Professors are often reluctant to introduce active learning in class for fear that they will not have time to cover the content. In his Introduction to Epidemiology class, Wayne LaMorte has used online technology to flip the classroom. His course website consists of learning modules, including video, for students to absorb content outside of class time, taking a “pre-quiz” to demonstrate they have retained the content. This process freed up classroom time to explore more complicated topics in greater detail: class time could be spent on discussion of controversies and problem-solving (both individual and team-based). After class, students would then take a more detailed “post-test”.
Students reacted with enthusiasm. 98% of the students “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that the online modules were a significant aid to teaching. Their comments included: “Given that I had already taken more advanced epidemiology courses, my main engagement with the course was through the online modules. This provided an excellent way to accommodate people with different levels of experience who could learn at different speeds.” “Did not find I needed to use the textbook. The online modules were more than enough to understand the material.”
Prof. LaMorte developed the online modules using SoftChalk software. SoftChalk is currently being offered to School of Public Health faculty through the Office of Teaching, Learning and Technology. Faculty. Faculty at other schools may be able to take a similar approach using other available technologies such as Echo360, Digication and Blackboard.
Welcome back to BU! The fall semester is in full swing, and we are working in many ways to help you with technology in your teaching. We have partnered with the Center for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching on their newly expanded list of Teaching Talks, which are now each paired with a Teaching Tech Talk. These seminars are excellent places to think about enhancing your teaching and the role can technology can play in the process. We will kick off the series on September 18. CEIT will present a Teaching Talk by Domenic Screnci at 10:30 on instructional design, followed by a Teaching Tech Talk at noon introducing new technologies and our educational technology team. This will be a great opportunity to discover new technologies you might not have known about, and think about how they can make your teaching more effective. You can register for this talk and others now. You can also see a complete list of our packed schedule of Teaching Talks and Teaching Tech Talks for the fall.