Strengthening STEM laboratory assessment using learner portfolio and electronic assessment

Description Weekly lab reports are an integral part of the foundational engineering curriculum. In many conventional science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) curricula, students are required to write a report after each weekly experiment, documenting the lab process. Recent research by Vargas and Hanstedt (2014), however, indicates limitations of weekly lab reports, including reduced effectiveness …

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Use academic challenges and experiential missions to provide learner choice and engage students in online course activities

Description Aligning students’ instructional preferences with course activities and providing opportunities for learner choice are widely recognized as educational best practice, helping students to engage with content and learn more effectively (Kern & State, 2009; Patall, Dent, Oyer, & Wynn, 2013; Patall, Cooper, & Wynn, 2010), and researchers and practitioners have started extending this instructional …

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Use online debates to enhance classroom engagement

Description A debate is a formal competition between two teams, usually with three members each, arguing a discussion statement known as “the moot”. Shaw (2012) believes that debates stimulate critical thinking and can be a highly effective way to actively engage students in research in the online classroom. Student-generated debate presentations can become a welcome …

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Use student created discussion prompts for peer review

Description Reading assignments are often the basis for understanding much of the information and material content delivered in class. It can often be challenging – and overwhelming for students – to encourage reading and assess comprehension in the absence of traditional face-to-face class discussions. Utilizing student created discussion prompts as a means for peer review …

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Using student created blogs as a progressive formative assessment in an online STEM course

Description The utility of writing assignments to enhance learning biology is well documented (e.g. Mynlieff et al., 2014; Couch et al., 2015). Such assignments can provide the basis for assessing higher-order and critical-thinking skills (Kelly et al, n.d.). Furthermore, when students are able to react to instructors’ feedback by re-drafting or adjusting their written work, …

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Assess Individual Learning from Group Projects

Description While many instructors across instructional venues integrate collaborative activities that emulate professional realities, collaboration assessments often disenfranchise some contributors. When evaluation hinges on groups producing a cohesive, homogenized artifact, the outcome favors compromise. Homogenized perspectives don’t generally reflect the complementary visions of individuals. This can foreclose on participant satisfaction if the outcome silences or …

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Use video self-modeling software to strengthen reading and speaking fluency

Description Using video self-modeling (VSM) is an effective and engaging method for strengthening a student’s reading and speaking fluency; it has been a popular tool used for decades to effectively improve individuals’ behaviors and skills (Prater et al., 2011). This activity provides students with an opportunity to watch and listen as they model a skill …

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Use minute paper to evaluate student participation

Description The minute paper is a formative assessment strategy whereby students are asked to take one minute (or more) to answer two questions: what was the most important thing they learned in class today; and what still remains unclear to them. The goal is for the instructor to get a feel for whether students captured …

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Syllabus Quiz

Description In the online environment, it is important to provide clear expectations, policies, and grading expectations and to ensure that students are familiar with these policies and expectations (California State University, Chico, 2014). You may have a very detailed syllabus. However, students may not carefully read all of these details. By creating a syllabus quiz …

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Social Videos

Description Instructor: Jim Hobart, Advertising/Public Relations, Nicholson School of Communication, UCF Course Title: ADV3008 Principles of Advertising Student generated video; have students create their own videos to illustrate course concepts or ideas. Share not only with other fellow students, but also with family and friends. Benefits: student-centered learning; motivation; anchored instruction Copyright concerns: Increase students’ …

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