Higher education is under pressure to change from both within and outside (Christensen & Eyring, 2011). One such pressure is from future employers. According to the survey conducted by The Chronicle of Higher Education (Supiano, 2013), most employers significantly value students’ authentic experience over their classroom activities or grades. Authentic learning experience is a direction for teaching and learning innovations. As I discussed in my previous blog post (“Let’s Get Real about Learning”), authentic learning facilitates the transfer of learning and provides students contextual knowledge and skills. Students who learned decontextualized knowledge can answer items on a test but may not be able to use what they learn to solve real-world problems. Integrating the “authentic factor” is especially important today because the social division of labor is becoming more and more pronounced and complex. Future professionals need context-specific competencies about where, when, why and how to employ the concepts, rules, and principles they learn in class.



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