Bryan University is a private for-profit research university based in Tempe, Arizona, which offers online programs and degrees in the fields of healthcare, exercise science, and legal. Dynamic experiential learning, known as DeXL, was developed within Bryan with the definitive focus on solving a specific higher education issue — why are online learning experiences so drastically behind the needs of students?
Bryan was originally working with other local universities to launch their online learning programs, and the DeXL initiative was born. Since then, Bryan has been working to unleash student potential and collaborate with corporate partners to provide quality online education environments and improve job placement.
Changing the learning model with DeXL
Bryan University committed to changing their current learning model, since their students are mostly online, far from the “traditional” college experience. With Bryan’s traditional learning methods, students would read textbooks, attend lectures, answer discussion questions, and take exams and tests. This model was one size fits all – and Bryan knew this wasn’t personalized or helpful for their students.
Once Bryan rolled out their new, adaptive 4-step model — Base Learning (obtain new knowledge), Integration (collaborate with peers), Application (demonstrate new skills via simulated job tasks), and Exploration (student generated activities and projects), this more modern, personalized process of learning, proved especially effective for Bryan’s curriculum and students.
Cerego steps in at phase one — Base Learning. As with any type of learning, the forgetting curve was something Bryan University wanted to address, especially during this core, intro learning. Bryan needed a solution that would address the core knowledge retention for both cognitive and non-cognitive skills, in order for them to build off this knowledge through each step of the learning process. Cerego was introduced as a solution with the intention of overcoming the forgetting curve easily and efficiently in a natural way.
Cerego introduced to Bryan courses + internal training
Previous to Cerego, Bryan was using McGraw and Smartbooks to educate their students. Now, Bryan instructors are able to take the base learning elements from their curriculum and plug it into Cerego for learners to interact directly with the core concepts. Once students overcame the initial adoption challenge of working within an e-learning platform, Cerego consistently proved to be a better and more customized experience.
Cerego is now a key part of the educational offerings at Bryan University. After seeing such strong success with the platform during the pilot, Bryan rolled out Cerego into all academic courses and also began using Cerego in their internal training for staff. Internally, Bryan University employee attitudes toward organizations improved, and performance outpaced previous methods, specifically for sales staff.
How Cerego has made a difference at Bryan
Cerego creates a user experience that meets the student where they are at and then lifts knowledge and retention from there. For Bryan, the problem has always been scale and that is where Cerego has been able to fill the gap. Previously students would need to read a book or watch a lecture to first learn the material. This wasn’t as effective in building the base knowledge, and Cerego has created a more effective learning experience for the user early on, improving their knowledge and retention for the long term.
With Cerego, Bryan has seen a 267% increase in time engaged in practice from students and a 50% reduction in lecture time. Eric Evans, President of Bryan University, reflected on the decrease in lecture time, saying, “Students are spending time in Cerego learning the lecture material and content, freeing up the faculty to spend time mentoring and coaching.”
Cerego differs from previous methods of learning for two key reasons: the user experience and the teacher experience. For users, the app is aesthetically pleasing and people are naturally inclined to use it, which helps with engagement. The students and staff feel like they’re actually learning and retaining the material and it shows in the results. For teachers or class admins, they love Cerego because of its dependability. Once students learn using Cerego, they know students have a strong base knowledge to build on for the more collaborative or interactive part of class. Teachers can see students are more engaged in class and they are able to spend less time re-teaching the basics — a win for everyone.
Bryan University learner outcomes
Currently Bryan University and DeXL have about 700 active Cerego students working towards associate or baccalaureate degrees in fitness, legal, and healthcare fields. With Cerego, Bryan has seen 267% increase in time engaged in practice from students and a 50% reduction in lecture time. Eric Evans, President of Bryan University, reflected on the decrease in lecture time, saying, “Students are spending time in Cerego learning the lecture material and content, freeing up the faculty to spend time mentoring and coaching.”
Additionally, assignment submissions increased from 76% to 87%, and average assignment grades improved from 69% to 82%. Justin Harper, Fitness Department Director, said, “Cerego really filled the gap in forcing our students ultimately to read. But they don’t really look at it as reading – it is in more of a game, quiz-like format, so they don’t even realize they are reading, studying, and being exposed to the info on an everyday basis.”
One student in the program said, “Personally, I am ecstatic about the way in which it prompts and compels me to learn and study. What I enjoy most is how much information I retain. I find the answer popping into my head in a split second.”
Overall, Cerego has been able to make a strong impact for every member of the Bryan University community, from teachers to students to staff. The results are undeniable, and Bryan is excited to continue implementing Cerego into new programs and finding new ways to increase student potential.