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eFellows Grants - 2016
Advanced Course Redesign for Blended or Online
Awards up to $5,000. Projects include a "whole course" redesign to a blended or online mode.
Partial Course Redesign
Awards up to $2,000. Course redesign projects with smaller scope, targeting specific course aspects, but which could eventually lead to a whole course redesign over time.
Building Blocks for Course Redesign
Workshop designed to build the basic elements of a course (description, goals, objectives, & assessments). A stipend will be provided.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Scientific (Technical) Russian 3001 / 5001 - Blended Course
The four human language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) are classified by two criteria: 1) user's role in skill production (passive, active) and 2) format (written, oral). The 2012 eFellow grant I received was critical in transitioning to a blended format for the upper level course "Russian Phonetics and Intonation 4320", which focuses on the enhancing of oral FL skills: listening (passive, oral) and speaking (active, oral). The logical next step is to create a curricular component, currently missing - the "Scientific Russian", in order to focus on two written skills - reading (written, passive) and writing (written, active).
The Scientific (Technical) Russian is a 3 credit hours course. It has been offered twice as a face-to face course: Special Problems 200 in the fall 2010 and Special Problems 3000 in the fall 2014. The Scientific Russian will be offered as experimental in the Fall 2015 and Fall 2016 at both undergraduate level as 3001 and graduate level as 5001. The course will be offered thereafter on a yearly basis upon receipt of the permanent number during the Fall 2016.
The prospective enrollment for the Fall 2015 includes: 5 undergraduates (3001) and two graduate students (5001). Based on the enrollment numbers and the overall growing interest in the Russian Minor, the course's enrollment is projected to increase by 50 % in the next two years, expected to grow further.
The Scientific Russian is the required course for the Russian Minor. The Missouri S&T campus and the ALP Department are providing support, through the eFellows and Community of Practice Program, to develop a hybrid/ online version of the course.
A comparative linguist, an experienced Russian-English-French translator, an instructor of Russian to engineers at the college level for twenty six years, I firmly believe that we must "encourage and enhance collaboration in teaching and research" for our students and the faculty (S&T Strategic 2020 Plan, Theme 1, Lever 1.5). The language of science, research methods, and data processing techniques are universal across subjects. As an active researcher and a language practitioner, I have to share my professional experience with my students. The "Scientific Russian" course will accomplish exactly that.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Electrical Engineering 2800 - Electrical Circuits (for non-EE majors)
The current course structure of EE 2800 (Electrical Circuits for non-EE majors) is traditional classroom learning. A blended learning method is proposed where part of the instruction will be accomplished by interactive online modules and part of it will be realized by in-class discussions, design analysis, and a semester long evolving project.
Benefit to students:
The redesign will promote more interactive and experiential based learning as opposed to instructional based learning only. The proposed structure is expected to improve critical thinking, analysis skills, interaction amongst peers, interaction with instructor and a critical dialogue in class. The students will be prompted to self-learn the basic background required for a particular application/design/analysis and then with instructor’s help, the students will be expected to apply the knowledge in critical analysis using examples, design problems, project etc. in class.
The skills and learning established in class will not only help students succeed in the course work by understanding and applying the learned material well, this will also inculcate team work and critical thinking that is necessary for every engineer to succeed.
Benefits to key customers as distinguished in the strategic plan:
The proposed redesign targets two of the key customer groups established by chancellor’s strategic plans namely, “Undergraduate Students” and “Employers”. The undergraduate students will benefit by learning more due to the effective and efficient use of time inside and outside of class room. The students will benefit by spending more time on doing the analysis as opposed to listening to instructions. This is in adherence to the strategic plan levers 1.1 and 4.3.
Better prepared students will lead to better prepared engineers that are highly valuable to our employers. The innovative learning and creative thinking will also lead to better research on campus with our undergraduate students contributing more and helping in the fulfillment of strategic plan levers 1.2, 2.5 and 4.3.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- English 1160 - Visualizing Research & Writing
The project's design is intended to capitalize on face-to-face interactions by flipping the traditional lecture/workshop classroom setting, and converting class meetings to discipline-specific focus groups that would meet in the library once per week. The course would mimic a traditional blended format: students participate in the course online, and meet in discipline-specific focus groups once per week during the class’s section time. Discipline-specific focus group meetings will occur at the Nonavitra Visualization Wall housed in the C. L. Wilson library, in order to facilitate collaborative research, writing, and revision endeavors within the group meeting sessions. All other collaborative and e-learning endeavors will occur via Blackboard (utilizing TurnItIn software, video lectures, online quizzes and discussion boards) and Google Drive. During weeks 15-16, the class will reconvene in the library’s conference room to meet in a mock-conference, and students will present condensed versions of their research projects to their classmates in order to gain presentation experience, and use collaborative writing technology through Google Docs to gather feedback from an audience that is not comprised solely of specialists in their disciplines.
In recent years, research has indicated that employers of STEM graduates find that written communication skills are among the top deficiencies of their new employees (Sundberg et al., 2011). Though STEM students tend not to recognize the extent of this deficiency (Sundberg et al., 2011), they do report that the university’s expectation of literacy throughout the undergraduate years is a significant source of stress, causing students to adopt an adversarial relationship with courses that require large amounts of reading and writing (Hardy & Clughen, 2012). This stress leads to a lack of confidence in writing self-efficacy, and lack of confidence has been a factor in the inhibition of students’ writing skills (Pajares & Johnson, 1993). In this study, I will explore whether the undergraduate research and writing classroom can be reconstructed using the educational technology available to increase student self-confidence, and thus student success in research and writing, through interventions which have proven successful in other venues – specifically, through dividing the class into smaller discipline-specific focus groups (Li 2013), relocating class meetings in the library (Weiner 2009; Mezick 2007; Soria, Fransen, & Nackerud 2013), and through implementing experiential learning that mimics the kind of research and writing students can expect to encounter in their graduate and professional careers (Thiry, Laursen, & Hunter 2011). A variety of educational technology will be essential for the delivery of instructional materials, to facilitate collaborative efforts during focus group and full-class meetings, and to maintain class cohesion beyond the focus group and full-class meetings.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Chemical Engineering 2100 - Material and Energy Balances
ChemEng 2100 is one of two sophomore-level core courses in the Chemical Engineering that are not available to transfer students from a typical community college or general studies program. This course is fundamental to the chemical engineering curriculum and must be mastered with a grade of C or better before continuing to the upper level courses. As a result, students who performed poorly during the regular academic year or those who transfer to MST after a two year program must take this course before continuing with the Junior and Senior years of the program. This course, therefore, must be offered every semester including Summer terms.
Typically, faculty carefully guard their summer time as an opportunity to focus on research or other academic interests and do not choose to teach summer classes. Thus, the summer versions of this essential course is often relegated to adjunct faculty who do not have significant academic experience and are not strongly vested in the student’s success. This problem is a national one, and not just an MST problem. Students need to take a summer course in Material and Energy Balances and only a small number of courses are available across the US and those are frequently taught by unproven faculty.
This project proposes to recreate the summer version of the course so that it would be less demanding of faculty time during the summer by spreading the workload through the year and enabling summer conference travel without diminishing the quality of the course. Being delivered electronically will benefit the students that need to work at a slower pace and review material more frequently to succeed. Online office hours and a small collaborative project will help the students feel connected.
This summer MST initially had 12 students enrolled in ChemEng 2100 and 5 enrolled in ChemEng 2110. These courses are gate keepers to the rest of the ChemEng curriculum. At transfer advising sessions, several other students considered enrolling in this course but were not available to move to Rolla before the fall term. Due to the small numbers, both courses were cancelled for the summer of 2015. As a result, these students will now face a less-than-full-time-load of courses for the fall and will be forced to supplement with courses that are not needed for their degree. They also will have their graduation delayed by one additional semester. Based on my discussions with the students this year, I am confident that the MST transfer student enrollment in the summer classes will be at least 10 – 15 if students are not required to be on campus the summer before they planned to move to Rolla. Students at other universities across the US face a similar problem. I believe that, if this course is done well, it will attract summer-only students and allow transfer students to have an opportunity to finish their Chemical Engineering degree with two years in residence at MST.
Director of Composition
Coordinator, English Teacher Education Program
English & Technical Communication
COURSE / PROGRAM
- English 2243 - Science Fiction Literature
- English 2244 - Fantasy Literature
This course redesign project of English 2243: Science Fiction and English 2244: Fantasy Literature into blended courses will enhance and improve face-to-face (f2f) class meetings, allow use of online applications to strengthen course outcomes, and facilitate student demonstration of content mastery. Because literary studies extends to numerous media, genre study across all platforms is essential to the understanding of literature's impact. Conversion of English 2243 and 2244 to blended formats will increase face-to-face (f2f) discussion opportunities, and permit students with oral delivery options using VoiceThread for demonstrating content mastery. A blended format with an asynchronous online component will also allow students more time to complete media assignments and course activities, also leading to improved outcomes. A blended format will also facilitate the use of other teaching and learning applications such as Scoop It, Ted Ed, and 3D Game Lab.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Teaching Science in the Elementary Classroom
Research suggests that teacher effectiveness is the single most important factor in predicting student achievement (Darling-Hammond & Ball, 1997). Effective teachers must have a firm grasp of academic content, a vast repertoire of pedagogical methods, and an understanding of child development and the various learning styles. Ironically, many elementary teachers struggle with the first of these requirements, citing a limited background knowledge, confidence, and efficacy for teaching STEM. Consequently, this may have a negative impact on elementary students and their attitude towards STEM learning and careers.
In the fall of 2014, Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T) embarked on a new journey to effectively prepare pre-service teachers using a STEM focused approach. The proposed redesign of the "Teaching Science in the Elementary Classroom" course will utilize a blended structure to incorporate constructivist pedagogy emphasizing the importance of inquiry learning, student centered learning, Activity-Project-Problem Based Learning (APB), and collaborative learning environments. In a commitment to providing first hand connections between campus learning activities and real world applications, a partnership has developed between Missouri S&T and the Rolla Public School District. As a result of those efforts, the proposed science course will provide pre-service teachers hands-on time in an elementary classroom, under the supervision of a highly qualified cooperating teacher.
Additionally, pre-service teachers will experience the APB nature of Project Lead the Way (PLTW), a leading provider of rigorous, relevant and innovative STEM education curricular programs, resulting in the attainment of the PLTW certification. The APB learning approach specifically centers on hands-on, real-world projects that help students understand how the information and skills they are learning in the classroom may be applied in everyday life. The APB based learning approach scaffolds student learning, building the required skill sets to apply toward an open-ended design problem. Students will experience PLTW modules firsthand, developing skills to design and use APB learning to enhance conceptual understanding, critical thinking, creativity, and the engineering design process to solve realworld problems in the classroom. Using VEX IQ Kits to build and program robots is among one of the modules pre-service and cooperating teachers will use to enhance their math and science classes.
This blended course redesign will offer students approximately 20 hours of classroom seat time, 10 hours of online asynchronous learning, and 10 hours of experiential learning. There are several goals for the design of this course. First, as one of two universities selected to partner with PLTW, Missouri S&T has the potential to serve as a model teacher education program on both the state and national level. Additionally, there are very few undergraduate programs across the nation focused on STEM education and S&T serves as Missouri's first, giving us the opportunity to again lead the way. Finally, integrating classroom studies with learning through field experiences related to a student's academic or career goals provides progressive opportunities to incorporate theory and practice.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Psychology 1101 - General Psychology
The goal of this proposed course redesign is to increase student access to an entry level course required by psychology and non-psychology majors. The flexibility of an online course may encourage students to enroll who otherwise are unable to attend a daily, classroom based lecture course. A reasonable enrollment cap for an online summer course could be 20-30. This cap would more than double the average summer enrollment and seems reasonable especially during the first implementation of the course redesign. Furthermore, if it is warranted, the redesigned course could be offered during the fall and spring semesters.
Benefits of the proposed course redesign may include improved student learning outcomes, increased student acceptability of course content, generalizability of redesign components to other psychology courses, and increased classroom availability.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- English 2XXX - Mythology and Folklore
This class will be taught as a fully integrated online, asynchronous course. The course redesign will ideally achieve the following objectives:
- Develop an elegant, comprehensive, and easily accessible course design and website.
- Develop Ways to Optimize Student/Teacher and Student/Student interactions.
- Develop Innovative Assessment Measures.
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Engineering Management 5710 - Six Sigma
- Engineering Management 6710 - Design for Six Sigma
This proposal is for the course redesign of two courses: Engineering Management 5710: Six Sigma and Engineering Management 6710: Design for Six Sigma. EMgt 5710: Six Sigma is a graduate course in Engineering Management program. It is taught every fall semester and typically has approximately 25-30 students each semester. EMgt 6710 is a graduate course in Engineering Management that is offered every spring semester ond typically has 15-20 students.
These courses involve advanced statistical analyses and methods for process improvement and product design through the use of statistical software (Minitab). The content can be difficult for students to grasp with only a few examples that are covered during a normal lecture. In addition, if an on-campus student misses a concept during a discussion, they cannot easily go back as they could as a distance student. In addition, demonstrations can be easy to perform and illustrate for on campus students; however, it is more difficult to show the intricacies of examples and experiments for distance students. Therefore, videos can be created and edited to show the slight nuances and details.
To facilitate learning and provide additional course examples, course material will be recorded and made available online to students. In particular, additional examples in the more difficult topics such as hypothesis tests, regression analysis, and design of experiments will be made available to help students. The recordings will also enable the students to view problems worked out by hand and step-by-step instructions on solving problems through Minitab. Additional topics will also be made available online to reduce the class hours. In this effort, class time may be reduced by roughly 10 minutes. However, more importantly this freed up time will allow for more detailed discussion on the use of the statistical techniques, how to implement them, and how to properly interpret the results to make effective change.
The two courses will utilize course blending. Students will be required to watch the recordings prior to class. Links to the recordings will be provided on the course schedule. The recordings will provide the students with the necessary foundation for each lecture. For example, a recording would be posted providing an overview of Design of Experiments (DOE). This would allow class time to be spent on discussing the calculations and running experiments in class thereby providing hands on experience on how to conduct a DOE. This hands on experience is essential to prepare students for the real world and provides additional knowledge and retention for students that they cannot obtain through reading a chapter and lectures simply on calculations and methodologies.
The class modules will be developed during the fall of 2015 in preparation for the fall 2016 semester (for EMgt 5710) and spring 2017 (for EMgt 6710). In order to measure the effectiveness of the modules, the students will be required to watch the recordings prior to class and class homework and tests will cover the material on the recordings.
In addition, technology will be added to the course through software such as TedEd, Scoop.lt, and Quizlet. Scoop.lt provides access to relevant articles around specific topics. This tool enables students to read articles from sources such as Industry Week to see how the topics discussed in class are being used in industry. Topics and instructions will be provided in the course schedule to enable students to read timely articles as topics are discussed. Quizlet aids students in studying using gamification. A link to Quizlet will be provided through BlackBoard or another course management system. Finally, TedEd provides videos on course topics, "dig deeper" content, quizzes, and discussion boards. The links for the TedEd videos will be provided on the course schedule.
This proposal is follow-up to a very successful course redesign of Engineering Management 4710. While the previous grant for EMgt 4710 was a Tier 2, the work completed met the requirements for a Tier 1 grant. EMgt 4710 was redesigned to incorporate several technologies such as TedEd, Scoop.lt, and Quizlet to enhance learning. The course redesign drove the selection of the appropriate technologies. In particular, the course objectives were developed based on the ABET objectives which drove the learning objectives. Then the corresponding appropriate technology was selected to drive the necessary level of learning using Bloom's taxonomy. This same methodology will be used to redesign both EMgt 5710 and EMgt 6710.
Associate Teaching Professor
COURSE / PROGRAM
- Math 1120 - College Algebra
- Traditionally, Math 1120 has the lowest pass rate (C or better) of all courses on campus, at least in the spring semesters. In the fall semesters, the pass rate has been steadily increasing, and is currently at approximately 65%. However, the spring semester pass rate has been fairly steady, around 36% over the past four years. (See supporting document).
- As a result of the building blocks for course redesign workshop on May 20, 2015, the course goals and objectives for the spring semester Math 1120 are now well - defined. The purpose of this redesign is to alter the method of course delivery and restructure course components to better align with the new course goals. We expect this to result in higher success rates.
- This project constitutes a major portion of the redesign of Math 1120 in the spring semester. In the preliminary stages of this project, content videos were created for student access and review. Additionally, the basic structure of the course was changed. Previously, students met for lecture 5 hours per week, in 3 sections of 50 students each. This was reformatted to 3 hours per week of lecture in a single group of 150 students, and one hour per week of problem session, in six sections of 25 students each.
- This project will consist of adding computer-based, self-paced modules in content areas as well as modules on college preparedness and time management. The use of clickers, quizzes, and Blackboard questions will also be added to allow for more feedback between the student and the instructor. In addition, one hour of scheduled computer lab time will be incorporated.
- Currently, course enrollment is approximately 150 students. Given the increase in new students for fall semester 2015, the enrollment for spring semester 2016 Math 1120 is expected to increase significantly.
- The benefits of redesigning the spring semester of Math 1120 are increased passing rates and increased student retention rates.
- The lead faculty members are Sarah Sexton and Stephanie Fitch.