1: Establishment of partnerships and successful completion
of the first quarter.
2: Improved leadership skills seen in departmental
meetings and project management.
up the partnerships
of the five partnerships (Sociology, History, and Biology) were
established as projected. Applications went out the last week of
the previous quarter. We received five for the sociology position
and two for the history position. After reviewing the applications
with me, the teachers selected their first choice. I notified the
students (those accepted and those not) over break. Details of these
partnerships as individual case studies
can be seen under the OBSERVATIONS
at the left.
History: Faculty member chose the person she wanted as a partner
after break started. I contacted the student over break and he agreed
to the project. The faculty member did not have the project material
ready until half way through the quarter. The faculty member and
the student finally met eighth week of the ten week quarter. The
student never accomplished anything; at that point in the quarter,
he was too involved in final projects for his classes.
fifth partnership was the for the Education Department. We sent
out 30 applications and received no responses. The department even
did some telephone follow-up and still found not Education majors
interested in this opportunity. Several were interested, but unwilling
to give up their jobs in Day Care to take this on. We are pursuing
other alternatives, but this one may need to wait until next fall.
individually with the first three student partners the first week
of the quarter. I also met occasionally with each of them individually
on their partnership on an 'as need' basis. Usually, this was driven
by the student.
added a scope
document, which the student/faculty partners drafted together.
Specific documents are included with each case study. The students
worked with their faculty partner on the details of the contract
for the year.
a group, we initially met over lunch in the pub. However, they wanted
to utilize the time for learning, so we agreed to bring lunch to
the training room and use that time as tech learning sessions. I
planned to have them train each other on skills in which they each
had more depth. It became evident that this would have to wait a
quarter. They were not sufficiently advanced to train and were too
busy launching their partnerships.
the last three meetings I held informal training sessions for about
30 minutes. We touched on some basics of MS Word. Surprisingly,
they found some functions were new to them. We also covered the
outlining feature and its 'Send To...' feature to import the outline
directly into PowerPoint. When we slid over to some PowerPoint topics,
Ethan stepped in graciously with some tips and points that were
new to me. The case studies document more thoroughly the progress
of the faculty.
have worked on how to approach the faculty members when they load
the students with too many tasks. We have shared methods for helping
the faculty member toward independence ~ a trip to the restroom
is often helpful!
sodas, chips, and cookies ~ modest fare for a small celebration
for the four partners at the end of the first quarter of P4L. Though
I planned a few remarks of thanks, the meeting immediately took
off with a life of its own! The two faculty members were fascinated
by what the other was doing. They saw and shared how what they were
doing could help the other. The students were as active participants
as the faculty and the exchanges were definitely close to four equals
sharing results and successes. See the Data section below for results
of the wrap-up survey.
History and Education Stalled
was genuinely disappointed and surprised by the lack of response.
The realized they need to recruit for the fall. They are determined
to use this process to assist one of their faculty members. They
are still strong allies for this faculty development effort.
Art History professor was never really
committed to P4L. Rather, she was interested in getting help with
data entry for a database. She did not seem particularly concerned
about the lack of progress. She felt continually swamped teaching
in the quarter system. The student did not demonstrate any concern
about not having the work. Nor did he do any follow during the intervening
seven weeks to see about the job. The general lack of direction
in his life was apparent.
~ Biology, History, Sociology
who worked in the Sociology P4L, and Ethan,
the History student partner were very engaged in our weekly meetings.
Generally, they were enthused by the progress they were making with
their partners. When they did run into problems, they brought them
to the weekly meetings. Initially, the weekly meetings were just
a formality. As they came across problems, they found these meetings
a place to brainstorm for answers. Often, I could sit back as they
shared directly with each other.
whose Biology professor was in Peru for the quarter, felt like she
had nothing in common with the other two. Meetings were a waste
of time for her. She and I agreed that we would meet as needed,
but that she would not meet regularly with the other partners. Instead,
she would continue scanning the professor's slides. A second frustration
for her was space limitation for images she was scanning. We found
a temporary solution until the space issue resolved. While Stephanie
was always cooperative, her normal joyful demeanor returned when
she made progress with the actual project. She is dedicated and
motivated. In our final meeting, she noted that she appreciated
the new image management software and the unlimited space. She reported
that she had some problems with the stacker in the Nikon slide scanner,
but that she had found a way to make it work.
~ History, Sociology
faculty members were enthused about their student partners. They
were delighted with their own progress as well. Batz left viocemail
notes of enthusiastic progress about five times during the quarter.
Glen surprised himself with how much he achieved in the ten weeks.
Not only were his tech skills advanced, but they had immediate applicability
to his courses.
was interested in the student reaction to her web site. She designed
a survey for the students to fill out along with their course evaluations
at the final. Students generally rated the annotated links,
navigation, and readability GOOD or GREAT,
but most of them rated usability as only ACCEPTABLE.
of her survey will help future web site development, but more importantly
will assist Batz in rethinking both classroom activities and assignments.
Discovering the reasons for the low usability next quarter will
help focus on student learning and alternative uses of the web site.
The goal is to provide viable resources to initiate research rather
than to provide so many resources that they have no need to search
on their own. A critical skill for students is the ability to locate
and evaluate web resources.
the end of the quarter, each of the four partners filled out a Progress
Notes. These were used to guide the partnership for the following
quarter. The evaluation covered the following areas:
of the partnership: The Sociology partners rated this
area very high. The History partners found that they started off
with regular meetings and good progress, but, as the quarter progressed
and they both became busier, they met less frequently and progress
slowed. "Need to stick to a regular day and time," noted
Glen. Later he mentioned that they might need outside structure
to ensure that this happens.
progress: All rated this very high and noted successes.
The History PowerPoints and Sociology web site surpassed expectations.
For Sociology, we opted to drop Blackboard and PowerPoint (see
skills: Glen learned Google searching, enriching the
images for his Powerpoints and gaining new information. He found
these helpful in reinforcing and gauging student retention of
material. Batz can "now independently access [the] course
website in class...[with] confidence." Ella noted, "he's
begun to grasp electronic researching... and what technology is
capable of doing in the classroom."
skills: Ethan learned Mexican history more thoroughly
and was able to assist other students in class. Ella learned FrontPage.
Both learned some additional PowerPoint skills. Most significantly,
they both learned patience and began exhibiting good mentoring
qualities, including a deeper listening. Both struggled at some
point with the change in their relationship from teacher-student
to equal partners, but in the wrap-up meeting were freely making
comments and suggestions.
of progress toward goal: The comments from Glen at the
wrap-up meeting noted that both he and Batz had moved significantly
toward fluency with technology - that they had used different
tools, but the result was the similar. Batz noted that he had
lost much of his fear and was no longer stymied when technology
caused a problem, especially in the classroom.
Batz - none in the program. He is eager to move on to Blackboard.
Glen - more regular meetings.
Ella - more tech in weekly meetings, including Excel and Access.
Employment suggested using applications and a mailing to all majors
in a field. This provided the opportunity to all majors to apply.
We investigated students we had not originally considered. We gained
useful background information we would not otherwise have known.
The applications need to go out three weeks before the end of the
quarter. Students are often too busy the last week to give this
opportunity careful consideration.
The Art History professor was a poor choice on
my part. My motivation was external to this project and the two
goals did not complement each other. In my eagerness to solve
her problems and to try to utilize this program as a motivational
tool, I did not hear her reluctance. I was not alert to the signs,
notably her slowness in getting the materials together. Also,
I believe a critical factor may be that this was the professor's
first year at Principia. Faculty often have a challenge moving
from the semester to the quarter system.
lost a great deal not being part of the team. Maintaining the
value of the meetings for the each individual at the start needs
better planning. Once committed, the students create their own
value and the sense of community builds.
expressed frustration about half way through the quarter. She
was working with Batz on Powerpoint and saw no progress over several
meetings. We looked at their goals and determined together that
they were overly ambitious. We opted for dropping both the PowerPoint
and Blackboard in favor of the equipment mechanics and a more
solid functional ability with the class web site and the internet
in general. This also allowed her to incorporate the library online
databases as well.
weekly meetings with the students need more structure.
While these meetings need the fluidity that allows for their questions
and concerns, if there is no direction, they can feel like a wast
of time. The both agreed that the tech sessions were helpful and
definitely wanted to continue them
excitement of all four partners surprised me. Also, the enthusiasm
generated at the wrap-up meeting is a point on
which to build. The
student partners were solicited for their views on what works
from their perspective. The faculty wanted to know how their classroom
approach could be different as well as what worked for student
assignments and how to teach needed technology skills to the students.
It was true collaboration that can be more ostensibly incorporated
in the future.
workin P4L was included in her application to a summer internship
with Cultural Survival
advocating for indigenous people through their human resources
and public relations departments. She will be working directly
with individuals as well in resolving personal life issues.
fared far better in the Mexico History course through working
on this project. While working on PowerPoints, he and Glen often
engaged in side conversations covering material that was not necessarily
part of the course, thus enriching his experience.
led the group into an evaluation of the impact of the
two approaches (PPT and Web) on student learning. It was encouraging
to see them all share ideas and directions as well as what they
will do differently in the future. Their
comfort with the technology skills gave them a fluency to consider
the pros and cons of these approaches and of technology in general.
is becoming easier for me to enjoy the silences and not feel the
need to constantly direct the action. That showed in the wrap-up
meeting - I stepped back and watched them lead each other
to new ideas and opportunities.
Quarter, I will start two more partnerships at the college and at
least one at the high school. One faculty member has already approached
me eager to take advantage of this program.
the college, I have consulted with the Associate Dean of Faculty
who works with faculty development to select several candidates
to approach. We have a list of seven faculty to approach. Eventually,
there will be an application process, probably managed by the
College Computer Committee.
the high school, I will work with the academic dean on the details
of the program.
'touching base' meetings at mid-quarter to share ideas and encourage
carefully (avoid?) faculty in their first year at Principia.