As a math instructor at EMCC for 16 years, I have always believed students must practice. They have to do 20+ problems outside of class in order to be able to DO problems on exams/quizzes. From working with physics and chemsitry faculty over the years and seeing what they do with journals, I have been hesitant to try this. "Math is different. Math is skill based, and you don't get good at this unless you practice over and over again," I would think to myself. It took me 16 years to get to this "aha" moment, and I am so excited about this.
This semester I am provided a sample of a successful paper submitted by a 1st year student last semester to test the idea that identifying a peer who succeeded with similar challenges will provoke greater effort and ultimately greater success. For the full background on this CATS please see "Will Providing a Peer Sample Motivate Growth?"
Need: Streamline 1st 4 weeks of Differential Equations. Create clearer expectations, journal instructions, MATLAB directions, problem sets, and activities. Alleviate student confusion.
Writing lab reports is something all students, even strong writers, struggle with. It is a different style and format to all most other writing that they have experienced before.
For many years now, physics/chemistry faculty require students to journal after each class period (note: there are other faculty on campus who have been journaling for years, as well). In Fall 2017, a few non-phy/chem faculty incorporated journaling in their classrooms for the first time. In Spring 2018, during week of accountability, approximately 15 instructors met and discussed best practices in journaling.
I incorporated "One Minute Paper" classroom assessment technique by K. Patricia Cross (1993) into ENG091 classroom learning during the entire semester of Fall 2017. By far, this class had the most diverse student population that was comprised of: Junior ACE (high school dual students), traditional first year underprepared students, Adult Re-entry students, and students with disability.
In the 3rd week of PSY 101 students have to complete an assignment critical to college success (locating a research article in an academic journal on a specific topic and providing a summary, APA style reference, & informed opinion). Recognizing that this task is usually just beyond the students' current abilities, I use extensive scaffolding to support their acquisition of these important skills. Nonetheless, grades on this assignment remain low and approximately 60 % of students are unable to successfully complete the full task.
After several years of teaching writing, it is clear that revision is the most important and most difficult part of the writing process. I have stopped the traditional process of partnering student up, trading papers, and having them make random corrections. Now, we correct papers as a class, we have substantive discussions about decisions in writing, and my students are actually learning how to be better writers. I have used this in my ENG101 and ENG102 courses at EMCC, but this can easily be used in any course that incorporates writing. I think this would be extremely effective in dev
We specifically investigated how we can integrate creativity more effectively in the classroom for the benefit of both students and faculty. Our investigation included: reading Creative Confidence, learning more about Design Thinking challenges, locating and sharing creativity resources, using creativity to personally address one teaching challenge, and implementing at least one actitivty/lesson/strategy that we deveop using creativity to at least one class this semester.
Students kept an Excavation Journal through the five weeks of ENH251: Mythology. They were advised to use their journal to record: observations, notes, questions, ideas, images, sketches, maps and artifacts in addition to the answers to the various Dig Sheets. Each Dig Sheet focuses on a particular area of world mythology, engaging the student in reflective thinking about assigned readings while also encouraging their use of creativity.