[B] Week 1 Discussion:

Feel free to introduce yourself and let us know if you have any familiarity with OER or Open Pedagogy (it’s fine if you don’t!). 

Have you ever assigned your students to create an educational resource that could be used by other students, such as a handout, study guide, or even a page of a class website? Do you know of any colleagues who have tried this? Does it sound at all interesting to you?

Please post a response by Wednesday, 7/20.

In addition to your post, respond (briefly) to one other person’s post by Friday, 7/22

19 thoughts on “[B] Week 1 Discussion:

  1. Howard Mandelbaum (he/him)

    Good day, I am an Adjunct lecturer in the math and computer science department at John Jay college. I have no familiarity with OER or open pedagogy. While I have taught at different colleges the courses, I taught have all been significantly structured by the department. That said, I have created assignments for students (particularly in computer science courses) that asked them to solve some programming problem using the programming language being taught (Python, Cobol, RPG etc.,) and to share their solutions with the other students in the class in a structured walk through of their algorithms to solve the programming problem at hand. Since I am taking this seminar, I can safely say the subject is interesting to me and I hope to be able to apply it to my math courses.

    Reply
    1. Bruce Shenitz (he/him/his)

      In the first summer session of this class, another professor in Computer Science was thinking about doing some OER creation with his students. I know we have a zoom appointment and look forward to talking with you about what you’re interested in doing.

      Reply
  2. Julie Kiss (She/Her/Hers)

    Hi, I am an adjunct within the Science department at John Jay. I have little experience with open pedagogy or OER. The curriculum for the courses I teach drastically changes depending on the course and which types of course I am supporting- lecture, recitation, or lab. Labs and lectures are generally fairly structured and have little room for students to share, where as recitations are a space that I have created assignments where students create, share, and discuss concepts. Many of the courses I teach are formatted by a course coordinator, and therefore I am given a recommended list of articles and resources. Depending on the course, I have leniency to add any relevant articles or resources as I see fit.
    Some of the criteria for choosing educational resources I have are as follows. They must be course relevant and specific to the topic or concept we are discussing. They must be appropriate to reading, writing, and comprehension level; the resources I use for freshman science major versus seniors taking a 400-level course versus non-science majors of all ages is drastically different. The resource must bring something new to lesson and be able to engage the students.
    I look forward to learning a lot from the moderators and my fellow colleagues. Hopefully, I can adapt some OER approaches and utilize them in a couple of upcoming recitations for a dual Biology and Gender course in the Fall. I am interested in how this approach may change when applied to in-person, synchronous, or asynchronous courses. If anyone has recommendations for asynchronous sections in particular I would be extremely grateful.

    Reply
  3. Marlene Goldstein (She/Her)

    Hello, everyone! I am an adjunct asst. professor at John Jay in the Phys Ed and Counseling/Human Services Dept. I have been teaching stress management and personal/public health courses asynchronously for many years at John Jay. I was actually one of the first professors at John Jay to develop my classroom courses into asynchronous online ones (20 years ago!). Back then the few of us who took on the challenge had practically nothing to go by – no templates, no advice, even BlackBoard was not developed yet! But I enjoyed the challenge and I felt like an online superstar ahead of my time – now, 20 years later…. eh… it’s time to add some new tools into my toolbox lest I sink even lower from faded superstar to outright has-been! I have no experience in OER and open pedagogy and am excited to learn!

    Reply
    1. Cody D. Stitzel (she/her/hers)

      Hi Marlene,

      It was nice to “meet” you yesterday. I am glad to be in a group with one of JJ’s original asynchronous instructors that paved the way for us down the line! I too was fortunate to have a couple years of experience in teaching online asynchronously prior to the pandemic, which surely made that transition a bit smoother.

      Despite having such experience, I agree with what you mentioned about the challenges of staying up to date with new teaching techniques. I learned in the Teaching of Psychology course I took as a graduate student that ironically, we as instructors are not often incorporating the findings discovered by research into our teaching practices. For example, we know students learn more from retrieval practices (i.e., the testing effect) than from restudying their notes, and yet, most instructors do not leave time or try to incorporate these practices into each class. I’m hoping this seminar will give me the jump start in motivation to re-evaluate the learning principles I have been relying on, in addition to learning about OER and Open Pedagogy.

      Regarding a couple of the things you mentioned during yesterday’s meeting, many of my classes have also made their own private WhatsApp chat groups, which I believe were both beneficial and detrimental to students learning, depending on the day! Similarly, I have indirectly provided students with my personal cell number (it’s listed in my email signature block) and have never had even one student contact me on it after teaching approximately 20 classes. I suppose other instructors have had issues and therefore they are concerned, though I am curious about why there would be such differences across instructors and students.

      Enjoy your weekend!

      Best, Cody.

      Reply
  4. Marlene Goldstein (She/Her)

    Oops – I posted my comment before I meant to! The only correspondence that the students have with one another is through my discussion forums, where they are encouraged to draw off of and share of their own experiences and each other’s. I remember I once made an extensive study guide for the exams, so they can learn through hunting for the answers in the book and lectures as a solitary activity. When one student posted up all the answers for everyone, I sort of canned that idea, and it is likely they develop their own whats app groups independent of the course itself. So now I realize that if I truly want to remain effective and up to date as an educator, it is time ( in fact, overdue) to gain skills in OER approaches to help guide and encourage students to collaborate with one another in a way that promotes and enhances learning. This course comes at a great time!

    Reply
    1. Cody Stitzel

      Hi Marlene,

      It was nice to “meet” you yesterday. I am glad to be in a group with one of JJ’s original asynchronous instructors that paved the way for us down the line! I too was fortunate to have a couple years of experience in teaching online asynchronously prior to the pandemic, which surely made that transition a bit smoother.

      Despite having such experience, I agree with what you mentioned about the challenges of staying up to date with new teaching techniques. I learned in the Teaching of Psychology course I took as a graduate student that ironically, we as instructors are not often incorporating the findings discovered by research into our teaching practices. For example, we know students learn more from retrieval practices (i.e., the testing effect) than from restudying their notes, and yet, most instructors do not leave time or try to incorporate these practices into each class. I’m hoping this seminar will give me the jump start in motivation to re-evaluate the learning principles I have been relying on, in addition to learning about OER and Open Pedagogy.

      Regarding a couple of the things you mentioned during yesterday’s meeting, many of my classes have also made their own private WhatsApp chat groups, which I believe were both beneficial and detrimental to students learning, depending on the day! Similarly, I have indirectly provided students with my personal cell number (it’s listed in my email signature block) and have never had even one student contact me on it after teaching approximately 20 classes. I suppose other instructors have had issues and therefore they are concerned, though I am curious about why there would be such differences across instructors and students.

      Enjoy your weekend! Best, Cody.

      Reply
    2. Cody Stitzel

      Hi Marlene,

      It was nice to “meet” you yesterday. I am glad to be in a group with one of JJ’s original asynchronous instructors that paved the way for us down the line! I too was fortunate to have a couple years of experience in teaching online asynchronously prior to the pandemic, which surely made that transition a bit smoother.

      Despite having such experience, I agree with what you mentioned about the challenges of staying up to date with new teaching techniques. I learned in the Teaching of Psychology course I took as a graduate student that ironically, we as instructors are not often incorporating the findings discovered by research into our teaching practices. For example, we know students learn more from retrieval practices (i.e., the testing effect) than from restudying their notes, and yet, most instructors do not leave time or try to incorporate these practices into each class. I’m hoping this seminar will give me the jump start in motivation to re-evaluate the learning principles I have been relying on, in addition to learning about OER and Open Pedagogy.

      Regarding a couple of the things you mentioned during yesterday’s meeting, many of my classes have also made their own private WhatsApp chat groups, which I believe were both beneficial and detrimental to students learning, depending on the day! Similarly, I have indirectly provided students with my personal cell number (it’s listed in my email signature block) and have never had even one student contact me on it after teaching approximately 20 classes. I suppose other instructors have had issues and therefore they are concerned, though I am curious about why there would be such differences across instructors and students.

      Enjoy your weekend! Best, Cody.

      Reply
    3. Michael Schoch (he/him/his) Post author

      Hi Marlene and Cody,

      Marlene you are still definitely a superstar. I think that’s a permanent title.

      It’s interesting and useful to hear you both connecting open pedagogy to asynchronous learning–I’ve noticed that in some of the articles about OER, the writers explicitly state that OER relies on digital learning. Other authors seem to point out that there are alternatives. But I agree with you both that the pedagogy and philosophy, in this case, is tied to what’s made possible by the internet. Excited to hear more about your experiences!

      Reply
  5. Anna Lerer

    Hello,
    I am an adjunct lecture instructor for the science department and teach SCI 112 Environmental Science and SCI 220 Human Anatomy and Physiology for non science majors.
    I have previous OER experience where I found open text resources for the SCI 220 class I teach and used those texts to present information to students as well as use them to build assignments.

    I have not previously used work to have students edit it for others, which is an interesting idea and something I am excited to try. Since my lectures are not for science majors, it allows for more creativity in the classroom when it comes to presenting different materials.

    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      I have not in the past had students edit assignments to present to others, nor do I know of any other professors who have done that.
      The most I have ever had my students edit were peer review assignments where they review each other’s works, or a paper review where they review studies published by others as an assignment.

      Reply
      1. Michael Schoch (he/him/his) Post author

        Hello and welcome! I can’t quite tell from your post who you are. If you sign in through the academic commons, we should be able to see your name and know that your posts aren’t spam.

        I’m also interested to eventually hear more about this peer review assignment.

        Reply
    2. Julie Kiss (She/Her/Hers)

      Hi Anna,

      I’ve also used peer editing and peer grading in the past. I have found it exceptionally helpful in tempering students’ expectations and in prompting them to be more involved in the course. However, I usually use those methods in smaller in-person sections. I am now moving into a class that is not only asynchronous but needs some revamping as the previous instructor had issues with rampant cheating. I am definitely all for supporting creativity in my recitation portion of that class, but the lecture portion is mostly based on short reading/ writing assignments and two major exams (midterm and lecture). These two sections will be averaged together so I think the rigidity of one may lend to the fluidity of the other, much like SCI lectures and labs.

      I have not used material students have edited previously either, but it may be something I would be interested in pursuing as well. Not sure what software or what type of assignment would be optimal. I know you mentioned study materials, but again not sure what would be the best platform for that (especially with previous exam questions already being found on quizlet, coursehero, etc.) I imagine students may not put in the effort and would simply look for previous exam questions. I am honestly just worried about plagiarism or academic dishonesty.

      Reply
      1. Bruce Shenitz

        Hi Julie. We’ll be talking about platforms mostly in the third session. I know that issues around quality control (which I suppose would include plagiarism and academic dishonesty) were already being raised in our first session, and I think we’ll continue to talk about those in later sessions.

        Reply
  6. Cody Stitzel

    Hi All,

    I am an adjunct instructor in the Psychology Department at John Jay. I have taught courses on Psychology and Law and Abnormal Psychology at the undergraduate and master’s level since the Fall semester of 2018. Most of the courses I’ve taught have been online and asynchronous, though I have also taught online synchronous courses as well as in-person courses. Fortunately, I have had a lot of flexibility in choosing the type of content and sources for my courses, and because of that, have become somewhat familiar with OER. For example, I have used all OER for my online, asynchronous master’s level course (e.g., open access peer-reviewed journal articles, educational YouTube videos, news or media articles, podcasts, and documentaries), and have more recently begun to incorporate these types of sources into my undergraduate level courses, in addition to the required textbook. I have found that students get more excited about learning when various types of materials are available to present related but different information.

    I am slightly less familiar with Open Pedagogy techniques, although I have incorporated this into a handful of assignments in the past. For example, I have had students create multiple choice exam questions and post them to a discussion board, where other students can suggest corrections or edits as well as indicate what they believe the correct answer is – after this portion of the assignment was completed, I evaluated the questions, provided feedback/correction if needed, and then selected and included the strongest questions in the exam the students took. I retained many of these questions and used them in future classes’ exams. I have also asked select students from previous semesters for consent to use their papers as a sample paper for students in future classes. While the new students are not actively editing the original sample paper, I see this as perhaps semi-open pedagogy.

    I am very much interested to learn more about the use of innovative student-centered pedagogical methods for undergraduate teaching that focus on active learning. I look forward to working with you all over the next couple of weeks!

    Cody

    Reply
  7. Cody D. Stitzel (she/her/hers)

    Hi All,

    I am an adjunct instructor in the Psychology Department at John Jay. I have taught courses on Psychology and Law and Abnormal Psychology at the undergraduate and master’s level since the Fall semester of 2018. Most of the courses I’ve taught have been online and asynchronous, though I have also taught online synchronous courses as well as in-person courses. Fortunately, I have had a lot of flexibility in choosing the type of content and sources for my courses, and because of that, have become somewhat familiar with OER. For example, I have used all OER for my online, asynchronous master’s level course (e.g., open access peer-reviewed journal articles, educational YouTube videos, news or media articles, podcasts, and documentaries), and have more recently begun to incorporate these types of sources into my undergraduate level courses, in addition to the required textbook. I have found that students get more excited about learning when various types of materials are available to present related but different information.

    I am slightly less familiar with Open Pedagogy techniques, although I have incorporated this into a handful of assignments in the past. For example, I have had students create multiple choice exam questions and post them to a discussion board, where other students can suggest corrections or edits as well as indicate what they believe the correct answer is – after this portion of the assignment was completed, I evaluated the questions, provided feedback/correction if needed, and then selected and included the strongest questions in the exam the students took. I retained many of these questions and used them in future classes’ exams. I have also asked select students from previous semesters for consent to use their papers as a sample paper for students in future classes. While the new students are not actively editing the original sample paper, I see this as perhaps semi-open pedagogy.

    I am very much interested to learn more about the use of innovative student-centered pedagogical methods for undergraduate teaching that focus on active learning. I look forward to working with you all over the next couple of weeks!

    Cody

    Reply
    1. Bruce Shenitz

      It sounds like you’re already implementing many of these approaches, so I hope you’ll share your experience with everyone both during our synchronous meetings and in comments here on Commons.

      Reply

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