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THE NEXT GENERATION COURSE REDESIGN TM PROJECT INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFORMATION: AASCU Conference – Portland, OR July 28, 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "THE NEXT GENERATION COURSE REDESIGN TM PROJECT INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFORMATION: AASCU Conference – Portland, OR July 28, 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 THE NEXT GENERATION COURSE REDESIGN TM PROJECT INSTITUTIONAL TRANSFORMATION: AASCU Conference – Portland, OR July 28, 2011

2 T ODAY ’ S G OALS Share why UNT changed its approach to undergraduate instruction Describe how the Next Generation Course Redesign Project works at UNT Demonstrate parts of NGen courses Discuss barriers to course redesign Challenge you to think about course redesign at your institution 2

3 W HY REDESIGN LARGE ENROLLMENT COURSES ? Bad News – the “Perfect Storm” High DFWI rates Demographics – higher and more diverse enrollments Financial factors – tuition cannot keep exceeding CPI Accountability Good News Knowledge of learning Emergence of digital tools 3

4 W HAT WE KNOW ABOUT LEARNING We know that, if we provide an active learning experience that allows students to engage with course content each other, and instructors, they can and will think critically and develop cognitively 4

5 G OALS OF THE UNT N G EN P ROJECT Improve student learning outcomes in large enrollment undergraduate courses To have a university-wide impact through the establishment of a Community of Practice Create a redesign process that is sustainable and replicable 5

6 (T RANSLATION ) G OALS Students think, work hard, like what they are doing, get good grades that mean something, and graduate Doesn’t cost more and uses less space Faculty enjoy and believe in the process 6

7 UNT’ S T RANSFORMATIONAL QEP G OAL

8 N EXT G ENERATION R EDESIGN IS A TEAM PROCESS Faculty teams redesign 4-6 courses per year Two-year commitment Occurs within an interdisciplinary community of practice Senior Faculty Fellows “Choreographed” Retreats and monthly meetings with faculty and staff Institution-wide forums End-of-pilot and project meetings 8

9 S TEPS IN THE N G EN REDESIGN PROCESS 9

10 T HE “ BUILDING BLOCKS ” OF N G EN COURSES NGen courses consist of a “blend” of the following: Large group lectures : 0% – 30% of contact hours Small group experiential learning : 30% – 60% of contact hours Media-rich interactive online environment : 30% - 50% of contact hours 10

11 I N N G EN, LECTURES ARE BEST USED TO : Create interest and motivation and provide assurance that students can be successful Clarify and expand upon (rather than deliver) content Model the acquisition of knowledge in the field “How does a chemist/sociologist approach a research question?” Present the critical lower level concepts to provide scaffolding for higher level concepts 11

12 W HAT IS EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING ? The major goal is the acquisition of higher-level abstract concepts and values The instructor plays a vital and purposeful role in the process Experiential learning has two equally important parts Concrete experiences Guided reflection 12

13 I N N G EN, EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING ACTIVITIES ARE BEST USED TO : Introduce an emotional component Brain-based learning Analyze, evaluate, and synthesize Present and defend newly-acquired hypotheses 13

14 A SIMPLE CONCEPT, BUT EASILY MISAPPLIED … 14

15 D EVELOPING SUCCESSFUL EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING ACTIVITIES 15 See handout

16 E XPERIENTIAL L EARNING ACTIVITIES VARY IN COMPLEXITY Level of complexity is driven by: Complexity of GLO’s/sLO’s Flexibility of the classroom Time available Instructional support Examples Simple : Think-Pair-Share Moderate : Parts of a cell beauty pageant Complex : Competitive simulation game 16

17 E XPERIENTIAL LEARNING EXAMPLE : D AM I T ! Competitive simulation game that lasts for one month Students play one of three roles dealing with the historic Hetch Hetchy dam project: Member of U.S. Senate Committee on Public Lands Preservationist – e.g., John Muir Conservationist – e.g., Colonel John Biddle Students reenact the public hearing and committee vote 17

18 I N N G EN, ONLINE LEARNING ACTIVITIES ARE BEST USED TO : Acquire lower-level learning to free up time for in-class experiential learning Chunk content to overcome working memory limits Provide low-stakes assessments such as quizzes for practice and confidence building 18

19 O NLINE LEARNING EXAMPLE : U.S. H ISTORY II Providing the foundation for the Hetch Hetchy “Dam It” simulation game Specific context Background readings Character descriptions (special website) Online course content on the Progressive Era Online course content 19

20 UNT CURRENTLY OFFERS 19 N G EN COURSES Art HistoryBiology I U.S. History I & IIOrganic Chemistry American Government I & IIDevelopmental Math/Algebra Principles of Language StudySurvey of Mathematics World Literature I & IIComputer Applications Modernism & the Visual ArtsOccupational Health Introduction to CommunicationsHuman Development Introduction to SociologyMotor Development Sociology of DisastersGlobal Marketing Concepts Music Appreciation 20 Six new courses will start the redesign process this fall

21 F ACULTY P ERSPECTIVE DR. BRENDA MCCOY 21

22 C HANGE WHAT OR WHO ? “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it Good teaching evaluations Well-rated on “Pick-a-Prof,” but what does that really mean? It’s getting harder to cover material in all types of courses Students are not reading—slowing lecture and class discussions Plagiarism is becoming common and writing skills are deteriorating Critical thinking skills have been declining 22

23 I MAGINE ! Away from blame Trying to imagine what is needed to engage my students Verstehen Trying to understand or imagine how my students must see the classroom and the world Coming to grips with the idea that the “train is leaving the station…” The social changes are profound and I must adapt if I want to be on board 23

24 J UST “G OOGLE IT ” It has never been easier to find “answers” We have become addicted to “Google” Our students have never known another way Radical impact on higher education “The professor is an idiot—I just fact- checked him…” “Why do I need to learn that? I can look it up when I need it.” The shape of “Gen Y” and later generations Long on answers, but short on experience 24 Doodle 4 Google Matteo Lopez, age National Winner

25 E XPERIENCE ! Confucius I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand. Facilitate student discovery How can I structure a situation so that students experience collective action? How can students easily draw random samples of different sizes and explore varying results? How can I get students to espouse a position based on personal investment rather than repeat “sound-bites?” 25

26 S OCI 1510 THEN … AND NOW sections taught each semester Large classes: 100 – 120 students Less “sage on the stage” and more “guide on the side” Lecture M W F M Lecture or formal discussion All students W Experiential learning Group A (half of class) F Experiential learning Group B (half of class) Old System Online textbook and testing Online learning objects N- Gen Redesign 26

27 S OCIOLOGY 1510 We use 8 different activities Group size varies from 5 – 50 Different degrees of length and complexity Examples: Flash mobs Semester-long project on collective behavior which students plan and execute Survey questions Using clickers, students respond to survey items and evaluate what happens when the wording is slightly altered Philosophy of Individualism Students explore their feelings about “free- riders” and the process of creating policy 27

28 L EARN ! “Who dares to teach, must never cease to learn.” (John Cotton Dana) Ever-changing subject content New pedagogical approaches—not “shiny- object” syndrome From our students Wiki-world: the brave new world for the academy 28

29 T HERE IS “ PUSH - BACK ” “Now can we stop playing games and learn Physics” (Wieman, 2006) “Active learning…is a philosophy and movement that portents trouble for the future of higher education and the professoriate. It is longer good enough to teach well; instead, professors must be ready to embrace newly developed methods of ‘engagement,’ even as class enrollments skyrocket. The ‘new professor’ must make large classes as entertaining as video games—or else take students out for coffee and memorize their hobbies.” (Mattson, 2005) “I just can’t take the ‘me’ out of my teaching.” (Frustrated NGen Fellow, 2009) 29

30 D ILEMMA ! 30 If I use experiential learning in my class, how am I going to “cover” all the material?

31 T HERE ARE SIGNIFICANT CHALLENGES Once you move beyond the small circle of innovators, there are formidable challenges Lack of rewards Hostility to change Scheduling problems Research vs. teaching demands Entrenched and comfortable pedagogy Lack of resources to produce online materials 31

32 A DDRESSING THE C HALLENGES Extended Redesign Project Currently 9 years Nurturing Communities of Practice Offer “NGen Lite” opportunity Redesign single unit Summer-long project Retains assessment expectations 32

33 A DDRESSING THE C HALLENGES Working to change the recognition/reward system Creation of professional career track for instructors Development of institution-wide teaching assessment Revision of workload documents 33

34 A DDRESSING THE C HALLENGES Creation of a Core Academy Separate academic unit under the Dean for Undergraduate Instruction Faculty are full-time instructors in a professional track Faculty report to the Core Academy but are co-hired by the department Department receives SCHs for their courses taught in the Core Academy Serves as a “Beta” site for NGen Courses 34

35 A DDRESSING THE C HALLENGES Creating student demand for change Presentation to advisors Promotional items Website Billboards 35

36 E NABLING T RANSFORMATIVE C OURSE R EDESIGN : 3 P’ S Passion Project Management Persistence 36

37 D ISCUSSION Dr. Philip Turner Dr. Brenda McCoy 37 For more information: Next Generation Course Redesign Peter Lang Publishing


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