Initial Publication Date: December 14, 2015

Using GETSI Modules in Your Course

GETSI materials were designed and tested by your peers—faculty and instructors at diverse institutions across the country. The materials were designed to be adaptable to a wide variety of classrooms and settings. This page provides some information on the materials that will help you adopt and adapt GETSI materials.

What You Get with GETSI Materials

GETSI has developed 2–3 week modules. All of these materials are presented here with a common structure, consisting of instructor resources, student materials, and answer keys.

Instructor Materials

The instructor materials section provides guidance for the faculty member or instructor. It lays out a set of broad goals and complementary assessments and then describes a sequence of units and subsidiary activities that will engage students in meeting those goals. The activity descriptions include activity-level goals, detailed descriptions of how to run the activities successfully, and any needed supporting materials, such as student handouts.

The instructor materials section also includes a set of Instructor Stories, where you will find more details about how your peers adapted a specific course or module to their academic setting.

These resources are available for free online. If you would like to explore the instructor resources offline, you can download a PDF or zipped html file of the entire module or course.

Student Materials

Complementary to the instructor's section is a separate set of student materials. These are readings or guided instruction designed to be given directly to students. They support and are integral to the activities described in the instructor's section. In some cases, these student materials can substitute for, or augment, traditional textbook readings.

Four versions of the student materials are provided:

  • Web-based evaluation version: A web version of the student materials sits within the instructor's materials so that you can easily explore them. This web version has a brief instructor's note at the top of each page which provides a link to the other versions.
  • Web-based student version: A second web version has the same content, but sits apart from the rest of the GETSI site and has no explicit links back to the instructor's materials. This version is perfect for your students. If you provide them with this url, they will be able to get the information intended for them without immediate access to the larger website.
  • Downloadable PDF: A download link in the upper right corner of the web-based student materials provides access to an identical copy of the materials in PDF format that is suitable for printing.
  • Downloadable zip file for integration into LMS: A stand-alone version of all the html content that makes up the student web pages can also be downloaded. This set of files is provided in a single zip archive which you can download, unzip on your local computer, and rework to suit your needs. This zip file is compliant with the IMS Common Cartridge format, which means you may be able to upload the zip file directly into your local learning management system (e.g. Blackboard, Moodle, Canvas, etc.), allowing your students to access this local version.

Answer Keys for Verified Instructors Only

While all of the GETSI materials are free to use, some of the materials would lose their value if they were easily available to everyone. Within the instructor's materials, you will find some answer keys and assessment instruments that are only downloadable by verified instructors. If you try to download these, you will be directed to fill out a simple form to validate that you are an instructor (and not a student looking for easy answers). You will only need to go through this simple process once; then you will have access to all the instructor materials across all of GETSI and InTeGrate. If you have participated in On the Cutting Edge workshops or are a member of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers you likely already have an account that is pre-approved and can download instructor-only materials immediately, as long as you use the same email address you registered with.

Adapting GETSI Materials to Your Course

The Materials are Designed with Adaptation in Mind

Throughout the development process we have focused on creating materials that would work well in a wide variety of teaching settings—including yours. Whether you are in a community college or a large research institution, teaching online, in a large lecture hall or small seminar, you will find guidance on how to make the activities work well in your environment. Despite the variety of settings, GETSI activities focus on engaging students in hands-on learning: doing, not just listening. In some cases it takes a bit more creativity to fit these sorts of activities into a traditional setting designed for simple lectures, but our Instructor Resources section provides guidance on how to do so.

Pick and Choose Just the Parts That Will Work for You

While the materials have been designed to work effectively in the particular sequence presented, we expect many instructors will want to pick just the pieces that fit their needs, rather than adopting an entire module or course. We have documented each individual activity so that it can stand alone and be integrated into your existing courses as you see fit. Feel free to take pieces of the activities, student materials, or any of the supporting documents.

We have made sure that all the materials are completely free to use and re-purpose within a traditional educational setting. Most are offered under a standard Creative Commons license so that you can add those student readings to your coursepack without having to worry about copyright.

And if you have ideas about how to use the materials that you want to share, please let us know! We are happy to spread the word. You are also invited to join the community of instructors using these materials to share and exchange ideas.