Texas Tech University

Discipline-based Education Research

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The seminar is coordinated by Dr. Beth Thacker, Associate Professor of Physics, and has moved online due to COVID-19. To join this seminar, please join the discussion on ZOOM. Please email Dr. Beth Thacker, if you would like to be included on her weekly emails for updated topics. 

Seminar Meeting Topics

Date: Wednesday, September 15
Time: 2:00 PM - 2:50 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://texastech.zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Lisa Limeri
Topic: Using Growth Mindset Theory to Inform Your Teaching 
Abstract: Will be a 1-hr interactive workshop about research on growth mindset, why it matters, and how to leverage this research to foster better and more equitable learning in our classrooms.
Date: Wednesday, September 8
Time: 2:00 PM - 2:50 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://texastech.zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Jazmin Cruz
Topic: Teaching Finite Element Analysis Lab Online
Abstract: Finite Element Analysis (FEA) Lab is a course in the TTU Mechanical Engineering curriculum. In the past, it was exclusively an in-person class that takes place in a computer lab. However, all lab sections are currently being taught as a distance course. This seminar will discuss the overview of the course, the techniques that can be used to engage students despite the online modality, and the challenges that may arise in class. 
Date: Wednesday, September 1
Time: 2:00 PM - 2:50 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Beth Thacker, Stephanie Hart, Jianlan Wang and Kyle Wipfli
Topic:

Likert-Style Problems for Assessing PCK-Q

Abstract:

As part of a project to develop a written instrument for assessing learning assistants (LAs) pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) in the context of questioning (PCK-Q), we are experimenting with alternate question formats. Previously developed and validated free-response questions serve as the basis for a new question format. This new format consists of Likert-style answer choices that require the LAs to assess a scenario where a student has a misunderstanding, evaluate the situation, and score potential LA responses. The instrument will examine an LAs ability to identify appropriate responses that provide evidence of PCK-Q in the classroom.

Date: Wednesday, August 25
Time: 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

What I did this summer??

Date: Monday, May 3
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

End of semester wrap up at TTU and nationally

Date: Monday, April 25
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

End of semester wrap up at TTU and nationally

Date: Monday, April 19
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

Continued discussion: How much content knowledge do you need to teach effectively?

Date: Monday, April 12
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

How much content knowledge do you need to teach effectively?

Date: Monday, March 29
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Brant Hinrichs, Drury University
Topic:

Social positioning correlates with consensus building in two contentious large-group meetings

Abstract:

This talk analyzes two examples of whiteboard meetings from a college calculus-based introductory physics course taught using University Modeling Instruction. In this pedagogy, students work in small groups to create a solution to the same problem on 2′ × 3′ whiteboards. They then sit in a large circle with their whiteboards held facing in and conduct a student-led whole-class discussion (“board” meeting) to reach a consensus. One example is given of a conversation where students overcame sharp disagreements to eventually reach whole-class consensus and another example is given where they did not. We examine how social positioning contributed to students either successfully examining and resolving different ideas or failing to do so. Initial results from two different “board” meetings tentatively support the idea that meetings where “experts” soften their position by “hedging” more frequently are better able to overcome sharp initial disagreements to reach consensus on their own. Our analysis suggests that the way students position themselves in discussions may open or close the collaborative space to productive sense-making.

Date: Monday, March 15
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

PhysPort

Date: Monday, March 22
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Jerry Dwyer
Topic:

Mastery Grading

Abstract:

Mastery Grading is a grading scheme by which students are offered several opportunities to reattempt assignments for all or nothing credit. There is no penalty for taking longer to master the concepts. The goal is for students to eventually show that they understand the material. We discuss possible implementations of this approach and consider its advantages and disadvantages as a means of learning and assessment of that learning.

Date: Monday, March 15
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

PhysPort

Date: Monday, March 8
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Group Discussion
Topic:

Review of the X-DBER Conference

Date: Monday, Feb. 23
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Gina Passante, Physics, California State University, Fullerto
Topic:

Student Thinking about Measurements and Uncertainty in Physics

Abstract:

Measurement and uncertainty are central concepts taught in undergraduate physics laboratories. These concepts are often first introduced in an introductory lab and are then used throughout the physics degree (and hopefully beyond). However, the complexity of experiments performed in undergraduate labs increases greatly as students move to advanced laboratory courses. Additionally, somewhere along the way, students are introduced to quantum mechanics where the concepts of measurement and uncertainty take on additional meanings. In this talk we will investigate how student thinking about measurement and uncertainty depends on the context of the experiment. We will specifically focus on any differences between how students think about classical and quantum experiments in terms of the uncertainty and errors that may arise.

Date: Monday, Feb. 22
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Jianlan Wang
Topic:

Causal Reasoning in Physics

Abstract:

Causal reasoning is a critical component in scientific reasoning. It can be used to support student knowledge construction and diagnose student misconception about a concept. In this talk, I will discuss causal reasoning in the context of Newton's 3rdlaw, including the measurement of student causal reasoning, student misconception indicated by their causal reasoning, the pattern of their reasoning development, and the influence of high-stake testing.

Date: Monday, Feb. 15
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Jazmin Cruz (continued)
Topic:

Remember Why You Started

Abstract:

This seminar will be a round-table discussion where members share their motivation for exploring and participating in education research. Some questions to prompt discussion include: Why did you choose DBER? What led you to pursue a career in higher education? What do you want to be remembered for when you leave the academy? What motivates you to come to work everyday? These discussions can be as vague or as detailed as you are comfortable with sharing. The goal of this seminar is to re-energize our members by collectively remembering why we started this career path in the first place.

Date: Monday, Feb. 8
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Jazmin Cruz
Topic:

Remember Why You Started

Abstract:

This seminar will be a round-table discussion where members share their motivation for exploring and participating in education research. Some questions to prompt discussion include: Why did you choose DBER? What led you to pursue a career in higher education? What do you want to be remembered for when you leave the academy? What motivates you to come to work everyday? These discussions can be as vague or as detailed as you are comfortable with sharing. The goal of this seminar is to re-energize our members by collectively remembering why we started this career path in the first place.

Date: Monday, Feb. 1
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Mike Borowczak, University of Wyoming
Topic:

Weaving together Cybersecurity & CS into Existing STEM disciplines: Learning from K-12 experiences

Abstract:

This talk focuses on how the Cybersecurity Education and Research (CEDAR) center and lab at the University of Wyoming has promoted both core cybersecurity research as well as cybersecurity education research in order to develop well-rounded undergraduate and graduate researchers. By engaging in interdisciplinary research and outreach student and faculty researchers within the lab gain soft-skills to complement their technical skill-sets. To date the center, founded in 2017 has been instrumental in acquiring over 4M in funds from federal, state, corporate, and national lab funds – spanning both educational and core-research activities. The associated research lab now has 7 PhD students, 2 MS students, dozens of BS students in addition to MS and BS alumni. Examples of structure/partnerships, expectations, challenges, and successes are provided and significant opportunities for discussion are expected during the session.

Date: Monday, January 25
Time: 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Location: Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/95642052668?pwd=QVR3d21HUDdrU09KNTBlSkNDYXZzdz09
Presenter: Levi Johnson
Topic:

Prompting Effective Feedback for Undergraduate Virtual Presenters

Abstract:

In response to continuing health concerns, the 2021 TTU Undergraduate Research Conference is shifting to an entirely virtual conference format. While this shift means that the conference will lack the traditional hustle and bustle of in-person poster sessions and mediocre luncheon food, moving the meeting online affords some unique opportunities to rethink how we support novice academics at the beginning of their research journeys. This session will be a round-table discussion examining a series of proposed changes to the URC presentation formats and reviewer rubrics.

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