QUBES Reflections

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Program Overview -

Project EDDIE and the QUBES project partnered to support the adaptation of EDDIE modules across disciplines. Beginning in 2019, QUBES has project partnered with Project EDDIE to provide an interactive faculty community called a faculty mentoring network (FMN). EDDIE modules use publicly available datasets to engage students in inquiry and quantitive reasoning. Faculty participants identified modules and specific units to implement and developed a timeline for integration of activities and assessment that fit their courses. Mentors provided support during the online group biweekly meetings by leading discussions around pedagogical topics, providing additional resources on implementation and assessment, offering suggestions about adapting the modules, and guiding next steps. QUBES provided logistical support and most importantly maintained the online environment in that faculty could share ideas and collaborate throughout the project. The project culminated in a reflective Instructor Story by all participants which is included on the Project EDDIE Website and contributes to a broader use of the modules.

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Mentor Reflections -

Sarah Cadieux, Renneselaer Polytecnic Institute- Spring 2022 Mentor

As a previous EDDIE FMN Alum and participant in the Teaching Quantitative Reasoning with Data Workshop, I was familiar with several the EDDIE Modules and have utilized many in my own teaching. The majority of those in my cohort focused on the Climate Change module, which I have been utilizing in both geology and environmental science courses since 2017. As I was very familiar with this module, I came into the experience feeling confident in my ability to mentor those approaching these modules for the first time. However, as I've learned in teaching, nothing ever goes as you had initial anticipated. For a group all mostly working on the activity and data, I was amazed at the different ways each participant approached and used the module in their classes. I found it interesting to think about how a single set of climate data could be used in such a range of classroom topics, and to students with different experiences. As a result, I spent a lot of time thinking about objectives in teaching and learning more than I had before. 

One of my favorite parts about the Faculty Mentoring Networks is getting to know a group of diverse educators. This semester not only did I get to meet and know faculty globally, but also one on my own campus! With so much of campus interactions currently taking place online, it is easy to not talk about pedagogy with colleagues. Having this faculty member and I each doing the same module but in different courses allowed for discussions about cross-discipline overlap, as well as common struggles amongst the same student population. As a result, as I think about what I teach in my courses, I'm more aware of similarities and connections that can be made to other classes on campus. 

Elizabeth Farrell, CUNY Queens College; SUNY Nassau Community College - Spring 2022 Mentor

As a Project EDDIE Module author (see Green Roofs/Green Infrastructure), I was excited to be asked to co-lead the 2022 EDDIE Spring FMN. I looked forward to feedback about not only my own module, but on other modules I have taught or plan to implement in my own classroom. I continue to enjoy helping to build the EDDIE community and connecting with other faculty members. Hearing other perspectives and ideas about pedagogy and quantitative reasoning through the use of large datasets and active learning helps to strengthen and improve my own teaching. Our Spring 2022 FMN participants included instructors from a variety of disciplines and levels of experience, all of which infused our discussions with new ideas, interdisciplinary concepts, and proven pedagogical techniques. Each meeting I led discussions relating the resources provided in our discussion boards to the modules each attendee was implementing in their course, and we enjoyed productive conversations about challenges and successes with our unique didactic methodologies.

Many of the participants were teaching classes that were either hybrid, online, asynchronous or synchronous.  This online aspect of teaching quantitative reasoning and trying to maintain active learning, while facing the challenge of not being in person, can oftentimes be difficult, especially when analyzing data.  Troubleshooting using software with students is almost always easier in person.  I was happy to share and receive ideas and resources to improve my own skillset and help others to do the same.  Several of the attendees were able to utilize TedED videos myself and others in the EDDIE community created, as well as statistical vignettes and many other resources from the EDDIE website.  It was great to give and receive feedback, advice, and resources as we built relationships that I hope will extend beyond the Spring FMN meetings. I was impressed and grateful for how much I got back from each meeting.  It was an experience I would love to embark on again, as I, like so many in the EDDIE community, am always exploring new ways to enhance my skill set, strengthen my professional development, and continue to build a network of colleagues with whom I have synergistic relationships.  Our common goal of enhancing student learning, despite our differences in background and experience, ties us together.

 

Andrew Havales, University of Wisconsin-River Falls - Spring 2021 Mentor

The role of faculty mentor for the EDDIE Spring FMN 2021 was an exciting opportunity for me to reflect on my own teaching as a junior faculty and to continue building the EDDIE community by facilitating conversations around teaching concepts and quantitative reasoning with large datasets and inquiry-driven learning. I was also interested in utilizing my interdisciplinary background (biology and geology) and professional development skills to integrate resources and viewpoints. Our Spring 2021 FMN was composed of instructors from a variety of backgrounds (e.g., biology, geology, environmental science) and differing levels of experience (e.g., new faculty to tenured faculty with 30+ years of experience). This diversity of backgrounds and experiences were the critical base for fruitful discussions as someone described their challenges and colleagues shared multiple ideas, strategies, and resources. As a result, everyone in attendance found value in the discussions and resources. I facilitated discussions by posting discussion prompts and selected example resources, I continued to learn from the group about new resources and ideas to utilize in my own teaching. These same resources have also become infused into future FMNs and the EDDIE community. The interactions were fun to experience, and I was thrilled to see the bonds folks built throughout the semester evidenced by bittersweet moment as we signed off our last planned call at the end of the semester. I noticed a comradery that develops during and FMN that reinforces the notion that we don't have to teach in isolated bubbles and that there are others out there that share similar challenges such as classroom logistics, our own confidence in teaching (e.g., inquiry-driven learning, quantitative reasoning, coding), or trying to incite change at our institution. Lastly, I was unsurprised and always admire the creativity, dedication, and thoughtfulness that our community of instructors invest in their teaching and student learning. I look forward to future opportunities to engage with instructors to perpetually improve my teaching, build new relationships with colleagues, and improve the quality of education we provide for students.