Meaghan has now taught three terms of Introductory Geology as an adjunct, and has a few things she's been sampling with her teaching that went well, and a few that, well, didn't. Since she's no longer working for CWU and won't be teaching this year but instead traveling and looking for a more permanent position (HINT HINT READERS WHO ARE EMPLOYERS), here's a review of what she's learned so that it can benefit anyone else looking to teach an introductory geo class.
But it's a lot easier to write in first person so we're going to do that in 3...2...1...NOW: For context, the classes I've been teaching are:
- Between 30 and 85 students
- 4 days a week for an hour
- Cover only a single quarter (10 weeks, September to December)
- Have an accompanying lab, but the lab grade is separate and also optional so not all students are taking the lab
- Are stand-alone intro courses: CWU doesn't have an intro geology series, just several variants of one class so students can choose to take whichever intro class that seems most appealing
- Meet one of the gen-ed standards, so typically are full of freshman that are undeclared
- Have a high failure rate. All the intro science classes do at CWU, though.
- Have some form of Canvas (online software) component
- And are taught using a mixture of Powerpoint and other activities/discussions
OK! Now onto the teaching techniques!
|Photo by the AMAZING Marli Miller, whose photos are all free for geology class use!|