Presentation on theme: "Redesign of a Multi-Semester Introductory Course General Biology at Fairfield University Overview of Redesign Efforts The Past The Present & Future Cost."— Presentation transcript:
Redesign of a Multi-Semester Introductory Course General Biology at Fairfield University Overview of Redesign Efforts The Past The Present & Future Cost Savings & Pedagogical Improvements And reconciling the two
General Biology l Was a chalk and talk lecture format l Students were more passive than active & were unhappy with their educational experience (in more ways than usual) l Some Q & A, but it was mostly one-way communication l Technology was limited THE PAST 2 Semester Course 4 Faculty Each Semester Simultaneous Lectures: same syllabus & time Different (adjoining) Rooms This General Biology course was resource expensive (space, time and money).
The Plan: Move to large lecture hall Create an active learning course built upon peer instruction. Use laptops & wireless technology in lecture & laboratory Administration Buy In: Redesigned an Existing Lecture Hall to Meet Our Curricular Goals The redesigned course: The Almost Present
The redesigned course: The Present l Redesigned syllabus to take advantage of technology l Incorporated student- centered, active-learning approaches to instruction l Laptops in the lab Focused on depth of coverage not quantity Emphasized higher-order thinking (hypothesis testing, data analysis, data interpretation)
Costs l Reduced # of professors in the course (CAVEAT) l Reassigned faculty time to other high priority courses l Our realized savings in the laboratory were substantial l Funds re-directed towards important departmental goals Pedagogy Students attitudes increased dramatically Team work, technology and dynamic classroom were consistently cited as positives in the course Scores on common questions were higher (not significantly so) compared to the old course Increased number of declared majors by 4% Cost Savings & Pedagogical Improvements Redesign spread through the curriculum