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Prioritizing Student Success in a New Territory

Lisa Rosof is a faculty member at USC Salkehatchie. She teaches psychology and yoga. In addition to teaching students at the Salkehatchie campus, Rosof also teaches a dual credit course for the local high school students.  

Rosof’s teaching style has always been interactive, fun, and engaging and her students love that about her. Then came Spring Semester 2020 when the pandemic hit. She was forced to move all of her classes online. This was quite a challenge for all of us, especially for Rosof who taught a yoga course. The yoga class, as well as her psychology class, required close interactions with her students. Not only was she challenged in this aspect, but she also had little experience with Blackboard or online course design and management. 

Her lack of physical contact with her class and her inexperience with Blackboard and online learning environments did not stop Rosof. She was determined to do what it took to make sure her students had the ultimate online experience in her class.  

Her first task was to learn the ins and outs of Blackboard. At the beginning of the pandemic, Lisa had little knowledge about the tools and resources that could be used to build functional online courses in Blackboard. Concepts such content links, tool links, and Blackboard Collaborate were foreign concepts to her. Although these terms might have been new to her, the concept of providing a quality learning environment to her students was not new.  

Immediately, Rosof jumped in with both feet and started her quest to learning how to use Blackboard to build a quality on-line course.  Initially, she met with CTE Instructional Designer Yvette Sands at least twice a week to work on building her class.  In addition, she used several resources provided on the Keep Teaching website. Sands and Rosof triumphed when she reached milestones such as adding a video to a class and adding folders and links to the course.  They almost had a party when she learned to set up columns in the gradebook.  Student success was her main focus, and she was determined to provide her students the best online experience possible. Rosof spent countless hours in one-on-one sessions with Sands and even more time sharpening her Blackboard and course management skills.  

That was then and this is now. The one-on-one sessions and Rosof’s determination led to positive remarks from students in her Fall 2020 PYSC 101 course:

  • "As a freshman this class was very eye opening and I loved everything my instructor had to offer! I wish I could take this class again it was so nice and so clear!"
  • "I really enjoyed being in Professor Rosof's class. She truly cares about her students.” 
  • "Professor Rosof is one of the kindest and caring instructors that I have encountered. She was very understanding of my illness when I became sick within the beginning of the course. I would definitely take this class again, if I could.” 
  • "One of the best teachers I have ever had! Felt like I could go to her with anything, and felt supported!” 

Rosof has made tremendous progress in designing engaging online courses. Today, she has the knowledge and skills to start from scratch and design her own online courses. Her tenacity and determination, combined with her dedication to her students, have made all the difference in the world!  Lisa Rosof, you did that! 

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.