The poster session and dessert reception will take place in the A.B. Graham Hall from 1–1:45 p.m. Explore posters on a variety of teaching-related topics. The poster creators will be available for conversation.
The Effects of Linguistic and Demographic Features on Placement Test Levels in Higher Education
Eunjeong Park, Teaching & Learning
- Acknoweldge the way to improve teaching effectiveness by investigating the effects of linguistic and demographic features on placement test levels through logistic regression.
- Learn the effects of linguistic and demographic features on placement test levels through logistic regression.
Due to the increasing number of international students studying in the United States (“Institute of International Education”, 2016), higher education institutions tend to provide placement essay tests to ensure international students’ readiness for college courses. The high-stakes nature of placement test makes linguists, educators, and assessment-related researchers look for significant components of differentiating levels of placement tests. This study investigated the prediction of two levels (i.e., low vs. intermediate) of 411 placement test essays and examined the influence of the type-token ratio (TTR), tokens, gender, college type, graduate status, and age on placement test levels through logistic regression. The results show that the TTR, tokens, college type, and graduate status were significant indicators to differentiate students’ placement test essays. However, several demographic features, such as gender and age, were not statistically significant factors of the two levels (i.e., low vs. intermediate) of placement test essays. As an evidence-based approach, this study will inform educators in higher institutes of the way to improve teaching effectiveness by investigating the effects of linguistic and demographic features on placement test levels through logistic regression.
Team-based approach to connecting ‘real life’ and Biology courses for non-majors
Suma Robinson, OSU, Mansfield, Biology Department
- Know more about team-based learning
- Learn ideas about student involvement in a ‘real life’ learning situation
- Connect course material to practical knowledge
Non-major Biology courses include students from a variety of possible majors. Taking a Biology course is seen as onerous and unrelated to subject matters of interest and careers especially for freshman and sophomores. A team-based project based on a problem and its possible solutions allows students to make connections between course content and practical applications in ‘real life’. It also allows for an introduction to group dynamics and peer interactions between diverse groups of students. In addition, for many, the project is an initiation to library searches and resource usage, concepts which will help with any future academic goals.
TA Peer Mentoring in a Teaching Community of Practice
Corrie Pieterson, Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology
Judith S. Ridgway, Center for Life Sciences Education
- Apply the backward design process to program evaluation and enhancement
- Consider TA professional development through the models of social constructivism and situated learning
- Consider strategies for establishing or enhancing peer mentoring programs in other programs and departments
We used backward design to enhance an underutilized peer mentoring program for teaching associates (TAs) in the Center for Life Sciences Education (CLSE). The CLSE prioritizes student-centered instruction and TA professional development as part of its mission to support undergraduate biology education. Under the situated learning model, peer mentoring as a form of professional development helps novice TAs to more fully participate in a teaching community of practice.
Following a needs assessment, we developed a mentoring workshop and support materials to foster mentoring relationships. To provide structure and flexibility, we encourage mentoring pairs to use a backward design approach to determine objectives, plan activities, and assess progress.
Participation in the peer mentoring program increased in the two years following program enhancement. Anecdotal evidence suggests that experienced TAs feel better prepared to assume the role of a mentor following the workshop. In an ongoing research study, we are assessing the impacts of peer mentoring on the teaching anxiety, attitudes, and behaviors of novice TAs.
In our program, a professional development course requirement for TAs encourages sustained participation peer mentoring. Departments with less formalized professional development may be able to sustain a peer mentoring program by incorporating it into existing structures.
Writing as Knowing: Multimodality in Engineering Technical Communications
Jennifer L. Herman, Department of Engineering Education
Lynn Hall, Department of Engineering Education
Deborah Kuzawa, Department of Engineering Education
Leah Wahlin, Department of Engineering Education
- Understand that writing and communicating engineering concepts and processes are not just methods for transferring knowledge, but *constitute* engineering knowledge
- Be introduced to assignments that can create writing and communicative scenarios to foster understanding of how audience, purpose, and context are connected to technical subject matter.
- Understand that discussing and teaching writing and communication skills and knowledge can improve learning, application, and analysis of concepts in various technical fields.
Writing, speaking, and listening are skills integral to securing a job and performing the work of an engineer. We assert that these communicative activities and abilities are not just tools and channels by which engineering concepts and processes are transferred from one individual to another. Rather, writing and communicating engineering concepts and processes constitute what engineers know.
Technical writing courses, and all engineering curricula, should foster the development of communication skills and technical engineering knowledge in tandem by providing students with writing and communicative scenarios in which audience, purpose, and context are understood to be inseparable from the technical subject matter conveyed.
Our poster presents a review the existing literature on writing as knowing, communicating in multiple modes, and the transferability of communication skills to a variety of contexts and purposes.
Our poster also illustrates how our engineering students develop transferrable communication skills through three assignments taught in our technical communication courses.
By asking students to engage with and communicate their engineering knowledge in this way, students are better poised to understand, engage, and create in the complex and demanding world of engineering.
Development of Hands-On Engineering Labs: Relating the Real-World to the Classroom
John Schrock, EED
- Learn how to help students relate real-world items to Engineering concepts
- Learn how to help students engage in tinkering and problem-solving
- Learn how to help students gain experience using tools and applying
Research has shown that “making an immediate connection to something real or familiar often motivates students to be engaged in their own learning because they are able to relate well with the object that embodies the phenomenon they are attempting to learn.” Additionally, measured results show that hands-on activities increase engagement and student performance. Students are more likely to stay the course of learning if it involves information and activities that interest them.
The lab was designed to achieve the following goals:
- Relate the real-world to engineering through tactile engagement
- Engage students with an everyday item to lead them on a path to knowledge
- Use tools to tinker, manipulate, and build a system around this item(s)
- Build tool knowledge and tool intuition through practice
- Increase confidence in using tools, tinkering, and problem solving
Lab kits were created that are self-contained with all necessary parts for the students to tinker and learn. The kits can be easily transported and maintained, while allowing space and opportunity for future development. This kit is a base structure to provide guided exploration and allow for problem solving and thoughtful development, both individually and with teammates.