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Upcoming “Students as Producers” Conversation on Teaching, September 25th

Posted by on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 in Events, News.

As part of our “Students as Producers” theme year, the Center for Teaching will share and explore ways  that instructors can teach for this kind of learning.   Students, particularly undergraduates, are often seen as “consumers” of  knowledge, memorizing information delivered to them by professors  during class and then simply repeating it back on exams and essays.  But  we know that they can be “producers” of knowledge, as well, capable of  generating meaningful, creative work, even within the confines of a  semester-long course. Join us for our first Conversation on this theme

Students as Producers: Incorporating research and design into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) classes

Date: Wednesday, September 25th
Time: 4:10 – 5:30
Location: Center for Teaching
Facilitator: Cynthia Brame
Audience: Faculty, Students (Undergraduate and Graduate), and Staff

What do you consider to be the pinnacle of your field? For many of us, it’s the discovery of new knowledge or the design of a new solution to a thorny problem. We want our students to engage with these hard tasks—to do more than memorize existing results, to actually engage in aspects of the discovery process—but it can be challenging to fit these opportunities in credit-bearing courses.

This panel highlights three Vanderbilt STEM faculty members who have integrated compelling research and design questions into their courses.

John Ayers
incorporates a service-learning project in which Geochemistry students   research environmental contaminants in soil and water samples from North   Nashville homes, producing environmental hazard reports for the homeowners.

Students in Mark Woelfle’s Genetics lab generate and   characterize mutants in a key pathway for DNA synthesis and present their   work in a journal-style article, clarifying their understanding of the   pathway and the process by which our understanding grows.

Tom Withrow
developed an entire course in Mechanical Engineering in which students   designed, developed, and tested an amphibious vehicle to compete in the   Model-Based Amphibious Racing Challenge.   This term, he’ll be   teaching another edition of this course.



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