GSA Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, USA - 2019

Paper No. 110-9
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


ORMAND, Carol J.1, MACDONALD, R. Heather2, MCDARIS, John R.1, HODDER, Jan3, BAER, Eric M.D.4 and EMERSON, Norlene R.5, (1)Science Education Resource Center, Carleton College, 1 North College Street, Northfield, MN 55057, (2)Department of Geology, College of William and Mary, PO Box 8795, Williamsburg, VA 23187, (3)Oregon Institute of Marine Biology, University of Oregon, PO Box 5389, Charleston, OR 97420, (4)Geology, Highline College, MS-29-3, 2400 S 240th St, Des Moines, WA 98198, (5)Department of Geography and Geology, University of Wisconsin - Platteville, 1200 Hwy 14 West, Richland Center, WI 53581-1316

The SAGE 2YC: Faculty as Change Agents project has designed and run a variety of virtual professional development activities for geoscience faculty in two-year colleges. The virtual activities included book and journal clubs, implementation groups, and workshops. All of the activities were structured to support learning about, discussing, and implementing evidence-based practices related to the SAGE 2YC project: supporting the academic success of all students, broadening participation in the geosciences and STEM, facilitating students’ career pathways, and making institutional change happen.

Each of our virtual professional development activities were structured as a series of virtual meetings with asynchronous assignments in advance of each of those meetings. For example, book clubs and journal clubs were organized around reading primary literature on evidence-based practices. Before each virtual meeting, faculty members completed a reading assignment and contributed their thoughts to an online discussion board. The virtual meeting discussions built on those preliminary responses, allowing for nuanced discussions of the readings and the emergent themes or questions that resonated most strongly with the faculty participants. Other virtual professional development series utilized curricula, learning assessments, and other materials as foci for discussions. We also ran virtual workshops, where each workshop covered a broad range of topics, rather than focusing on a single topic.

The design of these virtual professional development experiences supports deep engagement with evidence-based practices through asynchronous assignments, asynchronous online discussions, synchronous discussions using video conferencing technology, and the multi-session format. These design elements can be replicated for faculty communities meeting virtually, face-to-face, or in a hybrid format. As a result of these virtual professional development activities, participating faculty implemented a wide range of evidence-based teaching practices in their courses and programs.