By Nathan Schiller, Director of Academic Support
Many MCNY students are adult learners who want their education to be connected directly to their professional fields. That’s why MCNY has accelerated programs and Purpose-Centered Education, whose core component is the Constructive Action, a semester-long course focused on action in a real-world environment.
Using self-directed learning to prepare for the workplace
In the Learning Enhancement Center (LEC), we support students’ work with a self-directed learning approach. One of our initial goals is to help students figure out the type of learners and thinkers they are. This provides a base for targeted work that empowers the student to grow and achieve success in the classroom and beyond.
But making these connections can be tough. Sometimes it seems as if there is no obvious connection between the classroom and the workplace. Why learn algebra if you do community outreach? Why read philosophy if you manage a healthcare clinic?
But we believe that school subjects are valuable even if they do not seem, at first glance, to have a 1-to-1 relationship with a work environment. After all, learning is not something you do just in college or grad school. It’s a lifelong pursuit.
Why LEC tutoring focuses on learning processes
When we work with students on writing assignments, we often start by helping them develop a writing process that works for them. For instance, although understanding a complicated text or linking together complex ideas requires critical and creative thoughts, these are subjective pursuits, where a single, unified, “true” answer doesn’t always exist. What matters is that you engage in the process of discovery.
Likewise with quantitative-based assignments. Statistical analysis, for example, starts not with a formula or a dataset, but with questions about the type of information you want to collect and study, and your purpose in doing so. As you engage in these processes, you bring a unique perspective that will help you make connections among different areas of life. For instance, how you solve problems of sequences, how you find present and future values—this can help you manage your personal finances.
Critical thinking? Problem solving? Accumulating information and communicating it clearly? That’s what we do in all walks of life. And that’s the connection the LEC can help you make.
Interested in signing up for an LEC tutoring session?