Oktoberbest: A Celebration of Teaching
October 14, 2011, 9:05 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Hollings Special Collections Library, Thomas Cooper Library
University of South Carolina - Columbia
Enhancing Learning Through Reflection
Kevin Clarke, Program Coordinator for Faculty Development and Assessment, University 101 Programs
Jaime Shook, Graduate Assistant, University 101 Programs
Reflection is a valuable component of processing information, and a necessary step in creating deep learning experiences. Class discussions and assignments are valuable ways to encourage or facilitate reflection, but those assignments must be intentionally designed, and conversations well-structured to ensure students understand their experiences, make meaning of those experiences, and develop action steps for future encounters with the material.
In this session, the presenters will discuss the value of effective facilitation in helping students make meaning of their in and out-of-class experiences, by demonstrating effective reflection techniques for large group discussions, personal reflection in class, and reflection focused assignments; following the model of what, so what, now what.
Learning On-the-Go with an iPod Touch
Lara Ducate, Associate Professor, Languages, Literatures and Cultures
Lara Lomicka-Anderson, Associate Professor, Languages, Literatures and Cultures
With mobile learning gaining popularity, students, using an iPod Touch for example, have access to course-related material anywhere and anytime. Students can be both active consumers and producers of content and learning is transformed into something that is “on-the-go” and extends beyond traditional classroom walls. With such a device, students can collaborate on projects with partner schools, hold a virtual field trip, or talk to (and see) native speakers using Skype to video chat. They can also create mobile movies, produce photo collages, use built-in wi-fi to conduct research and stay in touch with classmates, use voice memos to record interviews, or keep native speaker voice samples. Students can easily access online materials both in and outside of class and participate in and communicate with virtual communities. In this presentation, we will discuss how we have used iPod Touches in our intermediate German and French classes to extend the walls of the classroom. We will discuss various tasks we have implemented, including microblogging and social networking, both in and outside of class and how we have assessed these tasks.
Socrates meets Social Media in the 21st Century: A Back-to-the-Future Pedagogy
Joel Stevenson, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Strategic Management, Moore School of Business
The Moore School offers "Launching New Ventures" simultaneously every summer in six regional locations via tele-presence, as "one" classroom. An essential ingredient in this class is meaningful student involvement. Yet, where expertise in the instructor is critical, student involvement must not preclude experienced-based knowledge sharing from the instructor. So what we do is to involve students at these multiple TV-locations, while staying true to the Socratic method, so as to end up with a high energy, well-documented transfer of knowledge, highly-valued by students, while also confirming reciprocal knowledge transfer in several concrete ways.
Professor Joel Stevenson leads this pedagogical wonder. His "Socratic class" with 60+ students in 6 different geographic locations accepts and meets the challenge of making ALL students involved in "class discussion." How?
STEP 1: USE a COMMON TEXT-BASED SOURCE - "Launching New Ventures," a highly regarded text, was required for all students. Each class session centered on "discussing" material covered in selected chapters in that text. This gave a focus, set boundaries, and identified key issues in launching new ventures as a starting point to socratically engage students.
STEP 2: BUILD TRUST AMONG ALL STUDENTS - Joel creates trust with the students by not eviscerating anyone for having the wrong answer, but by continuing to encourage participation in all locations the dialogue became very interesting from all locations. The students responded to Joel's challenge to "let me know what you think".
Microbes in & Around Us: Demonstrating the Use of Technology in Teaching Biology
Kajal Ghoshroy, Assistant Professor, Division of Science, Mathematics, and Engineering, USC Sumter
Pearl Fernandes, Associate Professor, Division of Science, Mathematics, and Engineering, USC Sumter
Students on regional campuses of the USC System are mainly first generation students, in their first two years of university experience. Their exposure to biology and environmental science, or global/current affairs is minimal. Our aim on this project was to mesh current popular information gathering practices among students with classroom techniques in order to enhance learning. Using microbes as a theme, we used PowerPoint lectures, enhanced with YouTube videos, chalk-talk, collaborative hands-on learning techniques and projects such as "Effective Hand Washing." These were accompanied by multiple active learning assignments for assimilation of knowledge and assessment of learning. Using our methods, we took students beyond the traditional boundaries of a classroom to the world outside, related the lecture content to context and made science more real and applicable, and thereby improved student learning.
In our presentation, we will demonstrate the use of these above techniques in teaching the significance and role of microbes in the environment, our body and in industrial settings. We will discuss their impact as causal agents of diseases; as soil builders, decomposers and nutrient providers in nature; their use in manufacturing and technology; as well as historical impact of microbes in South Carolina. We will demonstrate that the pedagogical techniques allowed students time to think and formulate ideas, synchronize communication, engage and interact with each other as well as with course content. Using pre and post assessments we gathered information on change in student interest and knowledge. The combination of in-class and beyond-the-classroom activities stimulated student learning, knowledge and application of science to real-life situations.
Maplets for Calculus: An Electronic Study Guide for Students and Instructors
Douglas B. Meade, Associate Professor & Undergraduate Director, Mathematics
Phillip B. Yasskin, Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics, Texas A&M University
Maplets for Calculus (M4C) is a collection of 129 applets for both students and instructors. The M4C applets provide interactive graphical user interfaces for typical examples and exercises on a variety of topics in precalculus, single-variable calculus, and multi-variable calculus.
The problems considered are either algorithmically generated or user entered. Successful completion of the problem requires correct intermediate responses before moving on to the next step. Computer algebra algorithms are employed to analyze student responses and to provide customized hints and feedback. Algebraic, graphic (2D, 3D, animation and stereo), numeric and verbal approaches support diverse learning styles.
Several schools are using the M4C in settings including structured labs, homework support, and lecture demonstrations. Schools that have adopted the M4C include Texas A&M, Arkansas - Little Rock, 2 CUNY campuses, and Toledo. At USC, the M4C applets are utilized in the weekly computer labs associated with Calculus I and II (MATH 141 and 142). In addition, more than 1000 students in more than 40 countries use M4C as a tutor without a tutor.
Instructors comment that the intuitive introduction to limits, derivatives and integrals in lab makes it easier to introduce these concepts in class and frequently use the applet graphics as lecture demonstrations. They also like the interactions that arise when students in a lab have different versions of similar problems. Initial assessment of M4C's effectiveness shows that students prefer M4C over a computer algebra or numeric system.
BIOL J530 Histology: A Success Story for a New Distributed Learning Course
Robert W. Ogilvie, Professor Emeritus, MUSC & Visiting Professor, Biological Sciences, USC
Roger H. Sawyer, Executive Dean & Senior Associate Dean For Graduate Education, College of Arts & Sciences
Kathleen Clardy, Teaching Assistant, Biological Sciences
This talk will present successful implementation of a new course offered for the first time spring semester, 2011, BIOL J530 Histology, which includes a virtual laboratory. We reported on the progress of creating this course in a presentation during Oktoberbest 2010. A second offering of this course is currently running this fall semester. Specific changes and innovations will be presented that have been implemented in the fall, 2011 course based on our experience and feedback from students for the spring, 2011 course. The changes in content and delivery of the course will be discussed as listed.
-Course startup and check-in routine
-Module Quiz Structure
-Midterm and Final Exam Structure
-Implementation of Podcasts of lecture narrative
-Implementation of Podcasts to show class how to access certain aspects of the course -Implementation of Podcasts to provide video and audio feedback for difficult quiz and exam questions
-Use of Jing, Snagit and Camtasia Studio
The presentation will include sharing the statistics of access to the course tools and content area on the Blackboard Course Web Site.
Flipping the Math Classroom - A Paradigm Shift
Stephen T. Anderson Sr., Associate Professor, Division of Science, Mathematics, and Engineering, USC Sumter
We are utilizing a hybrid approach in one section of College Algebra, utilizing an online learning platform from Hawkes Learning Systems to allow (require) students to read the e-text, view the online video modules I (and others) create, and perform the practice at home. IN class, we are like a one-room schoolhouse-personalized, where some may be in chapter 3 section 3.4, while the student next to them may be stuck on 3.1, or accelerated into chapter 4 or 5. We do have target dates for chapter exams (tried ONCE without these target dates - NEVER AGAIN!!!).
As Salman Khan and Bill Gates suggest (khanacademy.org), technology has PERSONALIZED the course in a way I have not experienced in my 40 years of university teaching. I can analyze the exact sections a student may be stumbling on, create personalized video to address the area (that MANY utilize even when they THOUGHT they knew the material), spend QUALITY 1-on-1 time while IN class working directly on their individual problems! No more "one-size-fits-all" lecture and lock-step learning. The "D-W-F" drop rate has improved, and those who DO drop learn EARLY in the course they are either under-prepared or under-motivated and we can more accurately redirect them into lower level courses, or continue to work with them at their pace outside the classroom. Rather than "teaching them math," we are facilitating their LEARNING math by DOING...
I would be very wary of driving in a world where drivers were only "lectured to" before they were issued a license...or asked to just WATCH in the passenger seat before we let them drive!
Fostering Citizenship through Hands-on Assignments
Mary Hjelm, Associate Professor of English, Regional Campuses & Continuing Education
Chris Nesmith, Assistant Professor of English and Director of the Evening Program
A major plank in most universities' core curricula is to develop well-rounded and engaged minds that can participate in the ongoing responsibilities of good citizenship. Therefore, students are often encouraged to be engaged and participatory citizens but rarely are given practical examples or opportunities for involvement beyond being encouraged to vote during major election cycles. In PALM P493, "South Carolina Studies" (one of the required courses in the Palmetto Programs' BA in Liberal Studies and BA in Organization Leadership), students are assigned a variety of tasks that aim to foster an interest in the political process, provide confirmation of the impact a single individual can make within a community, and cultivate active and conscious citizenship at the local, state, and national levels.
Weekly assessments and pre- and post-course surveys verify the power of hands-on involvement by asking students about their behaviors and attitudes regarding voting, volunteering, writing their representatives, and other measures of civic engagement. While this project is in the middle state of collecting data, results to this point indicate a strong and positive move toward developing a personal and lifelong commitment to civic engagement in students who previously did not see a need to participate or care about the processes that help to govern our lives.
Integrative Learning: Packing the Most into Your Study Abroad Course
Karen Edwards, Senior Instructor, Retailing
STRATEGY TO ENHANCE TEACHING. An important goal of higher education is to foster students' abilities to integrate learning across courses, over time, and between campus and community life (AACU & Carnegie Foundation, 2004). This requires a shift in the basic faculty function from mere information delivery to that of designing a learning environment (Guskin, 1994). The University's Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) focuses on Integrative Learning, and charges faculty with implementing a broad array of within and "beyond the classroom" (BTC) experiences for students, enabling them to make connections between theory and practice, and to become lifelong learners (Pastides and Moore, 2001).
HOW IT WORKS. Integrative Learning guides students in meaningfully connecting their classroom and BTC experiences to one another. The University has identified four "high-impact" strategies as key BTC experiences - Research, Community Engagement, International Studies, and Leadership (Pastides and Moore, 2001). Well planned faculty-led study abroad courses can incorporate elements of each strategy, leading to enhanced skills both generally and with respect to the discipline of the particular course. The Department of Retailing May 2012 trip to Italy will incorporate elements of engagement with professional communities across the Retailing and Hospitality disciplines, as well as leadership and research skills for our students. It would be a pleasure to share our planning framework for that trip with University colleagues.
SIGNIFICANCE. The experiential strategy of study abroad, as a pedagogy, is known to invite students to make connections between coursework and community, theory and practice (Huber, et al., 2007). Thus, faculty-led study abroad trips have the potential to be transformative in the lives and development of students.
Problem Based Learning: Taking a Lesson from History
Lynn Thomas, Dr. P.H., Assistant Dean for Preclinical Curriculum, School of Medicine
J.T. Thornhill, IV, M.D., Assistant Dean for Medical Education and Academic Affairs, School of Medicine
Nancy Richeson, M.D., Assistant Dean for Clinical Curriculum and Assessment, School of Medicine
Albanese and Mitchell (1993) defined Problem Based Learning (PBL) as "an instructional method characterized by the use of patient problems as a context for students to learn problem-solving skills and acquire knowledge about the basic and clinical sciences."
At the USC School of Medicine, PBL cases are just one of several venues that are used to help students make the transition from knowing the facts of a complex problem, to applying those facts, and then determining a reasonable solution to the problem.
1. Demonstrate how PBL cases can be quickly developed for most disciplines using a template approach.
Case construction can seem overwhelming, but almost any problem or case study can be turned into a PBL learning experience. For this seminar, a historical medical mystery will be used.
2. Describe how a PBL case is used in a small group setting.
The PBL experience is structured within a framework of discovery, hypothesis generation, learning issue identification, and resolution.
3. Share subjective assessment rubrics.
As with any type of instruction, an assessment is necessary. PBL is most often evaluated by a subjective assessment since skill acquisition is generally at the level of improvement in higher order thinking proficiency.
Surviving an Online Faculty Boot Camp - A Roundtable Discussion
Renee Shaffer, Instructional Designer, University Technology Services
This roundtable presentation introduces the Effective Online Instruction (EOI) course for USC faculty which has been offered for the past 3 years. The course, based on the best practices and engagement principles, gives faculty a true feeling of what it is like to be an online student. It is designed to expose faculty to technology which they can incorporate into their teaching whether it be a face-to-face course, a hybrid model or completely online. During the summer of 2011, seventy-one (71) faculty/staff from USC campuses statewide enrolled in the asynchronous course and experienced online learning from the learner's perspective. Over twenty (20) academic disciplines were represented. This is their story.
The members of the faculty roundtable will discuss technologies, collaborative learning techniques, assessment, behavioral aspects of online teaching and learning and will describe the benefits for USC faculty. The course was seen as a practical guide to integrating new technology and learning tools into existing teaching methods to enhance the effectiveness of teaching and to engage students. Technologies and social media components such as wikis, Facebook, discussion boards, YouTube videos, and Adobe Connect were utilized. Confirmed faculty speakers who will discuss ways that they are incorporating their new knowledge into practice include: Noni McCullough Bohonak, USC-Lancaster, William E. Moore, USC-Union, Mary Steppling, USC-Columbia, and Hendrikus E. Van Bulck, USC-Sumter.
Reaching out to Medical Students with Online Tutorials
Sarah Fletcher, Faculty, School of Medicine-Medical Library
Karen McMullen, Head of Access Services, School of Medicine-Medical Library
This presentation will discuss the experiences of the USC School of Medicine Library in transitioning from traditional in-person library orientation to the use of online interactive tutorials. Our medical students are busier than ever and we are constantly looking for ways to reach out to them and make it easier for them to use the library and its services. The presentation will outline our use of Adobe Captivate software to create online interactive tutorials to guide students both through general orientation of the library and its services as well as through specific library resources. We will also discuss our findings on the effectiveness of this program based on post-tutorial student surveys.
Development of Environments For Fostering Effective Critical Thinking (EFFECTs)
Juan Caicedo, Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Joe Flora, Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Charlie Pierce, Associate Professor and Associate Chair, Civil and Environmental Engineering
This presentation discusses the Environments For Fostering Effective Critical Thinking (EFFECTs) pedagogical framework. This framework allows instructors to foster and assess critical thinking in their classes. The EFFECTs framework is structured in a manner that is consistent with Kolb's Experiential Learning Theory (Kolb 1983), where a four-stage cycle of learning begins with concrete experiences that provide a basis for observations and reflections. An EFFECT starts with a decision worksheet that contains a driving question that engages students to acquire additional content knowledge and skills. Small group collaboration, hands-on and/or inquiry based investigations are used to explore this new content knowledge and skills. Finally, a design report gives students an opportunity to revise the solution proposed during the decision worksheet. Journal entries are used to provide feedback to assess their critical thinking. This is significant because many engineering programs provide students with core knowledge and technical skills, but do not provide an environment that will encourage critical thought during class. The presentation includes strategies to develop EFFECTs as well as remarks of instructors that have recently adopted EFFECTs into their classes.
Wa'da You Know?: The Role of Metacognition in Classroom Performance
Kathleen C. Kirasic, Associate Professor, Psychology
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of metaknowledge on course performance, pass rate, and course completion. Four classes of Lifespan Development were selected for this comparison. All students (N=240) had equal access to all learning materials: text, study questions, before & after class homework assignments. Half of the students (N=120, in 2 classes) were instructed to rate their level of certainty as they attempted to answer each of the study questions. Students could choose from 4 levels of certainty: 3-Definitely Know, 2-Pretty Sure, 1-Maybe, and 0-Have No Clue. The other half of the students (2 classes) did not perform the metacognitive activity. Results indicated significant differences between the "certainty-rating classes" & the "non-rating classes" on the final grade earned in the course, the percentage of students passing the course, and the number of students completing the course. Students asked to evaluate their knowledge performed better, grade-wise, and were more likely to complete and pass the course. The one extra step of a self-evaluation exercise appears to draw the students' attention to the material and have them seriously consider the strengths and weaknesses of their knowledge base. The sheer act of having the student engage in 2 mental operations (processing the question and evaluating one's knowledge) further instantiates what is being learned and emphasizes the student's attention to the material. It is believed that the implementation of these experiences will enhance any course.
Activities to Improve Students' Communication (Written & Oral) Skills
Tena B. Crews, Professor, Integrated Information Technology
During this session, the presenter will provide an overview of a current service-learning project which involves the following activities used to improve students' communication skills. Each activity will be explained in detail.
-Using service-learning to develop written communication for a community partner.
-Using in class "editor sessions" to edit each other's written documents.
-Using students' private, personal blogs to reflect on the process.
-Using a wiki for students to edit each other's written work.
-Using feedback from community partners on written documents and oral presentations to improve students' communication skills.
-Using a pre- and post-test scenario for the assessment of communication skill growth.
Connecting service-learning to communication skills (oral and written) emphasizes the importance of the skills. As students are learning specifics pertaining to oral and written communication in the classroom, the can then apply what they are learning to a real world situation. The community partners involved in the service-learning project provide necessary information to help students clarify and enhance their communication.
Through this collaborative effort, students learn to work with their peers, with individuals in the community, their instructor, and build their communication skills at the same time. The presenter will also share her syllabus with the attendees and ask for their input on improving the course activities. Attendees will also be asked to share any activities they use to improve their students' communication skills.