Scenario Based Examples

Scenario One: Expertise

Q: I teach a course which is foundational and provides fundamental skills to the students, however I continually receive low scores on “Relates Course Materials to Real-World Applications.” As it is not one of their discipline related courses, I struggle to highlight to the students the relevance and importance of the course. Do you have any suggestions on what I can do, as it seems obvious how this material would lay the foundation to move forward.

A: There are many ways in which you can highlight to the students the relevance and importance of your course, even if it is on the periphery of their discipline specific courses. One of the easiest ways is to encourage students to look at job postings (or bring them to class) and show them where the skills they are learning in your class align to the job posting. Additionally, you can work with the students to have them do self-discovery: task them with finding job postings, or articles which demonstrate the connection between the content and their future career. Using mind maps can also help students to see the connection between topics that new learners might not necessarily see immediately.

Scenario Two: Organization and Clarity

Q: Every year, without fail, I have students who will say that I do not use DC Connect to share course-related materials, links, and information. My DC Connect page is where I share all the content that is presented and discussed in class, how do I ensure that the students are making the connection between the question on the questionnaire and the reality of how DC Connect is being used?

A: This is a common question and concern from faculty. One of the ways to encourage students to look at DC Connect and recognize the abundance of information which you have provided to them, is to show them in class where everything is located. For example, if you are in Week 10, open the students DC Connect page at the beginning of the class and show them where the content is. This helps direct them to the exact page and keeps the familiar with how your course is laid out. This also allows them to see all of the valuable information provided, and to ask questions in the moment if they are struggling to navigate your DC Connect page.

Scenario Three: Engagement and Rapport

Q: I am an open and approachable person, and I have always thought that I projected that while I am in the classroom, however I keep seeing a handful of students indicate that they do not feel comfortable asking questions in class, or only feel comfortable some of the time. This is something that I would like to work on, as I would like to have the respondents move to higher levels, do you have any suggestions on what I could implement?

A: As we know many students do not want to appear unknowledgeable or silly to their classmates. To increase students' comfort in asking questions, you could open a Padlet and allow them to post their questions during class anonymously. Also, if you know from years of experience that there is a particular point that causes confusion, address it up front. Tell the students that this part has caused confusion in past, and to let you know where their comfort with the topic is. This will help ease discomfort with admitting they might need additional support. In addition, if you share personal stories related to key topics, the students will know that they are not alone and you as the instructor remember what it is like to be new to the content.

Scenario Four: Assessment and Grading

Q: I noticed in the SFQ, one question allows students to determine if I am using appropriate assessment methods to determine their knowledge and skills. How do I ensure that the student see the value in the assessment I am providing them.

A: By incorporating authentic assessments into your course, you will be ensuring that students are being assessed on the required skills and knowledge needed for their future. This includes the utilization of rubrics to allow students to know where their marks are coming from and providing the rubrics in advance for students to know how to construct their submission. In addition, by including the direct link between the assessment and the course learning outcome the students will understand that rational behind the assessment. Lastly by evaluating the students on real world applications, they will see the relevance of the assessment.