9:50 - 10:30 Featured Flex Sessions (concurrent):

Coffee will be available in Founders Lounge and in the Blume Board Room

Advice for Publishing your Pedagogical Innovations

Ann Cutler, Ph.D., Editor, Journal of College Science Teaching

Frick Center, Bryan Room

Tech Salon

Dave Basener, Instructional Technologist, Center for Scholarship and Teaching, Elmhurst College

Frick Center, Blume Board Room

  • 5 or 10 minute sharing sessions

  • You are invited to come in, sit down, share and learn.

  • In the tech salon you can sit down in groups and hear what your colleagues are doing with technology, see their short demonstrations or give one yourself.  

  • If you have a technique or tool that you can demonstrate on your laptop to a small group, please join in and share it.

  • Do you have an app on your smartphone or tablet that makes your life in the classroom easier?  Sit down in a small group and show your colleagues.

  • At the other end of the room, sit down and watch your colleagues show their ideas on “the big screen” - or join in there also.

  • This session is both an opportunity to share your ideas and to see a Tech Salon in operation.

Poster Session

Frick Center, Founders Lounge

Undergraduate research projects in lecture-based courses

Peter Dijkstra, Benedictine University   

Faculty research is known to support and enrich undergraduate instruction. However, it appears that involvement in undergraduate research is restricted to a small elite percentage of the student body. Moreover, at liberal arts colleges with limited time and resources for research, bringing research into the classroom is challenging. Here I discuss a strategy to incorporate undergraduate research projects into lecture-based courses without the need of an actual lab. I am currently testing this strategy in my Comparative Animal Physiology class. In the first four weeks of class students complete as homework assignments a series of self-contained training modules on hypothesis testing and data analysis in R. I then give teams of students (2-3) different datasets relevant to the topics covered in the course. Each team will use their dataset for their own project that involves data analysis, a written paper, and an oral presentation. The goals of the program are to (1) provide students with opportunities to apply their newly acquired skills to real problems and, in so doing, to gain specialized familiarity with a topic; and (2) to give them vital skills in doing research including data analysis and critical thinking.

Using Cover Letters to Address Instructor Feedback in a Research Methods Course

Frances Daniel, Indiana University Northwest and Catherine Gaze, Elmhurst College   

This research examined how writing cover letters to the instructor influenced final papers in a research methods course. After receiving feedback on drafts of each section of an APA style research paper throughout the semester, two classes wrote cover letters to the instructor explaining how the instructor feedback was incorporated into their final paper. Two control classes received the same feedback throughout the semester, but did not write a cover letter. Results showed that students enrolled in the cover letter classes tended to show more improvement in the quality of their papers than the control class.  Using a cover letter seems to help improve the overall quality of student papers.

Use of an iPad Virtual Whiteboard to Increase Classroom Interaction

Robert McCarthy, Benedictine University   

One of the goals of using technology in the classroom is to create a more interactive learning environment. Here, I explore how an iPad can be used as a virtual whiteboard to bring an interactive component to a traditional lecture-based course. Over the course of the past semester I have been using an iPad to teach Human Anatomy, a 200-level undergraduate course for Health Sciences and Biology majors. I reviewed ten virtual whiteboard apps for ease of use, ability to create pictures with different colors and line thicknesses, ease of importing pictures and exporting drawings, and whether or not the app can record audio for 75 minutes or longer. Initially, I wanted an app that could be used to (1) draw pictures, (2) mark-up PowerPoint slides, and (3) record lectures, in the style of Khan Academy. I found that none of these apps adequately accomplishes all three tasks, so that a virtual whiteboard must be paired with lecture capture technology such as Tegrity or D2L Capture. However, the benefits of a virtual whiteboard are clear. I present results of a classroom survey showing that students preferred the interactive components of a virtual whiteboard to a more traditional PowerPoint lecture style.

Best Practices in Mentoring: A Professional and Personal Development Experience

Julie Gonzales and Larry Carroll, Elmhurst College

The Elmhurst College Center for Professional Excellence Mentoring Program assists students in becoming global citizens prepared to make a difference in the world. Taking an active role in their mentoring relationship, students embark upon the journey of the meaning of high character, strong integrity, and social responsibility.  Mentors guide this process by providing a professional relationship of encouragement, support, and development of specific skills and knowledge, to enhance students’ professional and personal growth.

Encouraging Innovation Through Collaboration: Integrating High-Impact Educational Practices

Mary Kay Mulvaney, Wally Lagerwey, Larry Carroll and Mick Savage, Elmhurst College
This project shares the best practices model of the Elmhurst College Center for Professional Excellence as a model for honors education, but applicable to all.  It focuses upon the collaboration of the five areas of the CPE: Honors, Career Education, International Education, Intercultural Education, and Service-Learning, by sharing details of a case study of one Honors Program student, her service grant project with Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, her current international study in India, and her understanding of the transformative skills gained that she will bring to the workplace.

Whiteboards in the College Classroom

Colleen Munro-Leighton, Nicole Koonce, Elmhurst College   

To address low energy, passive-listening students in the classroom, a new twist on a classic active learning strategy is presented.  The features and advantages of this low-cost method are discussed.  In addition, specific ideas for implementation in variable size classrooms and across disciplines are outlined.

Empowering Adjuncts and Ensuring Quality: The TLC Model

Maribel Valle, University of St. Francis

With the ever-present need to lower costs in higher education, there has been an increased reliance on adjunct faculty to delivery course content. For public health education, this could provide the opportunity for the re-invigoration  of academic courses because it can bring talented public health professionals, actively working in the field, to academia. At the same time, academic departments are concerned with consistency and the standardization of course content, while maintaining high levels of course relevancy and currency. Too often this has been translated into a top down approach which minimizes the expertise of the adjunct and limits the potential for innovative approaches. The situation is not without its complexities and competing interests. The Teaching and Learning Community (TLC) model seeks to ameliorate the potential pitfalls by providing a venue and a culture that encourages collegial reciprocal flow of content, pedagogical techniques, and embedded assessments. Through this model, academic departments ensure their courses are both standardized and highly relevant. Adjuncts emerge with a sense of professional investment and a greater understanding of the reasoning behind departmental regulations and requirements. By combining the accessibility of an online social space, the tools of a modern Learning Management System, and highly motivated individuals who wish to deliver quality content, the TLC model can result in improvements in learning, teaching, adjunct retention and administration.