Making Change Happen

Part of the InTeGrate Savannah State University Program Model

Advice for Future Implementations »Faculty Reflections and Stories »

High-Level Project Timeline

Fall, 2015

  • Identified the potential components of the InTeGrate modules that were presented in the proposal for use in ENVS 1140 Environmental Issues.

  • Held initial cross-College meetings to identify and address the roadblocks to have students from multiple majors take the new courses. The goal was to have the paperwork submitted by the first approval meetings of Spring 2016.

  • Drafted paperwork for the new courses as they would need approvals at the levels of program, department, College, New Programs Committees, Faculty Senate, and Vice President of Academic Affairs. Thus knowing the timing of the meetings was essential.

Spring, 2016

  • Modified and began to implement InTeGrate material in the existing course for non-majors, ENVS 1140 Environmental Issues, to include several previously developed modules
  • Developed and submitted documents for a new lower-level (freshman/sophomore, Coastal Hazards & Environmental Risks) course as an entry course for a new cross-program certificate in Coastal Community Risks & Management. University approval attained (respective departments, Colleges, New Programs and Curriculum Committee, Faculty Senate, VPAA).
  • Developed a new upper-level (junior/senior, Environmental Justice & Coastal Risk Management) course as a capstone course for new cross-program certificate in Coastal Community Risks & Management. University approval attained.
  • Continued networking & planning meetings/activities to develop model curricular pathways for cross-disciplinary certificate.
  • Certificate program approved at the University level

Summer, 2016

  • Continued modification and implementation of existing course for non-majors, ENVS 1140 Environmental Issues.
  • More detailed development of the new lower-level course, COST 1140 Coastal Hazards & Environmental Risks.
  • More detailed development of the new upper-level course, COST 4140K Environmental Justice & Coastal Risk Management
  • Continued networking & planning meetings/activities to develop model curricular pathways for cross-disciplinary certificate. Some team members identified other courses that were of interest for them to use InTeGrate materials

Fall, 2016

  • Offered new upper-level COST 4140K Environmental Justice & Coastal Risk Management
  • Continued implementation of existing course for non-majors, ENVS 1140 Environmental Issues.
  • Coastal hazards concepts incorporated in MSCI 4101K Marine Sediments class
  • Humans' Dependence on Earth's Mineral Resources InTeGrate module incorporated into GLIB 3190 Global Supply Chain Management
  • InTeGrate concepts incorporated into POLS 3702 Introduction to Geographical Information Systems

Key Aspects of the Program

Because a major component of our program model involves the development of new courses, having regular meetings with the project team has allowed for coordinated action and deliberate integration of the SERC materials in the courses. Secondly, having team members that are knowledgeable about the necessary steps to achieve approvals for the courses and successful course usage by and promotion to the students has been key. Lastly, having strong strategists, particularly Rukmana and Pride, participating fully in the program has helped tremendously with important timing for getting the necessary University approvals. In the classroom, for the course that has been modified (ENVS 1140 Environmental Issues), tiered modification has been helpful in finding out what works effectively and what does not with the student body at our institution. This has involved keeping the same pre- and post- tests, using only one SERC activity at a time (first Hazards vs Risks and Calculating Risk), and then adding in the GLE and essay question for student assessment in the existing course.

We anticipate institutional level impact with the development of the Certificate program and Area D approval for the new courses, COST 1140 and COST 4140K, enhancing cross-disciplinary academic and grant writing collaboration.

Sustaining Change

The broader impacts of the program are that the project is:

  1. grounded in the knowledge of the resources
  2. supported by the faculty and administrative foresight to share knowledge and create opportunities for students and faculty to use their expertise to serve the community, and
  3. crowned with the cross-college and inter-institution willingness to forge new relationships toward the betterment of the education and broader communities.

Project leader, Sue Ebanks, used and intends to continue to use the materials through infusion within her existing course offerings and new course developments as well as extensive outreach efforts. Additionally, the success of this program in drawing non-science majors into topics using relatable current issues-based content has encouraged her to collaborate with an expanded team to use InTeGrate materials to more broadly educate and train in-service and pre-service K-12 educators in Earth Sciences to incorporate Earth Science information and concepts into our Africana Studies program.

A success of this short program was that we developed and received university approval to offer two new courses that were built on Environmental Justice and Coastal Hazards and Risks. The upper-level new course was taught in an abbreviated, 8-week semester format in late Fall 2016 and despite being impacted by Hurricane Matthew, students were able to complete in-class projects and a major section of a larger Service Learning Project. Possibly more importantly they could gain an appreciation and understanding for how their training in their respective fields of environmental science, civil engineering, and homeland security and emergency management can be used to serve in the development of coastal risk management plans and other needs within the region. This initial offering has clarified our understanding of the necessary next steps to increase the impact of using the InTeGrate materials in the interdisciplinary discussion and action format.