In my F 2016 BIO181 classes, I noticed several students checking email, texting, sleeping. Those students usually sat alone in the back of the room. I use “think-pair-share” activities to promote collaborative learning and communication, but this is challenging when disengaged students are spread out all over the classroom. To boost engagement, I established a seating policy mid-semester. All front seats must be filled first, and no one sits alone at a table. I asked students to get up and move, and late comers could not avoid being directed to open seats.
I utilized Literature Circles as a method for creating stronger community in online classes, deepening the engagement between students, and practicing group work in prep for the course final. Students were in 1 group for duration of the semester, each group given additional readings to read, analyze and report out using the Literature Circles roles. The student in the Connector role would collect the student’s work and post it in Canvas for grading and students would switch roles on their own each week.
For only the second time EMCC offered PHY131/MAT231 LC this fall. While N was small (12 and 15) some interesting results were found. On CSEM post test both classes scored above national average of 47% and no real difference in classes. The LC improved dramatically from first exam to last (pre-final) where the other remained flat. It is encouraging that the LC even though the students started at least 1 MAT class behind performed as well and improved up to traditional class scores as semester progressed.
Using National Library Week as a vehicle for outreach to students has been a continual goal for the Information Resources Department. The purpose of the promotion of this week is to engage students to connect and celebrate their library, in this case, Estrella’s library. Previous endeavors included free food and promotional giveaways, however, these activities did not really engage in a connection between the Library, research assistance, and services.
The problem: Some students have been misinterpreting my instructions for class assignments with multiple steps. With two multiple stepped assignments, on average 6 out of 31 students missed a concept.
The process: Peer groups consisted of 4 students. After groups were given instructions for the assignment, peers repeated the instructions to their group. Afterwards, each group (8 tables) had to summarize and rewrite the instructions on a mini white board.
*Not being one to explicitly tell students to place their electronic devices away, I wanted to see if I could not only do that (that is, have them put them away) but also assess their basal understanding of communication concepts within COM 225, public speaking.
Two of my hybrid EDU classes this semester were challenging me to actively engage my students, especially when involved in group tasks or assignments. Collaborative groups expert Spencer Kagan recommends, among a variety of strategies, the use of Talking Tokens. Each student is given 3 tokens (I use paper clips from a box in the middle of each table). As they talk, ask a question, give a suggestion, etc., they put a token back in the box. When they are out of tokens, they cannot talk until everyone else in their group is also out. Then, the process begins again.
The fall 2016 Assessment Happens was held August 18 in the CTL. A record number of 61 faculty and administration signed in, with 57 filling out evaluations (also a record high). On a 5 point scale, the ratings were all in the 4 - 5 point range, with a high of 4.72 for the CATS of the Month Share Out and a low of 4.36 for the CATS Differentiated Workshop.
As stated in a previous CATS (Conceputual Understanding in PHY121), the focus of this assessments is on the conceptual understanding of the Learning Community compared with the traditional Phy 121 course. Current data continue to show that the overall learning of the learning community student is equivalent those of the traditional student.
Learning Community (LC) faculty have been saying for 6 years that the main focus on the LC is to help students in future STEM courses. Majoring in a STEM field is difficult; math is a barrier for most students. Approximately 20% of community college students start as a STEM major with 69% of them changing it to non-STEM. The LC course is designed to help students be successful STEM students and truly understand how math and physics are intertwined. So, student grades were analyzed from fall 2010 - spring 2016. Students that went through the LC vs.