9:00am to 9:50am
In June 2016 the APA Committee on Associate and Baccalaureate Education sponsored the Summit on National Assessment in Psychology to address the need for assessment measures linked to the Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major 2.0. In this presentation jointly organized by SEPA and SETOP, we will discuss the highlights of the Summit, provide an overview of the assessment resources compiled during the Summit, and provide an update on access to the online repository of these resources. Potential directions for the Guidelines and additional assessment resources will also be discussed.
10:00am to 10:50am
A perennial issue in teaching is finding creative ways to foster students’ internal motivation and self-direction in their learning. In this session, we will discuss the integration of gamification (using game-like elements in a non-game environment) into course design to achieve this goal. Building on a framework rooted in self-determination theory, session attendees will learn basic elements of gamified course design and will have opportunities to discuss and generate ideas for gamification elements in their own courses. The presenters will also share examples and data from their own recent psychology courses—one in a large research university setting, the other in a small teaching-focused university—relating gamified course design to student variables, including self-reported internal motivation, metacognition, and perceptions of the course learning environment.
With today’s focus on the online classroom, students need skills to succeed in a technologically driven educational journey. Students must demonstrate competency in critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity in addition to core academic content. Flipped classrooms provide educators the opportunity to cultivate these skills, but how can this be done in the online classroom?
During the presentation, we will share how Psychology instructors can teach students to utilize Web 2.0 tools to enhance their learning, collaborate with others and in teams, and present to their instructor/class using a flipped classroom format in the online course. We will demonstrate how students can utilize Web 2.0 tools to improve communication and collaboration. We will also show how by using Web 2.0 tools, there are opportunities for enhanced creativity and critical thinking. Finally, we will demonstrate how students can utilize Web 2.0 tools to embrace problem-based learning and inquiry based learning.
In 2005, the Creative Inquiry Task Force at Clemson was assembled to facilitate creative endeavors through student and faculty collaboration. The Creative Inquiry program has supported over 1000 projects through funding, conference organization, and matching student interests with faculty and graduate students. The university-wide platform centered on creative endeavors has been successful for undergraduate students by allowing students to develop a competitive resume while promoting curiosity and critical thinking. The program also offers graduate students the chance to bolster their research productivity and laboratory management skills through collaborating with faculty and mentoring undergraduate students. This workshop will focus on the impact of Creative Inquiry for psychology faculty, undergraduates, and graduate students as well as implementation strategies for other universities. The success of the Creative Inquiry program at Clemson suggests that other institutions could develop a similar platform for undergraduate and graduate students to connect creative interests.
11:00am to 12:00pm
Fake news is proliferating, in part because social media is a great equalizer; popularity, not accuracy, drives the stories that all look respectable in our newsfeeds. Although political fake stories get the most press, science fake stories are just as dangerous and offer us an inroad to increase students’ information fluency. In our classrooms, we can harness “real news” to teach real-world applications of psychology, particularly in global and multicultural contexts. But we also can harness “fake news” to teach the critical thinking skills that help students evaluate the firehose of information we all encounter.
In this presentation, I’ll first explore cognitive and social psychology research on why fake news and, relatedly, real but “fluffy” news (i.e., “clickbait”) are both compelling and divisive. I’ll then talk about how we can use news sources to bring other countries and cultures into our classrooms. Finally, I’ll consider how we can layer lessons about critical thinking onto these discussions, teaching students to differentiate among good, questionable, and fake news sources.
12:00pm to 1:00pm
1:00pm to 1:50pm
Psychology is a fascinating subject...which means the person who is teaching Psychology should be equally as captivating. This dynamic and interactive presentation will show you how to incorporate video and imagery within your presentation to increase student engagement, learning and participation. Using these tools will greatly enhance the culture in the classroom and lead to higher rates of students retention.
While good resources in the form of color images, 3D manipulation apps, coloring book pages, and videos exist to aid the neuroscience student in learning basic gross neuroanatomy, nothing beats a good, active-learning, hands-on, manipulative exercise. This session will cover several exercises that can be adapted for the introductory modules of General Psychology, or the more challenging material of a semester-long Neuroscience or Behavioral Neuroscience course. The session will focus on 1) clay modeling of brain parts using life-size plastic ventricles (human) as a starting point, and 2) the dissection of sheep brains aided by use of eco-friendly natural stains to enhance white/gray matter distinctions, but will also include a presentation of attempts to 3D print, sculpt, and mold low-cost ventricle models, as well as reviewing other neuroanatomy resources available to the instructor such as a printable brain "cap", and a pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey-type labeling exercise. Session attendees will try their hand at clay modeling, and examine sheep-brain slices stained with mulberry juice and other natural substances.
Undergraduate research is a high-impact educational practice that leads to deep learning for students (Kuh, 2008), but it is time-consuming to do well, and a lack of time is a common barrier for faculty mentors (Buddie & Collins, 2011). In this session, we will discuss mentoring strategies that both facilitate high-quality undergraduate research experiences and save time for the faculty member. First, we will brainstorm as a group the strategies we have found to be successful with our undergraduate researchers. Then, I will provide resources that attendees can use to help facilitate high-impact undergraduate research experiences with their students. Time at the end will be reserved for attendees to reflect on their current and aspirational undergraduate research mentoring experiences and to create an action plan for the future.
Being a lifelong learner has been shown to be a positive factor in an individual's life. Many of our students are older and returning to college to pursue a different path. Despite the change in the demographic of the average college student, we continue to address our students with the latest best practices all focusing on a pedagogy of the knowledgeable teacher and receptive student. This presentation will present the rationale for changing from the typical pedagogy to a heutagogy that nurtures and supports a lifelong learner.This presentation will focus on moving from the cut and paste pedagogy curriculums to heutagogy- self determined education- as a means to keep the students not only engaged but excited.
2:00pm to 2:50pm
The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships between students’ self-reported altruism (SRA), motivation to serve (MTS) and purpose in life (PIL). The participants were 583 undergraduate and graduate students from a mid-size, mid-Atlantic university, representing many different majors and professional training programs. An online survey was utilized to measure the three primary variables. Four main hypotheses were made for this study: (1) there would be significant positive correlations between all variables (SRA, MTS and PIL); (2) there would be clear differences on all three variables between students who have served compared with those who have not served; (3) there would be a measurable difference between males and females on all three variables, and lastly, (4) scores for all variables would increase with age. All hypotheses were either fully or partially supported by the data.
A rich literature in the scholarship of teaching and learning has explored the value of neutrality or impartiality in teaching controversial topics. Some contend that disciplined impartiality is the only defensible stance, while others argue that it is the duty of the professor to instill values consistent with the ethics of their disciplines or the missions of their institutions (see Kelly, 1986 for a summary). The recent fraught political cycle raised this issue anew. We will begin by summarizing various approaches to neutrality in teaching, then we will share our own perspectives and recent experiences during the 2016 election year, and finally we will lead an interactive discussion with the audience. In addition to the voices of the three professors on the panel, several undergraduates will also be invited to reflect on their experiences with neutrality or non-neutrality in the classroom.
Psychology faculty are often more willing to provide career advising to the ~25% of their majors who plan to attend graduate school than to the ~75% who plan to enter the workforce. This presentation addresses the causes and consequences of this unfortunate situation and provides participants with readily available career-advising resources and a systematic strategy to bring these resources to the attention of job-seeking students during academic advising sessions. At the end of this presentation, attendees should be both more willing and more able to facilitate their job-seeking students’ accomplishment of Goal 5: Professional Development of the APA Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major by becoming familiar with the “skill sets desired by employers who hire or select people with psychology backgrounds,” and “acquiring an understanding of the “settings in which people with backgrounds in psychology typically work,” thus helping them to “develop meaningful professional directions.”
The field of psychology is undergoing a "revolution" regarding the questionable validity of findings across many of its areas. Our discipline is likely not the only one in which classic studies are unreplicable, calling into question some of our basic assumptions about the field. Replication, long frowned upon for publication, is making a comeback, leading psychology professors to wonder how best to present material in textbooks that may be in question. The purpose of this panel discussion is to explore some of the ways professors can use these challenges to the bedrock of our disciplines to tap into student critical thinking. Why didn't the study replicate? Were the constructs incorrectly operationalized? How far reaching are the implications of these revelations? We will present our ideas for addressing this and hope to dialog with attendees about their positive and negative experiences, and ideas for moving forward during this exciting transition.
3:00pm to 3:50pm
Teaching psychology can often be a challenge, in part because it requires students to try to understand difficult concepts, especially those related to psychological disorders. Incorporating literature helps psychology students understand these concepts, because it allows them to put themselves into the situation of the characters in the literature and to try to perceive what the characters’ lives are like. This presentation addresses the interdisciplinary exploration of psychology through literature, illustrating the readings (novels, poems, short stories, and plays) that we incorporated in a General Education class and how students used that literature to synthesize psychological information. We will use the students’ final projects to show how their understanding of literature helped them meet learning outcomes for psychology. During the presentation, we will provide a compilation of stories, poems, and texts that relate to psychology, and we will brain storm additional ways to teach psychology through the use of literature.
Online courses are notoriously difficult to engage in active student participation. Through the use of qualitative data in the form of anonymous written feedback from students, various strategies were developed to promote student engagement in online classes. A new online platform was tested with a Learning Management System (LMS), which allowed the instructor to provide live lecture videos, screen share, and hold individual video meetings with students on a need-be basis. Additionally, content was color-coded by week to streamline the material on the LMS. Several weekly forums were required in order to provide community and to facilitate discussion of the material. Student feedback was very positive, including at least one student remarking that, after taking at least 5 online courses, this was the most engaging and interactive online course that she had ever experienced.
Introducing and preparing graduate students to teach and potentially pursue academic positions is done in a variety of ways, including programmatic or departmental programs, specific workshops or courses, an apprenticeship model, or through teaching assistant activities. During doctoral training, especially for students in applied areas of psychology, the main focus is often on research and research-related activities. This often results in students not being fully prepared for teaching in higher education institutions or understanding the professional and career development issues involved when pursuing an academic career. Attention to preparing future faculty in psychology is especially important as the number of psychology doctoral students pursuing an academic career has remained fairly consistent (and relatively low) through the years. This session will highlight activities of the University of Georgia Preparing Future Faculty (PFF) in Psychology program. PFF scholars will discuss the benefits and challenges of the PFF program as well as their own personal growth and development as a result of participanting in the PFF program.
The teaching of abnormal psychology requires sensitivity in presenting cases, protecting the anonymity of patients as well as the sensibility of students who may be experiencing mental health issues. There is a fine line between self-disclosure and self-protection for both students and professors. I intend to discuss the role of teacher self- disclosure in the context of the Abnormal psychology class. I will present a video of the 2015 TEDx Charleston talk, “Secrets of a Wounded Healer”. The talk offers personal testimony for the need to de-stigmatize mental illness and how we can approach this topic with students. Discussion will center on the advantages and disadvantages of teacher self-disclosure.
4:00pm to 5:30pm
This poster is a visual depiction of an online resource that psychology majors can use to become aware of the careers for which they can prepare with a baccalaureate degree in psychology.
APA’s Guidelines stress the importance of teaching communication and professional development alongside course content. Group presentation assignments serve multiple functions including providing students an opportunity to learn course material, as well as to collaborate and build oral communication skills. Inter-departmental collaborations may improve student success by teaching these valued professional skills. Students were assigned to develop and deliver a group presentation on an assigned topic related to human sexuality and to attend an appointment with the University’s Center for Writing and Communication. 51 students rated their ability to construct and to present a quality presentation before and after the assignment. Two paired-samples t-tests indicated a significant difference in students’ (1) ability to construct a quality presentation, t(50) = -5.24, p < .001 and (2) presentation delivery skills, t(50) = -5.47, p < .001. Instructors should be encouraged to utilize campus resources in order to support their students with course assignments.
As students prepare to graduate from college there is a renewed emphasis on their ability to use their education in new environments. The ability to identify skills that can be utilized in one’s career and the confidence in being able to discuss those skills is important to initial post graduation efforts. The current research surveyed a convenient sample of 12 students in a senior seminar psychology course regarding their views of their education and skills. Students endorsed the value of college and their confidence in discussing their education. These items were also strongly correlated. Further, these items were also strongly correlated with the number of skills mentioned, but not correlated with the number of courses and activities that promoted those skills. In addition, the skills mentioned were largely general in nature, and not specific to potential careers. These findings will be discussed in terms of course and program development.
A lab activity was created using modeling clay to create subcortical brain structures around purchased ventricle models to better understand spatial locations of difficult structures of the brain. An instructional guide was created complete with a reference sheet with sketched proportions and shapes of structures and a picture of a completed clay/ventricle model. A pretest, posttest, and likeability survey was given to measure the effectiveness of the activity as well as its enjoyableness. There was a significant difference in the mean pretest scores and the mean posttest scores, t(12)=-5.63, p<.001. Because of difficulties with Play-Doh, such as staying together, hardening, and even sometimes harming the ventricle models, different types of clays were tested in modeling. Each clay was judged in color availability (each structure uses a different color), ease of shaping, stickiness (good or bad), shape retention, and ease of cleanup. The top two clays were Cernit and Sculptey.
As part of the Academic Program Review, the psychology faculty decided to revise the psychology major to include a B.A. degree with four specializations. Prior to the review, the psychology major included the choice of a typical B.A. degree or a B.S. degree, which prepares students for graduate school. The B.S. degree was only offered at University campus. Thus, one goal of the specializations was to increase center and online students’ opportunities. The four specializations include general, developmental, experimental, and clinical/counseling. Currently, the general and clinical/counseling specializations seem to be the most popular. However, there are challenges in offering all four specializations across all delivery domains. For example, it is especially challenging to offer the experimental specialization online and at adult education centers. The proposed presentation will describe the specializations, discuss delivery and other challenges, and report results of a student survey assessing satisfaction with the new psychology major.
The use of gamified learning is becoming more popular in online courses. Gamified learning involves the use of game elements “to motivate players to engage in a task they otherwise would not find attractive” (Plass, Homer, & Kinzer, 2015, p. 259). The proposed poster will address three cases (i.e., courses) where a different gamified learning format is used in each course. The first case uses one game as a theme for the entire course. Thus, students interact with the material in various ways using the same game throughout the term. The second case involves using multiple game formats in the same course. For example, each module introduces the material by using different classic board games. Finally, the third case involves building the course in a way that allows students to apply what they have learned in previous modules to a game that is presented later in the course. Applicable theories will be discussed as well as the pros and cons of each approach.
First Year Experience (FYE) courses include various topics and presentation styles depending on institutional goals, including information on a particular major and “soft skills” (e.g. time management, adjusting to college, etc.). Research in this area tends to survey students at 4-year institutions who are less likely to be first generation or diverse students, and more likely to be educated in “soft skills.” We surveyed students at our 2-year, open-access college (known for its higher proportion of first generation and diverse students, who tend to lack “soft skills”) on their perceptions of completing the FYE Psychology Majors course. Preliminary results suggest that students liked learning about career paths and course requirements for the degree, but found coverage of topics associated with “soft skills” and reading scholarly research less important. Discussion will involve suggested modifications to make the FYE Course in Psychology more impactful for students at 2-year, open-access colleges.
There is little published on non-toxic differential staining of grey or white matter of already preserved brain. We wanted to increase visibility of subcortical structures during dissection, and eliminate exposure to toxins. Slices (of 5 mm) were submerged in solutions and judged on vibrancy and contrast of the color, and time it took for the specimen to achieve optimal color. Food coloring and red wine appear to be the best tested so far, some other staining substances included: bloodroot, beet juice, madder, teas, red cabbage, turmeric, etc. were also tried. Alum was used as a mordant in order to aid the penetrance while water, vinegar, and alcohol, were used as rinses or a type of clearing agent in order to achieve maximum differentiation. The combination we judged to be the best thus far has been a diluted alcohol presoak with a pinot noir/alum solution and an alcohol post soak.
Past research has shown that completing a Positive Psychology course (vs. a comparison course) led to students reporting greater well-being, lower depression scores, and lower stress (Goodman, Middleditch, Childs, & Pietrasiuk, 2016). The current study sought to expand on this research by testing how a Psychology of Emotions (vs. a comparison) course may improve specific emotions-related outcomes. Students enrolled in a Psychology of Emotions course and a Lifespan Development course completed a series of emotion assessments at the beginning and end of the semester. Students in the Emotions course reported significant improvements in emotional intelligence and beliefs about emotions relative to those in the Lifespan course. These results illustrate the importance of designing courses that may help students develop important social-emotional skills that they can use beyond the classroom.
Most research EEG devices are expensive and require advanced skill to set up and interpret. Relatively recently, consumer grade brain-computer interfaces utilizing EEG technology have become available. Examples of these are the Emotive EPOC and the Emotiv Insight. These devices are wireless headsets that read brainwave signals, and then using a proprietary algorithm, translate this data into metrics that can be readily understood. The Emotiv Insight is a 5-channel version, which translates EEG data into six different emotional dimensions in real time – Excitement (Arousal), Interest (Valence), Stress (Frustration), Engagement/Boredom, Attention (Focus) and Meditation (Relaxation). This poster will display how the Insight has been used in undergraduate research, and a consideration of the usefulness and challenges of using such devices.
This study assessed the value of adding an experiential laboratory to an Introduction to Psychology course. Attrition, student learning outcomes, course satisfaction, and self-assessed knowledge gained were compared between a 4-credit hour lecture-based course, and a 3+1‑hour lecture-plus-laboratory. Total contact hours and student demographics were comparable across courses. Learning outcomes were assessed with identical multiple-choice questions over 6 core concepts: history and theories, research design and analyses, brain and behavior, learning and memory, development and personality, and mental health. Course satisfaction and perceived knowledge gained were derived from end-of-semester evaluations. Benefits of adding laboratories to introductory courses will be discussed.
In the past decade, new course approaches that minimize reliance on lecture are becoming more popular. In the flipped classroom, students read texts and watch recorded lectures before class. In the classroom, students practice application, translation, and problem solving under the direction of the instructor. In backward design, the instructor thinks of the course first in terms of learning outcomes. Assessments, content delivery, assignments, and course goals are then built from the original learning outcomes. Despite the popularity of these approaches, such radical redesigns of one’s course may seem overwhelming and unattainable in the race of the academic calendar. In this poster I will illustrate simple ways to begin to introduce these methods into one’s courses without attempting complete course redesigns. I hope to invite discussion about how colleagues have slipped these and other redesign elements into their traditional courses.
Students often struggle with summarizing the results of research studies and appropriately citing sources using APA format. This poster describes how to use popular texts to teach students these essential skills. Students in an interpersonal relationships course read Modern Romance by the comedian Aziz Ansari. The book is entertaining but also firmly rooted in social science research. Assignments including comparing Ansari’s summary to the original article in order to identify what information Ansari chose to include and what information he excluded and why. Students also edited Ansari’s summaries to be consistent with APA style. Course evaluations, on a 5-point scale, indicated that students found the assignments to be helpful (M = 4.92, SD = 0.28) and they felt they gained important knowledge (M = 4.69, SD = 0.63). The assignments from the course will be provided, along with suggestions for popular texts that might be used in other classes.
The Teacher Behavior Checklist (TBC) is a 28-item inventory that defines global qualities and characteristics of master teachers in in terms of specific behavioral anchors. Since its development 15 years ago, the academy has undergone many changes including student demographics, preparation of faculty for teaching, and shifts in policies governing institutions of higher learning. Thus, we were interested to study whether student perceptions of teaching have also changed, by systematically replicating the original research that produced the TBC (Buskist, Sikorski, Buckley, & Saville, 2002). We collected responses from 516 undergraduates and are currently conducting confirmatory factor analysis to test for any changes in the behavioral anchors attached to each of the 28 TBC items or any changes in the three scales that comprise the measure. We expect to find some change in the behavioral anchors, but no changes in the items that constitute each of the scales.
Employers consider written communication a fundamental skill necessary for success in the workplace (NACE, 2015). Similarly, psychology educators have positioned effective writing as one of the primary learning goals for undergraduate psychology majors (APA, 2013). Although there is some evidence that students may recognize the importance of writing (Miller & Carducci, 2015), students, like many people, have misconceptions about the strategies that lead to learning (Brown, Roediger, & McDaniel, 2014). Furthermore, certain individual differences may relate to students’ preferences regarding the course components that lead to the development of effective written communication skills. In the current study, we examined how the constructs of student academic entitlement and grit related to their perceptions of the importance of writing skills and their views of courses that include various writing requirements.
Students should appreciate psychology as a science, even in introductory-level courses (APA, 2012). However, students may not have this perception. For example, though students showed greater knowledge of scientific principles in advanced methods courses compared to lower level methods, their belief that psychology was scientific did not differ across course levels (Holmes & Beines, 2009). The present study investigated the extent that major and demographic variables predicted the extent that students valued psychology as a science. Introductory Psychology students completed a survey regarding the extent they valued psychology as a science, and they provided their major, gender, expected grade, and class standing. The results revealed that major, class standing, and expected grade did not significantly predict the extent that psychology was scientific. However, men valued psychology as less science than women. These results suggest that an important gap needs be bridged for men to value psychology as a real science.
The current study will investigate college students’ self-reported metacognitive reading strategies and their perceptions of textbook reading. Data from two different universities will be collected: Stephen F. Austin State University and Sul Ross Rio Grande College. Students from the previously described institutions will be asked to complete two surveys (the Metacognitive Reading Strategies Questionnaire and the Survey of Academic Reading Attitudes), in addition to two open-ended questions. The Metacognitive Reading Strategies Questionnaire is an instrument used to determine the frequency at which individuals use metacognitive strategies while they read. The Survey of Academic Reading Attitudes measures students ‘perceived academic reading behaviors, their explanations for success with academic reading and the value they place on academic reading (Isakson, Isakson, Plummer, & Chapman, 2016). Data will be evaluated to determine relationships between metacognitive reading strategies and student reading attitudes.
Do the students who actually need extra credit participate in extra credit assignments? This research examines an archival sample of students (N = 508) from several upper-level psychology college courses; analyses revealed that those with existing higher grades are more likely to complete extra credit assignments than are those with lower grades. Analysis revealed that female students were more apt to participate than male students and those enrolled in larger, lecture-style courses were more prone to participate than those in smaller courses.