Biology for nonscience majors i a statewide online initiative
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Biology for NonScience Majors I A Statewide Online Initiative. Jennifer Baggett, PhD Grace Rutherford, EdD LeCroy Center Dallas County Community College District March, 2011. Why teach biology online?. Sloan Survey of Online Learning (2010):

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Biology for NonScience Majors I A Statewide Online Initiative

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Biology for nonscience majors i a statewide online initiative

Biology for NonScience Majors IA Statewide Online Initiative

Jennifer Baggett, PhD

Grace Rutherford, EdD

LeCroy Center

Dallas County Community College District

March, 2011


Why teach biology online

Why teach biology online?

  • Sloan Survey of Online Learning (2010):

  • Surveyed 2,500 colleges and universities in the fall of 2009:

  • 5.6 million students were enrolled in one or more online courses.

  • 29% of students were taking at least one course online.

  • http://sloanconsortium.org/ Sloan Consortium, Eighth Annual Report. Allen, E., & Seaman, J. (2010). Staying the Course: Online Education in the United States, Sloan-C, Needham, MA.

Meet student demand

Improve student outcomes

Increase student access

Reduce costs


Why teach biology online1

Why teach biology online?

  • U.S. Department of Education (2010):

    • “Learning outcomes for students who engaged in online learning exceeded those of students receiving face-to-face instruction…” (p. xiv)

  • http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/os/technology/techreports.html

  • U.S. Dept. of Education, Office of Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development, Evaluation of Evidence-Based Practices in Online Learning: A Meta-Analysis and Review of Online Learning Studies, Washington, D.C., 2010.

Meet student demand

Improve student outcomes

Increase student access

Reduce costs


Why teach biology online2

Why teach biology online?

  • U.S. Department of Education (2006-7):

  • Factors most relevant to college decisions about distance education:

  • Meeting student demand for flexible schedules

  • Increasing course availability (# sections)

  • Increasing student access to college

  • Increasing student enrollment

  • http://nces.ed.gov/Parsad, B., and Lewis, L. (2008). Distance Education at Degree-Granting Postsecondary Institutions: 2006–07 (NCES 2009–044). U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics.

Meet student demand

Improve student outcomes

Increase student access

Reduce costs


Why teach biology online3

Why teach biology online?

  • Classroom space

  • Lab space

  • Lab materials

  • Instructor to student ratios

Meet student demand

Improve student outcomes

Increase student access

Reduce costs


Why not use a virtual lab

Why not use a virtual lab?

  • National Science Teachers Association Position Statement (NSTA, 2007):

    • “While reading about science, using computer simulations, and observing teacher demonstrations may be valuable, they are not a substitute for laboratory investigations by students.”

    • “At the college level, all students should have opportunities to experience inquiry-based science laboratory investigations…”

  • http://www.nsta.org/about/positions/laboratory.aspxNational Science Teachers Association Position Statement on The Integral Role of Laboratory Investigations in Science Instruction, adopted February 2007.


What is this project about

What is this project about?

Creation of Biology 1408 course template

Free to all Texas community colleges

Increase student learning and retention

Decrease institutional costs of hosting biology labs

Decrease instructor development time

Almost “ready-to-go” course for a last-minute section to be taught for first time by faculty member


Project background

Project Background

  • College Participation

    • Virtual College of Texas

    • TX Community College Teachers’ Association

    • Advisory Committee

  • Course Development

    • LeCroy Center

      • Lead Content Expert

      • Instructional Designer

    • McGraw-Hill

    • SoftChalk Platform


What makes a great course

What makes a great course?

  • The instructor

  • Clear, consistent,

    and relatable

    course materials


Research

Research

  • Areas important for student satisfaction with online instruction:

    • Interaction among students

    • Quality and timely interaction between student and professor

    • Consistent course design

    • Technical support

    • Flexibility of online courses compared to face-to-face

      Source: Young & Norgard (2006) Assessing the quality of online courses from the students' perspective


Student content interaction

Student-Content Interaction

  • 15 Lessons

    • Lesson Summaries

    • Animations

    • Interactives

  • 15 Labs correlate with lessons

    • Demonstration videos

    • Kit with lab manual


Instructional design

Instructional Design

  • Engage learner

  • Student orientation

  • Clear and intuitive navigation

  • Consistent course design

  • Guided learning modules with

    • clear learning objectives

    • built-in self-assessment

  • Lab partner guiding students through lab experiments by video demonstration


Instructor support faculty guide

Instructor Support: Faculty Guide

  • Syllabus template

  • Orientation template

  • Suggested discussion questions

  • Suggested research and interactive activities

  • Supplemental test bank


Measuring success evaluation

Measuring Success - Evaluation

  • Define learning outcomes

  • Design assessments

    • Lecture content

    • Lab practicals

  • Administer assessments to:

    • Face-to-face students

    • Hybrid students with traditional lab

    • Online students with at-home lab kit

  • Evaluate and share results


  • Contact information

    Contact Information

    • Jennifer Baggett

      [email protected]

    • Grace Rutherford

      [email protected]

      For more information about acquiring this course, contact:

    • Becky Stinson

      [email protected]


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