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Two-Year Community: Implementing Vision and Change in a Community College Classroom Journal Article
Journal Article
Two-Year Community: Implementing Vision and Change in a Community College Classroom
By: Steven Lysne and Brant Miller
Grade Level: College
The purpose of this article is to describe a model for teaching introductory biology coursework within the Vision and Change framework (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2011). The intent of the new model is to transform instruction by adopting an active, student-centered, and inquiry-based pedagogy consistent with Vision and Change recommendations.
The purpose of this article is to describe a model for teaching introductory biology coursework within the Vision and Change framework (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2011). The intent of the new model is to transform instruction by adopting an active, student-centered, and inquiry-based pedagogy consistent with Vision and Change recommendations.
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Research and Teaching: Laboratory Workload Calculation and Its Impact on Science Instruction at the Community College Level Journal Article
Journal Article
Research and Teaching: Laboratory Workload Calculation and Its Impact on Science Instruction at the Community College Level
By: Beth Nichols Boyd
Grade Level:
Despite the large body of evidence that indicates activity-based instruction is more effective than lecture-only instruction, for the purpose of workload calculation, many community colleges assign less value to the time spent in science lab than in lecture. This discrepancy is inconsistent with goals of science excellence set by the National Research Council and teaching guidelines recommended by multiple professional organizations. This study, using...  [view full summary]
Despite the large body of evidence that indicates activity-based instruction is more effective than lecture-only instruction, for the purpose of workload calculation, many community colleges assign less value to the time spent in science lab than in lecture. This discrepancy is inconsistent with goals of science excellence set by the National Research Council and teaching guidelines recommended by multiple professional organizations. This study, using input from full-time, two-year college science instructors, provides data regarding the extent of this policy at the community college level and its perceived impact on instruction. The responses indicate that differential loading of lab hours is common and widely variable, with a majority of the respondents’ hours in lab discounted compared with their hours in lecture, in workload calculations. In combination with open-ended comments made by study participants, the results suggest that science instructors do perceive impacts on their ability to create and teach pedagogically current and challenging laboratory activities when their hours in lab are counted for less than in lecture.
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Research and Teaching: During POGIL Implementation the Professor Still Makes a Difference Journal Article
Journal Article
Research and Teaching: During POGIL Implementation the Professor Still Makes a Difference
By: Patrick L. Daubenmire, Meredith Frazier, Diane M. Bunce, Carolyn Draus, Austin Gessell, and Mary T. van Opstal
Grade Level:
One common notion is that all classrooms using Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) are the same. Though POGIL has essential components, this research found that students’ conceptual achievement, a classroom outcome, can be differentially affected by professors’ style of POGIL implementation. Audio/video recordings of student groups interacting during POGIL classes were analyzed, and these interactions were coded and characterized using...  [view full summary]
One common notion is that all classrooms using Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) are the same. Though POGIL has essential components, this research found that students’ conceptual achievement, a classroom outcome, can be differentially affected by professors’ style of POGIL implementation. Audio/video recordings of student groups interacting during POGIL classes were analyzed, and these interactions were coded and characterized using two methods of coding. One involved phases and bridges of student interactions and the other examined students’ patterns of argumentation based on the Toulmin model of argumentation. As a result, differences in student outcomes between POGIL sections are explained as being influenced by nuanced ways professors interacted with groups during classroom instruction.
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Are "New Building" Learning Gains Sustainable? Journal Article
Journal Article
Are "New Building" Learning Gains Sustainable?
By: Mary M. Walczak and David G. L. Van Wylen
Grade Level: College
New science facilities have become a reality on many college campuses in the last few decades. Large time investments in creating shared programmatic vision and designing flexible spaces, partnered with large fiscal investments, have created a new generation of science building. Unfortunately, few studies provide evidence about whether the articulated goals were achieved. In this study, we revisit assessment of our science facilities after 5 years...  [view full summary]
New science facilities have become a reality on many college campuses in the last few decades. Large time investments in creating shared programmatic vision and designing flexible spaces, partnered with large fiscal investments, have created a new generation of science building. Unfortunately, few studies provide evidence about whether the articulated goals were achieved. In this study, we revisit assessment of our science facilities after 5 years of occupancy, looking specifically for sustained gains in (a) student perceptions of interdisciplinarity, (b) the ability to stay focused despite high levels of visual connectedness, and (c) overall appreciation for the learning environment.
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Implementing and Evaluating a Peer-Led Team Learning Approach in Undergraduate Anatomy and Physiology Journal Article
Journal Article
Implementing and Evaluating a Peer-Led Team Learning Approach in Undergraduate Anatomy and Physiology
By: Kevin Finn and Jay Campisi
Grade Level: College
This article describes how a Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL) program was implemented in a first-year, undergraduate Anatomy and Physiology course sequence to examine the student perceptions of the program and determine the effects of PLTL on student performance.
This article describes how a Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL) program was implemented in a first-year, undergraduate Anatomy and Physiology course sequence to examine the student perceptions of the program and determine the effects of PLTL on student performance.
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Collaboration-Focused Workshop for Interdisciplinary, Inter-Institutional Teams of College Science Faculty Journal Article
Journal Article
Collaboration-Focused Workshop for Interdisciplinary, Inter-Institutional Teams of College Science Faculty
By: Pamela K. Hanson and Laura Stultz
Grade Level: College
Many science educators know of the pedagogical benefits of inquiry- and research-based labs, yet numerous barriers to implementation exist. In this article we describe a faculty development workshop that explored interdisciplinary and inter-institutional collaborations as potential mechanisms for overcoming barriers to curricular innovation.
Many science educators know of the pedagogical benefits of inquiry- and research-based labs, yet numerous barriers to implementation exist. In this article we describe a faculty development workshop that explored interdisciplinary and inter-institutional collaborations as potential mechanisms for overcoming barriers to curricular innovation.
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Assessing the Readability of Geoscience Textbooks, Laboratory Manuals, and Supplemental Materials Journal Article
Journal Article
Assessing the Readability of Geoscience Textbooks, Laboratory Manuals, and Supplemental Materials
By: Scott P. Hippensteel
Grade Level: College
Reading materials used in undergraduate science classes have not received the same attention in the literature as those used in secondary schools. Additionally, reports critical of college textbooks and their prose are common. To assess both problems and determine the readability of assignments and texts used by geoscience faculty at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, a readability study was conducted on the most commonly used textbooks,...  [view full summary]
Reading materials used in undergraduate science classes have not received the same attention in the literature as those used in secondary schools. Additionally, reports critical of college textbooks and their prose are common. To assess both problems and determine the readability of assignments and texts used by geoscience faculty at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, a readability study was conducted on the most commonly used textbooks, laboratory manuals, and supplemental materials (magazine/journal articles).
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Research and Teaching: Assessing and Refining Group Take-Home Exams as Authentic, Effective Learning Experiences Journal Article
Journal Article
Research and Teaching: Assessing and Refining Group Take-Home Exams as Authentic, Effective Learning Experiences
By: Carol M. Anelli, Kimberly A. Green, Corey M. Johnson, and Betty J. Galbraith
Grade Level:
The learning goals of a lower division honors course, Science as a Way of Knowing, include critical thinking, scientific literacy, quantitative reasoning, communication, and teamwork. To help students develop skills and competencies for the course learning outcomes, we used a case study and developed scaffolded activities and assignments that targeted discipline-relevant tasks, for example, primary literature search, evaluation of source credibility,...  [view full summary]
The learning goals of a lower division honors course, Science as a Way of Knowing, include critical thinking, scientific literacy, quantitative reasoning, communication, and teamwork. To help students develop skills and competencies for the course learning outcomes, we used a case study and developed scaffolded activities and assignments that targeted discipline-relevant tasks, for example, primary literature search, evaluation of source credibility, hypothesis construction, data interpretation, and restatement of scientific content into lay terminology. We then implemented group take-home exams, which feature rigorous, open-ended questions in authentic contexts, requiring students to apply knowledge and competencies cooperatively to new situations. Data from five semesters show that, in comparison to traditional exams, many students feel that group take-home exams reduce test anxiety, foster interpersonal skills, are more rigorous, and better enable them to apply and synthesize knowledge and deepen their comprehension of the subject matter. Our study augments research on group exams that use an open-ended response format.
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Structuring a Science-Mathematics Partnership to Support Preservice Teachers' Data Analysis and Interpretation Skills Journal Article
Journal Article
Structuring a Science-Mathematics Partnership to Support Preservice Teachers' Data Analysis and Interpretation Skills
By: Kristin L. Cook and Sarah B. Bush
Grade Level:
As science teacher educators attempt to prepare teachers to underscore the aims of the Next Generation Science Standards alongside the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, they must pay close attention to the intersection of these two content areas. To address this challenge, the authors (a science educator and mathematics educator) created an experience for preservice teachers (PSTs) to learn and apply core concepts and processes of...  [view full summary]
As science teacher educators attempt to prepare teachers to underscore the aims of the Next Generation Science Standards alongside the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, they must pay close attention to the intersection of these two content areas. To address this challenge, the authors (a science educator and mathematics educator) created an experience for preservice teachers (PSTs) to learn and apply core concepts and processes of mathematics and science within our methods courses. Specifically, this was a concerted effort to support PSTs’ data analysis and interpretation skills within the context of scientific inquiry. In the unit described, codeveloped and implemented in a mathematics and science methods course, elementary PSTs are provided with clear scaffolds to apply their developing knowledge of data analysis and interpretation to a scientific inquiry. This integrated unit showcases one way teacher preparation programs can support PSTs’ understanding of how to analyze and interpret data and their ability to teach it in their future classrooms. As we make concerted efforts to address the new national standards, teacher educators must model strategic interdisciplinary planning and curriculum to make authentic connections across subject areas.
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Transforming Undergraduate Science Education With Learning Assistants: Student Satisfaction in Large-Enrollment Course Journal Article
Journal Article
Transforming Undergraduate Science Education With Learning Assistants: Student Satisfaction in Large-Enrollment Course
By: Robert M. Talbot, Bryan Wee, Katrina Marzetta, and Laurel M. Hartley
Grade Level:
Large-enrollment undergraduate science courses are often seen as “gatekeepers” and tend to support less-than-ideal pedagogical approaches. Student satisfaction with teaching and learning and gains in student conceptual understanding in these courses is often limited at best. At University of Colorado Denver, the Learning Assistant (LA) Program supports the transformation of these large-enrollment science courses to include more interactive teaching...  [view full summary]
Large-enrollment undergraduate science courses are often seen as “gatekeepers” and tend to support less-than-ideal pedagogical approaches. Student satisfaction with teaching and learning and gains in student conceptual understanding in these courses is often limited at best. At University of Colorado Denver, the Learning Assistant (LA) Program supports the transformation of these large-enrollment science courses to include more interactive teaching strategies and learning opportunities. We find that students in these LA-supported courses are satisfied with these courses in part because of their use of LAs, primarily during the lecture meeting time. Students do not report using LA support as much outside of course lecture meetings. Further, students in an LA-supported General Biology course also exhibited much larger gains in conceptual understanding. We suggest that future work should investigate cross-group comparisons of cognitive and affective gains by factors such as ethnicity; class; gender; and interactions among students, LAs, and faculty.
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