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Group Work and Collaboration in a Large Classroom Western Civilization I Carole Adams History Introduction – What are the issues? How to transform an introductory general ed course (Western Civ I) for a large classroom

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group work and collaboration in a large classroom

Group Work and Collaboration in a Large Classroom

Western Civilization I

Carole Adams

History

University of Central Florida

introduction what are the issues
Introduction – What are the issues?
  • How to transform an introductory general ed course (Western Civ I) for a large classroom
  • How to do this while having a Media-Enhanced course that meets M & W, with web work for Friday
  • How to encourage & foster student discussion in this setting

University of Central Florida

the setting for western civ i
The Setting for Western Civ I
  • MAP 259: 90 seats, fixed to floor; w/ computer
  • Meets 2 hours/ wk in class
  • Third hour = on-line
  • All students placed in small groups of 9
    • WebCT puts the 9 together for online discussion (no one else has access)
    • Then further divided into 3s
    • Seating plan puts the 9 together

University of Central Florida

large classroom teaching learning problems goals
Knowing each other in class

Having students interact in & out of class

Fostering active learning

Developing skills of critical thinking and analysis

Divide into small groups & use a seating plan

Pose questions to each small group via WebCT Forum

Grade participation to encourage

Relate history to contemporary issues & problems

Develop assignments (in & out of class) with Higher Order Skills

Large Classroom Teaching --Learning Problems & Goals:

University of Central Florida

creating the learning environment in western civ i
Creating the Learning Environmentin Western Civ I
  • From Day One foster enthusiasm, motivation
  • Have clear structure, organization, routine, communication
  • Teach skills as well as history
  • Relate the past to the present
  • Use mini-lecture interspersed w/ questions, collaborative exercises, individual exercises
  • Give quizzes based on higher level skills
  • Create small groups on WebCT and use a seating chart that > students sit with their online group
  • Create questions for online discussion in small groups that are focused & demand critical thinking
  • Give major assignments that foster critical thinking

University of Central Florida

implementation outcomes from work in the summer institute
Implementation & Outcomes:From work in the Summer Institute

1. From Day One foster enthusiasm, motivation

    • Syllabus encourages success; CLARITY and organization foster success
    • Opening class w/ WebCT: Onscreen & online
    • Example:

What Should Students Do?

  • Make sure you read and refer to the teacher's syllabus. Ask questions when you don't understand. Visit the teacher during office hours (most faculty at UCF really care about students, it's just that they treat students as grown-ups).
  • Make contact with students in your class, so that they can fill you in on what was covered and assigned if you have to miss class.
  • Use the Centers mentioned above. You can find them at:
    • Writing Center: http://reach.ucf.edu/~uwc/ Math Lab: http://pegasus.cc.ucf.edu/~mathlab/
    • SARC: http://pegasus.cc.ucf.edu/~sarc/
  • Get some of the terrific study guides and actually USE them. There are some at the campus bookstore. Good books include: 1) Robert Diyanni, How to Succeed in College (1996) & 2) Paul A. Grayson & Phil Meilman, Beating the College Blues (1999)
  • Use online study guides, such as: http://www.abacon.com/firstyearfocus/index.html
  • Use the sections of this course under "Student Tips" to learn how to study and do college courses, on and off-line.

University of Central Florida

implementation outcomes my work in the summer institute
Implementation & OutcomesMy work in the Summer Institute

2. Use mini-lecture interspersed w/ questions, collaborative exercises, individual exercises

  • Example of old format:

Current topic presentation:Prehistory

I. About human evolution

II. Hunter-gatherer societies

III. What's the difference between Paleolithic and Neolithic?

1

University of Central Florida

implementation outcomes my work in the summer institute8
Implementation & Outcomes:My work in the Summer Institute
  • After the Institute, new plans:

Prehistory

I. About human evolution

II. Hunter-gatherer societies

Individual exercise: list 3 important characteristics of hunter-gatherer societies

Step 2: work with your small group to come up with a group CONSENSUS as to the 4 most important….

III. What's the difference between Paleolithic and Neolithic?

Group discussion to hand in: what inventions and new cultural elements get your tribe from the Old to the New Stone Age? (list 5 changes)

2

Group work

Group work

University of Central Florida

implementation outcomes my work in the summer institute9
Implementation & Outcomes:My work in the Summer Institute
  • Give quizzes based on higher level skills
    • Lower-level memorization:

The Neolithic is:

    • The Old Stone Age
    • The New Stone Age
    • The Paleolithic
    • Higher-order comprehension:

Your textbook argues that the most important characteristic of the Neolithic is:

    • Use of iron
    • Burial of dead
    • Invention of agriculture

Old

New

University of Central Florida

implementation outcomes my work in the summer institute10
Implementation & Outcomes:My work in the Summer Institute

3. Create questions for online discussion in small groups that are focused & demand critical thinking – example:

For online discussion: everyone in your small group lives in the Roman Empire in 180 AD. Using your text, class work, & the web –

write a paragraph explaining the status and problems facing your group.

Person 1: You are a general (group = military)

2: You are Emperor Diocletian

3: You are a Roman artisan

4: You are an army officer

(in part of your answer, reply to the general)

5. You are a woman of the nobility

6. You are a Christian

University of Central Florida

implementation needed work
Implementation – Needed work …
  • For each class, find 1-2 exercises that are short, demand collaboration & critical thinking
  • For each week, develop online topics/ role plays for small-group discussion and analysis
  • Write weekly quizzes that incorporate more higher-order learning
  • Develop, for weeks 8-14, group projects that are clearly defined, with rubrics & mechanisms to assure collaboration

University of Central Florida

implementation needed objects
Implementation – Needed objects…
  • Seating plan for classroom
  • New technology (used by SCALE-UP)

Clickers

Sensor

Software

Immediate in-class feedback

to questions posed

University of Central Florida

conclusion what i learned
Conclusion – What I learned
  • Large classes & collaboration BOTH demand careful planning & organization UP FRONT.
  • Make sure students know from the start that you value group work, that they will be assessed for it, & HOW they will be assessed.
  • Have mechanisms to hinder slackers (“free riders” on the work of others).
  • If I get it all together this summer, things will flow smoothly in the fall.

University of Central Florida

attachments links etc
Attachments, links, etc.
  • I would like to thank all the presenters who helped me with:
    • Developing short collaborative exercises
    • Structuring large classes for high motivation & involvement
    • Teaching students how to work in small groups
    • Assessing group work, especially for large classes

University of Central Florida

slide15

1. Introduction

      • Statement of Purpose, brief description of what you’ve planned to accomplish in the Summer Institute:
  • 2. The Setting
      • Brief description of the course/class/setting in which the course will be taught.
  • 3. Learning Problems and Goals
      • Specific details of obstacles envisioned for students, class, etc. in terms of learning problems; Statement of goals you envision for your time in the Institute
  • 4. Creating the Learning Environment
      • Identify and discuss changes, such as ways to engage students, what tools and activities you are considering (considered), how pedagogy and technology assist in addressing the above problems and goals, specific examples of how and what changes made.
  • 5. Outcomes
      • What they are and what you expect that they will be. Are there specific products (deliverables) you have developed or will by the time the course is taught?
  • 6. Implementation
      • Relates to 3, 4 and 5 above; What necessary resources (computers, networks, etc.), where to begin, current difficulties/successes encountered in accomplishing the goals.
  • 7. Conclusion
      • “One size does not fit all…Blah, blah, blah”
  • 8. Attachments, links, etc.:

University of Central Florida

outcomes
Outcomes

University of Central Florida

outcomes projected
Outcomes - Projected

University of Central Florida

outcomes actual
Outcomes - Actual

University of Central Florida