Term Paper Peer Review

Term Paper Peer Review

Mery Diaz https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/members/mdiaz/

Human Services/SPS

https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/groups/stories-of-service/

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

This peer-review activity is connected to the HUS 1101 term paper and is designed to strengthen student writing for the human services. In groups of four, students will provide and receive feedback on a draft of part 1 of their term paper. Each student will receive a copy of all group member drafts. With the use of an assessment rubric, each student will provide and receive verbal and written comments on content; clarity; evidence to support argument; and APA citations and references.

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

Students will strengthen writing skills.
Students will be engaged in active learning of the use of APA citation and references, and the use of peer-review journals to support their arguments.
Students will encounter greater diversity of perspective and feedback
Students will learn to the different stages of writing and refining their writing.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

This activity will take place during the 5th session.
Instructors should expect to actively build preparation over the course of 3 sessions.
Instructors should expect to devote a portion of classroom time for prep and activity.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

This is a low-stakes activity that will prepare students for a high-stakes assignment near the end of the semester.
This activity will require three sessions for students to be prepared to provide and receive feedback.
During session 2 of the semester, the instructor will devote a portion of the lecture to deliver instruction on peer-reviewed journals and book sources and APA citation and references.
During session 6, the instructor will devote time to include an in-class writing assignment where students will have brought 2 sources (other than the course textbook) with prior notice to use as they begin a first draft of the first section of their term paper.
The instructor should also discuss the term paper and rubric that will be used to assess student performance.
The peer-review will take place during the 4th session during a portion of class time. Prior to this session, students will have been prompted to bring 4 typed and double-spaced copies of their drafts with reference page. Members of the group will receive copies of rubric that they will use to review and provide feedback. The instructor should model the use of the rubric and how to provide productive and respectful feedback to peers. The group should provide a summary for the instructor on what each member will need to work on to strengthen their papers.

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Learning communities, Common intellectual experiences (core curriculum), Writing-intensive projects/assignments

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

Rubric Grading Rubric Mery Diaz L4 2015 developed for term paper. Students will use this to self-assess and peer-review.

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

This activity will be implemented during the Fall 2015 semester

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.

Bustling Vacancy_ Mapping “behavioral” city patterns to produce architectural space

Bustling Vacancy_ Mapping “behavioral” city patterns to produce architectural space

Loukia Tsafoulia

Architectural Technology/Technology & Design

ARCH3609_Integrated Software in the Architectural Office https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/3609-integrated-software-in-the-architectural-office/

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

In this course, I create a project with multiple components that incorporates research, evidence, reading and thinking critically, demands organization and presentation skills and requires the ability to work collaboratively. Students work in groups of 2 or 3 over a semester period to produce a highly conceptual design project that is generated following rules of grammar, logic and mathematics. The project brings together the Urban and the Architectural scales through a series of NYC data abstractions and the establishment of rules that will define the students’ design in the architectural scale.

The students are asked to come up with a design dictionary of 3 main architectural elements that serves as their “alphabet” for space creation. At the same time, each group focuses on developing a visual language to discuss, collect, measure, map and quantify NYC behaviors/patterns. The students will respond to the literal and symbolic notion of “Motus” in the city, and create mappings, diagrams, data visualizations and diaries. The projects will ultimately be based on the cartography of their architectural
elements in such a way that they relate to the city mapping analysis. The assembly of these elements will ultimately create a spatial 3d pattern which programmatically serves as an open air experiential space in an empty city lot.

The assigned project involves four process stages:
– “Alphabet” stage
The “Alphabet” stage involves the creation of a design dictionary of three basic architectural elements: stair, wall and atrium. These are the “bricks” students will be using to construct their space.

– “Data” stage
This stage involves the study of New York City’s five boroughs using data analysis in order to identify and map “behavioral” city patterns such as patterns of noise, circulation, population, income, crime rates, programmatic uses, urban density, energy consumption etc. The teams select a minimum of two datamaps and numeric tables supporting these maps and through research, observation and analysis they correlate them and create a series of abstractions.

– “Syntax” stage
During the “Syntax” stage the students extract rules out of the city patterns that will define in a later stage their design. Outcome of this phase is a series of 2d diagrams and graphs explaining the “behavior” of each of the maps and their diagrammatic interpretation in 3d.

– “Composition” stage
This stage is about composing all the material produced during the Alphabet, the Data and the Syntax phases. The students employ the generated rules in order to assemble their architectural elements’ studies. They put together selected wall, atrium and stair studies (a minimum of 2 studies) following the rules extracted from the city pattern research to create a project. The projects will not take data literally. They will rather depart from conventional data definitions and ask what is the city, what is data, and how can they be re-applied in an architectural scale.

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

For this project the students are provided with guidelines for a better understanding of the integration of specialized software into all aspects of the architectural profession. The class simulates the design office space complexity so the students familiarize with its demands.
Students work in groups, demonstrating teamwork spirit, schedule and manage their time in collaboration with others, be professional with timeframes, enhance their speech and rhetoric skills. They have to weekly fill out timesheets learning how to be efficient with the hours spent per task.

The work environment demands that employees work together responsibly so learning in the classroom is initiated in a highly collaborative, interactive, and experiential way and the evaluation and feedback given in between them is encouraging, learning focused and transparent.

Students have to use data related to their city as their driver towards design. During this process students develop research, analytical and compositional skills. They conduct research related to NYC data using online resources such as https://nycopendata.socrata.com/ , http://nyc.pediacities.com/Nycpedia ,
http://wirednewyork.com/forum/ and learn how to properly cite sources. They gather, interpret, evaluate, and apply information discerningly from a variety of sources. Students present regularly throughout the semester to invited professionals from the architecture and urban design as well as curatorial fields. The presentations are in the form of printed boards 24”by36” (I provide them with the template) and oral presentation. Through publicly presenting their work students gain confidence and conscientiousness on their production, engage in constructive dialog with professionals and through this personalized experience increase their interest towards higher education levels.
Students curate all the work produced for the class including their group project in an individual book / portfolio. Main emphasis is given into the narrative of their design concepts and how they all tie together. Story telling is the center of their curation. Every book represents each author so each student should manifest his/her arguments through this book. Together with a printed version the students are also asked to use OpenLab, Archinect and Issuu as platforms to digitally create their eportfolio.

In the end of the semester, I showcase students work at my online digital platform PLB_Education (see link below) giving students the opportunity to be exhibited, to make their achievements visible not only to School’ ‘s community but also to the wider public. For the next semester I plan to also use OpenLab as an online platform in which students will post their blogs and discussions participating in a more interactive learning process. This project and its supportive materials (online archive, recordings etc) create a strong base for continuation past the course’s teaching period. Each subsequent class will build on previous semester classes’ work and therefore document how NYC data progressively alter.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

This activity is a semester long project. I introduce the project on week #2 when I spend 30 minutes in class explaining the details, giving references and engaging on brief discussion with the students. I also post the project’s detailed description, resources, references and tutorials on Blackboard. For this coming semester I will also use the OpenLab platform for discussions and open feedback. From that point on my lectures and weekly assignments support with knowledge on integrated software the evolution of the project.
After Midterm I split the class in two sections: first part is a lecture or workshop on software and technical skills and the second part (60mnts) is organised as desk-critiques or open discussion on each team’s progress and concept.

Students are required to work in groups and meet once per week with their collaborator/s for two hours of brainstorming. Then they have to distribute the tasks between them in order to meet the weekly goals of the project as defined in the weekly assignment handouts. I expect students to devote 4 hours weekly over the course of a semester. They use a timesheet template created in google drive to control the time spent per task. Generally, I will allow some class time for students to meet and discuss and for me to check in with their groups, however, students are expected to devote time outside the classroom for gathering and analyzing their data and composing their design.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

The students are given step by step all the software and theoretical support needed to develop the project’s multiple components in the form of weekly lectures and class discussions. So, the project is broken down to 10 weekly assignments/tasks outlined in the form of instructional handouts. I also post on Blackboard:
Tutorials and Class Recordings so I support them with possible software questions they may have outside the class hours.
– References and Resources.
– Base files for their convenience.

The students are given a template they have to follow and fill with required visuals and text description for their project’s presentation. These are boards 24” by 36” that they gather all the material needed to visualize their project (see project’s brief). Additionally, the whole class is sharing a google spreadsheet that serves as timesheets documenting hours spent per task as individuals and as groups for the project (see project’s brief).

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Collaborative assignments and projects, Open Digital Pedagogy (the OpenLab), Undergraduate research, Capstone courses and projects, Place-Based Learning

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

This project is 50% of the overall grade. All the students have to weekly upload their work digitally on Blackboard following a given file name protocol. I have designed and posted on Blackboard a Rubric relevant to the project’s learning objectives with 5 scales (needs improvement, satisfactory, good quality, excellent quality). The class is broken down into four big presentations (1/4 pin up, Midterm Review, 3/4 pin up , Final Review). The overall grade for this project is outcome of their weekly submissions grade (40%) as well as their 4 main group presentations grade (60%) throughout the semester.

The performance criteria I asses for their group project presentations in my Rubric are based on oral communication:

Organization
– Ability to collaborate and present successfully as a group a highly sophisticated project.
– Professionality in presentation and meeting the given deadlines.
– Followed layout and visualization instructions for the project.

Quality of Supporting Material:
– Neatness and accuracy of the visuals.
– Quality of written description.
– Quality of city data analysis and data interpretation.
– Quality of final design as defined by the constraints set by the city data each team is analysing.

Delivery
– Quality of oral presentation. The presentation techniques, speech and posture as well as
coordination btw the group members are appropriate and appealing.
– Quality of plotted boards (nicely cut, pinned and in great resolution).

The performance criteria I asses for their weekly group project digital submissions are:
– followed instructions and submission on time
– file composition
– file neatness & accuracy,
– file line weights & resolution
– file presentation.

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

This is the second semester I assign this project and students have positively responded addressing it as one of the most motivating and challenging projects they have dealt with. It has been a motivator towards high quality of work and a very interactive and vivid class. I am very excited to implement all the knowledge obtained through the Living Lab Seminars related to the use of OpenLab and the incorporation of HEP and General Education SLO’s to the project’s brief. This assignment has many components so in order to create a very clear methodology for the students I have to provide them with very specific visualization steps, templates and class recordings. Directing all the steps of the project, creating an online platform to exhibit their work, creating timesheets, refining the rubrics for this project’s assessment and providing them in advance to the students has made my teaching overall more effective.

The main challenge is having the students work in groups and being able to manage their time accordingly. For that reason, I create an hierarchy similar to the office space where the working team reports to the project leader regularly through emails, timesheets and notes on each others projects shared with the whole class.

This project by nature relates not only to architectural, urban and preservation design oriented fields but also to Curatorial Fields and Social Sciences. Since this project is based on both qualitative and quantitative data analysis there could be a correlation with Math fields as well. Finally, the project focuses on developing a visual language to discuss, collect, measure, and quantify data. The students and create mappings, diagrams, data visualizations, diaries so I could imagine this project being part of Visual Arts Studies. In the future, I would like to further the project to better connect STEM fields with Liberal Arts.

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.

This is link shows the course’s OpenLab page with the courses syllabus and the weekly handouts, and the description for this project. This website is still under construction and will be used for the next
semester:

https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/3609-integrated-software-in-the-architectural-office/

This link showcases students work from the previous semester:
http://www.plbny.com/#!3609-bustling-vacancy/c1y5p

Drugs in the News

Drugs in the News

Anna Matthews https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/members/amatthews/

Dental Hygiene/SPS

DEN 2315

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

This low-stakes assignment is one of the four OpenLab assignments for second-year Dental Hygiene students who take DEN 2315, Oral Pharmacology, in the Summer session. The purpose of the online assignments, including “Drugs in the News”, is to continue the conversation related to the subject of pharmacology beyond the walls of our classroom and to supplement our limited classroom time (Summer session lasts only 5 weeks – 9 in-person sessions + final examination). Assignment description for students can be found here: Drugs in the News Assignment 2015

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

1. to relate information about drugs presented in the media (print, TV) to the information students learn in the course (DEN2315);

2. to evaluate the information from the news source (article, TV segment, TV ad, blog post) for correctness by finding the original source such as the research article, textbook, professional resources and websites;

3. to share the information about drugs (which can be newly developed or approved medications, or recent updates about medications available previously) with classmates on OpenLab by creating a post and including the links to the original source and references;

4. to read each others’ posts and comment on at least two of them.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

this is the first of the four OpenLab assignments and it is due after the first week of Summer session. Students have three days after the posts are available to comment on each others’ entries. Late posts or comments are not accepted and an appropriate penalty is applied as described in the syllabus.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

because of time limitations and very tight schedule of our session, I invite students to join our OpenLab site ahead of time and upload their syllabus before the session starts and assignments at least a week before they are due. Students must be OpenLab members and know how to create a post and reply to each other. I demonstrate it in class during our first session. No other special arrangements are required.

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Collaborative assignments and projects, Open Digital Pedagogy (the OpenLab), Wrriting-intensive projects/assignments

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

this assignment is 5 points of the students’ final grade in DEN2315. Half of the grade (2.5 points) was given to the students’ original post and half to their two responses to each others’ posts. I did not use the VALUE rubric but evaluated the students’ work using a simple Grading rubric, which I created myself based on the examples from Bean’s “Engaging Ideas: The Professor’s Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking and Active Learning in the Classroom” (2011).

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

I designed and first used this assignment in 2013, and have used it since with success. The students are required to find and share a new article/news segment, published or aired within a year from the beginning of our session, so when they share these news about drugs on OpenLab, we all learn from each other and there is a very active conversation. Consistently, there are many more responses from each student than the two required by the assignment, and each of the posts receives a lot of attention. For example, in our group of 25 (24 students and I) there were 151 posts and comments for the “Drugs in the News” assignment, averaging 6 per person!

The students often surprise me by finding something very unique and sometimes even unbelievable, such as this year one student found a small article about a common medication lansoprazole (Prilosec), an OTC medication for heartburn, which showed promising activity against the bacterium that causes tuberculosis! I was very intrigued but quite skeptical until a few days later an original research article was published in Nature Communications.

This assignment has been a rich source of learning for our students and me every time I offered it in my Pharmacology course, and I intend to include it in my sessions in the coming years.

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.

Tell Me About Infinity

Tell Me About Infinity

Jonas Reitz https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/members/jreitz/

Mathematics/ School of Arts and Sciences

MAT 2675 Calculus II https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/2012spr-mat1575-reitz/

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

In this low-stakes writing assignment, students create a blog post exploring the concept of infinity. The post must respond to one of several prompts focusing on personal experiences of infinity, and must include a photo that illustrates infinity in some way. Extra credit is offered for providing a thoughtful comment on another student’s post.

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

This activity is introduced in the course MAT 2675 Calculus II as we prepare to embark on the study of infinite sequences and series, the first rigorous introduction of infinity in a mathematical context. Before students begin to wrestle with the (challenging!) technical details of the subject, I want them to reflect on their preconceptions about this pervasive and slippery notion of “infinity”. I want to give them the opportunity to make connections between infinity as it appears in other areas of life – philosophy, art, religion – and as it appears in the curriculum. In addition, I use this activity to build or reinforce technical skills – how to create a blog post, upload images, and add tags. I want to get students writing in a low-stakes environment, where their focus is on the content. Finally, I want to give students a chance to respond to one another, building community and trust in my class.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

This activity is tied to a particular topic in Calculus II, infinite sequences and series, which traditionally makes up the last third of the course. The assignment is given just before we begin this topic, around week 9 or 10, and it is due two weeks after it is assigned. I spend 5-10 minutes discussing the project in class when it is assigned, and in subsequent classes I will provide a little time for students to ask questions or raise concerns. I expect students to devote 2-4 hours to this activity, over the course of 2 weeks.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

I post the assignment, including detailed instructions, on the course OpenLab site (see below). I will spend a very short time in class discussing the assignment and answering questions – but I will NOT go over every detail (they are expected to carefully read the assignment and follow all instructions). I try to make the assignment stand-alone, with links to appropriate resources (including, for example, how to create a blog post, how to upload an image, and so on).

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Open Digital Pedagogy (the OpenLab), Wrriting-intensive projects/assignments

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

The assignment includes a list of 5 specific expectations (“You should create a new blog post including the following”), and I use this as a checklist. The assignment is worth a certain number of points, and a student’s score is based solely on the checklist. I want this to be low-stakes in terms of writing — grammar and spelling are not evaluated, and the structure and content of the written work need only loosely fit the instructions. I write a response to each student’s post, and while I don’t share their point score at that time, I will point out if there are significant problems or missing items and encourage the student to make revisions.

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

This has been one of my most successful writing prompts – I was excited and impressed with the variety of creative and thoughtful responses. Asking them to write about their personal experience provided freedom to talk about the subject without fear of “being wrong,” and gave a rich source of material from which they could draw. Many posts spurred great comments, and I noticed in several cases the comments developed into real conversations (although the extra credit offered for commenting on another post did not extend to multiple comments).
I think this assignment could adapt quite easily to many disciplines. It is often the case that certain words, familiar from our daily lives, take on a specific and technical formal meaning in an academic context which gives students trouble – especially as the “formal” and “informal” definitions may be at odds with one another. I can imagine this activity applying to many such cases – by asking students to explore their existing experience of a word or concept, they begin to focus on the meaning of it in an intentional way, which prepares them to compare and contrast their informal definition with the formal usage.

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.

Link to Assignment: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/2012spr-mat1575-reitz/2012/04/04/openlab-assignment-7-tell-me-about-infinity/

Link to Student Work Examples: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/2012spr-mat1575-reitz/?s=infinity

“How Long is the Brooklyn Bridge?” – Field Trip

“How Long is the Brooklyn Bridge?” – Field Trip

Jonas Reitz (with Ezra Halleck) https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/members/jreitz/

Mathematics/ School of Arts and Sciences

MAT 1175 Fundamentals of Mathematics https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/mat1175fa2011/

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

In this introductory mathematics course students are exposed to a variety of mathematical ideas in the abstract, with relatively few built-in applications or connections to the “real world”. By taking students out of the classroom, exposing them to a local New York Landmark (walking across the Brooklyn Bridge), and asking them to use the mathematical knowledge in the course to estimate the length of the bridge, we allow them to make a concrete connection between their own experience and the ideas in the text. The field trip itself provides plenty of opportunity for informal interaction among students and faculty, and overcoming the practical difficulties (staying together, navigating the New York streets, following instructions, accomplishing the goals of the day) gives the class a shared experience that builds community and trust. We paused at the halfway point of the bridge to participate in an icebreaker activity (a bingo variant, which encouraged meeting and talking to many different classmates). Finally, students were asked to take a photo of themselves on the bridge.
Following the trip, students completed a followup assignment on the OpenLab in which they posted the results of their calculations (how long is the Brooklyn Bridge), their photo from the trip, and a reflection on the process.

The field trip combined two MAT 1175 sections (my own section and a one taught by my colleague, Ezra Halleck), and provided a great opportunity for students in both sections to make connections.

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

This activity uses an abstract idea (proportions) to answer a concrete real-world problem, “How long is the Brooklyn Bridge?”. Students compare the time it takes them to talk a known distance (the length of the City Tech block of Tillary Street, from Jay Street to Adams Street) with the time it takes them to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. By solving a proportion, they are able to use their time measurements to estimate the length of the bridge. This demonstrates the underlying idea of proportions in a familiar, outside-the-classroom context, and provides perspective on the abstract notions presented in the text.

In addition, this activity (which took place early in the semester) provided a great way to help establish a sense of community in the class. We took advantage of this activity as a way for students to form groups that included members from both participating sections, which went on to complete a larger group project over the course of the semester.

Finally, this activity was a great way to introduce technical skills – creating a blog post, uploading photos, adding tags, and so on.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

This activity took place very early in the semester – the second or third week of class. It was a great way to break the ice, to get students engaged with the material and interacting with one another, and to establish a new perspective on the material at hand and on the college experience generally (especially since this course has many first-time freshman students). This meant that planning had to take place very early – distributing field trip instructions, completing necessary paperwork, and preparing the class for day of the trip. We devoted about 15 minutes in class to discussing the trip (prior to the trip itself), one day of class for the trip, and about 15 minutes in class discussing the results of trip (the week following). We expected students to spend about an hour outside of class writing completing the followup assignment on the OpenLab.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

Any City Tech field trip requires proper paperwork to be completed, including permission forms for any students under the age of 18. We provided detailed logistical instructions for the day of the trip, including directions (in case students came late and wanted to catch up with us) and suggestions of what to wear and bring (comfortable walking shoes, weather-appropriate attire, water bottle, camera, stopwatch). We also created written instructions for the mathematical part of the trip, detailing where and how to time themselves walking and emphasizing the importance of maintaining a steady walking pace. The activity is low-stakes but is counted towards their grade – we did not deduct points for wildly unrealistic estimations of the bridge length, for example, as long as they were supported by data recorded on the trip, and calculations were shown clearly. Students that missed class that day were allowed to make it up by following the instructions on their own and completing the followup assignment on the OpenLab.

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Open Digital Pedagogy (the OpenLab), Place-Based Learning, Brooklyn Waterfront

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

The field trip itself was not assessed, beyond checking attendance. The followup assignment included a list of 5 specific expectations (“Create a new blog post responding to the field trip.”), and this was used as a checklist. The assignment was worth a certain number of points, and a student’s score is based solely on the checklist. We wanted this to be low-stakes in terms of writing — grammar and spelling are not evaluated, and the structure and content of the written work need only loosely fit the instructions.

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

This is the first time I took students out of the classroom, and I was gratified by the energy and excitement that this simple change of scenery infused in the class. It was great to see students interacting with each other (and with me) in an informal setting, and I believe that the connections that were made that day had a lasting impact on the students’ experience.

I was surprised at the amount of planning and logistics that were involved in even a simple field trip, and in the future I will aim to have my planning absolutely complete prior to the start of the semester. It was difficult to carve out time in our overfull departmental syllabus to allow the trip to take place. While we did not cover a great deal of mathematical content on this day, I still believe it was a worthwhile investment of time – the mathematical content that we incorporated was presented in a way that drove home the efficacy and wide applicability of the underlying ideas, which I think our students will remember beyond the end of the course (unlike the vast majority of the other content).

I think this kind of activity is widely adaptable to many disciplines – for me, this is not a project about studying proportions, but instead about allowing students to experience a connection between course content and the outside world. Asking students to step out of the classroom immediately creates new perspective, and giving them something “hands on” to do involves them in the course content in a way that is difficult to do inside the classroom walls, in the context of a traditional textbook. In addition, the social and emotional impact on the class can be profound – especially in large, “non-major” courses in which students are not already incorporated into a discipline-specific cohort, and may not be predisposed towards engagement in the material.

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.

Field trip instructions:
https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/mat1175fa2011/assignments/day-5-brooklyn-bridge-field-trip/

Followup assignment:
https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/mat1175fa2011/brooklyn-bridge-trip-followup-assignment/

Student work: https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/mat1175fa2011/?s=field+trip+response

Visit to a Drugstore

Visit to a Drugstore

Anna Matthews https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/members/amatthews/

Dental Hygiene/SPS

DEN 2315

Activity Description: Provide a brief description of the activity

This assignment is focused on place-based learning as the activity happens outside of class. It is part of DEN 2315 course, Oral Pharmacology, taken by our second year students in a 5-week Summer session. Full description for students can be found here: Visit to a Drugstore Assignment 2015

Learning Goals: What do you aim to achieve with this activity?

1. to enhance classroom learning by observing the availability and selection of herbal and nutritional supplements, and vitamins/minerals in a drugstore or supermarket of students’ choice;

2. to work individually or in groups of 2-4, depending on the students’ preference, and learn to work in teams;

3. to investigate the claims listed on the package of the selected supplement and find information from independent academic or professional sources;

4. to explain possible adverse effects, drug interactions, and effects on dental/periodontal conditions and process of dental hygiene care;

5. to share the findings, including pictures from the visit to the drugstore, references, and personal impressions with classmates on OpenLab.

Timing: At what point in the lesson or semester do you use this activity? How much classroom time do you devote to it? How much out-of-class time is expected?

this is the 3rd of the four OpenLab written assignments and it is due at the end of week 3 of our Summer session.

Logistics: What preparation is needed for this activity? What instructions do you give students? Is the activity low-stakes, high-stakes, or something else?

as a place-based assignment, this activity requires extra time and some additional travel from students, but because they can select the drugstore to visit and choose to either work individually or in groups, it hasn’t presented any difficulties.

High-Impact Educational Practices: Which of these practices based on George Kuh’s High Impact Educational Practices (and other innovative approaches) does this activity incorporate? Choose all that apply.

Collaborative assignments and projects, Open Digital Pedagogy (the OpenLab), Wrriting-intensive projects/assignments, Place-Based Learning

Assessment: How do you assess this activity? What assessment measures do you use? Do you use a VALUE rubric? If not, how did you develop your rubric? Is your course part of the college-wide general education assessment initiative?

this assignment is 5 points of the students’ final grade in DEN2315. I did not use the VALUE rubric but evaluated the students’ work using a simple Grading rubric, which I created myself based on the examples from Bean’s “Engaging Ideas: The Professor’s Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking and Active Learning in the Classroom” (2011). Although reading and commenting on each others’ posts was not graded, I strongly encouraged it, and many students did reflect on information shared in group. The post authors, however, were responsible to answer any questions I or the classmates asked and to provide additional information when necessary.

Reflection: How well did this activity work in your classroom? Would you repeat it? Why or why not? What challenges did you encounter, and how did you address them? What, if anything, would you change? What did students seem to enjoy about the activity?

this is my favorite assignment that I created and started using in 2014 and the students share with me that it’s their favorite as well. Visiting a drugstore for a specific purpose can be overwhelming due to the variety of available supplements, their brands, and dosages, and my goal is to let the students experience this and become aware of how our patients who don’t have background information that we know, and perhaps don’t have access to reliable and trustworthy sources of information, might feel in a similar situation. Many students describe this assignment as an eye-opening experience and share that they learn very much from it.

Here are some of the students’ quotes from this year’s posts:

“This assignment made me realize just how many conditions one drug can treat, as well as just how much side effects may occur with the use of these drugs. It really goes to show just how complex the field of pharmacology really is, and just how much there is still to learn.“

“This exercise helped me learn that before I buy such things it is important to do my own research. Trusting the words on a bottle is simply not enough!”

“With all that we have learned in class and my own research I have done, I have decided to stop taking vitamin supplements all together. This assignment has opened my eyes even more and I rather get my vitamin intakes from real food sources.”

I intend to continue using this place-based activity in the coming years and i hope my students will continue to learn from this experience and enjoy the trip!

Additional Information: Please share any additional comments and further documentation of the activity – e.g. assignment instructions, rubrics, examples of student work, etc. These could be in the form of PDF or Word files, links to posts or files on the OpenLab, etc.