991.
  • Smith, Hyrum W. The 10 Natural Laws of Successful Time and Life Management. Warner Books, 1994.
  • Sousa, David A. How the Brain Learns. Corwin Press, 2006.
  • Steiner, Claude M. Scripts People Live. Bantam Books, 1974.
  • Stone, Hal, and Sidra Stone. Embracing Your Inner Critic. HarperCollins, 1993.
  • Tobias, Sheila. Overcoming Math Anxiety. W.W. Norton & Co., 1993.
  • vonOech, Roger. A Whack on the Side of the Head. Warner Books, 1983.
  • Ward, Francine. Esteemable Acts: 10 Actions for Building Real Self-Esteem. Broadway Books, 2003.

For questions or problems regarding Graduate Courses, send an email to