Resources for Teaching Large Classes
General Information About Teaching Large ClassesTeaching Introductory Geoscience: Teaching Large Classes - This collection of pages contains a variety of information on teaching large classes, including active learning pedagogies for large classrooms and a browse of examples of introductory courses with 150 students or more.
Early Career - Teaching Large Classes - This page contains useful strategies and references about keeping students engaged, using technology and making it work for you, and getting groups to work well.
Teaching Urban Students - This collection of pages is part of the Cutting Edge and Pedagogy in Action projects and focuses on how to teach in urban environments, including how to handle large class sizes. The pages present information about how to effectively teach and engage students and example activities.
Assessment in Large Classes - Large classes pose a challenge for instructors who need to assess a large number of students in an efficient way. This page hosts a collection of SERC pages devoted to assessment strategies andexamples of how assessment is performed in the geosciences.
Effective Teaching Methods for Large ClassesPedagogy in Action - Interactive Lectures - It can be difficult to engage students with the material in a large lecture class. This collection of pages on Interactive Lectures has strategies and specific examples of activitiesto involve students in large and small lecture-based classes.
Teaching with Interactive Demonstrations - Interactive demonstrations can also be used in classes of all sizes, as projection systems can make demonstrations visible to students in the backs of large classrooms. In this module you can learn about how to illustrate conceptsand perhaps even entertain your class with simple demonstrations. There are several example demonstrations included.
Lecture Tutorials - Lecture Tutorials are short worksheets that students complete in class to make lecture more interactive and thus, they can be effective in teaching large classes. They are designed specifically to address misconceptions and other topics with which students have difficulties. This module provides basic information for what lecture tutorials are and hot they can be used in the classroom. References and examples are also provided.
ConcepTests - ConcepTests are conceptual multiple-choice questionsthat focus onone key concept of an instructor's learning goalsfor a lesson. When coupled with student interaction through clickers and peer instruction, ConcepTests represent a rapid method of formative assessment of student understanding and may be useful in assessing learning in large classrooms (especially when used with clickers). This module explains what ConcepTests are, how they are used, and provides references and examples of ConcepTests.
Process-Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning - This page, part of Project Kaleidoscope, explains how and why process-oriented guided inquiry learning can be effective in large classrooms. Links to resources with more information are also provided.
Teaching Metacognition in Large Classes - These pages, by Perry Samson, explain why and how he teaches metacognitive skills in his large introductory classes.
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Testing the Fixed-hotspot-moving-plate model part of Introductory Courses:Activities
Students examine hot spot tracks, magnetic inclination data, and coral data from the Hawaii-Emperor Seamount Chain to test the hypothesis that hotspots are fixed. Most students have learned somewhere that hotspots ...
Resource Type: Activities, Classroom Activity
Whose Fault Is It Anyway? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Games:Examples
This game has students simulate the propagation of P and S waves after an earthquake and to use the lag between these to determine where in the simulation the earthquake occurred. -
Resource Type: Activities:Classroom Activity:Short Activity, Short Activity:Demonstration
Modeling Sea Level: Lateral and Vertical Facies Changes part of NAGT:Teaching Resources:Teaching Materials Collection
Participants will use a tube and bead (or ball) model to visualize and predict how changes in sea level can control the lateral and vertical facies distribution within and adjacent to a marine sedimentary basin. ...
Resource Type: Activities:Classroom Activity, Lab Activity
Earthquake Machine Demonstration part of Introductory Courses:Activities
This classroom activity is a demonstration where students predict what will happen under various conditions. The "Earthquake Machine" shows relationships between stress, strain, friction along the fault ...
Resource Type: Activities:Lab Activity, Classroom Activity
Simple Landslide Demo part of Introductory Courses:Activities
Demonstration of control of surface friction on slope stability. Simple analogue model uses a wooden board (the slope), a large rock (the landslide), and transparency and rough sand paper. Students anticipate how ...
Resource Type: Activities:Classroom Activity
Pop Bottle Hydrograph part of Introductory Courses:Activities
Create hydrograph and explore changes in physical parameters on form of hydrograph. Set up is easy: water is sprinkled into a model watershed (sand in pop bottle) and allowed to dribble onto cheap digital scale. ...
Resource Type: Activities, Classroom Activity
Michelle A. Fisher: Using Interactions between Water, Earth's Surface, and Human Activity in Biology for Majors at Three Rivers College part of Integrate:Teaching for Sustainability:How the Community is Using InTeGrate Materials:Instructor Stories
Over a 6-week period, I incorporated the "Interactions between Water, Earth's Surface, and Human Activity" module into the ecology section of my Biology for Majors course to allow students to assess the interdependence between the abiotic and biotic world. Through use of the module, the study of geosciences was connected to the study of ecology and to the grand challenge of river flooding that occurs in our region.
Resource Type: Course Module
Using Classroom Response Systems for Research on Learning part of GET Spatial Learning:Blog
Do you use clickers in your classroom? If so, there are simple ways you can use the technology to pre-assess students' conceptual knowledge, ask students to make predictions, and provide timely feedback to ...
Silvia Secchi: Using the Map your Hazards Module in Geography, People and the Environment at Southern Illinois University Carbondale part of Integrate:Teaching for Sustainability:How the Community is Using InTeGrate Materials:Instructor Stories
My class combines social and biophysical science perspectives to make students undertint the challenges of environmental management. I thought the Map Your Hazard module was a great fit for it. I adapted the module to focus on flooding because my institution, Southern Illinois University (SIU), is in a flood prone area and there are many environmental justice challenges associated with floodplain management here. Further, I study this issue myself with other collaborators at SIU, so I thought this interpretation of the module would be combine place-based education with my research strengths. The main challenge was the large class size.
Resource Type: Course Information
Jennifer Sliko: Using Cli-Fi in Planet Earth at Pennsylvania State University - Harrisburg part of Cli-Fi: Climate Science in Literary Texts
Planet Earth is an introductory course about Earth, with emphasis on the processes the affect the landscape of Earth. Students learn about fundamental geologic processes and how they impact humans and the environment on regional and global scales. Some of these processes are slow, such as the movements of continents, and change Earth over a period of millions of years. Others are rapid, such as earthquakes and floods. Students learn how these processes are related and interact with each other.
Resource Type: Course Information