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Feb 23, 2011

Working with Student Teams: Structured Problem Solving

Structured problem solving is a technique that is easy to introduce. It is effective in both small and large classes and is easily adapted for online and blended courses. Purpose:  To increase students' problem-solving abilities by ensuring that all students in a team are actively involved with given tasks and able to serve as the team's spokesperson; to set an expectation that students will coach/teach one another (positive interdependence). Steps: Assign identities to each student within the team. You can have students simply number off (1,2,3,4) or use some other method such as playing card suits (heart, diamond, spade, club)… More

Author: francine_glazer

Feb 15, 2011

Teaching Writing in the Disciplines

  Remind students that writing is a process that helps us clarify ideas. Tell them that writing is a way of learning, not an end in itself. Let students know that none of us knows exactly what we think about a topic or issue until we put our views on paper. Also let students know that writing is a complicated, messy, nonlinear process filled with false starts. Help them identify the writer's key activities: Developing ideas Finding a focus and a thesis Composing a draft Getting feedback and comments from others Revising the draft by expanding ideas, clarifying meaning, reorganizing… More

Author: francine_glazer

Feb 08, 2011

Helping Students Write Better in All Courses

  Few faculty members would deny the importance of writing in their academic discipline or the role writing plays in mastering material, shaping ideas, and developing critical thinking skills. Writing helps students learn the subject matter: they understand and retain course material much better when they write about it. You don't have to be a writing specialist - or even an accomplished writer - to improve your students' writing skills, and you don't have to sacrifice hours of class time or grading time. The ideas that follow are designed to make writing more integral to your courses and less onerous… More

Author: francine_glazer

Feb 03, 2011

February Fun

Welcome back to the new semester! It has felt like a very long winter hasn’t it? Record breaking snowfall,  ice and sleet. Spring just can’t come soon enough. February is also the time when many people feel the “Winter Blues.” It’s an uncomfortable, yet common experience many people have.  Luckily there is a lot you can do to prevent the blues…. Exercise – it’s a great stress reliever!   Eat a healthy diet – food changes your mood.   Get some sun – spend some time outdoors during the day. Talk a walk in Central Park or around campus.   Embrace the… More

Author: anna_ye

Feb 02, 2011

Sample Writing Assignment for an Introductory Science Course

  I teach a one-semester course that is an introduction to both physics and chemistry for non-science majors. Most of the students are freshmen who usually have weak science backgrounds and typically take this course merely to fulfill a requirement. In order to make the course more meaningful, I try to show how physics and chemistry are involved in the students’ daily lives. I think it is important for students in any course to write a paper, but I have struggled to find an appropriate writing assignment for this intro course. Ideally, the topic would be interesting to the students, not require a… More

Author: francine_glazer

Jan 25, 2011

Learning by Writing

Try this experiment: ask your students to spend 5 minutes writing about a topic before beginning class discussion on the topic. You don’t need to grade it or even collect it, although you might want to use the students’ work as a way to take attendance. Why do this? Research findings suggest that students who write about topics learn more than those who do not. Drabick, Weisberg, Paul, and Bubier (2007) compared the test performance of students who either wrote or thought about a topic for 5 minutes before engaging in a 10-minute class discussion of the topic. Ungraded writing produced larger… More

Author: francine_glazer

Jan 17, 2011

Semester Beginnings

  First Impressions matter. The first two days of class – even the first 15 minutes of the quarter – will make or break it.   The first class is your opportunity for culture-building. It’s crucial that you get students talking – that you not just hand out a syllabus and send students off to do their homework, already numbed to the prospect of another quarter of the teacher talking at them. ~ Luke Reinsma, Seattle Pacific University   Today, it is recommended that instructors use that [first] class to set the tone (anticipate challenge, but expect my support), actively engage students… More

Author: francine_glazer

Jan 03, 2011

Ready to come back??

Happy New Year to all our continuing and first semester students! Although we still have a few weeks left of winter break, I thought it would be a good idea to mentally prepare yourself for the Spring semester. It’s always a good idea to start making the adjustments a week or two in advance. A few helpful tips: 1.       Bedtime – after staying up late and enjoying the luxury of sleeping in, it’s time to create and enforce a sleeping schedule. This will not be easy! 2.       Eating Schedule – start getting in a regular breakfast, lunch and dinner routine. Many of us… More

Author: anna_ye

Jan 03, 2011

Resolutions for 2011

It’s that time again! Weight loss resolutions made the first week of January only to be abandoned by the month’s end if not sooner. If we have so much more knowledge, why does this keep happening year after year? According to Mindy Haar, MS, RD, CDN, Director of Clinical Nutrition at New York Institute of Technology, the growing focus on how we eat and not just what we eat is a welcome one.  Nutritionists are joining forces with behavior experts such as psychologist Dr. Brian Wansink whose mission is to turn mindless eating into mindful eating.  Some strategies to make… More

Author: mindy_haar

Dec 08, 2010

The Last Day of Class

The last day of class rapidly approaches (at least on the New York campuses)! The way students feel about a class greatly influences their retention of the material and whether they will ever take another, similar class. Make the last day of class one that leaves students with good memories of your discipline. Here are some things to avoid: Above all, resist the temptation to cover that last little bit of material! Students will not retain it past the final exam, almost guaranteed. Also, rushing to cover a few more items demonstrates that a professor did not plan very well,… More

Author: francine_glazer

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Profiles
Frank Mruk Frank Mruk
Associate Dean and Professor
Department: Architecture
Campus: Old Westbury
Lisa M. Runco Lisa M. Runco, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department: Life Sciences
Campus: Old Westbury
Nicholas Bloom Nicholas Bloom, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies, and Director of the Core Curriculum
Department: Social Sciences
Campus: Manhattan