Society for the Teaching of Psychology

Division 2 of the American Psychological Association

GSTA Blog

Welcome to the GSTA blog! This semester's theme is Teaching Tips
Every week we will post a graduate student teaching or teaching assistant tip. The tips, written by graduate students, are sourced directly from classroom practices and syntheses of recent teaching related research.

If you would like to submit a tip for consideration send it to us at gsta.cuny@gmail.com, subject line Blog and your potential title. Submissions should be between 500-1000 words.

You can also submit any questions you would like addressed on our blog as comments below or send them to gsta.cuny.@gmail.com, follow us on twitter @gradsteachpsych or join our Facebook Group.


Thanks for checking us out,

The GSTA Blog Editorial Team:

Philip Kreniske, Kasey Powers, Francis Yannaco and Theresa Fiani



<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   Next >  Last >> 
  • 28 Oct 2014 10:34 PM | Francis Yannaco (Administrator)

    This post originally appeared on Noba Project's Noba Blog. Noba is an open and free online platform that provides a high-quality, flexibly structured psychology textbook resource for instructors and students everywhere.

    by Francis Yannaco

    One of the first projects I worked on as a student representative of APA Division 2 (Teaching of Psychology) was a summary of resources for teachers of psychology. We reviewed some of the best books on teaching with tech and some great online archives of psychological teaching resources. The information in the books was helpful, plentiful, relevant, and up-to-date. There was only one small problem with the resources for us: we had just a few weeks to read and review them and the process of accessing them too would take just a few weeks through library loan. Altogether, the dozens of books would cost thousands of dollars through a store and would then only be accessible by a single reader at a time. The solution to this problem came in the form of eBook copies available on my university’s online library system, which has a good-sized catalog of all types of texts – except student textbooks. This shortcoming caught my interest as a student who always avoided the bookstore.

    Like me, many students are opting out of the bookstore shopping-spree. A recent poll found that 65% of students have skipped the purchase of a book because of the cost (US PIRGF Education Fund,http://senate.rutgers.edu/PIRGTextbookCostsReport.pdf). As an undergraduate, I settled for earlier-edition copies ($3-4 shipped) or I downloaded the PDF of the text from a popular India-based student message board (many students in India are also unable to afford the texts). Now as a graduate student, almost all of the required texts are freely accessible from the library’s Online Research Databases. To complete the circle, I am now in the role of teacher and once again concerned about textbook costs, this time for my students. Will the cost of my textbook choice burden students’ family budgets? Will some fail my course because of it? With libraries offering only hardcopies, what are the alternatives for access?

    The problem: too many students need access to too many expensive books simultaneously. The current solution is to make every single student pay huge individual costs. We can look to how education handles a similar problem to see an alternative approach. When academic journals went electronic, academic researchers needed to access many expensive books, journals, and articles simultaneously. The solution was simple and effective: institutions pooled together resources to pay for shared access to the Online Research Databases I mentioned earlier. If you are not completely familiar with them, they are essentially online libraries full of donated works written by the very academics who access them. What a fantastically eloquent solution. Why not apply it to textbooks?

    Unfortunately, Online Research Databases are obscenely expensive, despite providing access to works they do not own and despite the fact that they do not compensate the authors of those works. The catch in Online Research Databases is that they only become economically feasible when academia comes to a shared agreement to pool its resources together to access them. This philanthropic approach to solving problems is the essence of academia; it is what brings art to the streets, what saves lives in the emergency room, and what will provide open, free textbooks to the students of the world. The solution to academia’s textbook crisis is academia.

    Stewart Brand coined the now-famous slogan of open source advocates: “information wants to be free.” In the software world, the concept is still revolutionary, but for academics, the phrase borders on trite. The academic community lives by a very simple task: to record and share information with the world. It is time for academia to start living up to this purpose in the classroom, starting with a catalog of comprehensive open textbooks for every course. The modern textbook model demands that those with the least contribute the most to a system that privatizes public information and sells it back to the academic workers responsible for producing it. If information really does want to be free, then the current textbook model is a prison. Academic psychology needs to quit its job as warden and become an information advocate, starting with projects like Noba and Wikibooks.

  • 23 Oct 2014 3:08 PM | Francis Yannaco (Administrator)
    The GSTA is proud to announce the launching of a Book Club this semester. Here, we will explore notable works on the theory and practice of teaching.


    Our first book, Ambrose et al. (2010). How learning works: 7 research-based principles for smart teaching. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass ISBN: 978-0-470-48410-4, introduces readers to seven general principles of student learning that are grounded in learning theory and distilled from the research literature and experience. The discussion will begin on December 1st. Be sure to pick up your copy of our first book and join us with other beginner and veteran teachers by contributing you own insights and questions about the book on our blog (http://teachpsych.org/GSTABookClub)!


  • 22 Oct 2014 5:51 PM | Francis Yannaco (Administrator)

    Some Classroom Routines for Learning to Stick

    Peri Ozlem Yuksel-Sokmen

    College of Staten Island and The Graduate Center, CUNY


    I study social routines as a framework to examine how children develop communicative skills in various contexts and cultures. In this blog, I will argue that routines are critical components for classroom practices in higher education, too. I will use the analogy of early joint activity to show how routines provide structure and promote a positive learning environment in which learning is made to stick.




    Routines such as getting dressed, pretend play, or joint picture book reading take place in the daily lives of young minds and provide vital contexts for learning to occur in a repetitive and structured, yet fun way. Children learn how their social world is organized, the words and tools experts use in relation to each context, and learn to become a member of their cultural community by participating in daily activities with others. Colleges are also communities of practices. Students come here to continue with the joy of learning to become competent leaders in their communities and future professions.


    Effective teaching starts with clear establishment of rules and procedures crucial to control and engage a crowd in larger lecture halls or to maintain reciprocal responsibilities and roles in smaller class room settings (Hilton, 1999; Schroeder, Stephens, & Williams, 2013). From day one the instructor has to make clear that students are expected to be respectful and will not disturb the learning process at any time.  For instance, a strict rule may apply to cell phone policy, not bursting in or out the room when someone else is presenting, or requiring students to read or complete certain assignments before coming to class. Learning-centered teaching involves that students come prepared to class and know that they have to repeat this to every class session. The same applies to cheating and plagiarism, and making sure that students know from day one that breaking rules for ethical misconduct has consequences. These classroom rules set the parameters for maintaining a learning experience without disruptions and dishonesty (tips for students you should also be aware of: http://www.wikihow.com/Cheat-On-a-Test).


    Above and beyond these basic regulations for maintaining an ideal learning environment, there is a list of established routines psychology teachers can include into their teaching practices for learning to be more memorable. The easiest one is to start with greeting your students upon entering the classundefined a routine that might even increase student test scores (Weinstein, Laverghetta, Alexander, & Stewart, 2009).  Before you move on to a new class topic or lecture series, it is a good routine to ask students to a) summarize main points from the previous class session and to b) speculate about the upcoming class topic. This can be done as a short writing activity. The activity creates student reflection on past and future learning (metacognition). At the same time the speculation is meant to foster curiosity: It enhances recollection of past materials and excites students for new learning (Bonwell, 1991). Another great routine involves the establishment of ‘circle time’ , especially appropriate for lab classes (seating arrangement matters). Facing peers instead of their back provides students the opportunity to interact with each other and to narrate what they have learned. Because learning sticks if students understand what they have learned.

     

    “Learning is not a spectator sport. Students do not learn much just by sitting in class listening to teachers, memorizing pre-packaged assignments, and spitting out answers. They must talk about what they are learning, write about it, relate it to past experiences, apply it to their daily lives. They must make what they learn part of themselves.” (Chickering & Gamson, 1987, p. 3)

     

    The routines presented here are just a few quick and easy conventions to run a class but they also require that students understand the rational behind your established rituals in order to be involved and to become active learning partners. Effective teachers also know that routines or class rituals require time preparation and modifications depending on the class format (lab class vs. large lecture class) and task at hand. Routines establish a culture of practice necessary to acquire knowledge and develop new ones.

     

    You cannot teach an old dog new tricks but you can teach your students the routines of thinking to remember to remember to learn. And to repeat to think. In this sense, wishing you a happy routining.


    References


    Bonwell, C. C. (1991). Active learning: Creating excitement in the classroom. Active learning workshops. Retrieved on October 11, 2014 from www.active-learning-site.compdf


    Chickering, A.W. & Gamson, Z.F. (1987). Seven principles for good practice. AAHE Bulletin, 39(7), 3-7.


    Hilton, J. L. (1999). Teaching large classes. In B. Perlman, L. I. McCann, & S. H. McFadden (Eds.). Lessons learned: Practical advice for the teaching of psychology. Washington, DC: Association for Psychological Science.

    Ruhl, K. L., Hughes, C. A., & Schloss, P. J. (1987). Using the pause procedure to enhance lecture recall. Teacher Education and Special Education, 10, 14-18.


    Schroeder, J.L., Stephens, R., & Williams, K.L. (2013). Managing the large(r) classroom. Observer, 26(3). Retrieved on October 11, 2014 from http://www.psychologicalscience.org/index.php/publications/observer/2013/march-13/managing-the-larger-classroom.html


    Weinstein, L., Laverghetta, A., Alexander, R., & Stewart, M. (2009).Teacher greetings increase college students’ test scores. College Student Journal, 43(2). 452-453.

  • 14 Oct 2014 7:51 PM | Francis Yannaco (Administrator)

    by Kasey Powers

    A common conundrum when teaching is how much to give students to go on when it comes to instructions for studying for the exam. As an instructor we want them to learn everything that’s been covered, but it isn’t feasible to cover every concept, term, experiment on an exam, especially a multiple choice exam, which is what I use in my Introductory Psychology classes. Students have often asked for a study guide and want to know exactly what will be on the exam. However, providing an instructor created study guide can be too specific and adding “extras” that were covered in class but aren’t on the exam causes many student complaints. It’s easy to get caught between giving too much or too little. I took an idea from Dr. Dan McCloskey (Powers, Brooks, McCloskey, Sekerina, Cohen, 2013) that he uses in his research methods classes to create a crowd sourced study guide in my Introductory class.


    I do this using the Blackboard Wiki feature, but using your campus’s Course Management System Wiki or Forum or even a Google Doc could work. If you ask students to log in to Google Docs  you can track their revisions as you would on Blackboard. During class the week before we talk about the exam and what will be on it. I open up a new wiki and ask students for major topics that might be covered for each chapter. The students throw out experiments, names, terms, and ideas from the textbook and class discussions. I type in their responses to outline form.  Then after the class I go in to the guide and add anything from the exam students may have missed.


    For example a partial outline for Social Psychology might look like this:


    Social Psychology

    Milgram, Obedience

    Zimbardo, Dindividuation

    Altruism

    Bystander Effect

    Cognitive Dissonance


    The students are then tasked with filling in the information. They write that Zimbardo conducted the Stanford Prison Experiment that covered deindividuation.

    A second student might add that the experiment was made up of college students who were assigned to be prisoners or cops.


    As students fill in the outline they add pieces of information and edit one another’s work. This leaves the burden of studying on the students as they are the ones responsible for creating a detailed study guide and by removing any incorrect information. This solves the problem of providing too much or too little information as students created the outline. To ensure that the outline is complete I go through it and add in any keywords that are on the exam but that students may have missed. I do not remove keywords provided by the students that are not on the exam.


    This is a quick and easy way to give a few class points, or even extra credit.

    Dr. McCloskey will be speaking at Pedagogy Day., October 24, on different ways to utilize Blackboard in the Classroom. If you are in the New York City area you are welcome to join us! https://www.facebook.com/PedagogyDayCUNY


    Powers, K., Brooks, P. J., McCloskey, D., Sekerina, I. A. & Cohen, F. (in press). Hybrid teaching of psychology. To appear in M. Hamada (Ed.) E-Learning: New Technology, Applications and Future Trends. NOVA Science Publishers.


  • 01 Oct 2014 11:32 AM | Kasey Powers (Administrator)

    by Emily Sharp and Collette Sosnowy, Sarah Lawrence College

     

    One of the challenges of teaching a technology-focused course is, of course, the technology. Unless it’s a lab-based course, an instructor needs to keep the time spent setting up, teaching, and troubleshooting the tools to a reasonable amount. It’s all too easy to lose time to spend on developing course content and preparing for class.

     

    When Collette Sosnowy, visiting faculty in psychology at Sarah Lawrence College, was designing her interdisciplinary seminar “You Are What Your Tweet: Identity and Social Media,” (Spring 2014) these were her concerns. The course centered around using social media to learn about the psychological implications of social media: how we present ourselves online, perceptions of the public and private, and issues of identity and relationships.

     

    At Sarah Lawrence, independent work is a large component of the curriculum. For this class, each student maintained a blog throughout the semester, which served as an ongoing record of their independent projects. The goal was not only to have them produce the work, but to critically engage with the medium in part through using it, as well as publicly document their research process.


     

    Collette initially considered using a blogging platform like Wordpress until she attended a workshop with the college’s Web Services Advocate, Emily Sharp, about using the school’s learning management system (Jenzabar eLearning, branded on campus as MySLC). Collette realized that not only could the system meet her technology needs, but could provide institutional tech support as well!

     

    MySLC is most widely used by faculty for uploading syllabi, emailing students, distributing readings, and moderating online discussion. Far fewer faculty use the blog feature or give students the ability to create and manage content.

     

    Emily was on board with the idea and prior to the semester, she and her student workers devoted much time to setting up a subsection in the course webpage. Each student got a page in the section containing a blog area and a place to embed their social media feeds. Permissions were set so that students could only add and edit content on their own pages.

     

    Emily put together a user guide and gave a workshop on getting started with their blogs, including how to forward their domain name to their page, configuring their blog, posting their first entry, including images, and embedding Twitter feeds, videos and other media.

     

    Over the next few weeks the students got started while behind the scenes, Emily tweaked the setup of the pages as needs arose - adding a static “About” section and a “Blogroll” (a list of links to their classmates’ and other blogs) to each. Some small technical issues that came up and a few students needed extra help but after the first few weeks, the kinks were worked out and students were blogging prodigiously.

     

    The way Collette and Emily used MySLC was radically different and focused much more on the social tools and integration capabilities of the system. The collaboration was successful from both perspectives: working with Emily and her staff gave the class a familiar platform to work with and provided much-appreciated tech support. Students saw the experience as both learning important technology skills as well as critically engaging with the very thing they were studying. Emily and her staff were able to stretch MySLC to accommodate an out-of-the-box method of learning, a model that other faculty could adopt in the future.



    Tips for a successful collaboration:

     

    1. Start early. It takes time to get together, discuss the goals for the class and logistics for the project, set it up, test it, etc.


    2. Establish a good relationship. Emily and Collette got along really well and were equally excited about the project, but even if you don’t become chums with your instructional technology staff, be clear about what you both want from the project and what you can each give to make it a successful collaboration.


    3. Similarly, have clearly defined roles. Emily and her staff set everything up and she visited the class to train students on the platform and had written a detailed instruction guide. She was patient with students who continued to have trouble learning to use it, but since the students had been given the tools to work out problems, the responsibility was theirs.


    4. Give and get feedback. Since this was a new project, it was important to assess how well it worked, how it could be improved in the future, and, if there’s interest, how it could be applied to other types of classes, sizes, etc. It’s also a good idea to keep documentation of communication and resources.

     You can view the archive of blogs at: youarewhatyoutweet.net or see the class Twitter feed: @youtweetSLC #tweetSLC

  • 16 Sep 2014 4:34 PM | Francis Yannaco (Administrator)

    By Naomi J. Aldrich, PhD

    Assistant Professor, Grand Valley State University; Developmental Psychology program at the Graduate Center, CUNY Alum




    I have found that one of the most boredom-inducing topics to cover when teaching Introductory Psychology or Child Development is the information on neuropsychology. Over the years, I have tried different ways to cover the material without overwhelming my students or putting them to sleep and have been mostly unsuccessful. However, I think that I have finally found a way to achieve better student understanding and interaction…Zombies!


    Several months ago, I came across a wonderful book The Zombie Autopsies: Secret Notebooks from the Apocalypse by Steven C. Schlozman, M.D. (2012). The book is written from the perspective of a neuroscientist who is keeping a journal of his investigation of the causes of zombiism in hopes to find a cure before the world is overrun with the ravenous undead. The book takes the reader through the different stages of the illness (i.e., Ataxic Neurodegenerative Satiety Deficiency Syndrome, ANSD) and in doing so, emphasizes what makes the zombie brain so different from ours. This is what made me so excited, I felt like I acquired a better understanding of the brain myself by learning about what makes zombies tick, so I did some more research. What I found is that a large number of people have started to teach children about the brain by using this zombie model. Given pop-culture’s focus on zombie’s today I believe this may be a great way to engage our undergraduates.


    This summer I taught a class of 7- to 13-year-olds and their grandparents about the brain using information from this book and it was one of the best classes I have ever taught! I am now planning to incorporate this for all of my neuropsychology undergraduate lectures from now on.


    Here are some main points:


    1) Zombie Stagger:

    - Normal people can walk around with good coordination between their body & brain.

    - Zombies stagger around and seem clumsy. They bump into things and often hold their arms out for balance.

    - Why? Deficient cerebellum


    2) Zombie Appetite:

                - Typically after we eat we get full. We have a varied diet, but we do not eat humans.

                - Zombies are always hungry, even after a huge meal. They also like eating humans, which is a problem.

                - Why? Defective hypothalamus


    3) Zombie Rage:

                - Regular people get angry and there are some situations where they may even feel rage. However, most people feel anger and then return to their normal emotional state.

                - Zombies are aggressive at all times. They are extremely violent and tend to attack humans in an enraged state. They are dangerous and cannot be reasoned with.

                - Why? Enlarged amygdala


    4) Zombie Stupidity:

                - Humans are able to solve problems, talk to each other, and make decisions. These abilities make us unique and have contributed to our success as a species.

                - Zombies are known for their stupidity. They often can’t figure out how to open doors and rarely, if ever, plan ahead. They are terrible problem solvers and seem to lack any ability to communicate except through grunts.

                - Why? Inadequate Frontal Lobe processing


    Here are links for lesson plans (including PowerPoint slides) for teaching the Zombie brain. These were developed for grades 7 to 12, but can be easily adapted for use with undergraduates (created by Katie Gould & Dr. Steven Schlozman). I have only used the first two lessons, but depending on your class you may want to incorporate information from all four:

    Zombie Autopsies Lesson 1: You’ll be Wishin’ for some Neurotransmission and Background Story

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/lessons_plans/zombie-autopsies-lesson-1-youll-be-wishin-for-some-neurotransmission-and-background-story/

    -        This lesson introduces students to neurons and neurotransmission through multi-media and active learning games.

    Zombie Autopsies Lesson 2: The Neuroanatomy of a Zombie

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/lessons_plans/zombie-autopsies-lesson-2-the-neuroanatomy-of-a-zombie/

    -        This lesson teaches students about neurotransmitters, neurotransmission and neuroanatomy through multi-media and active learning games.

    Zombie Autopsies Lesson 3: Super Spooky Psychiatric Medicine to Save the World

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/lessons_plans/zombie-autopsies-lesson-3-super-spooky-psychiatric-medicine-to-save-the-world/

    -        This lesson introduces students to the concept of medications development and gives students a simulation to apply what they know about neurotransmitters, neurotransmission and zombies.

    Zombie Autopsies Lesson Plan 4: Publish or Perish…for Real

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/lessons_plans/zombie-autopsies-lesson-plan-4-publish-or-perish-for-real/

    -        This lesson introduces students to writing an academic journal article and allows them to apply what they have learned during the Neuroscience and Zombies Unit.

    Here is the lesson plan I created for the class with 7- to 13-year-olds. My goal was to make it more interactive and fun. Basically, I first presented the children with information about how the normal human brain functions and then had them conduct a series of mini-experiments in which they had to figure out what lobe of their brain was responsible. Then they identified the lobe of the brain by painting a plaster-of-paris model of the left hemisphere. Next, I presented information about how zombie brains are different from ours and had them design their own zombie and they painted the lobes of their zombie brain (the right hemisphere with black paint indicating a deficient lobe). Finally, they had their grandparent come to the front of the class and demonstrate how their zombie would behave based on what they chose.

    Zombie Brains – Session Outline

    1.     Introduction

    a.      Welcome and thank you for helping us explore the human brain through zombie behavior at GVSU. Today we will talk about how the human brain influences our behaviors and abilities so you will be ready to learn about the brains of zombies. As almost all behavior can be traced back to the brain, scientists believe that zombies have damaged or diseased parts of their brain. If we can figure out what parts have been affected by the disease, then there may be hope that YOU will be able to develop medicine that can cure them if real zombies ever came to exist.

    b.     Warm up (ask the campers & write answers on board):

                                                        i.     How does a zombie look different from a human?

                                                      ii.     How do they behave differently than humans?

    2.     Present “Normal” Brain information

    3.     “Normal” Brain Activity

    a.      Pass out “Brain Tests” packet to each pair & help them get started

    b.     While they are working, pass out “Your Brain” model, paints, etc.

    c.      Discuss their brains and test results

    4.     Present “Zombie” Brain information – try to relate information back to lists on board

    5.     “Zombie” Brain Activity

    a.      Pass out “My Zombie” worksheets

    b.     While they are working, pass out “My Zombie Brain” model, paints, etc.

    c.      Once finished, each pair should come up & explain choices with grandparent acting as zombie

    Even if you choose not to use the Zombie model in your classroom, I would highly recommend the book itself… you will learn a lot, although it’s not for the squeamish J

  • 09 Sep 2014 9:57 PM | Kasey Powers (Administrator)

    by Peri Ozlem Yuksel-Sokmen

    College of Staten Island and the Graduate Center, CUNY



    Diversity is one of the most fascinating topics in the discipline of psychology and one of the biggest challenges new instructors face when dealing with diversity in students. This post encourages new instructors to start thinking about culture and ways to integrate this complex topic across the curriculum. But before new instructors teach about culture it is recommended that we take a cultural-historical approach in regard to the definition of culture and the diversity in our students.

    Ever since culture has been transferred to social science, anthropologists, linguists, and psychologists developed more complex definitions to understand society’s systems of shared meanings (Geertz, 1973). For example, Kroeber and Kluckholn (1952) collected over 250 definitions and concluded that there exists no single one but that each operational definition of culture is somewhat driven by scholarly interest and scientific method. Reaching all the way to the foundation of Wundt’s lab in 1879 and APA in 1892 till present day research time psychologists used gender and race as top two most popular factors to scientifically study diversity (see Figure 1 in APA psychNet). In order to support the appreciation for diversity and to transform student learning to the real world, it is safe practice to use a broader definition of diversity that includes religion, seniors, sexual orientation, ethnicity, multilingualism, involvement in cultural practices, and ability.

    Before designing a course plan that teaches about diversity instructors should be able to first define culture and use their own inclinations towards diversity as a starting point. Nygen and Nolan (2013) provide three main questions that every instructor can use as a mental guide in dealing with diversity:

    (1)  What are my own cultural values and biases toward students and people from diverse backgrounds (self-awareness)? 

    (2)  Do I know what I need to know about my students’ worldviews and experiences that may influence their learning experiences (knowledge)? 

    (3)  Am I using teaching strategies that are inclusive of students from culturally diverse backgrounds (skills)?


    Instructors’ self-awareness is an essential part of effective teaching because when we deal with complexity it is a safe practice to understand our own or the focal group’s behaviors that might have triggered cognitive processes, such as prejudice, bias, or stereotypical thinking as quick interpretations for group differences that mistakenly contributed to the misunderstanding of human activities.

    "Tell me and I'll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I'll understand."

    As this prolific Chinese proverb stresses the importance of self-referencing in the context of participation, just preaching and demonstrating research reports dealing with diversity has little impact on learning outcomes about culture. Rather, do we as instructors engage in meta-cognition and take the time to get to know our students? Do we provide them with opportunities to display their worldviews and special skills? What is our strategy to deal with diversity?

    The cognitive revolution in the 60s and the subsequent influx in interest examining mental activities in various social and formal settings, such as human interaction, decision making, and memory formation, has led to the development of interdisciplinary approaches and cross-cultural collaboration.  This has helped researchers to understand culture as a meaning making process that produces similarities and differences in the sharing and learning of information (Matsumoto, 2009). Especially, people’s involvement in common practices of particular cultural communities has contributed to the variation in differences in cultural participation (Gutierrez & Rogoff, 2003).

    Certainly, diversity is a worldwide inspiration for research and a topic that is gaining popularity in teaching and learning due to social change, yet it first starts with the individual acknowledgement of the instructors’ ability to self-reflect. Moreover, instructors’ awareness of their own attitudes towards the construct of teaching and student learning styles is another safe practice in the prevention of discriminatory educational practices due to labeling or self-fulfillment prophecies (Reynolds, 1997).  Gutierrez and Rogoff (2003) see the treatment of cultural differences as learning traits in particular student groups (e.g., minority students, students of color, first generation college students, holistic vs. analytic learners, etc.) as a hindrance for effective student learning, which encourages overgeneralization. In order to ensure student learning it is safe practice to regard students as individuals who participate in cultural communities and to listen to their worldviews with a cultural-historical perspective in mind.

    The integration of culture into undergraduate teaching go hand in hand with the instructors’ view and experience on student diversity. If the instructor focuses on the more salient abilities of the students, such as gender and race, and provides less opportunities for students to participate in discourse activities concerning diversity than the teaching of culture is a misconduct. Consequently, the learning outcome diminishes opportunities to deal adequately with diversity in the outside world. The instructor’s failure to acknowledge biased thinking and teaching may also transfer to the conduct of research reflected in the eminent cultural attribution fallacy (Matsumoto & Yoo, 2006, cited in Matsumo 2009).


    References

    Matsumoto, D. (2009). Teaching about culture. In R. A. R. Gurung & L. R. Prieto. Getting culture. Incorporating diversity across the curriculum, (pp. 3-22). Sterling, Virginia: Stylus Publishing, LLC.

    Gutierrez, K. D., & Rogoff, B. (2003). Cultural ways of learning: individual traits o repertoires of practice? Educational Researche, 32(5), 19-25. DOI: 10.3102/0013189X03200501

    Ngyen, L., & Nolan, S. A. (2013). Your sphere of influence: How to infuse cultural diversity into your psychology classes. Strategies for ensuring that diversity is an integral part of the psychology curriculum. Psychology Teacher Network. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org.

    Reynolds, M. (1997). Learning styles: A critique. Management Learning, 28, 115-133. DOI: 10.1177/1350507697282002

  • 02 Sep 2014 4:44 PM | Philip Kreniske (Administrator)

    Dear Graduate Student Teachers,


    Welcome back to another semester with the GSTA Blog!

    We hope you had a productive and restful summer and are ready to head back into the classroom.


    Boomer Goes Fishing


    This fall we will continue posting weekly teaching tips (see below to submit).  


    In addition, we are excited about the Society for the Teaching of Psychology Conference in Atlanta on October 10th & 11th


    And


    The 5th Annual Pedagogy Day at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York on October 24th


    See you at a conference or online at the GSTA Blog!




    About the Teaching Tips:

    Every week we will post a graduate student teaching or teaching assistant tip. The tips, written by graduate students, are sourced directly from classroom practices and syntheses of recent teaching related research.

    If you would like to submit a tip for consideration send it to us at gsta.cuny@gmail.com, subject line Blog and your potential title. Submissions should be between 500-1000 words and relevant images are encouraged.


    You can also submit any questions you would like addressed on our blog as comments below or send them to gsta.cuny.@gmail.com, follow us on twitter @gradsteachpsych or join our Facebook Group.

  • 03 Jun 2014 2:42 PM | Philip Kreniske (Administrator)

    A GSTA Blog Spring 2014 Retrospective and Useful Index



    Dear GSTA Community,


    As the semester comes to a close we’d like to thank everyone who read, commented and posted on the GSTA blog. Here’s the list of the posts, which we hope will serve as a useful resource when planning your courses in the fall!


    If you have any Teaching Tips you’d like to share please submit them to gsta.cuny.@gmail.com.


    Best,


    The GSTA Blog Editorial Team:

    Philip Kreniske, Kasey Powers, Francis Yannaco and Theresa Fiani

    And follow us on twitter@gradsteachpsych or join our Facebook Group!


    Encouraging Inter-Student Participation in Large Lecture Sections using Discussion Board Forums

    25 Feb 2014

    By Danielle DeNigris 


    Teaching Tip: Choose Your Assessments Based On Student Learning Goals

    04 Mar 2014

    By Emily A. A. Dow

     

    A Tool for Understanding Students: the Discussion Forum

    11 Mar 2014

    By Anna Schwartz

     

    Socrates in the Classroom: Helping Students to Discover What’s Already There

    18 Mar 2014

    By Jeff Kukucka

     

    A Mixed-Methods Approach to Child Development Instruction: Reflecting on Research Presented at the SRCD

    24 Mar 2014

    By Naomi J. AldrichPeri Ozlem Yuksel-Sokmen, & Sarah E. Berger

     

    Using Low Stakes Writing as a Learning Tool

    01 Apr 2014

    By Kasey L. Powers


    Short on Resources? A Variety of Useful Options for Graduate Students Teaching Psychology

    08 Apr 2014

    By Theresa Fiani and Rita Obeid


    Teaching with Technology: Just the Basics Part 1

    29 Apr 2014

    By Francis Yannaco


    Flip the Textbook

    06 May 2014

    By Kasey Powers


    3 Tips for Supporting Greenhorn Research Writers

    12 May 2014

    By Philip Kreniske


    Lecturers Can Run a Successful Course Without a Textbook

    20 May 2014

    By Hunter Kincaid



  • 20 May 2014 8:59 AM | Kasey Powers (Administrator)

     By Hunter Kincaid, PhD student Social/Personality Psychology


    We are lucky as instructors that so many textbook representatives are willing to give us free copies and online material to help create lectures.  While they make our job easier, we need to remember that they are in the business of selling expensive textbooks and often have little knowledge about the subject matter or current research in each field.  Since I am lucky/weird enough to be a very young lecturer students often feel more comfortable complaining about other classes and professors to me.  Let me assure you, your students know when you are using the slides textbook companies provide for you...and they are insulted by it.  


    Your goal as an instructor is not to teach the whole textbook or to get your students to connect to a textbook.  Your job is to decide what research topics are most important at each level (100-400), and then to find a textbook that provides information on each of those topics in an innovative way.  If you can't find a textbook that does this don't fret, because you DO NOT need a textbook to teach an effective course.  In Europe students are protected against companies charging hundreds of dollars for texts, our students are not.  Hunter college students come to our school because it is affordable, many do not have the extra money to buy your expensive text.  As a lecturer who has given up textbooks quite a few times when there isn't an adequate one on the market, I would like to share a few tips:

    1.  Many APA handbooks like the new Handbook of Sexuality and Psychology allow you to create texts for students by selecting what you would like to include only...allowing you to keep costs down for students.

    2.  You are supposed to be an expert in your field, that's why you were hired to teach undergrads.  That should mean you are familiar with many pieces of research in that field.  Try selecting articles that are written parsimoniously  to walk students through a research paper, many authors write in an accessible way including many CUNY graduates.  For instance in sexuality and gender studies even in 100 and 200 level classes I can select works from GC graduate Bell Hooks because she intends for her science to be accessed by the masses.


    For readings, I love using Hooks's (1997) "Selling Hot Pussy" in gender studies courses to talk not only about basic concepts like objectification but to then take it further by looking at objectification specificity, allowing us to think about gender role expectations in a non dichotomous way.


    Also a total classic is Sternberg's (1986) "A Triangular Theory of Love" I use it in social psych and psych of sex.  Its great to be able to go over classic literature with them, and this piece is highly cited/used in research and it's fairly accessible. Its a great piece to talk about methodology like operationalizing big amorphous concepts like Love.  Then after they read it I can have them do a reading response where they have to take the characters and relationships in their favorite tv/web series and describe each relationship using the dimensions of Sternberg's theory.


    3.   Post your lecture slides or lecture notes on blackboard. Worried about students not coming? Make your lectures interesting and fun, or make attendance part of their grade.  The lecture slides become a supplementary text in a course without a textbook.  I always include extra links, videos and citations for students in the notes portions of slides

    4.  Find visual examples (photo, video, live visitors to the class) that can help make the research articles you select REAL. For example, in my social psychology course students read research on the desire for equity or fairness when we learn about prejudice...and then we also watch video from controlled experiments with animal populations to show the beginning stages of testing these theories.  

    Do not be a lazy lecturer and rely on that textbook to do your job for you. You were hired to lecture because you have experience and knowledge in the subject matter, and we are paid to share that knowledge with our students.  So have confidence and share that same excitement with your students that brought you to academia in the first place!



    Hooks, B. (1997). Selling hot pussy: Representations of black female sexuality in the cultural marketplace. Writing on the body: female embodiment and feminist theory, 113-128.

    Sternberg, R. J. (1986). A triangular theory of love. Psychological Review, 93 (2), 119-135.

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   Next >  Last >> 
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software