Developing Positive Student Relationships

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Margaret Campbell discusses communication tips.

Margaret Campbell discusses communication tips.

The session on Developing Positive Student Relationships: A key to student success was co-facilitated by Donna Foulds, Instructor, Learning Services, Deanna Speidel, Instructor, Aboriginal Serves and Margaret Campbell, Instructor Learning Services. The audience was reminded that managing a positive student-instructor relationship is one of the most important and challenging responsibilities of an instructor. The way we communicate plays a significant role in a student’s ability to understand, integrate and apply knowledge. Relationships play a particularly important role with students who are struggling with academics, language, mental health issues or crisis in their lives. Being approachable while maintaining professional boundaries is important in maximizing student success. This particularly crucial when working with students from other cultures, who may not have experience with our teaching styles and methods.
You can listen to the podcast of the session

If You’ve Used YouTube, Try Films on Demand

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Kelly Burke, Librarian, speaks to Instructors about Films on Demand

Kelly Burke, Librarian, speaks to Instructors about Film on Demand

On January 15, 2014 SIAST Instructors had the opportunity to learn about the live streaming video service that SIAST subscribes to, “Films on Demand”.  Instructors brainstormed where they access video materials now: YouTube, Google, Khan Academy, Textbook Publisher Sites, Self-made videos, Library, National Film Board and the Saskatoon Public Library.

Instructors explore Films on Demand

Instructors explore Films on Demand


Kelly Burke, Digital and Web Services Librarian, showed how to access the SIAST Library Home Page and then to go to Program Guides. From here you can either scroll down the list until you come to Films on Demand or you can use the Alphabet List and go to F and find Films on Demand. View this quick sheet for instructions. View this Quick Guide for easy instructions.

Listen to the podcast.Kelly Burke Podcast on Films on Demand

Exam Statistics: What do all those m/c exam statistics mean?

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Nancy Anweiler speaks to SIAST Instructors

Nancy Anweiler speaks to SIAST Instructors

On February 5, 2014 Nancy Anweiler, Instructor, Practical Nursing discussed exam statistics with SIAST instructors. She said it was important to create a tool that best measures student knowledge and that the tool measure what you need it to measure: that is you don’t want an exam that is too easy that everyone is going to pass or an exam that is too difficult.

Looking at the Exam Statistics

Looking at the Exam Statistics


There are two statistics that are looked at: Point Biserial and P Value. The P Value stands for the percent correct or in other words how many students answered the question correctly. You may want to look at the questions where less than 50% of your students answered correctly. It is also important to note whether or not you have one correct answer and three plausible answers. If students are not picking a distractor it may be an indication that it is not a plausible answer. The Point Biserial is used to discriminate between the top 15 % of the class and the bottom 15 % of the class according to the Bell Curve. A Point Biserial of 0.2 is a good question as it discriminates between high and low performers. If you have a negative Point Biserial it might mean that the question doesn’t discriminate as everyone answered the question correctly. Look at the question to see if it is testing necessary knowledge. Questions that have a Point Biserial that is less that 0.2 need to be reviewed: Check the P Value, question wording and distractors before considering removing from the exam.

The other the statistic you may look at is the Kuder-Richardson which is used to measure the reliability of the exam. The reliability number ranges between 0.00 to 1.00 and that you would want a reliability of at least 0.7 .

You can listen to the podcast of this session.Nancy Anweiler podcast

A Proactive Approach towards Addictions and Mental Illness

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Intensity impact decreases with increased usage Intensity impact decreases with increased usage[/caption]
On March 27th, SIAST instructors had the opportunity to hear Allan Kehler, Author of Stepping out from the Shadows: A guide to Understanding and Healing from Addictions, speak. Alan pointed out that if you have lived in an environment of addictions you quickly learn: Don’t talk, Don’t feel and Don’t trust. He used a story about a boy to illustrate this point. Allan pointed out that we must remember that there is a good person inside even those that are dealing with addictions and that anger to anger creates more anger. We must treat anger with compassion.

Who am I?

Who am I?

Alan also talked about the three signs of being addicted: Waking up and thinking about it first thing in the morning; Using it to build your confidence (Taking a drink to go to a social event.) and Using it alone. Some of the signs of addiction include: physical deteriation; blood-shot eyes; decrease in attendance or performance at work and self-injurious behaviours. Really people who have addictions are trying to escape the painful reality of life. He uses the exercise Who am I? to have individuals be able to outline what is important to them : Want, Need, Like, Love, Dislike, Wish, Fear and Am.

Open a Door

Open a Door


It is important that we reach out to people and be available to listen. We need to be able to tell individuals that we are available and then be available if they stop by to talk. It is important to stop what you are doing and listen because they have taken the important first step. The session ended with Five Commitments: “Know your students not just as students, but as people; Understand behaviors may not be symptoms of laziness, but a side effect of an imbalanced home: Create trust and safety so that they feel comfortable talking without fear of judgment; Offer an invitation that you are available and genuinely interested to hear about their challenges and Be aware of available resources.
Listen to the podcast here
Alan Kehler’s Podcast

Teaching International Students: Tools and Strategies

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Margaret Campbell, Learning Services Instructor speaks to Instructors at SIAST

Margaret Campbell, Learning Services Instructor speaks to Instructors at SIAST

On March 12, 2014 Margaret Campbell, Instructor, Learning Services, Student Development spoke to SIAST instructors regarding Teaching International Students. More and more students are coming to SIAST as international students and as well, there are more newcomers to Canada whose first language is not English taking classes at SIAST.

Using Pauses helps to emphasize important points.

Using Pauses helps to emphasize important points.

Margaret outlined the main strategies: slower speech; pauses, using lots of examples, using visuals, and using a variety of approaches. She went further to say that the main ideas that she is sharing are the same ones you will find in the research and best practices and that students also have the same suggestions. Handout Teaching International Students

Speaking slower and watching enunciation is important.

Speaking slower and watching enunciation is important.

Listen to the session podcast.

SIAST Policies: Evaluation of Student Learning & Grading System and Student Promotion

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Susan 1

On February 12th Susan McIntyre, Associate Vice-President, Student Services and Kathy Larsen, Registrar discussed two new SIAST policies with instructors at Kelsey Campus. There were a number of items that Susan stressed:  no one evaluation tool should  be worth more than 40% as it does not capture the diversity of learning;  Programs may wish to consider the overall scheduling of assignments and exams so students have time to complete all work and students need to receive their material and feedback within 10 days of when it was handed in.  An important consideration for exam invigilation is whether the invigilator can answer questions or is the instructor available to answer questions.  It is also important that students receive a course outline stipulating the important dates, assignments and rules including attendance.  On-line students might receive this by email with the document made into a pdf.  It was noted that if exceptions were being made that the bar should be whether this exception would be made for another student or not.


Grading

Kathy Larsen, Registrar, discussed the 60% minimum pass grade and the grade modes.  She also went through the Sequence of Supplemental Exam Grade Changes and which ones were automatic. Kathy said that it was important that Supplemental Exams be given timely perhaps within 10 school days as they tend to affect a student’s standing whether it was work placements or student loans.  Also discussed was the Grade Point Average (GPA) and how a taking a class a second time would affect the student’s GPA in that term.

It is also important to note that Incomplete Grades will turn to a failure if the student has not completed the work so Programs need to be diligent in following up with students. Instructors should note that while students may access unofficial transcripts through MySIAST they are not charged for transcripts after graduation.

You may listen to the podcast here.

Another Blooming Learning Taxonomy: Marzano and Kendall What’s the big deal?

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Cindy Sherban, SCBScN, instructor speaks to faculty.

Cindy Sherban, SCBScN, instructor speaks to faculty.

On November 27, 2013 Cindy Sherban spoke to SIAST Instructors about the Marzano and Kendall Taxonomy.  We learned about the historical background to how Bloom’s Taxonomy became the pillar of education since the 1960s.

Marzano and Kendall’s taxonomy was adopted when the Nursing Program was going through a massive program change with a new academic partner and the redevelopment of their program.  Cindy noted that their selection of the taxonomy was based on evidenced based practice.  She also noted that the Taxonomy fits in with reflective practice that the nursing program is based on.

The levels of the Marzano & Kendall Taxonomy.

The levels of the Marzano & Kendall Taxonomy.

You will note that the Marzano & Kendall’s Taxonomy has six levels of processing and that go through three domains of knowledge.  Only Level 1 – Retrieval is seen to be automatic, the other levels mean that the person must consciously  retrieve the information.

While there are a few similarities between Bloom’s Taxonomy and Marzano’s it is not easy to transfer from one system to the other.  The model also has three systems: self, metacognitive and cognitive.  The cognitive system is the only one that has a counterpart in Bloom’s Taxonomy.  The Self-system takes in the learner’s motivation built on importance, efficacy and emotional response.

Two Taxonomies

Two Taxonomies

Cindy noted that it was shown that if learners only focus on cognition that they will have a 21% improvement in outcomes, if the focus is on metacognition the improvement is 26% but the biggest gain is when the focus is on the self-system 27%.

It was noted during the close of the session that the Basic Education Division is using Marzano’s book The Art and Science of Teaching to help instructors in the classroom.

You can listen to the podcast here.

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