2017 Faculty Fellows

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Assistant Professor of History & Legal Studies: Dr. Gregory Richard

Dr. Gregory Richard Dr. Richard will be integrating CogBooks courseware into his History 151 - United States History Since 1865 Quality Matters certified online course. History 151 is a survey of United States history since the American Civil War with special emphasis on post-Civil War Reconstruction, late 19th-century economic and social developments and 20th-century reform movements. Additionally, foreign policy and the overseas expansion of the U.S. economy receive attention, as do Cold War and post-Cold War developments. CogBooks courseware utilizes several different tools to offer students an adaptive experience. "Pre­tests" allow students to "test out" of elements of the course. CogBooks governs this, along with many other advanced systems of the learning software, with its unique micro­adaptive system. This is thanks to rule-based systems set up by the author or algorithms. 

The historian constantly pushes learners to make connections from our past to the present, while expanding their frame of observation beyond what they have experienced so far. Such an "out of one's comfort zone" experience needs to be adaptive. Adaptive technologies lie at the core of what historians should be offering students of the twenty-first century: looking at the evidence, making conclusions based on evidence, and assessing how those conclusions have and possibly still do affect our lives today as American citizens. These skills are as important in 2017 as they were in 1997, and fortunately, we have new and exciting tools in our toolbox to achieve that end. 
- Richard, 2017

Assistant Professor of Mathematics & Statistics:  Dr. Pingping Zhang

Dr. Pingping ZhangDr. Zhang will be enhancing her use of the ALEKS Adaptive Learning System in her Math 115 - College Algebra course by integrating evidence-based video tutorials into the ALEKS system as supplemental resources. Math 115 gives students a rigorous preparation in algebra. Topics include a review of basic algebraic concepts; functions and graphs; polynomial, radical, rational, exponential and logarithmic functions; equations, inequalities, systems of equations and inequalities; and applications. Dr. Zhang, who already integrates ALEKS into her course, will add a series of videos that address two common challenges: insufficient explanations for students with weaker backgrounds and too few connections among different concepts. Using observational data collected previously, step-by-step video explanations will be developed based on the theory of Teaching through Variation that addresses common cognitive obstacles. Teaching through Variation is a popular strategy to promote effective mathematics learning in China, where examples with gradually increased complexity are introduced (Huang, Yang, & Zhang, 2017). 

Given the diverse goals/backgrounds/needs of students in Math 115, the new digital course should provide a learning experience that is both customized and structured for each individual. It will also allow us to reach a broader community of learners throughout the year.  - Zhang, 2017

Learn how to become a Digital Faculty Fellows.