Protected: PSYC 261: Introductory Statistics
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Very good point. Certain topics (maybe all) require practice practice practice.
Very good point. My only thought is that there is already lots to do and statistics is not easy for students since there is not much to tie the concepts to: homogeneity of variance – not there’s an intuitive concept!
See comment to Kolar. Since this was designated a completely online course i thought access to SPSS problematic. Excel is free and widely available.
The supplemental part if i understand your comment, is the set of practice exams that are given online using a program called iSpring. The software randomly selects from a bank of questions a subset of questions which the students must answer using any means they need such as their book, notes, etc. The point here is to get them “doing” statistics since over the years I’ve found pure lecture a waste of time. Students may take the practice quizzes many times and must achieve 80% or above to get one point for a possible total of 13 which works out to be 13% of their grade.
Very good point. My decision to use Excel comes from the notice from Greenlaw that this course is to be completely online rather than blended. I thought in this light that access to SPSS problematic.
Very good point about Excel. The positive side is that it is free and easily available to everyone. Since Steve told my my class is to be completely online I thought the access to SPSS problematic. I too have looked into R and several others online and haven’t honestly had time to properly assess them.
At first I give them statistics and provide sources for them to look up. For example, one source claims that the average age of widowhood is 47. Then teams of two students go look to support or refute the statistic. There are about 12 teams depending on class size. After another such assignment, they must find such controversial or questionable statistics and do their research. All material is posted on Google docs.
Overall, I think this course meets the obejctives outlined by the committee. The two types of assignments will provide the students and the instructor with useful feedback on student learning. The course should be successful.
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I hear you on this…I have begun to found this same kind of “scattering” effect occurring, when some students are just used to using Facebook and don’t want to add Twitter, for example. I am thinking about having dispositions (learning from research, for example) and just allowing students to find the best way to do that (Twitter, an already established email list called SMART Brief, etc.) and reflect about it on their blog. Using Twitter has had limited success for sure this semester–some loved it and some didn’t like it at all. The problem is building a community when they do have choice–again having a scattering effect. Maybe networked blogs would bring this all together in one place.
Thanks for the feedback–the first few pages must be included with every COE syllabus–they were developed before I started at UMW. I agree though, it does make for a reaaaally long syllabus! I will look at shortening it wherever possible.
Ditto to the comments above. A really, nice, well-designed course that clearly supports student learning and offers them a variety of tools and models to approach teaching.
I like that you are using a variety of platforms in your course. As potential teachers the need for experience, practice, and reflection on these tools provides an authentic experience that they will face in K-12 classrooms. I also feel it sends the message that new technologies will always be emerging and it is better to explore and learn rather than avoid something new.
I like that you have infused metacognition in your course as it is often an overlooked element that in some ways limits students with opportunities to think about your own development.
I would encourage you to spend some time and think about your ‘big questions’ in terms of what you hope students ‘take away’ from your course. In what ways, if any, did X support your understanding of X or Read over the course objectives. How well did you do and what evidence do you have to support your assessment? These types of questions can really inform from the students perspective glimpse into their learning experiences.
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