Students. Who are these people?

Are students really who we think they are?  Over my past 10 years of teaching, I’ve realized that my initial perceptions of students’ skills are often way off.  As I began teaching, I considered all of my youngest students to be very tech-savvy.  Makes sense right?  They are always on their phones, they seem to live connected at all times, they are never without technology, yet do they really understand the tools that they constantly use.  The answer, as I’ve come to realize, is so often “no”.

tech savvy college student


I often teach some classes that are composed almost entirely of high school students.  Shouldn’t these students be ready for anything tech?  Maybe they should because they’ve grown up with smart phones in their cribs, but I’ve discovered that there is very little that they can do with their tech tools besides access their favorite social media apps, play online virtual killing video games (which I encourage, because if they do it in the virtual realm, maybe they’ll never do it in real life), and waste hour after hour on Netflix and YouTube.  What can they do with these tech tools that is of real value? Continue Reading “Students. Who are these people?”

Teaching Whisper…shhhhh

Stephanie Scoville


Teaching and learning, and new ideas…having been on both sides of the equation for so long, some days I feel totally unprepared to be the ‘teacher’ and wonder how in the world it happened…and then, the other days.  Those are the days I love.  And what keeps me involved with the students, and wanting to get better at what I do.

I teach Pharmacology, and I am fully aware that it is not the most exciting course, nor the favorite course of the students required to take it.  I am always trying to get them involved in the broad stroke, conceptual elements, and connecting the content to the patient.  Sometimes it involves the pictures, practice questions, case studies…and the case studies give them the opportunity to discuss the content, apply it to a scenario, and work with others.  All that education/learning theory being applied (by me) and helping the students improve their critical thinking skills.  Of course, it sounds great in theory, you might ask, and ‘how do you know it is working?’

Continue Reading “Teaching Whisper…shhhhh”

Habits – Wk6

Andrea Schaben

Like everyone I have habits; some are bad and some are good.  Here is a quick listing of my piccadellas good and bad – ice cream before bed, wake up at 6am, watch old “Friends” episodes during dinner, call Mom on Monday night, a long hike on Sunday, gym workout on Tuesday/Thursday, swim on Friday, put work away after 7pm, breakfast at 6am immediately after waking (including coffee), some chocolate after lunch, family time all day Saturday, and the list goes on.

So my point is not to list my habits, but to discuss how this can apply to work and also how I can use my inherent need to schedule to make my work life more productive. Continue Reading “Habits – Wk6”

Jiminy Cricket!

Samantha Fitch

Okay, so the full disclosure is that this may not be worthy of a “Jiminy Cricket” moment, but I do think I managed to motivate a student for at least a little while, and I’ll take what I can get!

Since I’m teaching ENG 100, I do see a lot of students who struggle with writing. Some of them don’t seem to put in a lot of effort, and they don’t have a high level in terms of writing skill. Of course that is sad and frustrating, but particularly with an online class it’s a difficult situation to change (and yes, I’m still doing feedback to most questions with Panopto, and I’ve had several students give positive feedback, but sometimes that still doesn’t cut it). I have other students who are low-level in terms of writing but who try very hard. One such student turned in his first essay, and I was actually a bit surprised that I couldn’t give him high marks, mainly because he is always very engaged online, and very communicative with me. I know he tries. I gave him his feedback as usual, going over all of his errors, etc. This time he asked even more questions prior to turning his essay in, and yet again, his essay wasn’t an A essay; in fact it was barely a B, despite all the work he put into it. But instead of pointing out all of the errors in the video feedback, I decided to praise him for all of the things he did well- Continue Reading “Jiminy Cricket!”


To post or not to post.
This is the question I ask.

Comments are the focus this week.
This is the actual task.

I figured I could still write
Just a quick word or two.

No big deal to do a post.
t’s actually for me and not you.

I’ve been super busy these days.
Programn Review is up.

Paperwork has been sent to cirriculum.
Now I can do all my catchup. Continue Reading “Six”

Canvas Satisfaction Survey Results

The survey says…!

The TeLS dept. recently put out a survey to the faculty about satisfaction with Canvas and ease of use.  There were almost 70 faculty that took it (69 to be exact)!  Thank you to all that participated.  The information that was received from this survey is very important to us for many reasons.  So what were the results?  Well, the first question on the survey was, “How happy are you with Canvas?”  37% of participants gave it a 5, 40% gave it a 4, 18% gave it a 3, 3% gave it a 2 and 2% gave it a 1.   Continue Reading “Canvas Satisfaction Survey Results”

To Canvas or Not To Canvas: A Rebellion Against Sameness (Part 3)

I have made a choice.  My choice has been (drum roll, please) not to use Canvas in my classes.
Before you start throwing rocks, or report me to the TELS Police, let me explain.
The Feared TELS Police!!!
I have nothing against Canvas.  It has a lot of nice features.  And some of my choice involved the difficult decision to forgo some of those features, like the Gradebook and the ability to automatically email my classes in one fell swoop of my finger.

Continue Reading “To Canvas or Not To Canvas: A Rebellion Against Sameness (Part 3)”


Week five it seems to be
No direction has been supplied to me

I’ll just do a post
On what I enjoy most

Teaching is where it’s at
So hold onto your hat

I love that light bulb moment
When the student understands the component

It makes me smile
To know it’s worthwhile Continue Reading “Five”

It was a good week!

By Stephanie Scovill

It is Wednesday! Woohoo! Only 10 more teaching hours this week, then grading my little hands off for the weekend.  But it was a great week! And not because I won the lottery or found a long lost rich uncle, but because that mid-term time when nursing students begin to say ‘oh. That’s why we…’  is here.  Lightbulbs!

Nursing students are tremendously stressed-out human beings.  You have seen them – maybe.  By mid second semester some wear sweats and slippers because they overslept secondary to another late night of studying.  They have test after test.  As you may know, pre-licensure nursing programs end with the students eligible to take the NCLEX -the licencing exam.  This is the definition of high-stakes testing.  So we get them ready by giving them high-stakes test after high-stakes test.  Learning how to answer those questions is different from any other type of exam.  Continue Reading “It was a good week!”

Week 5 – Balance

Question of the week – what does it mean to have balance in your life?  Regardless of work- life balance, family, projects, we all have to find our own balance within our life.  And here are my personal issues with balance:

  1. I have a hard time balancing the family/me time with job/student investment (emotional and physical).
  2. Finding balance of my physical capabilities: the physical activities I would like to do versus what I am capable of doing.  


Both are rearing their ugly head this week.  And by the way, weekly, it amazes me how conversations during the week feed my creativity when Sunday night I have no idea what I am going to write about. Continue Reading “Week 5 – Balance”