Companies across every industry look to keep employees trained and up-to-date on the latest trends and techniques within their field. Quality training and education is also considered a top benefit for employees to have. eLearning can offer a wide array of benefits, and Tom Harford, a consultant that focuses on innovative learning explains how companies can make the most of it.
Tom Harford spent decades as a teacher and administrator. Finally, he realized that his true passion was helping others to decide how they were best going to learn a particular subject. It’s when he chose to become a consultant, focusing on eLearning.
As former Columbia Dean Tom Harford explains, one of the main reasons to engage in eLearning is because of the options that it allows. Particularly within the workforce, many employees don’t have the ability to take an entire day off for training. It slows down productivity. Further, it can be difficult to follow along when training seems to go on and on.
eLearning can be done from anywhere. As long as there is an internet connection, an employee can log in and take the course. In some instances, the instruction is pre-recorded. In other instances, the instructor is live, making it possible to have a Q&A session with those who are taking the course. Former Columbia Dean Tom Harford explains that employees can choose to take the training from their office, within a training room, or even at home.
When eLearning is used by companies, it can make it easier for employees to truly grasp the material. Tom Harford is quick to remind employers that everyone learns in different ways and at different paces. It only makes sense to make eLearning regularly available. Employees may choose to watch the course a second time. It can also be a way for employees to go back and rewatch segments after they have had some hands-on experience with what they have been learning about.
Hiring an instructor to present material for a day can be expensive and ineffective. What happens when an employee is out sick that day? What happens when an employee has too many questions? The problems can go on and on, and former Columbia Dean Tom Harford has seen many of these issues first-hand.
Regardless of what a company wants to teach its employees, there are eLearning opportunities that are available. It’s all about realizing that learning over the computer is going to be the best option to ensure that everyone can learn in a way that works for them. Tom Harford recommends that a company sit down with a consultant to explore the eLearning methods that can work best given the subject, the amount of time that is available to work with, and more.
In the end, Tom Harford believes that eLearning can work for any employee.
Tom Harford, Ph.D. and former dean of Columbia University, has launched academic coaching services through Mind Revise Consulting. Academic coaching differs significantly from tutoring. Tom Harford doesn’t teach a lesson; his services address underlying issues that impact a student’s learning. Academic coaches like former Columbia dean Tom Harford search for ways to remove barriers blocking a student’s success.
Tom Harford and Mind Revise Consulting
Mind Revise Consulting included academic coaching as a service option to fill a gap in higher education. Tutoring is often a short-term solution. Students learn a lesson and require indefinite services to remain competitive in their studies. In comparison, academic coaching from Tom Harford uses strategies to stay better organized and on task. Instead of improving in math, for instance, students increase their skill set in all educational disciplines. Mind Revise Consulting chose to extend academic coaching services to provide one-on-one support to those who need to develop better study skills. Clients don’t come to Tom Harford for tutoring in one subject; most students who require academic coaching lack global competencies such as excellent oral communication or information retention.
Former Columbia Dean Tom Harford’s Methodologies
Tom Harford understands that all learners have distinct characteristics. Unlike tutoring franchises, he doesn’t believe that each student learns in the same manner. Instead of wasting valuable time on the repetition of facts, Tom Harford assesses each client to determine strengths and weaknesses. Is time management a struggle? Does the student struggle with decision making? Once Tom Harford sets goals with a client, he works with the student to improve performance in the learning process. Tom Harford personalizes goals while working with learners from all backgrounds, including undergraduate students and top business executives. Tom Harford also specializes in working with students from disadvantaged backgrounds. His experience includes the development of educational programs for those who are incarcerated or recently paroled.
Students working with Tom Harford don’t excel in just one subject area. Mind Revise Consulting aims to see a marked improvement in all areas of academia. With academic coaching, executive function skills improve. Students feel empowered by learning a skill set that helps them excel at school for the long-term.
Tom Harford’s Background
Former Columbia dean Tom Harford has the credentials to help his academic coaching clients achieve success. With over 25 years of educational experience in both the public and private sectors, Tom Harford has worked with diverse populations. Along with mainstream learners, Tom Harford has developed learning programs for special education students with challenges such as ADHD, dyslexia, and executive function disorders. Along with academic coaching, Mind Revise Consulting provides learning and e-learning solutions for individuals and organizations.
Former Columbia Dean Tom Harford discusses how prison education systems are essential to positive social change.
Education is the gateway to opportunity. It can allow people of varying social and economic statuses to advance through increased earning, networking, and more. Former Columbia Dean Tom Harford is now a consultant who specializes in learning solutions for individuals. One group of individuals in which he takes a particular interest are those currently incarcerated.
Tom Harford helps create educational programs for incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals. He recently explained how prison education systems are an essential part of reducing recidivism and keeping these individuals from returning to the prison system once they’ve served their sentences.
“Unfortunately, education is currently being denied to a major portion of those currently in the prison system,” former Columbia Dean Tom Harford said. “Only about one-third of state prisons are offering college-level classes and less than 10 percent of the nation’s prison population has access to them.”
Tom Harford explained that receiving a quality education is something that is becoming nearly impossible for those in the prison system to do, as funding is continuously reduced. The funding is not available to provide the materials these students and programs need to succeed. Tom Harford added that this is leading to an alarming number of formerly incarcerated getting rearrested shortly after being released. Almost 50 percent of those released are arrested again within eight years. Nearly half of those arrested return to incarceration.
“We’re seeing countless statistics and studies supporting the idea that the more educated the former prisoner is, the less likely they are to commit another crime and return to the prison system,” Tom Harford said. “Those who never graduated high school are the most likely to be arrested again.”
Former Columbia Dean Tom Harford cited another study by the RAND Corporation stating that incarcerated individuals who took part in educational programs while in the system were 43 percent less likely to be rearrested and return to prison. Even more, Tom Harford stated that prisons offering college-level programs experience less violence. This means the prisoners and staff enjoy a safer, healthier living or working environment.
Tom Harford added that the incarcerated, and society as a whole, see a number of additional benefits associated with the implementation of prison education systems. He stated that these benefits include superior health outcomes, increased personal income, increased volunteerism, and lower unemployment.
“The upfront funding turns a lot of politicians and officials away from the idea of supporting prison education systems,” former Columbia dean Tom Harford said. “But those short-term expenses result in major long-term societal and economic benefits.”
Tom Harford explained that when taxpayers spend $1 on the pursuit of prison education, they save between $4 and $5 that would have been used on incarcerating an individual. Education is the key to helping these individuals become productive members of society, reducing crime, and putting more money in the pockets of all consumers.
Getting a successful education continues to be one of the leading contributors towards overall personal and professional success. While some people strive in the classroom, others can find this more challenging. For those that are struggling with the standard educational process, former Columbia dean Thomas Harford offers productive solutions through academic coaching.
Academic Coaching By Former Columbia Dean Thomas Harford Offers Unique Approach
Thomas Harford’s approach to development employs a unique strategy for earning and cultivating sound habits. While the traditional educational system may focus more on learning facts and concepts, those that receive academic coaching from, former Columbia dean, Thomas Harford will find a more holistic approach. That is, he focuses far more on helping you to build habits and patterns that can help you achieve success. This will include helping you to change your mindset and getting unstuck from unproductive patterns.
Former Columbia Dean Thomas Harford Helps to Change Narrative
Another important part of academic coaching from Thomas Harford is that it can help you to change your narrative. A lot of students get challenged because they believe that their future has already been written. Whether based on how their parents or older siblings’ academic background, or other external factors, some students can feel they do not have a clear path for success. Through academic coaching, a student will learn that they are in greater control of their destiny and will learn how to strive towards their goals.
Academic Coaching with Former Columbia Dean Thomas Harford Helps to Provide Direction
A student that is continuing to progress will eventually have some big decisions to make. Whether deciding where to apply to college, which major to pursue, or how to find scholarships, there are many decisions that will have a large impact on your future. With academic coaching by, former Columbia dean, Thomas Harford you can receive support in navigating these choices. This can include helping you weigh various pros and cons and determining what options are truly best for your unique situation.
Who Can Benefit from Academic Coaching with Thomas Harford?
The academic coaching process can be a great option for multiple individuals, from many different walks of life and with various long-term goals. Ultimately, someone that feels stuck in a rut, challenged by traditional educational settings, or simply wants to change their direction should consider academic coaching.
Ultimately, former Columbia dean Thomas Harford can provide academic coaching that alters your mindset, improves decision making, and sets you on a path of continuous and productive learning habits.
Former Columbia dean Thomas Harford’s passion for how people learn has made him an expert in creating learning solutions for businesses. Your company can benefit from his decades of experience in academia as well as consulting. Mind-Revise.com is the consulting firm he founded and leads. His success speaks volumes on how he can work with individuals as well as a large Fortune 500 company toward the best learning solutions.
Former Columbia Dean Thomas Harford of Mind-Revise.com
Through this entity, former Columbia dean Thomas Harford provides academic coaching, learning solutions for organizations, as well as public speaking coaching and seminars. With 25 years of management and teaching experience in both private and public higher education, including Columbia University, City University of New York, The New School, and NYU-Polytech, Thomas Harford’s work has focused on: academic advising; learning outcomes assessment; academic support and learning initiatives; academic program design and development (online, hybrid and face-to-face); international partnerships; student life and alumni affairs; admissions, recruitment and marketing; and teaching. He has worked with clients from every background and level: undergraduates, graduate/professional students, returning students and career changers, teachers, veterans, artists, managers, and executives.
Former Columbia dean Thomas Harford understands that acquiring and utilizing knowledge is key throughout our lives, and he utilizes his expertise whether he is assisting students through the academic coaching arm of Mind Revise or investing in a large corporation’s learning strategy.
Former Columbia dean Thomas Harford of Mind-Revise.com believes learning is a life-long process.
Being able to bring learning solutions to his clientele is possible because former Columbia dean Thomas Harford continues to learn and explore new horizons. His doctoral studies in English inspired his continued interest in the benefits of narrative practice and strategic storytelling, and he remains actively engaged in the latest research on the art and science of human learning. Previous to his academic career, he worked as a professional actor. He still carries a fascination with performance, public speaking and creativity, and enjoys sharing those insights and cultivating those skills in his clients.
Former Columbia dean Thomas Harford believes that learning solutions are imperative for every business.
Cultivating a learning mindset at your organization–whether large or small–will help it continuously evolve. Learning is constant and necessary for every facet of individual and organizational evolution.
Thomas Harford of Columbia says many people believe dyslexia is simply getting letters mixed up — a reading disability. In reality, however, dyslexia is a complex neurological disorder that affects the way the brain organizes information pertaining to language. This can include such difficulties as not being able to process the way a language is heard, spoken, read or written, adds Tom Harford of Columbia. The scale for rating the severity ranges from mild to severe cases, according to Tom Harford of Columbia, and is a fairly common diagnosis among school-aged children.
Thomas Harford of Columbia says The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke defines dyslexia as “a brain-based type of learning disability that specifically impairs a person’s ability to read. These individuals typically read at levels significantly lower than expected despite having normal intelligence. Although the disorder varies from person to person, common characteristics among people with dyslexia are difficulty with phonological processing (the manipulation of sounds), spelling, and/or rapid visual-verbal responding.”
Dyslexia in children can involve problems with oral language abilities such as being a late talker, difficulty in pronouncing words, or difficulty in learning the alphabet and rhyming, says Thomas Harford of Columbia. It can involve problems with reading such as problems learning letters and sounds or trouble with reversing the order of letters when learning to read. It can also present in children as written language deficiencies as in the case of handwriting issues and spelling errors. Tom Harford of Columbia says it can also present as unrelated problems such as inconsistency in schoolwork or difficulty putting thoughts into words.
Cases involving the onset of dyslexia in adults usually result from brain trauma, Tom Harford of Columbia says, while at other times we’ll find dyslexia in adults that was never diagnosed as a child. It can be inherited, he adds, since recent studies have identified a number of genes that predispose the individual to this condition. However, just having the gene doesn’t mean you’ll automatically have dyslexia.
There is no treatment, says Tom Harford of Columbia, so instead, we work on the specific problem the student is having. Usually, this means modified teaching methods to meet the needs of the individual with dyslexia. “This means teaching them in a way that their brain can understand,” he says.
Dyslexia is a disability in all but 4 states, says Thomas Harford of Columbia, but even if the states don’t recognize it, federal law, including the Department of Education, recognizes it for Individual Education Plans (IEPs). “These are the special education plans schools are required to use with a child who presents with a disability like this,” Tom Harford adds.
Still, most dyslexics go undiagnosed, says Tom Harford of Columbia, so if your child is having trouble reading, get an evaluation while your child is still young. If we can identify the disability earlier in age, this allows the greatest chances of success later in life, he adds.
Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is a disability that affects up to 11 percent of school-aged children in the U.S. This number rises to 20% when limited to boys. When a child has this condition, there is an enormous responsibility for both the parent and the school to make sure these children are properly educated along with their non-ADHD peers. Here, Thomas Harford looks at some ways parents can help their child who has this disability.
One of the first things Thomas Harford recommends is getting your child diagnosed. The three core symptoms of ADHD are impulsiveness, inattention, and hyperactivity, Thomas Harford says. If your child exhibits these behaviors, the best thing you can do is get him to a doctor for testing. Not only will the testing confirm or deny the disability, Thomas Harford says, but when the child has the official diagnosis, the school is legally required to act. Thomas Harford says one of the best things you can do is get educated yourself about the condition and what resources are available to help your child.
As soon as your child is diagnosed, Thomas Harford says, you need to let the school know. In the U.S., the public-school systems are required to accommodate students with an ADHD disability. This falls under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)* and guarantees appropriate special education services to the child. The school will set up a meeting to create an Individualized Education Program, often called an IEP, for the child. With the school and the parents working together, the IEP is the single best resource your child can get since it addresses his disability directly.
Tom Harford suggests meeting with the child’s teacher and bringing literature or internet resources. If the teacher does not have experience working with children with ADHD, offer your support, he says. “It’s amazing how many teachers want to help,” he adds, “but they have to idea what to do.” Thomas Harford says providing resources to the teacher or sending them information via email will go a long way towards helping your child be understood in the classroom.
Another thing you’ll want to ensure is regular reporting, Thomas Harford says. While it is not necessary to scrutinize every interaction, it is crucial to have an overall idea of how he is doing in the classroom. Having regular communication between the teacher and the parent will help to watch for anything unusual which needs addressing sooner rather than later. “It’s all about providing the best opportunity for a good education despite any disabilities,” Thomas Harford says. When you have a plan going in and good communication all around, it’s best for everyone.”
For businesses, establishing a learning culture is key to long-term success, and Consultant Thomas Harford helps businesses zero in on how to learn with his services.
If a business isn’t growing, it is dying. But how does a business grow when revenues are flat? An engaged, motivated workforce can help by providing new ideas and energy. Thomas Harford helps businesses keep employees focused and invested by taking the pulse of an enterprise, finding its learning culture and amplifying it.
What is a learning culture? A lot more than routine rote trainings or slideshow based training modules. It involves having an overall approach to employee development and talent retention according to Thomas Harford.
Unfortunately, in today’s economy, businesses are constantly consolidating operations and at times, streamlining essential services like human resources at the expense of meaningful employee development. Thomas Harford describes it as moving away from a more dynamic learning mindset to a focus on strict knowledge acquisition with a hard statistic at the end, such as completion of compliance training for personnel issues or a certification verifying the ability to complete specific tasks
With the absence of an established robust learning culture, consultants like Thomas Harford can fill the gaps in the workplace by finding the best ways to engage employees in a given sector.
Thomas Harford is particularly passionate about helping new businesses and those expanding rapidly establish robust talent retention and growth practices.
This is done by being proactive. Thomas Harford says businesses should foster a drive for creativity and growth, and it needs to extend beyond learn, test and reward. It needs to be an overall sense of curiosity that leads to effective problem solving and helps propel the business forward.
And that doesn’t mean results aren’t measurable. Thomas Harford believes businesses need to accurately and effectively track learning outcomes, but those outcomes may extend beyond completion statistics. Has greater teamwork developed? Are more employees bringing new ideas to the table? Is there improved collaboration and information-sharing across departments? Are employees being rewarded for advanced training?
Thomas Harford always asks new clients if there is a learning mindset. Is growth rewarded and cultivated at the business? Do employees see and embrace the changing landscape, or are they stuck in completing daily tasks with no eye toward the future? Are employees ready to learn rewarded?
As the business evaluation process concludes, Thomas Harford then helps enterprises formalize a learning plan.
Haphazard training components are consolidated with a unified approach focused on effective learning, easily accessible online training and choosing educational opportunities that align with a company’s plans for growth and its mission statement. When needed, collaboration with accessible educational institutions can also be coordinated.
Not many people are aware that in 1987, U.S. President Ronald Regan proclaimed the month of March as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month*. With more and more disabled individuals merging into society throughout the 70s and 80s, Regan believed the public needed more recognition, knowledge, and understanding to help disabled individuals adapt in their new roles. While many schools have made tremendous strides in this area, Dr. Thomas Harford talks about some of the ways you can help your child at home understand what being disabled means to help advance his or her understanding and acceptance of disabilities of all types.
With the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act* of 1990, Dr. Thomas Harford begins, our country finally began to take special care of our disabled citizens. Even so, he says, children will be children and will sometimes not know how to approach someone they view as different from themselves. Dr. Tom Harford says there are a few things he recommends to his clients to help your child learn about disabilities.
Dr. Tom Harford recommends we start by teaching our children about the different types of disabilities. For example, some disabilities aren’t obvious, like learning disabilities, he says, while others are readily apparent, such as physical disabilities. Talking to your child about some of the different types of disabilities can go a long way towards facilitating an understanding of the disabled person, he adds.
You might want to read books with your child about disabled children, Dr. Thomas Harford says. This will give you an opportunity to explain some of the terms that your child might not know. Some of the types of disabilities you might discuss include communication disorders, learning disorders, hearing disorders, or they could be physical disabilities like vision difficulties, vocal disorders, or having to use a wheelchair.
The main focus of your talk with your child should be how all people are different, and that it’s okay to be different. Dr. Thomas Harford also encourages discussion about bullying with your child and what it means to bully someone. Encourage your child to be the friend that reaches out and includes others. Teach them to be aware of when bullying is happening and encourage him or her to speak out about it to a trusted adult if they see it happening.
Allow your child to ask you questions. Children are naturally curious, Dr. Harford says, and questions are a good way to allow them a safe and comfortable place for what they want to know. Be sure to let them know the door is always open for questions down the road as well.
One of the methods of moving past awareness and into acceptance is by role playing. An example, Dr. Tom Harford says, is to have the child try to communicate an idea to you without being able to verbalize it. This allows your child to gain an understanding of just some of the difficulties a vocally disabled person has each day.
Dr. Thomas Harford says we need to also be aware of our own language and behaviors toward disabled people. How we talk about and to disabled people — our language and our actions — will be picked up by even the youngest child. Most of all, Dr. Thomas Harford says, by watching your actions and your intentions, your child will learn acceptance of people that are not exactly like him. “In the end, isn’t that something we’re all looking for?” he asks.
With over 25 years of management and teaching experience in both private and public higher education, Dr. Thomas Harford does academic advising at all levels. His company, Mind-Revise focuses on academic advising, learning outcomes assessment, academic support and learning initiatives, academic program design and development (online, hybrid and face-to-face), international partnerships, student life and alumni affairs, admissions, recruitment and marketing, and teaching. Contact Dr. Tom Harford today for a free consultation regarding your organization’s academic needs by visiting https://mind-revise.com/contact/.
Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month* – https://www.specialneedsalliance.org/blog/march-is-developmental-disabilities-awareness-month/
Americans with Disabilities Act* – https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/history/35th/1990s/ada.html
Everyone has a story. Even those who don’t think they have a story – they have a story somewhere in them, waiting to be discovered. In this article, Dr. Thomas Harford discusses why stories are so important to public speakers and why every speech should have a narrative structure.
To tell stories is to be human, Dr. Thomas Harford begins. Nothing is quite as powerful as a well-told story for getting your message across.
Oral communication is one of the greatest life skills to have, Dr. Thomas Harford says. At his consulting company, Mind-Revise, LLC, Dr. Tom Harford helps clients master all parts of public speaking including anxiety reduction, voice enhancement, presentations, speech preparation, and voice pitch to name a few. “Part of communicating a great speech,” he says, ”is learning the fine art of storytelling.”
“When you’re speaking to an audience,” Dr. Thomas Harford begins, “whether large or small, your goal is to convey a message.” No matter if you are speaking to a large crowd with a goal to influence people, or speaking in a conference room to pass along an idea to your colleagues, or even speaking on the phone hoping to sell an idea to someone, you’re speaking to convey some kind of a message. “Stories are simply our natural way to convey meaning and get our messages across,” he says.
We respond to stories for several reasons, Dr. Tom Harford says. “Stories are naturally powerful. Narrative gives an audience a means of relation, of empathy. And we also know when a story doesn’t ring true, which is why a deep understanding of narrative structure is so important and effective.”
Dr. Thomas Harford says the best stories will have an immediate appeal that really connects the speaker to the audience. “These are stories that strategically convey meaning,” he adds. Many of the ways to add veracity to your speeches have to do with the way the speech is presented, such as specifically chosen words and tone of voice, but stories play a big part in making an emotional appeal to your audience also, he says.
Another important reason you want to tell a story is that you want people to remember your speech. “Facts and figures are great,” Dr. Tom Harford points out, “but people don’t usually remember facts and figures. A narrative beats a Powerpoint everytime.” This is because stories provide context for facts and figures. If your story is compelling enough and has enough detail, the audience won’t have any problem internalizing the salient points.
We all love a good story because we’re human, he says, and we all want to relate. Since stories make us more relatable and more human to our audience, it’s important to know how to craft your story for maximum impact. “Understanding narrative structure is key. That’s another story for another day,” he adds with a smile.
Dr. Thomas Harford developed an early interest in theater as a teen and worked professionally in theater and dance before returning to academic studies, ultimately earning a Ph.D. in English Literature. Tom Harford continued to work in higher education as both a teacher and administrator, eventually starting his own consulting practice, Mind-Revise, LLC, located in New York, NY which specializes in learning solutions for businesses, organizations and individuals.