• Engagement and Higher Order Skill Proficiency of First and Second Year Medical Students A Comparison Between IUSMs Legacy and Reformed Curricula

      Francis, Brandon; Hopper, Mari K.
      In order to better prepare students for clinical practice in today’s environment, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), American Medical Association (AMA), and Accelerating Change in Medical Education Consortium (Cooke, 2010) have all called for reform in medical education. In response to these calls, the Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) transitioned from its legacy curriculum (LC) to a newly reformed curriculum (RC) in the 2016-2017 academic year. The LC focused primarily on didactic methods to deliver necessary material, while RC incorporated active learning into at least 50% of student contact hours. This study set-out to determine if students enrolled in Indiana University’s RC demonstrated higher levels of engagement and proficiency in use of Bloom’s higher order skills (HOS) than students in LC; furthermore, the authors conducted analysis of student development in engagement and HOS from first year (MS1) to second year (MS2), focusing on MS1 students initially in the lowest HOS quartile. Following IRB approval, study participants’ engagement and HOS were annually assessed during MS1 and MS2 for the Class of 2019 (LC) and the Class of 2020 (RC). Engagement was determined using a validated Survey of Student Engagement (SSE) (Ahlfeldt, 2005). HOS proficiency was assessed using the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA+), professionally developed and validated by the Council for Aid to Education (https://cae.org/flagship-assessments-cla-cwra/cla/). Preliminary statistical analysis indicated that RC students increased engagement significantly from MS1 (39.0±7.0) to MS2 (40.8±5.3) and demonstrated significantly higher engagement than LC MS2 students (36.3±5.3); however, there were no differences in HOS proficiency when comparing RC to LC, or MS1 to MS2. Additionally, RC MS1 students in the lowest HOS quartile (1688.8±53.1) demonstrated significantly increased HOS when re-tested during MS2 (1809.5±86.8). This phenomenon was not seen in LC students. Implementation of RC resulted in higher levels of student engagement than LC and, despite literature suggesting that more engaged learners will become more proficient in HOS (Bonwell & Eison, 1991), there were no differences in HOS group means between RC and LC. 
    • Modified Peer-Assisted Learning Opportunities for Undergraduate Students

      Trulen, Justin
      Topic/Problem Statement Studies are regularly published about the importance of active learning. Active learning has been shown to help improve over all grades, reduce the number of DWF, increase students persistence in the STEM fields, as well as many other benefits [6, 7, 9, 10, 5, 11]. However creating such in-class activities required a great deal of time and work. Regardless of ones personal teaching philosophy, creating these active learning activities can pose incredible challenges regardless of the size of institution and resources. Context I reached out to several of our Mathematics and Education double majors, and Education with Mathematics emphasis majors with an opportunity to help me address the above issues. They were asked if they would like to help design collegiate course materials for Kentucky Wesleyan Colleges Mathematics course. The courses range from Foundations of Mathematics to Calculus III. These students select a course they were the most interested in and using examples they began designing their own work. Grounding No studies have been found where others have implemented a similar system on the under- graduate level. However several other studies have been found at the graduate level. These programs were across various disciples implementing peer-assisted learning (PAL), peer teaching (PT) or focused on a formal leadership training as a component in their learning outcomes In [4], they studied the effect when there was a slight shift in focus from strengthening discipline-specific knowledge to understanding effective teaching for a class of future educators. In [12], they designed an elective graduate pharmacy course that was taught by graduate students under the supervision of faculty members. In [3], graduate students developed work- shop sessions for engineering courses. In [8], graduate students developed an upper-level online green chemistry course. In [13], [2], and [1], all also reference the importance and the challenges when implementing such programs in their respected fields. All studies noted positive results with minimal to no negative side-effects. Approach We started out with weekly meeting to allow students time to ask questions and get feedback about design preferences of the questions. Since all active learning activities are built in a program called LATEX they also needed time to learn how to use this program. Initially, they began designing active learning activities that could be grouped into one of two categories but as time went on they began to branch out in to a couple of other types. As activities were finished, they were uses in the classroom if time permitted. Overall positive feedback from students were received in relation to the given active learning activity. Reflection This collaborative work is in the early development. A discussion of future goals are other types of activities to branch into and what to do with such a wide range of activities. Also a discussion of the importance of recruiting more students. We will discuss the importance of creating the opportunities for new ideas to make their way into the courses via these activities. Finally, the goal of using additional technologies, like light board and online grading systems, to further aid in the use of these activities will be outlined. References [1] M.H. Aburahma and H.M. Mohamed, Peer teaching as an educational tool in pharmacy schools; fruitful or futile, Currents in Pharmacy Teaching and Learning 9 (2017), no. 6, 1170-1179, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cptl.2017.07.026. [2] J. Elliott-Engel and D. Westfall-Rudd, Preparing future cals professors for improved teaching: A qualitative evaluation of a cohort based program, North American College and Teachers of Agiculture Journal 63 (Sept. 2018), no. 3, 229-236. [3] J. M. Foley, A. M. Verhoff, J. J. Pitre, and K. M. Ropella, Workshops on fundamental engineering skills: A graduate student-led teaching initiative paper, 2014 ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition (Indianapolis, Indiana), American Society for Engineering Education, June 2014, https://peer.asee.org/22794. [4] D. Fowler and C. Cherrstrom, Graduate student perception if teaching development in a college teaching course, North American College and Teachers of Agriculture Journal 61 (June 2017), no. 2, 150-156. [5] S. Freeman, S. L. Eddy, M. McDonough, M. K. Smith, N. Okoroafor, Hannah Jordt, and M. P. Wenderoth, Active learning increases student performance in science, engineering, and mathematics, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111 (2014), no. 23, 8410-8415, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1319030111. [6] M. Graham, J. Frederick, A. Byars-Winston, A.B. Hunter, and J. Handelsman, Increasing persistence of college students in stems, Science Education 341 (27 Sep. 2013), no. 6153, 1455-1456, DOI: 10.1126/science.1240487. [7] D. Haak, J. HilleRisLambers, E. Pitre, and S. Freeman, Increased structure and active learning reduce the achievement gap in introductory biology, Science Education 332 (June 3rd 2011), no. 6034, 1213-1216. [8] R.A.Haley,J.R.Ringo,H.Hopgood,K.L.Denlinger,DasA.,andD.C.Waddell,Graduate student designed and delivered: An upper-level online course for undergraduates in green chemistry and sustainability, Journal of Chemical Education 95 (2018), no. 4, 560-569, https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jchemed.7b00730. [9] M. Kogan and S. Laursen, Assessing long-term effects of inquiry-based learning: A case study from college mathematics, Innovative Higher Education 39 (2014), 183-199, https://doi.org/10.1007/s10755-013-9269-9. [10] S. Laursen, M. L. Hassi, M. Kogan, and A. B. Hunter, Evaluation of the ibl mathematics project: Student and instructor outcomes of inquiry-based learning in college mathematics, Retrieved from https://www.colorado.edu/eer/sites/default/files/attached- files/iblmathexecsumm050511.pdf [11] Conference Board of the Mathematical Sciences, Active learning in post-secondary mathematics education, Retrieved from http://www.cbmsweb.org/Statements/Active Learning Statement.pdf [12] B Patterson, O.W. Garza, M.J. Witry, E.H. Chang, D.E. Letendre, and C.B. Trewet, Student leadership, a leadership elective course developed and taught by graduate students, American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education 77 (2013), no. 10, 1-12. [13] N. Zuo, J. Penn, and M. Asgari, Teaching as a graduate student: A one-credit teaching module case, North American College and Teachers of Agriculture Journal 62 (Dec. 2018), no. 4, 359-364.
    • Understanding Retention Pathways and Bottlenecks of STEM Majors: Implications for Student Success

      Elliot, William S.; Deligkaris, Christos; Greenwood, Eric S.; Gentle, Adrian P.; Chan Hilton, Amy B.; Blunt, Shelly B.
      The goals of this project are to increase faculty member's knowledge about evidence-based student retention, instructional best practices, and understanding bottlenecks and other factors impeding student progress in STEM at University of Southern Indiana (USI). In particular, hands-on experiences through group work and engaging students with early undergraduate research contribute significantly to student learning. To accomplish these goals, a working group consisting of faculty members from across the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education initiated discussions in Fall 2017 to examine retention factors and bottlenecks. In order to support these activities, the working group secured an Innovation Grant through the Pott College with the goal of developing individualized projects focusing on increasing retention of STEM majors and improving student learning. To assist with our shared efforts, reference materials are made available through SharePoint, Trello is used to document developing hypotheses and activities of the working group, and in-person meetings are held at least once a month to discuss the readings and to share updates on individualized projects. Initially, a systems map was created by the working group to analyze retention pathways of STEM majors at USI. Systems thinking is an effective way to understand the complexity of a topic, identify links among themes, and discover potential individualized research directions. Each working group member then created their own systems map to better constrain their specific area of interest. Research projects that originated from this process include: (1) comparing student attitudes towards group work implementations in introductory Physics courses; (2) evaluating the effectiveness of Pre-Calculus as a preparation for college-level Calculus; (3) exploring the impact of course repeats on student success in the Pott College; (4) increasing retention rates of STEM majors through an early undergraduate research program; and (5) using a faculty learning community and systems mapping to engage faculty members with pedagogical research. Selected student learning outcomes of these projects include: (1) improved comprehension and problem solving skills through group work and active learning, and (2) enriched student engagement through early undergraduate research. Furthermore, faculty members supported one another through the process of Institutional Research Board (IRB) training, the IRB approval process, and securing student data from the Office of Planning, Research, and Assessment. The results from this project will support longer-term retention initiatives and inform strategies to improve student success and retention of STEM majors in the Pott College at USI. In addition, these projects will better position the Pott College to seek external funding (such as National Science Foundation S-STEM program or Howard Hughes Medical Institute Inclusive Excellence program) to support student retention efforts. Finally, classroom strategies that result in improved student learning will be expanded to other sections of introductory courses in mathematics and physics.