- Added scientist spotlights
- Incorporated critical feedback with assurance for sense of belonging
- Analyzed demographic data from previous 5 years to track changes in student success with modifications
- Developed new curriculum with CUREs and environmental justice themes
- Infused many of my assignments with multicontextualism by focusing more on high contextual approaches
- Developed more "sense of place" activities which engage students in local field work in a single location for the entire quarter
- Shared information on how to learn, metacognition and a growth mindset with my students
- Incorporated more metacognitive activities
- Included a "Scientist Spotlight" activity
- Added more local and relevant topics
Next steps: Introducing Bloom's Taxonomy, adding more Scientist Spotlight assignments, adding Critical Feedback with Assurance intervention
Strengthening our Department/Program
Our Action Plan goals focused on expanding our geoscience majors. With the lack of personal connection with individual students during remote teaching and what we learned from our outcomes data, we altered our main goal to emphasize developing a sense of belonging and addressing stereotypes and identity in all of our classes to support the success of all students and broaden participation. We have made significant progress with our strategies:
- All team members completed Universal Design Training
- Activities on sense of belonging, metacognition and science identity are incorporated in our classes
- Members of our department have attended our workshops and all will be using critical feedback with assurance in winter term as part of a department assessment project
- Established a relationship with our MESA program
- Polled our classes in Spring 2020 to begin gathering data on potential majors in our program (we learned there is not a clear way to do this with data gathered by the college)
- Incorporate "Critical Feedback with Assurance" intervention in all courses (Winter 2021)
- Involve our students and department in an outreach Earth Day activity in 2021(partnering with alumni and our Foundation)
Developing our Campus Community
Engaging our Colleagues:
We offered three workshops in a series for our STEM colleagues. Faculty were welcome to attend one or all three. Over these five hours of shared time we covered some of our key themes from our SAGE trainings that we believe help us achieve our goals of student success and equity. We emphasized developing a sense of belonging, using high context strategies, metacognition, and strategies to promote students' science identities. Workshop sized ranged from 14-25 participants.
Many faculty attended all three workshops and we received excellent feedback. These faculty committed to using one or more of the strategies we shared for winter quarter.
- We would like to offer our workshops again, ideally in person. If the entire year is spent online, we may offer the inclusive learning workshop online in the spring.
- Other STEM faculty have now expressed interest in having a monthly "happy hour" to engage in brainstorming and sharing of ideas.
Rebecca has taught at Clark College for 20 years as part of the biology, education, and Earth and environmental science departments. She has worked in partnership with the early childhood program to offer inquiry-based science experiences for students. Rebecca also uses Open Education Resources (OER) in her classes and teaches primarily through a hybrid format.
Rebecca teaches Integrated Environmental Science, Survey of Biology, Marine Biology, and Bioethics.
Kathleen has been a professor at Clark College for more than 20 years utilizing her extensive ecological background to lead the College's field studies classes. In 2015 she co-created and currently co-directs the Clark College Native Plant Center which introduces 300+ students a year to native plant propagation and native plant restoration projects in the Columbia River Gorge. In 2018, Kathleen purchased 1,000 acres in the Siskiyou Mountains of northern California and designated it as an ecological reserve where students can have direct experience with ecological restoration.
Kathleen teaches Introduction to Environmental Science, Introduction to Ecological Restoration, Field Studies in Environmental Science, Principles of Wildlife Conservation, Pacific Northwest Birds, Field Studies in Biology, and Environmental Biology.
Michelle has experience teaching geology and other Earth sciences at both community colleges and universities, and has held both adjunct and full-time positions. She teaches and develops online, hybrid, and face-to-face classes and has developed a fully-online geology course at Clark that is Quality Matters certified. She has participated in POGIL (Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning) workshops and is working to implement more POGIL-like activities in her geology courses at Clark.
Michelle teaches Introduction to Physical Geology I (Earth Materials and Structure), Introduction to Physical Geology II (Surface Processes), and Historical Geology.
Clark College in is located in Vancouver, Washington just north of Portland, Oregon. Nearly a quarter of their 14,000 students are under 18. Seventy-six percent of their students are first generation.
Earth and Environmental Sciences Department: Each year, ~340 students enroll in Clark's geology courses, ~300 students take environmental science courses, and ~160 students enroll in a meteorology course. This means that the department directly serves about 800 students per year. Most students take their courses to complete the science requirements for an AA transfer degree. Clark does not have majors but does have students enrolled in AST-1 (Associates of Science Track 1) degrees in which they can focus on Geology or Environmental Science. The students who take their Earth and environmental science courses seem to represent the general demographic of Clark College.
There are 8 faculty in the Earth and Environmental Sciences Department, which is part of the STEM Instructional Unit. Four faculty are full time, 3 of whom are tenure track and one who is temporary. Only one of the tenure-track positions teaches fully within this department; the other two also teach in the Biology Department. The other 4 faculty members are adjunct faculty.
Institutional demographic data is from IPEDS the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, U.S. Department of Education, typically for the 2018-19 year as available.