My topic is Achievement Seminars which will include ways to improve study skills, reduce test anxiety, and improve overall academic organization. I am hoping that the use of technology with this topic will improve the teaching and learning because the students will be actively involved in learning the information versus just listening to me lecture.
I am planning to use Schoology, which will be yet another new technology learning experience for me. I have posted in groups, but never run my own course through schoology. I want to use an online survey to pre/post test the students regarding their perceptions about their current study skills, testing issues, and/or organization skills. I also plan to use the discussion board option within Schoology and possibly incorporate some videos or some other online tools. If anyone has some ideas about other technology I could incorporate, I would certainly appreciate it!
I am going to run a hybrid format for the seminars. Face-to-face meetings during Indian Time, thinking 4-6 times. Then, discussions and/or assignments to complete via Schoology in between face-to-face meetings. I plan to recruit students via Schoology sign-up and I am going to focus mainly on freshman. Depending on how much interest I have, I may also extend it to sophomores. I feel like I will have greater participation if the students volunteer for the group versus being referred by the parents or counselors. If attendance is forced upon them, I think it will be unlikely that I will get much participation in the online portion of the course.
One common misconception with my topic is students who believe there is no room for improvement in their study skills. I have so many students who do not understand how they received a poor grade on a test or a quiz because they spent 15 minutes “looking over their notes”. I plan to offer several different options for more active study habits and get students motivated to change their effort level rather than increase time studying. I think students also struggle with communication. They do not let their teachers know when they don’t understand a concept. They do not show initiative in asking for extra help or even letting their parents know they are having trouble. I am hopeful that after the course, students will understand the importance of communication and after some role-play and discussion will feel more comfortable speaking up.