Initial Publication Date: May 25, 2017

Karen Rose Cercone, Indiana University of Pennsylvania-Main Campus

From your experience, what practices make for excellent online Earth Science learning?

Designing activities that start with students' natural curiosity about the environment around them and which then lead them to use critical thinking and apply what they've learning to situations that matter to them (IE, flood risks for a house they might buy) rather than simply 'googling for information' and regurgitating meaningless facts on their exams.

How do you utilize technological tools (Google Earth, topical databases, blogging, etc.) in your online courses?

I use Virtual Earthquake in almost every class I teach. I also have students in face-to-face classes using mineral identification apps on their phones or tablets, geologic map databases and flood risk identification sites. I would like to incorporate more of these tools into my online class.

How do you manage student engagement and assessment in your online courses?

Students are required to do daily open-note review quizzes to keep them from lapsing in class participation. They are also assessed with weekly open-book critical essay exams.