- *Addresses a particular need to improve teaching;
- *Benefits UNLV students in particular; and
- *Applies in a variety of teaching contexts.
Build It in the Chat: Using the Chat Function in Online Platforms to Facilitate and Improve Student Writing
Helping college students “find their voice” as writers is challenging even without the isolation necessitated by the Pandemic. Shyness, lack of comfort with the subject matter, and fear of using the wrong word or phrase, can all keep students from expressing their ideas as fully as they, and we, would like. This can lead to non-completion or plagiarism of assignments If a student is also a non-native English speaker and/or has physical and/or cognitive difficulties, the situation can appear insurmountable. Building student writing thought by thought, line by line, paragraph by paragraph addresses the problem by allowing individuals to express ideas as they emerge while giving and receiving feedback in real time as documents and discussions develop while capturing the results. All lengths/genres of writing in all disciplines can utilize the practice. No additional equipment/expertise is needed beyond what instructors are already using.
Michelle A. Arroyo
Although faculty frequently update the content of their courses, they rarely modify their teaching methods. Many faculty continue to teach as they were taught. During remote and online learning, modifying teaching methods is not only a necessity, but critical to student success. Learning-centered teaching focuses on what and how students are learning. Learning-centered instructors create safe, respectful, and inclusive environments that facilitate student learning. Learning-centered teaching is not a single teaching method, but rather emphasizes a variety of techniques and pedagogies than encourage instructors to create an environment that facilitates students learning online and remotely. As a result, students acquired deep and lasting learning that they can use later.
Roberta Jo Barnes
Applied learning is a critical component of the Hospitality College curriculum. This teaching practice examines the development of a course providing a meaningful substitution for internship during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Roberta Jo Barnes
The College of Hospitality is known for its experiential learning activities. In a typical semester, the college hosts a mock interview event for students in HMD 200, Hospitality Milestone course, in which students are interviewed and evaluated by a hospitality industry professional as part of an on-campus event. How can this important skill development occur when Covid-19 prevents the hosting of an on-campus event? This teaching practice provides an alternative for facilitating mock interviews in the virtual environment through collaboration with the Hospitality College’s career center, industry partners and the use of Zoom technology.
Sandra L. Candel
The Social Justice Issue is a project-based assignment in which students organize in groups to address a social justice issue of their choice. In addition, students are asked to connect theory and practice (praxis) by looking for resources in their community to offer possible recommendations, solutions and resources.
Topics researched include: Voting Rights; Sexual Assault At Colleges; The Racialization of Cannabis Use; Mental Healthcare; Legalizing Prostitution; Gender Pay Gap; Black Lives Matter; LGBTQA Rights Stigma Suicide & Homelessness; Japan's Patriarchal Society; RBG - Open Supreme Court Position; ICE Inhumane Treatment of Immigrants; Universal Healthcare; and Mental Health Stigma.
This teaching practice is used to help students accomplish the course learning outcomes, and to promote engagement, deep learning, metacognition, and group collaboration.
Students identified the Social Justice Issue Project as the most beneficial assignment they had done in class, stating:
- “The social justice project really helped with diving deeper into subjects I would've never really looked into.”
- “I really enjoyed working on the social justice project. It was informative, and I learned so much. I thought I knew about most of the issues, but there's so much left for me to learn and research about.”
- “I would say our Social Justice Project midterm has been the most beneficial. It got us thinking about real world issues and how those relate to our class. I hadn't realized the variety of topics that would be chosen and how invested my classmates would be in those topics.”
The podcast and infographic presentations developed from a move to remote instruction and my desire to transform traditional, PowerPoint-based student presentations into something that would lead to more meaningful collaboration within groups, more engaging post-presentation discussions among the class, and more significant engagement with class readings and their contexts.
Christine A. Draper
Using a children’s book or YA novel as an introduction, or a piece to draw students’ attention to a particular topic can harness the power of emotions help our students connect with, learn, and retain course material more deeply (Cavanagh, 2016).
While the plot-line of children’s books may appear simple, the issues addressed can be quite complex. The newest wave of children’s literature addresses a wide range of socially sensitive topics such as racism, poverty, death, gender identity, police brutality, war, and immigration (Johnson, 2014) and often does so in a way that invites discussion rather than foreclosing it.
Though it is not commonly viewed as appropriate material for the college level, children’s literature can put a “face” on any given subject (Carter, 2012), encourage critical thinking (Frey & Fisher, 2008), enhance motivation (Versaci, 2009), and provide a safe context to discuss sensitive topics.
COVID 19 was an unexpected situation, and it has a negative impact on students. College students' education has been an increasing concern especially during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Research shows the vital need to develop interventions and preventive strategies for all students including college students (Son et al., 2020). Many instructors had to adapt their teaching strategies with little preparation. Having a clear syllabus, creating new assignments based on students' needs, engaging students for more participation, and providing a positive communication have been essential factors in rapid transition to distance education especially during the Pandemic.
Jorge Ramon Fonseca Cacho
Online courses have historically been self-taught or a form of independent study. However, with the 2020 Pandemic a renewed focus on remote/online learning has forced the academic community to revisit what works, and does not work, with online classes. I propose that providing a livestream of a class and uploading the recording to a media sharing website, like YouTube, is more engaging to students than posting a pre-recorded lecture (text or video). I propose that doing this motivates students to keep up with the lectures rather than attempting to binge before an exam, or an assignment is due, and improves engagement with the instructor.
This is a simple practice for faculty to integrate into their courses to enhance career and professional development for their students. The “virtual document review” is an effective way for faculty to provide students a great resume, without the faculty having to be a career and professional development expert, and without the faculty having to edit each individual resume that comes in. All faculty should utilize the Career Services resources, especially right now as there are new and innovative ways to move resources online. Students resumes were significantly better after the use of this tool.
Regardless of the discipline, applying an embodied rhetorical lens to course material is a productive way for students to assess and gain new knowledge. Our experiences as creatures in bodies affect both how we create a text and how we receive a text (a text and rhetoric being any form of communication whether in written, visual, or performative form). For this reason, both reading and writing a text is a self-reflexive activity.
The teaching practice that the department found helpful was self-guided reflection and assessment of professional development needs to improve course design and delivery. Professional development opportunities included cohort experiences, webinars, and self-paced trainings on online best practice including: course organization, student engagement, content delivery and assessment.
- 630 UNLV faculty participated in the Summer Course Improvement Program. The first step was to self-assess their online teaching practices and identify their professional development needs and goal. 262 chose to enhance a skill and 368 chose to incorporate a new strategy in their course
- 523 UNLV faculty attended one or more professional development opportunities, and provided evidence of a change in their course content or delivery approach
- 469 UNLV faculty identified an evaluation strategy for the effectiveness of this change
Utilizing Plastinated Head and Neck Dissections for Doctorate of Dental Medicine (DMD) Anatomy Laboratories : Observations from the DEN 7109 “Guinea Pig” Course
This poster documents use of digital dissection tutorials in place of in-person laboratory time for a gross anatomy course in a dental medicine doctorate (DMD) program. Tutorials were developed with a standard digital camera and Camtasia video editing software. Plastinated head and neck specimens prepared by the Von Hagens company in Germany were used in place of standard, embalmed cadaveric donors. Initial student feedback (N=40) indicated that the tutorials were helpful/very helpful (100%), clinically relevant/very clinically relevant (97.5%), were impactful on content retention (100%) and were appropriate/very appropriate with respect to length (3-8 min; 97.5%). After these initial findings were collected it was determined that dissection tutorials of the same length would be developed for the second semester of gross anatomy in this DMD program.
Appreciative Teaching: Utilizing Academic Advising Techniques for Better Teaching and Learning Experiences in Higher Education
Paige W. Johnson Ed.D
The first semester of college is quite difficult for students. Add to that a global pandemic, screen fatigue, cabin fever and general uneasiness and it's a recipe for a difficult semester in a difficult time. However, through appreciative teaching, which is modeled after the academic advising framework/technique called "appreciative advising" there are little ways to create a rapport, build a relationship, and foster goodwill with your students. This, in turn, will make your role more enjoyable and allow students to become more comfortable in and enjoy their role.
Paige W. Johnson Ed.D.
A full college semester, like any long-term project, benefits from periodic reflection, and reconfiguration to make it to completion successfully. This is the thinking behind creating a mid-semester reset framework for first-semester students aligned with lessons on health and wellness. Students asked to reflect on themselves personally, each class during the semester and create an actionable plan was useful in helping to find their power, remember and reconfigure their motivations and see what they're doing right and well as what they can improve.
Development and deployment of focused topic specific hand-on exercises for upper division technical courses.
Like many faculty teaching remotely, I faced challenges with student engagement, participation, and feedback, as well as balancing planned and impromptu course activities. In response, I explored using Google Docs to create productive and playful collaborative spaces inspired by Marie Foulston’s informal “Party in a Shared Google Doc” social experiment.
Survey questionnaires can be used as a tool to build rapport with students. This serves a few key purposes: 1. It allows instructors to connect with their students more deeply. 2. It gives students another way to communicate with instructors and makes them feel cared for as people. 3. It allows instructors to learn about patterns within the classroom to guide the curriculum of the course.
The global pandemic requires strategic agility from professors to provide the same quality education while minimizing risk of exposure and spread of COVID-19. To simulate patient experiences, I incorporated SimucaseTM. SimucaseTM is a computer-based simulation platform that provides students with experiences designed to develop skills such as clinical observations, interviewing clients and families, collaborating with other disciplines, administering and interpreting assessments, designing intervention plans, and implementing interventions using video-recordings of client scenarios.
This poster provides a brief overview of the challenges faced by students accessing online courses via the Canvas Student app and provides instructors with methods/solutions to optimize their online classrooms for mobile learners.
My best teaching practices offers four tips for engaging students in online discussion boards in the digital classroom. By identifying several ways to improve upon this commonly used classroom tool, the poster highlights how to engage students in learning in the course.
Joshua M. Polanski
As we transitioned to on-line education, the problem arises as to how to keep students engaged while listening to a prerecorded lecture. Listening to an hour to two hour lecture and watching a screen is not particularly engaging for the student. To this end, I embedded quizzes periodically within my prerecorded lectures of my DEN 7162 nutrition class for 1st year dental students that forced the students to engage with the lecture material.
Creating a culture of inquiry in non-research based courses helps students enhance their skills in critical thinking, reading, writing, collaboration, and argumentation. In English 101, some students feel like not having all of the answers about a text after a first read is unacceptable. This practice is designed to help college students understand and confidently discuss complex texts in a remote course.
Lindsay J. Russell
The Equity Design Framework allows instructors to address student equity in their online classes by taking a critical look at their current teaching practices and find ways to enhance equitable opportunities for all students. The framework is set up so the instructor can look at their online course and determine specific aspects that they would like to assess in regards to equity. Instructors then measure their current practices and look for ways they can incorporate equity either through their own self-reflection or by building self-reflective practices into their own teaching.
With the move to remote instruction, many students feel disconnected if there is no synchronous component, while others feel self-conscious about using WebEx as a group discussion platform, particularly if they have to turn on their camera.
Additionally, streaming platforms like WebEx do not yield a permanent record of the chat discussion.Instructors must rely on students taking notes or email them pertinent material afterwards.
Discord is a platform that originally came to prominence in video game communities for its adaptability and ease of use. Many students already have accounts and are adept users.
Incorporating a synchronous Discord element into your remote course will allow you to chat with students in real time and asynchronously, as they can leave messages that you can respond to.