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Qep Report on site visit November 8, 2011

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  • 1. ON-SITE VISIT NOVEMBER 8, 2011 Revised Text: April 5, 2012 Developed by Houston Community College in preparation for reaffirmation of accreditation by the Commission of Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • 2. Houston Community College 2
  • 3. Houston Community College There are many people at Houston Community College who contributed to the writing of this QEP . Their contributions were invaluable and greatly appreciated. Alan Ainsworth Saler Axel Tineke Berends G. Raymond Brown Judy Cantwell Charles Cook David Diehl Lorah Gough Stephen Levey Martha Oburn Jennifer O’Neil Angela Secrest 3
  • 4. 4
  • 5. Houston Community College Table of Contents 1 Executive Summary....................................................................................1 2 Background.................................................................................................3 2.1 Our College District..................................................................................3 2.2 Our City....................................................................................................3 2.3 Our Students............................................................................................4 2.4 Our Faculty...............................................................................................5 3 Process and Selection.................................................................................7 3.1 Development and Selection of the QEP Topic.........................................7 3.2 Rationale for Selecting HCC INSPIRE: Answering Critical Needs.........13 3.3 Developing the QEP and Narrowing the Focus.......................................19 4 Review of Literature and Best Practices...................................................21 4.1 Literature Review...................................................................................21 4.2 Review of Best Practices and Suggestions for Implementation ............26 5 HCC INSPIRE Goals, Activities, and Student Learning Outcomes...........31 5.1 Goal 1: Ensure Science Course Readiness..........................................32 5.2 Goal 2: Institutionalize Real-World, Active and Collaborative Learning in Science Courses.................................................34 5.3 Goal 3: Improved Science Student Engagement...................................46 6 QEP Implementation Timeline...................................................................47 7 Organizational Structure and Resources..................................................53 7.1 Institutional Structure and Organization.................................................53 7.2 Budget....................................................................................................59 8 Assessment of HCC INSPIRE...................................................................63 8.1 Outcome and Process Assessment Strategies......................................63 8.2 QEP Goal Assessments.........................................................................64 9 Appendices................................................................................................67 9.1 HCC INSPIRE Summary Chart..............................................................69 9.2 Definitions...............................................................................................70 9.3 Implementation and Assessment Plan...................................................73 9.4 Bibliography............................................................................................99 5
  • 6. Houston Community College 6
  • 7. Houston Community College 1 Executive Summary In recognition of its essential role in providing relevant learning opportunities to the students of a large and diverse community for academic and career advancement, Houston Community College (HCC) has developed a comprehensive Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) with a clear focus on improving student learning, engagement, and success in the sciences. While the US is currently the world’s leader in science and technology, numerous factors indicate a “gathering storm” by which US leadership is presently challenged. There are few fields of study more important than science for our social and economic security. As the current “energy capital” of the world and home to the famed Texas Medical Center, Houston must provide thousands of workers annually dedicated to scientific research, training, and work. HCC’s QEP, HCC INSPIRE (Innovative Science-Program Initiatives to Reform Education) will transform the HCC science student experience by providing real-world, active and collaborative learning opportunities. Such learning has been shown to improve student engagement, knowledge and persistence, as well as encourage critical thinking and higher-level reasoning. Further, such learning will contribute to 21st century learning skills for students as adaptability, teamwork, effective use of technology, and social and personal responsibility. HCC INSPIRE will bring together science faculty to create and assess a series of course-specific active learning modules with student-engaging, real-world themes. Faculty development teams in biology, chemistry, and physics will work with instructional designers to create the modules and college teams will pilot, assess, and scale-up implementation. The modules will be delivered in Eagle Online, the HCC learning management system, and supplemented by a collection of online learning materials in the HCC Library for faculty and student support. The HCC Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence will coordinate appropriate faculty development experiences with college Curriculum Innovation Centers. Faculty will implement a sciencebased student success course at all HCC colleges to improve science student learning and success. Faculty will also sponsor science clubs to promote student engagement. The HCC Office of Institutional Research will assess student learning outcomes (SLOs) as well as program goals and objectives. HCC INSPIRE will be led by Dr. A. Tineke Berends, HCC Northwest Biology Professor, who may be contacted at tineke.berends@hccs.edu . She will be supported by the Vice Chancellor for Instruction Charles Cook (charles.cook@hccs.edu) and the Accreditation Compliance Director Judy Cantwell (judy.cantwell@hccs.edu). 1
  • 8. Houston Community College 2 Background – Our College, City, Students, and Faculty 2.1 Our College District Houston Community College (HCC) is a two-year, open admission, public institution of higher education offering high-quality, affordable education to prepare individuals for life and work in a global and technological society. As a singularly accredited institution comprised of six colleges, HCC offers associate degrees (AA, AS, AAT) that transfer to four-year colleges and universities across the state and nation, and associate degrees (AAS), certificate programs, and continuing education in more than 70 fields of work. HCC has the largest adult basic education and English-as-a-second language programs, transfers more graduates to the university of their choice, and places more students in career employment than any other community college in Texas. Since its opening in 1971, HCC has grown into one of the largest community colleges in the nation with over 74,000 students enrolled each semester. More than 1.8 million students have improved their lives through education and training obtained from HCC. Community College Week recently ranked HCC first in Texas and fifth in the nation for associate degrees conferred in 2010-2011. HCC’s Board of Trustees, HCC’s official governing body, is composed of nine members who are elected from single-member districts across a taxing district that includes the Houston, Alief, North Forest, and Stafford school districts and the city of Missouri City. The broader service area for HCC includes the Spring Branch, Katy, and parts of the Fort Bend school districts. Administrative leadership is provided by a chancellor, who is the chief executive officer, a deputy chancellor/COO, vice chancellors for district-wide administrative areas, and presidents for regional colleges (Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest) and the specialized Coleman College for Health Sciences in the Texas Medical Center. Under the leadership of the HCC board and administration, the district has made significant investments in facilities, technology, and operational efficiencies that have prepared HCC for the future. HCC’s service area covers over 600 square miles of Houston and consists of 22 campuses or centers. This structure is conducive to providing a wide variety of academic and workforce offerings over a very large geographic area and to serving a diverse community. 2.2 Our City HCC serves the greater Houston area, the nation’s fourth largest city and its growing business economy provides limitless career opportunities for HCC students. The Greater Houston Partnership has identified the following key industries that drive our region and are poised for further growth, innovation, and excellence: • • • • • • • Advanced Manufacturing Aerospace/Aviation Biotechnology/Life Sciences/Medical Distribution/Logistics Energy, Petrochemicals, and Alternative Energies Information Technology Nanotechnology The Houston region offers a strong infrastructure to support these industries. Geographically centered between the East and West coasts of the nation, Houston hosts an exceptional airline system, deep sea port and intra-coastal waterway, multiple major railroads and intermodal facilities, and a world-class highway system. Houston is also home to the Texas Medical Center with the world’s largest concentration of expertise in medical treatment and care, medical research and medical technology. Houston is second only to New York City in the number of Fortune 500 and Forbes 2000 company headquarters. 3
  • 9. Houston Community College The need for a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)-trained workforce in Houston is enormous and expected to continue to grow as the area attracts more STEM-related research and technology corporations. Current STEM fields will add an estimated 72,510 jobs to the Houston area by 2018. BioHouston reports that emerging technologies will add an additional Annise Parker, Mayor of the average of 37,517 jobs per year in the greater Houston metropolitan area over City of Houston: “HCC’s bold that timeline. vision to provide the Houston prizes its racial and ethnic diversity as a source of strength in a global economy and is becoming ever more diverse. The 2000 census found that no racial or ethnic group constitutes a majority of the population, with approximately 42 percent white, 18 percent African-American, 32 percent Hispanic, and 5 percent Asian. By 2030, Hispanics will likely become the majority and Asians will climb to 10 percent of the total. educational needs of our region will enable us to meet the challenges of the changing global marketplace.” Further, over one-fifth of Houstonians were born outside the United States. In many ways, Houston is truly an international city, hosting 83 consulates, 21 foreign banks, over 560 foreign-owned firms, and a population speaking over 90 languages. More than 600 Houston-area companies have offices in 129 different countries, while over 3,500 Houston companies are engaged in international business. The Houston Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) contains 66 school districts, 50 charter schools, and a wide range of private and parochial schools. More than a dozen community colleges and 17 colleges and universities educate well over 320,000 Houston area students each year. In spite of its size, Houston provides a broad range of cost-competitive housing options; in fact Houston’s housing costs are the lowest among the 27 metro areas in the US with more than 2 million residents. 2.3 Our Students As an African American, Hispanic, and Asian American serving institution, HCC has a very diverse student population with the largest number of international students of any community college in the nation. Partly due to a traditional policy of open access and relatively low tuition rates, HCC, as most community colleges, enrolls larger percentages of nontraditional, low-income, and minority students than four-year colleges and universities. Other 3% HCC Student Demographics—Fall 2010 In Fall 2010, 83 percent of HCC students enrolled in semester credit hour courses leading to certificates and/or degrees, nine percent enrolled in Continuing Education Unit (CEU) courses, one percent enrolled in non-credit courses, and seven percent enrolled in Adult Literacy courses. HCC students attend primarily part-time (69 percent), while only 31 percent attend full–time. HCC students primarily take day time classes (59 percent), with 20 percent taking evening and 21 percent taking week-end or other classes. 4 Asian 14% White 18% Hispanic   Hispanic 34% AA   White   Asain   other   African American 31% Source: 2010 HCC Fact Book
  • 10. Houston Community College In 2009-10, HCC awarded a total of 4,946 total degrees and certificates. Other awards included 2,204 students completing the core curriculum and 1,049 students completing marketable skills achiever awards. HCC enrolls over 7,000 students each semester in dual credit courses and operates five Early College High Schools (ECHS) on its campuses, all named “exemplary” by the Texas Education Agency. HCC provides students with entrée to excellent workforce opportunities and articulation agreements with colleges and universities across the state and nation provide students with access to outstanding baccalaureate programs. HCC created an Honors College in 2006 to attract academically talented students and provide them a costfree opportunity to study together in a cohort/learning community, develop leadership skills, increase their global perspective through study/travel abroad, and prepare them for scholarship opportunities to prestigious universities around the country. Our goal is to recruit a diverse, multicultural student cohort that would not otherwise have the chance to study with outstanding professors, take advantage of numerous service and leadership opportunities, and study/travel abroad. HCC students qualify for the Omega Sigma Chapter, one of the largest in the nation, of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society. The chapter and its members have won numerous state and national awards. Most recently, HCC student and PTK member Curtwin Bismark, won both a Jack Kent Cooke Foundation transfer scholarship and a Newman Civic Fellow Award from Campus Compact. 2.4. Our Faculty The faculty members of HCC comprise a large and talented group of diverse individuals. During the 20102011 academic year HCC employed 910 full-time faculty members and 2,921adjunct faculty members. Of the total group, 23 percent hold doctorate degrees and 60 percent hold master’s degrees and above. Slightly over half (52 percent) of the faculty are female, and the ethnic breakdown includes 57 percent white, 24 percent African-American, 11 percent Hispanic, 8 percent Asian-American, and less than one percent American Indian. HCC faculty earned their credentials from prestigious universities across the nation and world, have won numerous awards and honors, including Fulbright Scholarships, appointments to prestigious national and state committees, and teaching exchanges with institutions around the globe. They have published scholarly books and articles, presented at professional conferences, composed operas and other musical pieces, and developed state-of-the-art curricula. HCC faculty currently write over $20 million of successful grant proposals each year, bringing funds to the college from the National Science Foundation, the US Departments of Agriculture, Energy, Education, and Labor, and numerous other sources. 5
  • 11. Houston Community College 3.0 HCC INSPIRE – Process and Selection 3.1 Development and Selection of the QEP Topic The HCC QEP topic is HCC INSPIRE (Innovative Science Program Initiatives to Reform Education). The topic was selected not only for its focus on student-centered learning, but also for its potential for districtwide, interdisciplinary participation by faculty and meaningful, scalable institutional reform. The process that was used to select the topic spanned two years and included broad and diverse participation by HCC students, faculty, staff, administration, community members, and Board of Trustee members. The topic chosen answers critical needs for our nation and state and is one that HCC is in an excellent position to pursue in terms of our setting, our infrastructure, and our track record for instructional innovation. The chart below summarizes some of the major steps during the selection process that are detailed in the following narrative. 7
  • 12. Houston Community College In Spring 2009, SACS Liaison and Vice Chancellor for Instruction Charles Cook created a new job description for a “SACS Director for HCC,” an individual who would lead the efforts to compile the Compliance Report, Focused Report, and Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) for HCC during its efforts for reaffirmation of accreditation in 2012. During the Summer 2009, the job was posted and interviews were conducted. Judy Cantwell, HCC-SE College Library Chair, was selected as the HCC SACS Director. During Fall 2011, Director Cantwell and Dr. Cook worked with HCC Chancellor Mary Spangler to organize the HCC Steering Committee for Reaffirmation of Accreditation. To add to HCC senior administrators (Presidents and Vice Chancellors) and the current and incoming Faculty Senate Presidents, Director Cantwell posted a call for volunteers and nominations by faculty and staff to serve on the Steering Committee as well as a host of sub-committees that would examine Board Governance and Institutional Mission, Strategic Planning and Institutional Effectiveness, Instruction, Student Services, Institutional Resources, Administration, and Development of a QEP. HCC Steering Committee for Reaffirmation of SACS Accreditation Name Location Charles Cook (co-chair) Judy Cantwell (co-chair) Gisela (Bennie) Ables District District Northwest College Alan Ainsworth Central College Dan Arguijo Jonathan Brook District Northeast College Renee Byas Bill Carter District District Linda Comte Northeast College David Cross District Margaret Ford-Fisher Northeast College 8 Title Vice-Chancellor of Instruction SACS Director Department Chair President of HCC Faculty Senate (2009-2010) Department Chair President of HCC Faculty Senate (2010-2011) Chief Communications Officer Associate Department Chair Co-Chair Programs Committee General Counsel Vice-Chancellor for Information Technology Instructional Design Coordinator Co-Chair Institutional Mission Governance & Effectiveness Committee EEO/Compliance Director Co-Chair Library/Student Services Committee President Co-Chair Institutional Mission Governance & Effectiveness Committee
  • 13. Houston Community College Name Location Fena Garza Southwest College Lollie Green Northeast College Bill Harmon Central College Butch Herod Northwest College Zach Hodges Northwest College Dennis Klappersack Southwest College Stephen Levey District Martha Oburn District Diana Pino District Irene Porcarello Southeast College Angela Secrest District Dan Seymour District Mary Spangler Art Tyler Thomas Urban District District Northwest College Willie Williams Betty Young District Coleman College 9 Title President Co-Chair QEP Development Committee Associate Dean of Student Development Co-Chair Institutional Mission Governance & Effectiveness Committee President Co-Chair Physical & Financial Resources Committee Executive Dean for Academic & Student Services Co-Chair QEP Development Committee President Co-Chair Faculty Committee Library Department Chair Co-Chair Physical & Financial Resources Committee Assoc. Vice-Chancellor for Academic Instruction Executive Director of Institutional Research Vice-Chancellor of Student Success President Co-Chair Programs Committee Director Library/LRC Support Services Vice-Chancellor of Institutional Planning & Effectiveness Chancellor COO/Deputy Chancellor Faculty Philosophy President of HCC Faculty Senate 2011-2012 Chief Human Resources Officer President Co-Chair Library/Student Service Committee
  • 14. Houston Community College Director Cantwell and Dr. Cook presented “The Road to SACS Reaffirmation for HCC” to the Board of Trustees in October, 2009, explaining the processes, timelines, reports, and roles and responsibilities for all HCC constituent groups. The Steering Committee and sub-committee members were selected and the initial kick-off meetings were held in December 2009, including that of the QEP Development Committee, co-chaired by Dr. Fena Garza, President of HCC-Southwest College and Dr. Butch Herod, Executive Dean of HCC-Northwest College. The QEP Development Committee started the Spring 2010 semester by posting a QEP Suggestion Box on the HCC web site, explaining to HCC students, faculty, and staff, the purpose of a Quality Enhancement Plan, offering example topics, and inviting them to submit topic suggestions. HCC QEP Development Committee Name Location Butch Herod (co-chair) Northwest Fena Garza (co-chair) Alan Ainsworth Southwest Central Jennifer Ankenbauer District Laura Arzola John Boxie Tenecia Brown Willie Caldwell Southeast District District Southwest Bindu Chakravarty David Diehl Northeast District Vivian Ellis Arnold Goldberg Janis Innis David Joost Southwest Southwest Southwest District Steve Levey District Evelyn McClain Mike McCormick Cheryl Peters District Southwest Central James Smith Northeast Title Executive Dean Academic & Student Services President Faculty English Division Chair Faculty Senate President 2010-2011 Faculty Alternative Certification Program Faculty Development Studies Lieutenant, Police Department Web Content Specialist Faculty Department Chair Business Technology Faculty Chemistry Director Teaching & Learning Excellence Pt Counselor Dean Workforce Development Faculty Developmental English Director Adult Educational Programs A s s o c ia t e V ic e C h a n c e l l o r Academic Instruction Training Specialist Faculty Department Chair History Executive Dean Instruction & Student Services Public Services Librarian 10
  • 15. Houston Community College All HCC leadership groups, including the Chancellor’s Strategic and Operational Teams, the Deans’ Councils, and the Faculty Senate were encouraged to have QEP discussions during the semester. HCC workforce programs engaged the members of their advisory committees in discussions about the QEP. During the May 2010 HCC graduation, each graduating student was asked to fill out a card answering the question: “What one thing would you suggest to improve HCC?” In Fall 2010, all of the HCC Colleges held QEP Forums for students, faculty, and staff participation, with the first held by HCC-Coleman College for the Health Sciences on September 7, 2010. HCC engaged students with focus group discussions on the QEP at meetings of the Phi Theta Kappa honors society and the United Student Council. By the end of the semester, the HCC suggestion box and the various forums and meetings had generated over 400 potential topics. The QEP Development Committee narrowed these topics down to five general categories. During the Spring 2011 semester, Director Cantwell and Dr. Cook issued a Request for Applications (RFA), inviting HCC faculty to apply for a stipend to write a QEP “white paper” on one of the five general topics, briefly explaining their background/experience, why they felt the topic should be selected, and what they proposed as the most needed actions to achieve the goal of their intended topic. The RFA offered the following further detail on the following general topics. 1. Improved Teaching and Student Learning in our Certificate and Degree Programs This topic would address HCC efforts to ensure that students are learning what they need for completion of their programs and successful performance at the next level. Examples include but are not limited to the following: Innovative and effective teaching strategies (e.g. Model Course Development, Learning Communities, etc.) and Active/Collaborative Learning (e.g., Service learning, Project based learning, etc.) 2. Improved Critical Thinking This topic would address the enhancement of critical thinking skills across the curriculum. Examples include but are not limited to the following: critical analysis, media literacy and information literacy. 3. Improved Teaching and Student Learning in Developmental Education and ESL at HCC This topic would address enhancement/development of strategies that address developmental education, focusing on one or more of its component parts: developmental reading, developmental writing, developmental math, or English as a Second Language. 4. Improved Pathways/Interventions Leading to Higher Completion Rates for HCC Students This topic would address means by which HCC might improve retention and persistence of students and increase their momentum toward completion of their goals – certificates, degrees, transfer, job placement, etc. It could include improvements in our outreach efforts, advising, orientation, mentoring, tutoring, assessment, tracking, soft skills, etc. 5. Use of Technology for Improved Student Learning This topic would address how HCC uses the Internet and other means of technology (iPads, computer notebooks, Kindles, Nooks, etc.) to improve teaching and learning. It could also include how HCC might enable students to become more literate and faculty to become more adept in utilizing ever-increasing waves of information, including “open source” learning materials. 11
  • 16. Houston Community College A committee composed of Director Cantwell, Dr. Cook, Dr. Steve Levey (Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Instruction), Dr. Martha Oburn (Executive Director of Institutional Research), Dr. David Diehl, Director of the HCC Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence, Dr. Alan Ainsworth (President of the HCC Faculty Senate), Faculty Senate appointee Professors Ruth Dunn and Pamela Norwood, and the Co-Chairs of the QEP Development Committee, Dr. Garza and Dr. Herod, selected seven faculty to write white papers, with at least one paper in each of the five categories above. The same committee ultimately read and judged the papers utilizing a rubric created by HCC Faculty Senate President Alan Ainsworth, and selected one submitted by Dr. A Tineke Berends, HCC-Biology Professor at HCC-Northwest College that included elements of active and collaborative learning, technology as a teaching tool, and “real world” content to improve teaching and student learning in the sciences. During the Spring semester 2011, Dr. Berends refined her topic as HCC INSPIRE: Innovative Science Program Initiatives to Reform Education and HCC named Dr. Berends as the QEP Director. Dr. Berends presented the topic to an HCC Faculty Roundtable to elicit feedback. She presented an overview of her topic in the first HCC QEP Newsletter to inform HCC students, faculty, and staff and delivered a PowerPoint presentation on the topic to the HCC Board of Trustees in May 2011. QEP Steering Committee Name Title Tineke Berends Juan Carlos Reina Bart Sheinberg Martha Oburn David Diehl Angela Secrest Nazanin Hebel Steve Dessens Kumela Tafa Mahtash Moussavi Beverly Perry Zachary Hodges Betty Fortune Charles Cook Judy Cantwell QEP Director (faculty) Director,Academic Resource Development Program Director, West Houston Center for Science Executive Director, Office of Institutional Research Director, Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence Director, HCC Libraries Program Coordinator—Biology (faculty) Program Coordinator—Chemistry (faculty) Program Coordinator—Physics (faculty) College Department Chair – SE (faculty) College Department Chair – NE (faculty) Northeast College President Southwest College Dean Vice-Chancellor for Instruction Director, Accreditation Compliance 12
  • 17. Houston Community College Further actions to develop and refine the QEP topic during the Spring and Summer of 2011 included the following: • District-wide survey of science faculty needs for development and implementation of the QEP • District-wide survey of science students to validate need for real world, active and collaborative learning strategies • District-wide roundtable discussion to narrow focus of QEP • Formation of QEP research and writing teams • Writing and editing of QEP paper On August 24, 2011, at the start of the Fall 2011 semester, Dr. Berends made a PowerPoint presentation to HCC Instructional Leaders (Presidents, Deans, Program Coordinators, Department/Division Chairs) A video of Dr. Berends’s presentation may be accessed at: http://itunes.hccs.edu/HCCS_SACS_QEP_2011.mov. 3.2 Rationale for selecting HCC INSPIRE: Answering Critical Needs 3.2.1 External Factors The state of education in science, and more broadly, that of the STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), has been a major concern in the United States for over two decades with many observers questioning “Are We Losing Our Edge?” (Michael D. Lemonick, Time Magazine, Feb 5, 2006) as the world’s leader in science and technology. In a 2005 best seller, Thomas Friedman argues that “The World is Flat” as new technologies have enabled the ambitious everywhere to compete successfully across borders. With large populations earning lower salaries and governments seemingly focused more intently on educational and economic advancements, countries as China, India, South Korea and Singapore are outpacing the U.S. on a varied set of indicators. What is even more unsettling to many Americans is that the advance of other countries is occurring as the progress of the United States seems to be stagnating or even slipping. Whereas the United States is currently the world’s leader in science and technology and the number of jobs in these fields is expected to grow much faster than those in other fields, America’s leadership faces major challenges. The technology workforce has traditionally consisted of white males and was regularly supplemented with scholars and scientists from around the world seeking to study and work in the U.S. Yet, the traditional workforce is aging, and the white male population demographic is being outpaced by minority populations, who in addition to females, are often less successfully recruited and prepared for careers in the STEM fields. Further, as opportunities are growing abroad, international students and workers are less likely to study and work in the U.S. 13
  • 18. Houston Community College In 2005, the National Academies issued a report entitled Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future, detailing problems and offering several specific recommendations for actions. Five years later in 2010, the same report was “revisited” and the same problems were noted and a subtitle was added that the gathering storm is “now approaching Category 5.” Listing just a few facts to illustrate the point, the report notes the following economic realities: • In 2009, 51 percent of United States patents were awarded to non-United States companies. • There are sixteen energy companies in the world with larger reserves than the largest United States company. There are 60 new nuclear power plants currently being built in the world. Only one of these is in the United States. • Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (computer manufacturing) employs more people than the worldwide employment of Apple, Dell, Microsoft, Intel and Sony combined. • United States consumers spend significantly more on potato chips than the government devotes to energy research and development. All the National Academies Gathering Storm committee’s recommenda¬tions could have been fully implemented with the sum America spends on cigarettes each year—with $60 billion left over. The Gathering Storm Revisited report (2010) also contains the following educational and quality of life indicators: • About 30 percent of U.S. high school math students and 60 percent of those enrolled in physical sciences have teachers who either did not major in the subject or are not certified to teach it. The situation is worse for low-income students. • The United States ranks 27th among developed nations in the propor¬tion of college students receiving undergraduate degrees in science or engineering. The United States graduates more visual arts and performing arts majors than engineers. • According to the ACT College Readiness report, 78 percent of high school graduates did not meet the readiness benchmark levels for one or more entry-level college courses in mathematics, science, reading and English. • The World Economic Forum ranks the United States 48th in quality of mathematics and science education. The federal and state governments as well as corporate entities have responded to the crisis with numerous initiatives to expand research and innovation and improve the teaching of math and science in American schools and colleges. In 2009 the Obama Administration announced its Educate to Innovate Initiative and public-private partnerships have been announced by companies such as Time Warner, Discovery Communications, Exxon-Mobil, Intel, Xerox, and others. In 2011, the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation donated $25 million to the Texas-STEM Challenge Scholarship to provide competitive awards to regional partnerships between community and technical colleges and local employers to help attract, retain and graduate STEM students. 14
  • 19. Houston Community College The Growing STEM Education Challenge for Community Colleges While our national need for scientific literacy and high-quality STEM graduates continues to grow, resources continue to shrink. Not surprisingly, enrollment at community colleges is up (Pew 2009, U.S. Department of Education 2009). Community colleges tend to be relatively diverse, enrolling greater percentages of underrepresented minority students (Pew 2010). Clearly, community colleges will need to carry an ever-larger share of the national responsibility to produce the much-needed STEM human capital (Boggs, G.R. 2010). Yet, community colleges face unique challenges in shouldering their share of the national mandate. Open enrollment policies, the commuter culture, lack of research infrastructure, and significant reliance on adjunct instructors are but a few of these challenges. Additionally, many community college students are those least prepared for the rigors of STEM education. Ironically, in striving to serve the needs of the under-prepared, top community college students at the other end of the spectrum may leave if they are not being sufficiently challenged (Atkinson R.C and Geiser S. 2009). 3.2.2 Internal Factors STEM Innovations at HCC HCC has already established itself as a leader in meeting the demands of its community with innovative instructional practices. In 2004, HCC became one of the original 27 community colleges nation-wide to win funding from the Lumina Foundation for Achieving the Dream (ATD), an initiative designed to assist students of color and students of low income achieve greater academic success. The initial ATD strategies included the design and implementation of student success and bridge courses. These strategies have successfully increased retention rates (HCC fall to spring persistence rates for students improved from 68.2 percent to 75.4 percent Fall 2002 to Fall 2010. HCC fall to fall persistence rates for students improved from 44.7 percent to 52.3 percent Fall 2002 to Fall 2009.) HCC INSPIRE will build on the proven history of ATD success. In addition to innovative institutional practices, HCC has launched several STEM-specific pilot programs district-wide. Among the highlights are: • The STEM Council, newly created to coordinate STEM activities across the HCC district • The NSF Scholars Program, a grant-funded program awarding district-wide STEM scholarships to students participating in extracurricular activities. • The HCC West Houston Center for Science and Engineering “Special Topics” research preparatory course and off-campus summer research opportunities in collaboration with the University of Houston, Baylor College of Medicine, Rice University, Purdue University, and the University of Texas – Tyler, funded by The Department of Homeland Security and Chancellor Innovation Award. • UST-HCC STEM & Articulation Grant, a Department of Education $5.9 million grant funding activities designed to increase participation, retention, transfer and completion rates of Hispanic and other low-income STEM students through a collaboration between HCC and the University of St. Thomas. • HCC Chancellor Symposiums, involving HCC students, faculty, business and industry leaders. 2008: Life Sciences (guest speaker Dr. Malcolm Gillis, former President of Rice University and member of BioHouston) 2009: Energy (guest speaker John Hofmeister, founder and Chief Executive of Citizens for Affordable Energy and former President of Shell Oil). 2010: Health Sciences (guest speaker Dr. Helen W. Lane, Chief Scientist for Biological Sciences and Space Life Sciences at NASA/Johnson Space Center.) • Chancellor Innovation Grants to faculty. Institutional funds ($300,000-$600,000) awarded to faculty to pursue instructional innovations including the use of mobile technology and learning communities in the sciences as well as the technology in the scientific laboratory. 15
  • 20. Houston Community College In addition to district-wide programs, individual colleges have launched initiatives for enhanced STEM opportunities including: • Research opportunities for faculty-student pairs at The Baylor College of Medicine through HCC-Southeast College’s Biology Department. • Empowering the Next Generation in Agri-science with Genomics Education (ENGAGE) and Innovative Means Promoting Agri-science Career Tracks (IMPACT), consecutive USDA grant-funded projects in collaboration with Texas A&M University and the USDA at Baylor College of Medicine. Through ENGAGE and IMPACT activities over 3000 HCC-Northwest College biology and chemistry students participate in oncampus, real-world research using research-grade HCC-owned instrumentation. Clearly, HCC has demonstrated a commitment to meeting the national and local need for scientific literacy and high-quality STEM graduates. outstanding HCC faculty to create courses for other faculty designed to improve pedagogy, create “learnercentered” instruction, maximize ATD strategies, and allow for ongoing professional development. Both the CIC and CTLE will be integrally involved in supporting the QEP for HCC. Science Enrollment The local need for STEM graduates is great and expected to continue as the area attracts STEM related research and technology corporations. Houston residents are increasingly aware that there is job availability in STEM fields both locally and at the national level, and that training in a STEM fields may be required to get these jobs. Therefore, it is not surprising that 5 year trend enrollment data reflects the vast increase in students enrolling specifically in science courses at HCC. Enrollment in biology, chemistry and physics courses has shown steady growth, increasing 52 percent in five years. This is higher than growth in any of the other STEM academic areas. HCC- Five Year trend Enrollment for Science Courses, FY 2006-2007 FY 2007-2008 FY 2008-2009 FY 2009-2010 FY 2010-2011 B I O L , C H E M , 26,032 PHYS 27,252 30,876 34,959 37,445 COLLEGE MATH 17,743 18,805 21,103 23,552 25,196 ENGR 257 547 873 1,203 Subject 172 o accommodate this growth, course sections in biology, chemistry and physics have increased accordingly. T This increase is reflected in both in-class and through distance education (DE) courses. In fact, enrollment in DE biology, chemistry and physics courses is growing at a faster rate than DE overall. In fall of 2011, 12,666 students (20 percent total enrollment) were enrolled in biology, chemistry or physics courses. Of those, 4,455 students (7 percent total enrollment) were enrolled in a core course (BIOL 1406, CHEM 1411 and PHYS 1401). In these core courses specifically, enrollment is up 37 percent in person and 196 percent in distance education. HCC INSPIRE has the potential to have a high impact on large numbers of HCC science students and to prepare them for STEM careers. 16
  • 21. Houston Community College Fall 2007 Fall 2008 Fall 2009 Fall 2010 Fall 2011 BIOL-CHEMPHYS In Person Enrollment 9,141 9,887 11,476 12,720 12,474 Sections 452 491 522 542 532 Distance Education Enrollment Sections 1206 1824 2250 53 83 87 2327 84 2933 104 Total Enrollment 10,347 11,711 13,726 15,047 15,407 Sections 505 574 609 626 636 Fall 2007 Fall 2008 Fall 2009 Fall 2010 Fall 2011 BIOL-CHEMPHYS 1406 1411 1401 Enrollment 3,309 3,660 4,075 4,376 4,358 In Person Sections 160 175 181 186 185 Distance Education Enrollment Sections 99 5 169 8 193 8 187 8 297 13 Total Enrollment 3,408 3,829 4,268 4,563 4,655 Sections 165 183 189 194 198 Students in core biology, chemistry and physics courses are significantly more likely to be full-time students (58.4 percent vs. 29.9 percent) and recent high-school graduates. Forty-seven percent of students enrolled in target core courses are aged 18-22. The same age cohort represents only 37 percent of the total HCC population. Further, these students have increased retention both fall to spring and fall to fall over HCC students in general (77% vs. 70% and 53% vs. 45% respectively). However, only 17 percent of the associates degrees awarded were the Associate in Science degree. Combined, these data indicate that students enrolled in targeted biology, chemistry and physics courses are the type of students who transfer to four year programs often prior to completing an associate degree. In fact, results of the 2011 Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE) indicate that science students are more likely to have the goal of transferring to a four-year college or university. Therefore, it is vital that the core courses they take at HCC prepare them for the academic rigor and learning environment of a four year university or college. Unfortunately, despite higher retention numbers, students in these target courses are less likely to earn a grade of A, B or C. Student success rates are lower in targeted courses (63.7 percent vs. 71.2 percent overall), suggesting that these students may not have the skills required to succeed in these core courses. As students are arriving at college less ready than ever before, it is increasingly important that we provide skills to students interested in STEM so they are ready to succeed in their first core science course. 17
  • 22. Houston Community College First year student success courses have successfully been implemented at HCC as a part of the ATD initiative designed to assist students of color and students of low income achieve greater academic success. Initial strategies included the design and implementation of student success and bridge courses. Currently all entering students with less than 12 college credit hours must enroll in a student success course during their first semester. Students have had the following choices: • GUST 1270: College and Career Exploration (for students who are undecided about a major) • HPRS 1201: Introduction to the Health Professions • EDUC 1200: Careers in Education • ENGR 1201: Introduction to Engineering • LEAD 1200: Leadership in the Workforce The student success courses have been implemented district-wide and have had a significant impact in terms of student success. HCC fall to spring persistence rates for students improved from 68.2 percent to 75.4 percent from the fall 2002 to fall 2010. HCC fall to fall persistence rates for students improved from 44.7 percent to 52.3 percent from the fall 2002 to fall 2009. In the fall of 2011, 476 sections of GUST1270 were offered (11,000 seat count), the largest of the success courses. GUST 1270 is designed to prepare students for the demands of college and work. The course emphasizes prioritization, time management, note-taking and listening skills, in addition to career assessment, financial aid, tutoring and student support services, all skills necessary to enable students to maximize the use of college resources. Because of a number of factors, HCC is moving from GUST 1270 to EDUC 1300: Learning Frameworks for the same students who formerly took GUST 1270. This course, based on psychological theories of learning, will be a more rigorous introduction for college. Apart from HPRS 1201: Introduction to the Health Professions, HCC does not presently offer a first year success course specific to the academic sciences. Although there are first year success courses that are program specific, there is not a course offered that uses science content to prepare students for the specific demands of future core science courses, despite strong and consistent growth in core science course enrollment. Therefore, to continue and build on the proven success of ATD, one goal of the QEP will include the design and implementation of a first year science-based student success course to prepare students for science learning. Due to increasing enrollment in core biology, chemistry and physics courses, it is increasingly important students be prepared and equipped with science-specific learning and study skills that lay the foundation for future success in science courses. HCC as a Leader in Instructional Innovation As a result of the ATD successes, HCC received a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for participation in the Developmental Education Initiative (DEI); and received an invitation from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching to participate in the Statway project. Statway is an initiative that creates an alternative math pathway for non-STEM students. Statway students take college level Statistics as opposed to College Algebra. In a similar way to this proposed QEP, Statway is based on learning modules that present students with “real world” problems. For example, students are presented with various data concerning five different breakfast cereals and asked to utilize the data to answer such questions as “Which cereal is most nutritious?” or “Which cereal will likely sell at the cheapest price?” This type of real world learning helps students understand the correlation between personal experience and the material content. According to a QEP student survey (June, 2011) science students desire this same type of relevance and real-world connection. On a scale of 1 (not helpful) to 5 (very helpful), eighty percent of students rated “relating new information to information I already know” as “moderately to very helpful”, 18
  • 23. Houston Community College and eighty-one percent of students rated “seeing how new information applies to real-world situations” as “moderately to very helpful”. When instructors emphasize relevancy to students, it increases student interest and consequently success. Real-world problem based learning modules, like those utilized in Statway, allow students to put their skills into practice and demonstrate that it is not only what students learn but the way that they learn that influences success. In the digital age where all students have one-click access to information on computers and digital devices, it will be the student who can interpret and comprehend information who will be the most successful. In generations past, students could suffice by preparing themselves for well-defined and relatively predictable jobs and careers, yet many of today’s students are preparing for jobs that do not yet exist and in time will no doubt disappear or be subject to continued and substantial change. In the workplace of the future, long-term professional survival will depend on being able to actively adapt to rapidly evolving technology, and to work collaboratively, solving real-world problems as they emerge. The use of online modules to incorporate problem-based learning into the classroom has distinct advantages. The module format will allow large scale district-wide implementation that will ensure consistency amongst HCC faculty including a large percentage of adjunct instructors. It is common for scientists to work collaboratively with other scientists, exchanging ideas, presenting data at research meetings and writing papers in peer-reviewed journals. One might expect, based solely on the collaborative nature of scientific research itself, that students in science courses are actively engaged learners having constant interaction with classmates and the instructor. However, results of the 2011 CCSSE indicate that science students are less likely to be engaged in class. Science students were significantly less likely to indicate that they ask questions, make presentations or work on projects in class. Science students were also significantly less likely to communicate with the instructor regarding grades, course material or literature outside of the classroom. Further, HCC has only two science specific extracurricular clubs. Research shows that actively engaged students both in and outside of the classroom are more likely to learn, to persist, and to attain their academic goals. Reforms in science education will be necessary to fill this need. Concurrent to HCC efforts, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating board has recently revised the core curriculum to ensure that students develop the essential knowledge and skills necessary for success in college, career, community, and in life. To this end, the Coordinating board approved a 42 semester credit hour core curriculum for all undergraduate students in Texas to be implemented in Fall 2014. The core objectives include critical thinking skills, communication skills, empirical and quantitative skills and teamwork. HCC INSPIRE will address and align science education reform with these new objectives. 3.3 Narrowing and Developing the QEP Focus The HCC QEP topic, INSPIRE (INnovative Science-Program Initiatives to Reform Education) is meant to do what its acronym suggests: set in motion innovative initiatives for district-wide education reform to improve student learning, engagement and success at HCC. HCC INSPIRE will begin in core science courses due to strong, consistent enrollment growth in biology, chemistry and physics core courses. Current CCSSE and student survey data reveal that the students desire greater engagement. HCC INSPIRE will enhance the way we teach science based on how the educational research says our students learn best. Through the QEP development process, HCC INSPIRE has evolved into a comprehensive, integrated plan that will lay the foundation for district-wide, sustainable, scalable science education reform at Houston Community College. Central to meaningful reform will be the incorporation of fully-supported, faculty-driven learning opportunities shown to improve higher-order thinking, while simultaneously ensuring science student learning, 19
  • 24. Houston Community College success and engagement. Through HCC INSPIRE, HCC must prepare its science students for the real world, empowering them with intellectual capital so they will be able to continue to apply their knowledge and succeed long after they leave HCC classrooms. It is HCC’s vision to be “the most relevant community college in the country, the opportunity institution for every student we serve, and essential for our community’s success 20
  • 25. Houston Community College 4 Review of Literature and Best Practices 4.1 Literature Review This section reviews the theory and background on real world, active, and collaborative learning techniques. These techniques support Houston Community College defining itself as a learning college that should embrace learner-centered practice and make “decisions [that are] evaluated in terms of the improvement of student learning” (Muzbeck, n.d.). The best practices identified in HCC INSPIRE are in keeping with HCC’s value of excellence and resolve to achieve student success. Most practitioners embrace active learning as an umbrella to learner-centered education which encompasses real world and collaborative learning. Active learning encourages student engagement to increase persistence and real world application. It does not always involve “interaction” (Cross, 2003), but may instead generate intra-action by stimulating learners to reflect and “self-monitor both the processes and the results of learning” (Cross, 2003). Educators’ enhanced use of active learning in science classrooms encourages students to achieve HCC’s defined institutional student learning outcomes (ISLOs) and competencies: reading, writing, speaking/listening, critical thinking, and computer/information literacy. Students, as young as age eight, exhibit science anxiety. Typically, they do not experience similar emotions in non-science subjects. Researchers at the Science Anxiety Clinic at Loyola University Chicago questioned college students, tested their muscle tension, and assessed their academic performance to determine how best to reduce this behavior. Clinic professionals found that blending the following three techniques brought about positive results and reduced anxiety in test subjects (Mallow, 2006): • Science skills learning, • Changing a student’s negative self-perception, and • Desensitization, through muscle relaxation, to science anxiety-producing scenarios. In active learning based classrooms, students feel more comfortable in their environment which helps them feel more positive and experience less tension. Obstacles such as science anxiety have spurred initiatives, of which HCC INSPIRE is one, to have instructors and institutions create new approaches, new demonstrations, interactive software, and innovative pedagogies (Tobias, 1997). For example, in one study, students’ abilities to process and integrate their understanding in first year physics courses rose after implementation of active learning based peer instruction. Instructor Eric Mazur (1997) discusses his students’ ability to apply Newton’s Third Law to course material. Even without exposure to active learning, his students were able to recite definitions of the law and perform applicable numeric problems. However, what he discovered—after issuing the famed Halloun and Hestenes (1985) test which requires students to demonstrate an understanding about physical phenomena as opposed to merely reciting theories—was that even after several months, students still held the conceptual beliefs with which they entered the classroom. During test situations, students would become frustrated because “they believe[d] they had mastered the material” (Mazur, 1997) only to realize their knowledge could not be universally applied. After the integration of peer instruction and concept based learning, Mazur’s students had a mean rise of 6.7 points on final exam scores over a six year period between 1985 and 1991. Studies like his support this QEP proposal to enhance student competencies and institute more real world, active, and collaborative learning into HCC’s science education. 21
  • 26. Houston Community College Students and teachers are responsible for creating educational environments that enhance achievement. After comparing the effects of active learning to traditional lecture based engineering courses, the hypothesis that “active and collaborative learning instructional approaches [are] more effective than conventional . . . methods” (Terenzini, Cabrera, Colbeck, Parente, & Bjorklund, 2001) appears validated. In a series of biology laboratory classes at Drake University, students viewed interactive video before performing dissections. After viewing these video tapes, students not only better understood the laboratory specimen, but their “performance in the laboratory gained perceptibly” (Bonwell & Eison, 1991). Additionally, frustration was reduced and the “quality of the dissections greatly improved” (Bonwell & Eison, 1991). Bonwell and Eison also discuss similar results taking place in chemistry classes. Instructors in active learning communities assume a facilitator role and reassign the responsibility of learning to their students. Learners become engaged in their own education, which often requires “reorientation” (Cross, 2003) since most students have little experience in self-exploration and evaluation. Instructors and students should readily welcome this change when they recognize the potential rewards. Real World Learning Real world learning, similar to problem based learning (PBL), is initiated by the presentation of a problem, challenge, or research question centered on a topic relevant to everyday life and career. PBL centers around content knowledge perceived as relevant and important by students. Educators should apply PBL to their teaching because “most students can be taught anything as long as it is relevant to their world” (Tileston, 2000). Learners gravitate toward experiences that satiate their need to understand the correlation between personal experience and presented material. When educators effectively demonstrate real world relevancy, the “energizing and curiosity-inducing dimensions of problems that form the basis and rationale for using problems in teaching and learning” (Barrett & Moore, 2011) occur and make learning more enjoyable. This, then, increases learner interest and success. When students are spectators in a classroom, they are less engaged and less likely to demonstrate mastery of the student learning outcomes (SLOs) necessary for success. Students who demonstrate a mastery of Knowledge, the first of the six levels that construct Bloom’s Taxonomy of Cognitive Domain, often identify their comprehension with key words such as (Clark, 2010): Defines Labels Outlines Selects Describes Lists Recalls States Identifies Matches Recognizes Knows Names Reproduces Unengaged students characteristically climb the Cognitive Domain ladder at a comparatively slower pace than their actively engaged peers. Students immersed in environments that endorse active learning are empirically quicker to achieve higher levels of Cognitive Domain. Students that exhibit evaluation, the highest level of cognitive domain, are identified by terms including (Clark, 2010): Appraises Criticizes Discriminates Justifies Compares Critiques Evaluates Relates Concludes Defends Explains Summarizes Contrasts Describes Interprets Supports 22
  • 27. Houston Community College Science based guided inquiry refers to actions that expand students’ “knowledge and understanding of scientific ideas, as well as [the] understanding of how scientists study the natural world” (National Science Education Standards, 1996). This involves “a scenario, a case, a challenge, a visual prompt, a dilemma, a design brief, [or] a puzzling phenomenon” that creates an incentive to learning (Barrett & Moore, 2011). Guided inquiry has been employed throughout science curricula and especially health care programs. Health care students parlay “clinical relevance, small group interactions, and active learning” (Solomon, 2011) into inquiry based PBL opportunities. Health care program instructors offer real life medical and ethical problems to students. These scenarios stimulate discussions regarding learned information and how better to conjecture potential outcomes. Questions presented may require factual knowledge, literature evaluation, or integration (Solomon, 2011), which are key elements of guided inquiry in the sciences. Problem-based learning (PBL) is a total approach to inquiry advocated by constructivist proponents. Constructivists believe that learners create and interpret knowledge for themselves through experience. Until the late 1960s, most science programs were teacher-centered and lecture formatted. Medical scientists were among the first professionals to “assert that students could learn basic science content without sitting in a lecture hall eight hours a day for two years” (Korin & Wilkerson, 2011). Though the first medical school to formally revise its curriculum was McMaster Medical School in 1969, it was not until Harvard Medical School implemented a hybridized lecture/PBL program that other schools “began adopting a problem-based pedagogical approach to address knowledge integration across courses and years” (Korin & Wilkerson, 2011). Modern views of learner centered education have inspired projects which heighten real life application and inquiry based problem solving. Data demonstrates that changes in curriculum expand learning outcomes, sustain engagement, increase problem complexity, and modify the shift from basic science content to clinical content (Korin & Wilkerson, 2011). Writing components within science education have recently been added into standards and curriculum because of writing’s essential place among highly regarded teaching strategies. When students are asked to write in science based PBL programs, they must interpret presented problems and offer hypotheses, data, and conclusions. This can be difficult for beginning science students since writing scientifically revolves around “factual information about structure, function, or events” (Clopton, 2011). Clopton, an introductory biology instructor, requires students to read science based research articles and write narratives in response. This task promotes “learning about the processes of scientific thinking and investigation” (Clopton, 2011) which are necessary critical thinking and writing skills. Some students have to learn writing skills (specifically those needed in science) concurrently with learning science skills and concepts. In the past, students who passed summative exams were judged knowledgeable. It is now believed that writing, unlike traditional testing, is a decidedly constructivist approach to formative assessment (Clopton, 2011) that couples with active learning techniques. Active Learning Active learning challenges students to move from remote participation to centralized participation. With institutional support, this teaching methodology requires students to individualize their learning needs, take responsibility for completing assigned tasks, and perform self-assessments. With practice, students’ awareness of their strengths and weaknesses heighten. The wide-reaching shift from instructor-centered to student-centered teaching in science education signifies institutions’ desires to enhance achievement. 23
  • 28. Houston Community College Notably though, evidence suggests that success increases when students are slowly initiated into the reorientation process required of participants in active learning environments. Therefore, students who undertake several active learning based science courses must rapidly discover the accountability required of active learners. They may not be as successful as peers who enroll in fewer science courses their first year. As such, post-secondary institutions limit the number of science courses that science majors can take during their first year (Hrabowski, 2005) due to science’s intimidating perception. Active learning requires students to challenge themselves and become committed to learning. Institutions are expected to create pathways that strive to achieve this outcome to help create “motivated, thinking, responsible, and productive citizens for the next century” (Tileston, 2000). Teachers are responsible for employing guided inquiry and “orienting students to the goals and purposes of active learning, making decisions about . . . learning groups, assigning and structuring learning tasks, assuming active participation . . . and monitoring and assessing learning” (Cross, 2003) beyond students’ selfassessments. Such deviation from the traditional teaching experience often necessitates faculty orientation and training. Professional development is essential to introduce faculty to the positive impact that active learning can achieve and to provide collegial support networks. Such networks encourage “everybody to work to top capacity” (Brandt, 1987) and to provide well researched, goal oriented educational opportunities for students. When Mazur read articles by Halloun and Hestenes and researched best physics teaching strategies, he assumed the necessary responsibility to teach in an active manner and best help his students critically think about presented curriculum. In an active learning environment, teachers must be cognizant to employ best practices. Student success and satisfaction are important factors reliant upon, among other things, Student Faculty Interaction (SFI). Results from The Harvard Assessment Seminars, a formal review of SFI practices, showed that 97 percent of men and 95 percent of women were satisfied with their school experience when they had personal contact with faculty (Light, 1992). Furthermore, “nearly every student who describes strong academic performance can point to a specific activity that ties academic work closely to another person or group” (Light, 1992). Light also points out that in addition to peers, the “other person is often a professor who is supervising the student’s work in a small class” (Light, 1992). A benefit of an education at HCC is the relatively small classroom sizes which facilitate SFI. Faculty members that employ active learning practices are more likely to interact with students and utilize active learning if they are knowledgeable about the effects and successes the combination of active learning and SFI will have. Collaborative Learning Collaborative learning is defined as a “learning paradigm [in which] there is positive interdependence among a group of students in the learning process and each student is both individually accountable for his/her own learning and responsible for other group members’ learning” (Sapon-Shevin & Schniedewind, 1992). It is vital to the long term improvement of curriculum because “students teaching other students” is one of the “most effective methods of teaching” (McKeachie & Svinicki, 2006). Several studies, including metaanalyses done by David and Roger Johnson, have been conducted on the differences between collaborative and competitive learning environments. Empirically, students with a background in collaborative learning not only succeed academically at higher rates than alumnae of traditional classrooms, but are also more “positive, committed, [and] involved in more caring relationships” (Johnson, 1993). 24
  • 29. Houston Community College As an “accepted and highly recommended instructional procedure,” (Johnson & Johnson, n.d.) considerable evidence exists that promotes collaborative learning as one of the most preferred methods of teaching. Collaborative learning can be used effectively to teach any subject matter, including science, and provide the skills necessary for success. Johnson and Johnson provide strong evidence that collaborative learning promotes higher levels of “academic achievement, leadership training, group decision making, conflict management” (Brandt, 1987), and social support. Social support often “provides the [necessary means] to improve attendance, personalize the educational experience . . . and improve the quality of school life” (Johnson & Johnson, n.d.). Collaborative learning helps reduce the “revolving door” effect that numerous community colleges, including HCC, experience. Collaborative learning techniques, by necessity, involve active learning. Collaborative learning falls under the umbrella of learner-centered teaching since “students must [actively] talk about what they are learning, relate it to past experiences, apply it to authentic problems, [and] construct their own meaning” (Stage, Muller, Kinzie, & Simmons, 1998). In traditional, teacher-centered classrooms, students have few opportunities to learn the interpersonal communication skills necessary to have meaningful academic dialogue. Their communications skills, therefore, often align with the first levels of Cognitive Domain, and the lower levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Affective Domain. Students who Receive Information, the first level of Affective Domain, often identify with key words such as (Clark, 2010): Asks Gives Points to Uses Chooses Holds Selects Replies Describes Identifies Sits Names Follows Locates Erects Gives Introducing more collaborative learning into science courses at HCC gives students the opportunity to achieve higher levels of Affective Domain because they will experience increased communication with others. In addition, students will have better “intergroup relations, acceptance of academically handicapped classmates, and increased self-esteem” (Slavin, 1995). Identifiers associated with student participation at the Characterization level, the highest level of Affective Domain, are (Clark, 2010): Acts Listens Proposes Serves Discriminates Modifies Qualifies Solves Displays Performs Questions Verifies Influences Practices Revises Communication is the foundation of a successful collaborative based classroom. Two of the four chief communication methods mentioned in 10 BEST Teaching Practices (Tileston, 2000) help secondary students benefit from significant educational experiences. 25
  • 30. Houston Community College 1. Communication between teachers and students Educators set their classroom tone. When students regularly interact with instructors, results similar to those described in the Harvard Assessment Seminars (Light, 1992) occur. SFI leads to improved classroom attendance, stronger classroom communities, and higher academic achievement. Teachers who are skilled classroom managers move about their classroom to observe activities, join student discussions, and avail themselves to questions or comments. 2. Communication between students Students in collaborative learning based classrooms are frequently divided into formal and informal groups that can be long or short term and vary in size. Practitioners agree that five is the ideal group number. Students in fours often split themselves into pairs while threes often become a “pair and an outsider” (Cross, 2000). Grouping presents several opportunities to work toward a common goal and “engage in group processing” (Yager, Johnson, Johnson, & Snider, 2001). “The purpose of group processing is to clarify and improve the effectiveness of [group] members in contributing to . . . collaborative efforts to learn” (Yager, Johnson, Johnson, & Snider, 2001). Through exercises like group processing, students are exposed to student diversity. By integrating their opinions, students learn to appreciate each other’s differences and learn from them. Diversity awareness and appreciation are central to the community college experience. Learning how to communicate effectively with peers is an important life skill learned through collaboration. Formerly, students were considered “passive recipients of knowledge” (Johnson, Johnson, & Smith, 1998) that thrived in competitive, individualistic environments propelled by extrinsic rewards. Students are now recognized for their vibrant backgrounds which augment classroom discussion, knowledge construction, evaluation, and interaction. Implementation of HCC INSPIRE initiatives corresponds to the paradigm shift in post-secondary education today. Real-world, active, and collaborative learning will enable students to develop their own understanding in science education, allowing them the opportunity to critically analyze content, strengthen communication skills, and connect course material to real life. 4.2 Review of Best Practices and Suggestions for Implementation A critical review of pertinent best practices, with thoughtful recommendations, very recently published by Felder, Brent and Prince, (Felder, Brent, & Prince, 2011) is particularly relevant to the HCC INSPIRE program. Felder, Brent, and Prince explicitly address engineering education, but every point equally applies to all STEM disciplines, including those to participate in HCC INSPIRE. The recommendations in this study take the form of critical decisions made by an institution among several reasonable alternatives in four categories of activities. Through a brief description of the best practices, and the thrust of the decision-making/recommendation, those best practices appropriate to HCC INSPIRE can be identified. (Some of the categories are only briefly touched on here, since they form the content of other sections of this document.) 26
  • 31. Houston Community College The categories to be addressed are: • Faculty training and development • Course development and implementation • Assessment of results • Creating a supportive campus culture. The critical decisions revolve around considerations of: • Institutional type, charter and resources • Scope of the program, whether institution-wide or limited to specific disciplines • Composition and experience of faculty A few global aspects need to be addressed for the sake of effectiveness of the program. Faculty Training and Development A wide range of activities are covered by this term. Workshops are widely used, and may meet once yearly or per semester, and may be institution-wide or limited in attendance to faculty in a particular field or closelyrelated set of disciplines, such as the STEM fields. The facilitators of the workshops may be external to the institution, or drawn from its members. Typically, workshops meet for a full day or two consecutive days. In general, for workshops to be effective in leading to positive changes in STEM instructors’ teaching activities, and in the students’ learning, the facilitator(s) need be expert in both STEM content and pedagogical theory. There are few candidates who meet both criteria, so it is advantageous to have two facilitators, one expert in the STEM content, the other in the pedagogical content. STEM faculty members are unlikely to seriously consider changing their teaching habits on the words of an expert in another field, unless joined by a respected colleague in their own area. Seminars, meeting perhaps weekly or biweekly, can also introduce new active learning ideas, and have an advantage over workshops in that the development instrument continues while faculty experiment with the changes, and discuss their experiences with one another. Seminars would typically include faculty from a single discipline or a set of STEM disciplines. (The multiple-campus structure of HCC might militate against the use of seminars of this type.) Mentoring (experienced member paired with a novice) or Partnering (pairing of peers) can be a very effective method of implementing and monitoring the success of active learning techniques in the classroom, so long as the association involves frequent discussion of the activities, and endures for at least a semester. A variant of this is Consulting, in which an outside expert works individually with one or several faculty members. A Learning Community may be formed for the purpose of faculty development. A Learning Community in this context is defined by “a community of faculty members who organize themselves around individual or communal activities intended to improve their teaching and to provide support and guidance to one another.” (Cox, 2004) The implication is that the existence of a Learning Community is also a measure of success of the program, since the Learning Community is formed on the initiative of its members, who are presumably active participants and wish to “raise their game”. 27
  • 32. Houston Community College Finally, a last method to mention is a Teacher Certification Program, which is rarely used for STEM faculty in the United States, but common in some other countries. These programs include mandatory instructional development. Literature suggests that such programs are successful only if strongly supported on a national level, which makes it reasonable to consider a Teacher Certification Program beyond the scope of this QEP program. Multiple Methods appear to be needed. Rarely, if ever, would the use of only a single one of the methods listed above be considered best practice. Rather, a best practice program would combine, say, a workshop and/or seminar series with a mentoring, partnering, consulting and/or a learning community part. An implication is that workshops and seminars can recruit faculty members to participation in the active learning effort. Sustaining that participation appears to be the major contribution of the other methods, with mentoring and consulting guiding the novice, and partnering and learning communities sustaining the progress of more mature practitioners. The descriptions of activities engaged in as parts of the Mentoring, Consulting, Partnering and Learning Community methods invariably include either classroom observation or video recording of teaching and student responses in the classroom. The observations and/or recordings of classroom activities provide concrete data on the effect of the methods. Collection of these data is not explicitly mandated as best practice in implementing these methods, but there is a strong implication that the effectiveness of the methods could be greatly compromised without it. A discussion of best practices in instructional development would be remiss without reference to the principles that learning theory indicates are essential to the design of the program. A succinct tabulation of these is described in the chart below. Factors that motivate adult learning (adapted from Wlodkowski, 1999) Factor 1. Expertise of presenters 2. Relevance of content 3. Choice in application 4. Praxis (action plus reflection) 5. Group work Rationale Adults expect their teachers to be experts in the material being taught, well-prepared to teach it, and knowledgeable about the interests, needs, and problems of their audience. Adults may quickly become impatient with material they cannot easily relate to their personal interests or professional needs. Adults respond well when given options about whether, when, and how to apply recommended methods, and are skeptical of “one size fits all” prescriptions. Adults appreciate opportunities to see implementations of methods being taught and to try the methods themselves, and then to reflect on and generalize the outcomes. Adults enjoy and benefit from sharing their knowledge and experiences with their colleagues. 28
  • 33. Houston Community College Overall, there are two substantial supports needed for a successful program of instructional development: (1) some meaningful incentive for faculty members to participate in the program, and (2) some meaningful reward for any improvements in teaching that may result from their participation. (Felder, Brent, & Prince, 2011) There are no prescriptive best practices to provide these supports. This is supported by another researcher in the statement that “If quality teaching is not explicitly expected and rewarded as an institutional priority, faculty may feel that participation in such a program to strengthen teaching and improve student learning is not highly valued by administrators compared to other activities. Therefore, administrators may need to provide some form of external motivation for faculty participation” (Romano, 2004). Another factor is that substantial change takes time as the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Program 2061 indicates: “Sensible professionals do not replace their strongly held views and behavior patterns in response to fiat or the latest vogue; instead, they respond to developing sentiment among respected colleagues, to incentives that reward serious efforts to explore new possibilities, and to the positive feedback that may come from trying out new ideas from time to time—all of which can take years.” (Ahlgren, A. and Rutherford, A.J. 1991) It should also be recognized that a high percentage of the science courses at HCC are taught by adjunct instructors, so HCC INSPIRE initiatives have to accommodate both full-time instructors with heavy teaching loads and part-time instructors who may be transient and dealing with the needs of students from several institutions. This direction responds to the simple observation that inclusion only of the full-time faculty would have a limited impact on student learning because students do not distinguish courses taught by full-time faculty or part-time faculty. Therefore, district-wide implementation of a successful program will require inclusion of the following elements: 1. Recruitment: Implement on-going workshops for science faculty, with two primary stated purposes: • 1.1.Recruitment of part-time and full-time faculty to active participation in HCC INSPIRE. Participating faculty become members of an HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community. The presenter of the recruitment part of the program might be a respected member of the science faculty at HCC. • 1.2.Presentation of ongoing real-world, active and collaborative learning programs at other institutions, with statistics comparing learning outcomes with those of traditional teaching techniques. This might be by someone of a stature on the level of Dr. Richard M. Felder of North Carolina State University. 2. Incentive: A salary premium under contract per course for volunteers participating in the program. 3.Responsibilities: • 3.1. Attendance and participation in periodic seminars of HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community members. The seminars might be inclusive of all STEM disciples at a college, or limited to a particular discipline, depending on the number of members available. • 3.2. Frequent attendance and video recording of classes of other participants, and having such observance and recording of one’s own classes. • 3.3. Formation of at least one Mentor relationship or Peer Partner relationship each semester with another participant. Frequent meetings with the partner for mutual review of classroom recordings. • 3.4. Implementation of at least one Collaborative Learning Module per semester for a course taught during that semester. 29
  • 34. 4. Continuity of the Program: • 4.1. One can reasonably expect a hesitant start to such a program. It may take three to five years before a solid core of faculty stabilizes the HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community. During this startup period, the participation level may be volatile, and a considerable amount of administrative nurturing may be required. • 4.2. The goals of the program can only be obtained with a firm, unwavering commitment from the administration, especially during the early years of the program. This requires a determined financial commitment by the institution. • 4.3. Safeguards against gaming the program by uncommitted or nonperforming faculty would be necessary. Professional quality work should be demanded. Participants who do not fulfill the responsibilities of the program should not be offered continuing contracts. Contracts could be limited to a single course for each faculty member, at least initially. • 4.4. Experienced and productive members of the HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community will rightfully come to think of themselves as a teaching elite, whose example will draw the most talented of the pool of adjunct instructors into the program. When this level is reached, the program will have become self-sustaining. • 4.5. The experience of students taught by the members of the HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community will result in a higher level of student achievement and eventual competition by universities and private industry to attract graduates of the HCC INSPIRE program. • 4.6. Membership in the HCC INSPIRE Faculty Development Community should be mandatory for volunteers in the program, instead of developing over time from the initiative of the volunteers. This forcing seems slight given the incentive offered for volunteers, and has the potential for speeding the attainment of maturity for the program as a whole. • 4.7. Over time, a library of modules for the STEM courses should build, providing choices of modules available for use by instructors, and also providing good templates for future modules to be developed by inexperienced volunteers. Thus a critical mass of high-quality modules should be attained in the program, which provides another source of stability and continuity for the program.
  • 35. Houston Community College 5 The QEP: HCC INSPIRE Goals, Activities, and Student Learning Outcomes QEP PURPOSE STATEMENT: HCC INSPIRE will improve student learning, engagement and success in the sciences. The QEP development process produced a plan to reform science instruction at HCC. The traditional mode of lecture-based instruction will be enhanced by the incorporation of real-world problem based learning in the classroom. Literature searches and a study of best-practices across the nation helped confirm that plans to change science instruction would conform to national trends. Many HCC science students have the goal of transferring to a four-year college or university. Therefore, it is vital that the core courses they take at HCC prepare them for the academic rigor and learning environment of a four year university or college. Experience in the HCC classroom will teach them to practice science skills while solving real-world problems, and help them apply what they have learned outside of the classroom. Three goals and related activities have been identified that will result in a transformation of science teaching and learning. Goal 1: Ensure science course readiness Activities include the design of a first year science-based student success course to prepare students for science learning. Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world, active and collaborative learning in science courses Activities include the implementation of real-world problem-based, active and collaborative learning modules to enhance learning and engagement in science courses. Activities within the modules will allow students to put science skills into practice.. Goal 3: Offer district-wide science enrichment opportunities Activities include district-wide organization of faculty-sponsored science clubs to promote student engagement and provide enrichment opportunities for students to apply science knowledge outside of the classroom. 31
  • 36. Houston Community College 5.1 Goal 1: Ensure science course readiness HCC INSPIRE will create a science-based first year success course (S-FSC) to ensure science course readiness. QEP GOAL: STRATEGY: OBJECTIVES: GOAL1: Science First Year Success Course 1: Develop science-based Science First Year Success Course Ensure science course readiness 2: Train faculty to teach Science First Year Success Course 3: Offer and implement Science First Year Success Course 4: Improve student science learning & study skills (an SLO-driven objective) 5: Improve student success in science courses 5.1.1: A science-based first year success course (S-FSC) More students are arriving at college less ready than ever before. Many students lack the necessary motivation, self-discipline, and fundamental academic skills to gather, conceptualize and process knowledge. They arrive with limited awareness of possible science career paths and an educational plan to succeed. Hence any implementation of science teaching best practices must be accompanied, or preceded by ensuring science students have the tools, information and the support necessary for successful progression through rigorous core science courses. As noted in chapter 3, HCC has created a series of first year success courses for students interested in pursuing study and work in engineering, education, the health sciences or the workforce in general, as well as students who are “undecided” regarding a major. These courses go beyond a standard orientation or study skills course, and include information about career exploration, time management techniques, financial aid, and academic advising. One of the goals of every first year success course is that every student will leave the course with a degree plan in hand. The establishment of these personal goals in freshman success courses has led to a marked increase in student persistence, completion, or transfer. Currently, of the five first year success courses offered, one is designated specifically for students who are “undecided” (GUST1270). GUST1270 is designed to prepare students for the demands of college and work. The course emphasizes prioritization, time management, note-taking and listening skills, in addition to career assessment, financial aid, tutoring and student support services, all skills necessary to enable students to maximize the use of college resources. For a number of reasons related to state approval of courses, GUST1270 is being replaced with EDUC1300: Learning Frameworks in the Fall 2012 semester. The proposed science-based first year success course (S-FSC) will incorporate science specific units within the EDUC1300 course. In other words, a science emphasis will be added to certain sections of EDUC1300. Students interested in science will be highly encouraged to sign up for the S-FSC versions of EDUC1300. However, since all freshmen with less than 12 credit hours are required to take a success course, many “undecided” students may enroll in the S-FSC sections and will benefit from improved science study skills even though they may not be headed into a science career. Capturing a wider audience all across our district will maximize the impact of the S-FSC. SLOs for the S-FSC component of EDUC1300 are outlined in the table below. The course will incorporate basic science learning skills, science vocabulary study skills as well as instruction regarding scientific data and its presentation in graphs, figures and tables. The course will still cover the traditional EDUC1300 first year success course topics such as learning theories and strategies. However, the career information portion of the course will emphasize science and science-related careers. 32
  • 37. Houston Community College QEP Objective: Target Population: Student Learning Outcomes: Objective 1.4: Improve student science learning & study skills Science First Year Success Course (S-FSC) students SLO 1.4.a: S-FSC students will demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehension of scientific information SLO 1.4.b: S-FSC students will demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills SLO 1.4.c: S-FSC students will be able to interpret scientific information, figures and tables SLO 1.4.d: S-FSC students will demonstrate an understanding of the scientific method The move from GUST 1270 to EDUC 1300 is very important in terms of strengthening students’ basic understanding of learning in more rigorous ways. The course description of EDUC 1300 from the Texas Academic Course Guide Manual is as follows: • A study of the research and theory in the psychology of learning, cognition, and motivation. • Factors that impact learning • Application of learning strategies. Theoretical models of strategic learning, cognition, and motivation serve as the conceptual basis for the introduction of college- level student academic strategies. Students use assessment instruments (e.g., learning inventories) to help them identify their own strengths and weaknesses as strategic learners. Students are ultimately expected to integrate and apply the learning skills discussed across their own academic programs and become effective and efficient learners. Students developing these skills should be able to continually draw from the theoretical models they have learned. The QEP Director and the QEP Steering Committee will create an S-FSC Curriculum Development Team from faculty applicants. This Team will consist of science faculty from biology, chemistry and physics, an EDUC1300 Program Committee member, an Instructional Design Specialist, and a Multimedia/IT Specialist. The S-FSC Curriculum Development Team will be responsible for the development of course materials, exercises and assessments. The S-FSC curriculum will be presented to the Science Program committees and the EDUC Program Committee for approval before piloting in Spring 2014. This will allow thorough completion of the EDUC1300 curriculum, currently under construction by the EDUC1300 Curriculum Committee, before adding the science-based units. It is expected that the Curriculum Development Team members who created the course will pilot it at their respective colleges. Other science instructors who are on the QEP Steering Committee and other QEP committees may also be interested in teaching pilot courses at their colleges. Training will be provided for S-FSC instructors. The QEP Director and all members of the various QEP committees and teams will be expected to publicize existence of the new course to counselors, academic advisors, and high school counselors. The course will be fully developed and offered throughout the district in the fall semester of the fourth year of the QEP. Increasing science course enrollment has created a need for students to be prepared and equipped with science-specific learning and study skills before enrolling in core science courses. Students who complete an S-FSC course will be prepared, and have a solid foundation for future success in science courses. The implementation and assessment timelines and processes for Goal 1 activities are explained in section 8 of this document and detailed in Appendix 9.3. 33
  • 38. Houston Community College 5.2 Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world, active and collaborative learning in science courses HCC INPIRE will implement real-world problem-based, active and collaborative learning modules to enhance learning and engagement in science courses. QEP GOALS: STRATEGY: OBJECTIVES: GOAL 2: Institutionalize real-world.active and collaborative learning in science courses Eagle Online science modules 1: Develop high quality.comprehensive Eagle Online science learning modules 2: Train science faculty to deliver the Eagle Online modules 3: Implement Eagle Online modules in science courses 4: Improve science student engagement 5: Improve student science content knowledge & science process skills (an SLO- driven objective) According to its mission, HCC offers a high-quality education, facilitates lifelong learning and prepares individuals in HCC’s diverse communities for life and work in a global and technological society. Students must learn to think in increasingly rigorous and complex ways, not only to advance their academic and work careers, but to survive and thrive in our rapidly changing world. HCC’s students indicate a need for connection and application of learning skills to real-world situations. On HCC’s 2010 Community College of Student Engagement Survey (CCSSE), HCC students reported no significant improvement from the previous year in “acquiring job [or work-related knowledge and] skills,” Further, science students expressed a desire for relevance and a real-world connection according to HCC’s QEP Development student survey conducted in June 2011. HCC INSPIRE will reform science education in the classroom to incorporate real world relevance to students. In addition, HCC INSPIRE will address and align science education reform to meet the new state core curriculum objectives targeted for implementation by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in 2014. Real-world problem based instruction allows students to see the correlation between personal experience and the material content. An effective method for instruction is harnessing what the student already knows and building upon it. Effective science educators should strive to make science content relevant to students “real-life” outside of the classroom, so they may make connections between what they already know and what they are learning in class and through the assignments they do outside of class. Many HCC science instructors already incorporate forms of real-world conceptually-oriented tasks into classes, but this has not been done consistently across the district. HCC has nearly 80,000 students across six colleges located on twenty-two campuses. The sheer size and geographical configuration of the school necessitates the need to target high enrollment core curriculum courses for reform. In order to achieve this ambitious goal, HCC INSPIRE will start with implementing user-friendly modules into basic science courses beginning with General Biology I (BIOL 1406), General Chemistry I (CHEM 1411) and College Physics I (PHYS 1401). The modular instruction will be a cost-effective approach to changing the pedagogy in the classroom, allowing many full-time and part-time instructors to unite multiple learning styles with multiple teaching styles. HCC will leverage existing resources and expertise whenever possible (e.g., HCC Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence, college Curriculum and Innovation Centers, the HCC Distance Education department, and the Library staff), especially during the beginning phases of the QEP. Due to increased funding of STEM course innovations over the last two decades, particularly by federal granting agencies such as the National Science Foundation and others, there are many excellent module materials available. Some of these incorporate the hallmarks of effective real-world, active and collaborative learning identified in the best-practices research. Further, many of these 34
  • 39. Houston Community College materials are open source, have already been field-tested, come with assessment materials, and may easily be adapted for HCC. Widespread implementation of this modular approach will involve three key steps: (1) the creation of the state-of-the-art modules and online course shells to house them, (2) the preparation of increasing numbers of science faculty for real-world, learner centered teaching, and (3) successful implementation of real-world, active and collaborative learning activities in HCC basic science classrooms district-wide. 5.2.1 Module Creation For INSPIRE, HCC has defined “module” as a set of materials for instructional use covering a substantial, complex topic. A module will cover at the minimum, one entire textbook chapter and will be designed to involve a minimum of two traditional classroom and/or lab sessions. Modules will be framed in the context of a central problem or challenge and will teach science content alongside science process skills. The modules will contain content-based learning objects, learning activities, student assessments, and rubrics (scoring criteria) by which the assessment will be evaluated. The modules will be embedded and taught via Eagle Online, the HCC learning management system in both in-person and distance education courses. Each module may be likened to a buffet, with a defined entry and exit point, but with multiple choices offered along the way to reach the end goal. Modules will begin with an attention-grabbing, real world problem or challenge and will conclude with student groups presenting a solution. Module “problems” will be topics essential to the discipline and the target textbook chapter, but also relevant to society as a whole. Students will work through module problems (textbook chapter themes) by completing activities that will teach all related concepts contained in the problem/chapter. The QEP science student survey conducted in 2011 indicates that being able to relate scientific concepts to the real world is imperative for students (with 80%, or 1579 out of 1970 science students survey respondents saying this is moderately or very helpful). Presenting course materials to students in the same manner in which they would encounter such a problem in the real world makes the instruction relevant to their lives. Therefore, the module may begin with a short video, a current commercial or some other object that introduces the real-world “problem” in a way that captures the students’ attention immediately and relates the problem to their world. Students need to make connections between the content they are learning and current societal situations. The topic of the module should grab the students’ attention and promote considered, engaged discussion. For example, after a news release or television commercial was shown, students might engage in discussion regarding what they already know about the topic and use this current knowledge as a foundation for the rest of the topics presented in the class session. This sort of technique was deemed moderately to very helpful for learning by 81%, (1620 of 2007) of QEP science student survey respondents. Many excellent and effective open-source problem-based learning (PBL) resources have already been developed. One biology example is a case study entitled “Mystery of the Toxic Flea Dip.” The case is loosely based on the real-life rotenone poisoning of a young girl who died after washing her dog with flea dip and is designed to teach the complex process of aerobic respiration in undergraduate Biology courses. Students take the role of coroner and must determine the cause of death. Students are expected to read the textbook and complete a pre-activity quiz on aerobic respiration prior to class. The case itself is divided into four parts with each teaching vital concepts contained in the module: (1) reading the case scenario, (2) brainstorming potential causes of death, (3) analyzing autopsy data, and (4) integrating concepts to determine the answer. 35
  • 40. Houston Community College Clues to the mystery are introduced gradually, followed by milestone questions that prompt student progression through the case. Questions are specifically designed to ensure students focus on the physiological processes involved in aerobic respiration and address commonly held misconceptions. Questions are answered by group discussions, interrupted periodically by short lectures on relevant concepts. For our module, we plan to adapt an open-source PBL exercise in a number of ways. If we were using the case study referenced above, the Mystery of the Toxic Flea Dip, the module would teach the entire chapter of cellular respiration, includes concepts as fermentation and aerobic respiration. The entire exercise would be spread out over the time allotted for studying all of cellular respiration (usually 1.5 to 2 weeks, depending on the instructor). Instructors would guide students through a series of engaging activities that would involve active and collaborative teamwork and the use of vetted, open-source learning objects such as short lecture segments, interactive games or animations. The following image illustrates how scientific concepts would be addressed sequentially through instructorchosen learning objects and activities to enable students to solve the chosen problem. First, students would read and discuss the case and address common misconceptions of cellular respiration using ConcepTests. The first scientific concepts of cellular respiration: biochemical pathways, reduction and oxidation reactions and glycolysis could be addressed in multiple ways, for example, an online game or crossword puzzle that is an overview of cellular respiration, or a video lecture segment on specific chemical reactions in glycolysis. Second, the students would brainstorm possible causes of the mystery death, while learning the scientific concepts of pyruvate oxidation and the citric acid cycle utilizing online animations, games or one-minute write ups of relevant textbook segments. Third, the students would receive the autopsy results, and work in groups to analyze the data as it relates to the scientific concepts of oxidative phosphorylation and chemiosmosis. The students would begin to realize that malfunctions in these critical pathways may have contributed to the mystery death as they visualize animations, role-play the electron transport chain or have a class discussion regarding the potential effects of the flea dip on these processes. Finally, the students would learn about other metabolic pathways and anaerobic respiration. They would put the “big picture” of these pathways together to solve the mystery and finish out the chapter contents with short lectures or active-collaborative activities. As the students work through these tasks they would not only solve the mystery, they would learn the scientific concepts presented in the textbook chapter. 36
  • 41. Houston Community College Sequential progression through the Case Study and scientific concepts of Cellular Respiration utilizing multiple learner-focused active collaborative activities and open-sourced learning objects. Student Presentations: Mystery solved Short lecture: types of anaerobic respiration Student activity summarizing the steps of aerobic respiration 4. Anaerobic Respiration & other metabolic pathways Active-activity demonstrating the electron transport chain Module topic problem: Scientific Concept: Crossword puzzle on chapter vocabulary Online video lecture segment: reactions of glycolysis ConcepTests covering misconceptions Cellular Respiration 3. Oxidative Phosphorylati on & chemiosmosis Analysis of autopsy report data 1. Catabolic pathways, Redox reactions & G Glycolysis Mystery of the Toxic Flea Dip Class discussion: possible ways Rotenone effects Mitochondrial function Video animation of chemiosmosis & ATP synthase Concept function Test Class discussion: How scientific concepts relate to mystery Reading case scenario & class Reading Case discussion on scenario problem 1-minute write write-up of what ci the citric acid cycle cycles does 37 2. Pyruvate oxidation & the citric acid cycle Jeopardy-style game on specific chemical reactions Student teams brainstorming causes of death Online Citric Acid Cycle Animation
  • 42. Houston Community College Learning object options and content-based, active and collaborative activities will be collected from full and part time faculty. Online forums, list-servs and Camp INSPIRE faculty workshops will serve as instruments to promote faculty communication and collaboration within and across disciplines. It is expected that far more material may be collected than is needed for the first modules developed. Faculty will use rubrics to score learning objects and those with the highest scores will be chosen for inclusion in the modules. Learning objects not chosen for the module will be compiled online to serve as a databank. These learning objects may be used as back-ups in the case of broken on-line links, or used as resources for future modules. The module remains dynamic, evolving to meet the needs of the students and faculty. Of course, all learning objects collected or created for HCC INSPIRE modules will be available to faculty to use. HCC-INSPIRE seeks to facilitate changes in the pedagogy from the traditional “sage on the stage” lectureformat to a more active and collaborative student-based setting where the instructor is the “guide on the side”. We strive to improve student learning by creating “collaboratories” where students work together, actively solving real-world relevant problems based on science content knowledge. Therefore, module development by program-based development teams is a critical component of HCC INSPIRE. Program-Based Module Development Teams To guide the process of HCC INSPIRE module development, comprehensive criteria and a concrete development template will be created. The criteria will be based on best practices research and in accordance with the QEP focus and desired student learning outcomes. Criteria will be reviewed by faculty groups organized under the auspices of INSPIRE into program-based Module Development Teams before being implemented by college-based Implementation Teams. Program-based Module Development Team are being formed for each of the initial target courses: General Biology I (BIOL 1406), General Chemistry I (CHEM 1411) and College Physics I (PHYS 1401). These particular courses were chosen as the starting point for HCC INSPIRE because they are core courses, and, as such, they represent a basic component of many degree plans at HCC and large enrollments of students. Targeting these courses maximizes potential HCC INSPIRE impact. The QEP will host a series of program meetings for faculty in the three targeted science programs to inform them of QEP goals and activities and solicit volunteers to join the program-based Module Development Teams. These meetings began in the late Fall Semester 2011 and have continued through the early part of the Spring Semester 2012. The size of the faculty representation on the development teams vary according to the number of faculty members in the program. It is expected that there will be four faculty members from the Biology faculty. There will be three members on the Chemistry Development Team and two members on the Physics Development Team. Faculty Module Development Team members will be drawn from all HCC colleges and will include both full-time and adjunct faculty. A credentialed Instructional Design Specialist will work with the Module Development Teams to develop specific active and collaborative learning activities to be incorporated into the module. HCC has several instructional designers on the staff of the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE) and the staff of the various College Curriculum Innovation Centers (CICs) will also be able to assist. The Module Development Teams will work together to create the modules as well as the assessments (described in section 8) that ensure students achieve desired student learning outcomes as described below. These SLOs are suitable for any module in the targeted courses in biology, chemistry and physics. During module development, Module Development Teams may use the online forums and QEP listservs to call upon content-based expertise as needed. CTLE staff and resources, including existing workshops, will be leveraged to reinforce necessary pedagogical expertise such as content-free learner-centered teaching strategies and rubric writing. 38
  • 43. Houston Community College Module-Based Student Learning Outcomes A great deal of research went into the development of the HCC INSPIRE student learning outcomes to be taught in the online modules. In the early stages, a search for a description of successful science education in the context of today’s rapidly evolving workplace was made. It was found that science education is lacking. “There is a major mismatch between opportunity and action in most education systems today. It revolves around what is meant by “science education,” a term that is incorrectly defined in current usage. Rather than learning how to think scientifically, students are generally told about science and asked to remember facts.” -Bruce Alberts, Science, 2009 HCC agrees that science education reform will require the cultivation of three crucial, universally applicable competencies: critical thinking, information literacy, and communication. (These terms are defined in the Definitions section of the Appendices.) In the sciences, critical thinking is addressed through data interpretation, problem solving, experimental design, and connecting new science knowledge to prior knowledge. Scientific literacy is fundamental as is the ability to communicate scientific ideas in writing, through oral presentations, and with other media. Based on the desired science process skills and corresponding general educational competencies, HCC has outlined six comprehensive, measurable Student Learning Outcomes for the science learning modules in the table below. QEP Objective: Target Population: Module-Based Student Learning Outcomes: Objective 2.5: Improve science student content knowledge and science process skills BIOL1406-CHEM1411 and PHYS1401 Eagle Online science module students SLO 2.5.a: Science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge SLO 2.5.b: Science students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources SLO 2.5.c: Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables SLO 2.5.d: Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data SLO 2.5.e: Science students will be able to solve a real-world problem. answer a research question, or address a challenge SLO 2.5.f: Science students will be able to communicate scientific concepts. scientific principles and/or socio-scientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations As explained above, these learning module SLOs encompass general science skills and processes applicable to any science discipline. Once the module topics and target textbook chapters have been selected, Module Development Teams will work with the discipline Program Coordinators and Program Committees in Biology, Chemistry and Physics to create the appropriate concept inventories to accommodate the INSPIRE module SLOs. 39
  • 44. Houston Community College Recently, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating board revised the state’s core curriculum to ensure that students develop the essential knowledge and skills necessary for success in college, career, community, and in life. To this end, a 42 semester credit hour core curriculum for all undergraduate students in Texas was approved and is scheduled for implementation in Fall 2014. The core objectives include critical thinking skills, communication skills, empirical and quantitative skills, and teamwork. HCC INSPIRE learning modules will address and align science education reform with the new core objectives of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board as referenced in the table below. Relevance of QEP learning module SLOs to Core Objectives of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board: QEP learning module Student Learning Outcomes: THECB Core Objective: SLO 2.5.a: Science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific CT – Critical Thinking Skills principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge SLO 2.5.b: Science students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity CT – Critical Thinking Skills of scientific information from a variety of sources SLO 2.5.c: Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables CT – Critical Thinking Skills SLO 2.5.d: Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data EQS – Empirical and Quantitative Skills SLO 2.5.e: Science students will be able to solve a real-world problem.answer a W - Teamwork T research question, or address a challenge SLO 2.5.f: Science students will be able to communicate scientific concepts.scientific principles and/or socio-scientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations COM – Communication Skills College-based Implementation Teams INSPIRE is a district-wide project, however, the implementation and incorporation of the modules into the biology, chemistry and physics will happen at individual colleges. Initial Implementation Teams will be located at the Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast and Southwest Colleges. Even with generous support from HCC, some QEP activities will be limited without more funding. Programbased Development Teams will be mindful to only incorporate equipment currently available district-wide in the modules. However, given the rate of change in the sciences, there will always be newer and better lab equipment available. The equipment will be necessary to maintain science education relevancy. Therefore, grant-seeking activities, particularly to help fund up-dated lab equipment across the district and to enhance faculty development opportunities, will be a regular activity of the QEP director and other members of the QEP Steering Committee. 40
  • 45. Houston Community College 5.2.2: Faculty Development -- Camp INSPIRE Over the course of the QEP, all science faculty teaching BIOL1406, CHEM1411 and PHYS1401 courses will be invited to participate directly in the QEP by incorporating real-world, active-and collaborative learning modules into their classes. Given the large numbers of target course faculty, the community college reliance on adjunct faculty, and relevant prior experience, we know that major changes in teaching strategies are more sustainable if achieved slowly and carefully. To that end, we have developed a plan that will be sustainable over the life of the QEP and beyond. All Biology, Chemistry and Physics faculty, regardless of courses taught, will be invited to participate in all QEP faculty development workshops and assemblies. The QEP-driven changes in pedagogy will spill over into other parts of the target courses or even make their way into non-target courses in the sciences and into other areas of the institution. As the QEP affects each program’s student learning outcomes and assessment, every HCC science faculty member will be affected by the QEP; all will also have the opportunity to contribute to and participate in the development of all materials described in QEP Goal 2. For continuity’s sake, all QEP faculty development workshops and assemblies will be called Camp INSPIRE throughout the duration of the QEP. Aside from dissemination of INSPIRE updates and information, enjoyable and inspirational activities will be crucial to every Camp INSPIRE event. A very successful Camp INSPIRE meeting on January 12, 2012 generated excitement and team spirit among 51 full-time and 4 adjunct Biology, Chemistry and Physics professors. The full-time professors came as part of required beginning of semester Instructional Day events. The part-time professors came by special invitation and they will serve as role models for future events. A second Camp INSPIRE series of meetings is planned for May 2012 and will immerse as many science faculty members as possible in real-world, active and collaborative learning, much like the modules designed for students. Another crucial feature of any Camp INSPIRE event will be to continue HCC efforts for program-based and faculty-driven professional development. We want a “by-science-faculty, for-science-faculty” nature in order to get the best introduction of science-based pedagogical strategies that students will be experiencing within the modules. During the May 2012 Camp INSPIRE week, groups of full- and part-time faculty who teach the QEP target courses (BIOL 1406, CHEM 1411, PHYS 1401) will be invited to program-specific small-group discussions. The purpose of these discussions will be to introduce the proposed format of the modules. Further, these groups will discuss which textbook chapter the first module should address and will come up with essential concept inventories. In Fall 2011, the Biology program assessment identified areas of most concern for improvement of student performance, including introduction to chemistry, cellular respiration, photosynthesis and DNA/RNA/protein synthesis. Therefore, it is expected that modules will target the textbook chapters that cover those concepts. Further group discussions with all faculty teaching the target courses will allow all to voice opinions regarding the science content they deem crucial within a given textbook chapter. Many instructors can relate to the experience of spending three hours lecturing, providing many facts and details, only to have students ask “what do I really need to know?” During these small break-out sessions of Camp INSPIRE, faculty will create concept inventories addressing content knowledge within the chapter necessary for students to succeed on course tests and beyond. Additional goals of the May 2012 Camp INSPIRE will be to train faculty both in how to use the modules embedded in Eagle Online as well Eagle Online itself. 41
  • 46. Houston Community College Considering the large number of faculty teaching the courses targeted by HCC INSPIRE, and the multicampus commuter nature of our institution, Camp INSPIRE opportunities will have to be made available in a variety of places and modalities. According to the QEP faculty survey, many faculty express a preference for face-to-face workshops. Because HCC’s Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE) workshop machinery is already in place, the workshops will be initially offered in a face-to-face format whether at the main administration building or at the local colleges, however additional workshops may also be made available online for new hires or faculty desiring a “refresher” course. In addition, it is hoped that the efforts in the targeted courses will inspire other workshops for new and different modules for other basic and higher-level science courses. 5.2. 3 Subject Plus We see a need for a permanent way to house and organize open-source, vetted online learning objects collected during the course of the QEP. The items will be stored utilizing a software called Subject Plus in the HCC online library and used by science faculty to support the learning modules developed for the basic Biology, Chemistry and Physics classes. The larger Subject Plus collection will also be available for use by faculty members and students. While many open-sourced online learning objects are readily available to faculty, the consolidation and organization within Subject Plus will make these resources easily discoverable and readily available. There will also be notes by other faculty members about how they used these materials in effective ways. Thus, it will provide a single repository for faculty-vetted materials previously posted on varied web sites and, as part of the library’s collection, it will be searchable through the library catalog. Librarians will be trained to assist students in accessing and using Subject Plus in association with the INSPIRE modules. Current HCC library instruction already includes information and media literacy. As libraries are changing in the new internet age, librarians already help students use the most effective ways to find and evaluate information outside of their textbooks. Librarians can partner with science faculty to help guide the students through the module activities, particularly in helping students locate information and scientific literature. Additionally, the HCC library has already produced a number of subject-specific Learning Guides. The guides are freely available on the HCC Library homepage, although licensed resources where access is restricted to the HCC community are also listed, with icons denoting access terms. The Learning Guides contain appropriate learning and study-skills resources, such as simulations and streaming media. They also include exercises to allow students to assess themselves about the concepts they’ve understood and retained. The implementation and assessment timelines and processes for all Goal 2 activities are explained in section 8 of this document and detailed in Appendix 9.3. 42
  • 47. Houston Community College QEP GOAL: STRATEGY: OBJECTIVES: GOAL 3: Improve student engagement with districtwide science enrichment opportunities xtra-curricular E science clubs 1: Establish science student clubs at five HCC colleges 2: Establish online.district-wide coordination of science club engagement activities 3: Offer district-wide science club engagement activities Although science classes at HCC are small (average=24 students), community college students interested in science-related careers tend to have little opportunity to bond over science outside of class. Yet, it is important they do so for peer support and to further a deeper exploration of science itself or as a career option. Free from grade pressure and class time constraints, student clubs provide opportunities for applying knowledge gained inside the class. Equally beneficial is the opportunity for science faculty and interested students to interact with individuals from real-world industry or research institutions at club gatherings. This part of the QEP is a logical and much-needed extension of the real-world, active and collaborative learning our science students will be doing in the classroom. Student Science Clubs at HCC Over the years, HCC colleges have experimented with offering different outlets for science student engagement and informal learning. One such effort, called National Science Foundation (NSF) Scholars, has been very successful in bringing interested students together for informal learning opportunities. However, the NSF Scholars effort is a highly competitive, grant-funded scholarship program, and relatively few students are selected to participate each year. Also, these students come from all across the district, so most of the students on any given campus are not even aware of the NSF Scholars Program. Additionally, Northwest College hosts an annual “Biology Boot Camp”, which offers “insider tips” for biology program survival. The Biology Boot Camps are highly regarded by students, but there has been little opportunity for follow-up. Southwest College and, more recently, Central College have established science student clubs with great success. In addition to student activities, HCC recently established a district-wide STEM Council of STEM faculty and administrators. The intent of the STEM council is to coordinate STEM-related activities and opportunities across the district. HCC INSPIRE will build on these efforts with the expanded establishment of student science clubs at the four colleges that do not currently have them. Faculty advisors of all STEM-related clubs will be asked to join a newly established STEM Club Network, who may share best practices in student clubs organization, management, funding of activities and recruiting. Having science student clubs and a STEM Club Network presence at all colleges will also give the STEM Council the ideal vehicle to provide and/or disseminate coherent student engagement opportunities, as well as provide district-wide guidance on industry and research-related issues long beyond the life of the QEP. Implementation of this initiative will require recruitment of science faculty willing to serve as science club advisors, in addition to the advisors of the existing clubs at Central and Southwest Colleges. The QEP Director, with the assistance of the STEM Council members and the science Department Chairs at Northeast, Northwest, Southeast Colleges will recruit faculty to serve as advisors. Already, 24 science faculty attended a round table discussion on the merits, best practices and startup requirements of student clubs during the 2012 HCC Faculty Conference (February 24, 2012). More science faculty will learn about these plans 43
  • 48. Houston Community College and will help develop ideas for Science Club activities during the May 2012 Camp INSPIRE. Once faculty advisors have been identified, they will initiate the process to recruit students and register the club with HCC. To provide a means of district-wide coordination, a STEM Club Network web presence will be created similar to what already exists for the NSF scholars program in addition to a STEM Club Network Facebook group. This group will help with Science Clubs as well as those in other STEM related fields. Per HCC policy and procedures, once the science clubs are established, the students themselves will govern the clubs. The faculty advisors will serve as liaisons and mentors, and will facilitate club activity. They will also provide continuity from academic year to academic year as individual students graduate, transfer, or move on. With the assistance of the STEM Council and the QEP Director, they will also disseminate engagement opportunities to local club members as well as administer the post-activity student surveys that will allow the QEP Steering Committee to assess science club activities and success. To accommodate the short, 2-year window of opportunity to capture community college students, club membership will be open to any HCC student interested in any of the STEM fields regardless of education status, and through the STEM Club Network activities, student club members will be encouraged to see the connections among the STEM fields. Science Club Activities The types of Science Club activities that would be sponsored though the QEP will vary depending on faculty advisor and student preference, resources available at each college, and the external opportunities that present themselves during the life of the QEP. However, any of the following are potential candidate activities that will meet the QEP goals: • HCC hosted research or industry seminars • HCC hosted science-centered community forums • HCC student judging of local K-12 science fairs • Student-to-student study or tutoring sessions • HCC student facilitation of K-12 student activities for community organizations such as The Boys and Girls Clubs or local schools • Field trips to industry sites or research labs • Collaborative in-house science-based projects or contests • External contests for science undergraduates, such as the annual genetically engineered machine competition • External contests for science undergraduate internships For HCC students, many who must work or take care of family members, internships work best when they are paid. Yet community college students are not typically as competitive for paid internships as students coming from research institutions. The QEP Director will be in a perfect position to serve as a liaison between science faculty and the HCC Office of Resource Development, allowing HCC to work towards the incorporation of internship stipends and other engagement opportunities for interested HCC students into HCC STEM grant applications. In addition, the QEP Director may work with the proposed STEM Club Networks to apply for funding from the Student Fee Activity Committee (SFAC) and the local College Activity Boards (CABs), which review all applications for use of student activity fees. The QEP will work in two ways to increase the number of HCC students involved in external internships, by increasing the knowledge of and interest in and access to such opportunities on the part of the students through the STEM Club Network, and informing HCC grant-writers to the need to include funds for student internships in their grants. 44
  • 49. Houston Community College The Implementation and Assessment Plan for all Goal 3 activities are explained in section 8 of this document and detailed in Appendix 9.3. The following page contains an overall concept map of HCC INSPIRE to help readers with a summary view of how HCC’s situation and priorities led to the choice of the QEP topic, what inputs and outputs were identified, and what impacts are projected over short and long terms 45
  • 50. Houston Community College Inputs Science faculty Science Department Chairs Money Time Materials Equipment Technology HCC STEM Council Academic Deans CTLE, IT, DE, library staff Collaborate to leverage collective knowledge and expertise Strengthen science faculty-student interactions Facilitate realworld, active & collaborative learning Provide solid educational foundation for science students Priorities STEM Club Networks STEM Students College Physics I Students General Chemistry I Students General Biology I Students First year students Participation Outputs District-wide STEM student clubs Subject Plus Eagle Online Science Learning Modules Science Based First Year Success Course Activities QEP Post QEP Short Term Improved science student retention and persistence Medium Term Improved science student graduation rates Long Term Innovative sciencebased freshman success course Greater student appreciation for science and research Renewed spirit of collaboration among science faculty Improved science student learning High-quality content specific learning modules embedded with real-world active and collaborative learning activities District-wide STEM community (faculty and students) High-quality STEM engagement opportunities Effective model for improvement of science student success at other community colleges Science students better prepared for transfer to research universities Incorporation of real-world active and collaborative learning in science courses Impact QEP Focus: Improved Student Learning, Engagement and Success in the Sciences Situation Low retention and persistence rates among basic science students Little opportunity to practice science process skills Exercises with little relevance to real life & career Resources for science courses fragmented and unused Evaluation Outcome and Process Assessments determine effectiveness and adjustments are made accordingly 46
  • 51. Houston Community College Chapter 6: QEP Implementation Timeline Accomplishing the goals of improved science learning, engagement and success for HCC students over the next five years requires a district-wide, shared effort. A science-based first year success course will be created to prepare students for science learning. Real-world active and collaborative learning modules will be created for core science courses to enhance learning and engagement. Faculty will be trained to deliver modules and encouraged to use real-world active and collaborative activities in their courses. Faculty-sponsored student science clubs will be initiated at colleges that do not already have them and an organizational council will be set up to coordinate the activities of these clubs. HCC INSPIRE is an ambitious plan to change the pedagogy in the science classroom as well as to foster new levels of communication and collaboration amongst faculty within and across disciplines. The QEP Steering Committee will meet regularly at the beginning of every Fall and Spring semester and additionally as needed. The QEP Assessment Team will meet at the conclusion of every Fall, Spring and Summer II term. The implementation and assessment plan for HCC INSPIRE is organized by goal and is fully explained in Section 8 and detailed in Appendix 9.3. 6.1 Goal 1 Ensure Science course readiness Initial strategies to design and implement a science-based first year success course (S-FSC) will involve the creation and recruitment of a Curriculum Development Team by Summer 2013. Open-source materials will be collected through faculty list servs and discussion forums. Course materials, exercises and assessments will be developed according to the S-FSC student learning outcomes (SLO) prior to taking the curriculum before the Science Program Committees and the EDUC1300 Program Committee in Fall 2013. Following curriculum approval, five sections of the course will be listed in the HCC catalog in the Spring of 2014. Scaled-up implementation of the course will continue through Spring 2016 resulting in over 40 sections offered during the QEP impacting over 800 students. Faculty training will be a large part of the implementation of the science based first year success course. The Curriculum Development Team will be trained in rubric creation via HCC’s Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE) workshops. All faculty training workshops will be developed, implemented and posted online. Five S-FSC faculty will be trained in fall 2013 and an additional five will be trained in fall 2014. While a fully detailed implementation and assessment plan for HCC INSPIRE is located in Section 8 and Appendix 9.3, a Summary Timeline for HCC INSPIRE events is contained in Section 6.4 below. 6.2 Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world active and collaborative learning in science courses Initial strategies to design and implement real-world active and collaborative learning modules into BIOL1406, CHEM1411 and PHYS1401 will involve recruiting and hiring faculty to participate on the Science Module Development Team. Information regarding this opportunity will be disseminated in January 2012 in various ways. Full-time and part-time Faculty members may apply to participate on the Module Development Team. An Eagle Online-based science faculty discussion forum and an email listserv will be created for HCC INSPIRE announcements. They will also be used for discussion of INSPIRE-related issues and to enhance communication among science faculty. The forum and listserv will be used extensively to solicit faculty for input regarding the agenda for the May 2012 Camp INSPIRE and to finalize its logistics, venue and registration, as well as further Camp Inspire events. Sixty-one full-time and forty part-time faculty will participate in the May 2012 Camp INSPIRE. A video recording of HCC Camp INSPIRE’s active and collaborative teaching exchanges will be posted on the CTLE website. Break-out roundtable discussions during Camp INSPIRE will focus on module chapter/topic selection and the creation of module concept inventories. 47
  • 52. Houston Community College During Summer 2012, 4 biology, 4 chemistry and 2 physics faculty will be hired to participate on the Science Module Development Team. Full-time faculty will receive teaching release time and part-time faculty will receive a stipend. The Science Module Development Team will be asked to pilot the learning modules in their own courses of BIOL1406, CHEM1411 or PHYS1401 during Fall 2012. The Science Module Development Team will be provided with a module criteria checklist and master template as well as an extensive collection of open source module topic related learning objects. Members of the Science Module Development teams will have multiple training sessions. Training will cover use of Eagle Online and the CTLE workshops in active and collaborative teaching pedagogy, “Improving Student Learning Through Active Engagement”, “Implementing Learner-Centered Teaching for Student Success” and rubric creation. Program-specific Science Module Development Teams will then develop three comprehensive science learning modules for one textbook chapter in BIOL1406, CHEM1411 and PHYS1401 and will send them to their respective Program Coordinators for review. Upon approval, the first draft Science Modules and related learning objects will be uploaded into Eagle Online and the library server Subject Plus. After completion of the pilot formative assessment, face-to-face Eagle Online Science Module training workshops will be designed for each discipline to train additional faculty members in module use. Faculty members who teach the targeted courses will be offered training in Spring 2013, Fall 2014, and Fall 2015 sessions of Camp INSPIRE. The learning modules will be implemented into targeted courses of each discipline and revised as needed based on formative evaluation of available instructor surveys, CSSEE , EGLS3 , module scoring rubric, and departmental exam assessment data. Again, a fully detailed implementation and assessment plan for HCC INSPIRE is located in Section 8 and Appendix 9.3, and a Summary Timeline for HCC INSPIRE events is contained in Section 6.4. 6.3 Goal 3: Offer district-wide science enrichment opportunities District-wide organization of faculty-sponsored science clubs will promote student engagement and provide enrichment opportunities for students to apply science knowledge outside of the classroom. Although a few science clubs currently exist at HCC, an inventory of current science, science-related, and STEM clubs will be made to see which colleges already have clubs and which do not. Roundtable discussions will be held on best practices in starting, organizing and running vibrant student science clubs. Information regarding science club start-up best practices and logistical matters will be disseminated to faculty at the May 2012 Camp INPIRE. A STEM Club Network will be established at each HCC college to encourage collaboration, joint projects and sharing of resources between clubs at different colleges. Members of the STEM Club Network will include all STEM club faculty advisors. An online web presence for the STEM Club Network will be established to disseminate information regarding club contact, applications and missions. This website will have links to all active STEM clubs. The web presence will include social networking, and a STEM Club Network Facebook group will be created for the universal posting of short articles applicable to club members. The QEP Director and the Student Life Coordinators will work closely with the STEM Club Network to solicit activities, such as seminars, workshops, field trips and conferences that might interest student members. Once again, a fully detailed implementation and assessment plan for HCC INSPIRE is located in Section 8 and Appendix 9.3 and a Summary Timeline for HCC INSPIRE events is contained in Section 6.4 below. 48
  • 53. Houston Community College 6.4 HCC INSPIRE Summary Timeline Fall 2012-Summer 2013 HCC INSPIRE Timeline Summary: Fall 2011-Summer 2012 S-FSC science module development Fall 2013-Summer 2014 Fall 2014-Summer 2015 Goal 1: Ensure science course readiness (Science First Year Success Course) S-FSC committee approvals S FSC S-FSC instructor training S-FSC pilot training Fall 2015-Summer 2016 S-FSC sections offered district-wide Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world, active & collaborative learning in science courses world, active & collaborative learning in science courses world, active & collaborative learning in science courses (Eagle Online Science Modules) (Eagle Online Science Modules) 49
  • 54. Houston Community College Fall 2011-Summer 2012 Establish Science faculty ListServs & Forum Science Module development Subject Plus install Fall 2012-Summer 2013 Module pilots Fall 2013-Summer 2014 Fall 2014-Summer 2015 Disseminate club information and share best practices Goal 3: Offer district-wide science enrichment opportunities (Extra-Curricular Science Clubs) Science Module sections offered district-wide Fall 2015-Summer 2016 Camp INSPIRE: Science Module Instructor training, team building, and dissemination of QEP information Disseminate club startup info 50
  • 55. Houston Community College Fall 2011-Summer 2012 Fall 2012-Summer 2013 Establish STEM Club Network, web portal and Facebook group Fall 2013-Summer 2014 Fall 2014-Summer 2015 Solicit Science Club engagement activities Disseminate Science Club engagement activities Assist with CAB Funding of Science Club engagement activities Fall 2015-Summer 2016 51
  • 56. Houston Community College 7 Organizational Structure and Resources 7.1 Institutional Structure and Organization There are two charts included in section 7.1, one to indicate the HCC structure for QEP implementation and one to indicate the HCC structure for sustainability. The first chart, HCC Structure for Implementation, reflects the roles of existing HCC offices and individuals and their relationships to the new offices and groups that will be created to carry out implementation of the QEP: QEP Steering Committee, QEP Director, QEP Assessment Committee, Module Development Team, College Implementation Teams, College Student STEM Clubs, and Freshman Success Courses. Board of Trustees HCC Structure for QEP Implementation Mary Spangler Chancellor Strategic Team, College Presidents and VC Instructional Deans’ Councils Program Coordinators College Depts/ Divisions SACS Steering Committee, Co-Chairs Charles Cook and Judy Cantwell Art Tyler Deputy Chancellor, COO QEP Development Committee, Co-Chairs Fena Garza and Butch Herod Charles Cook Vice Chancellor For Instruction QEP Steering Committee QEP Assessment Committee Module Development Teams, Biology, Chemistry, Physics Judy Cantwell Director, Accreditation Compliance Tineke Berends, QEP Director College Implementation Teams, Central, Coleman, NE, NW, SE, SW College Student Science Clubs, Central, Coleman, NE, NW, SE, SW Faculty, Biology, Chemistry, Physics STEM Council 53 Coordinator, Science Learning Communities and Freshman Success Course
  • 57. Houston Community College A second chart, HCC Structure for QEP Sustainability, reflects additional detail on existing HCC offices and individuals who will assist in the implementation stages of the QEP and who will also play a pivotal role in terms of integrating QEP activities into their regular processes and thus ensuring QEP sustainability over time: the Instructional Offices of Curriculum Quality, Learning Initiatives (Freshman Success Courses and Learning Communities), Academic Resource Development (Grants), Distance Education, the Library, the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence, the Office of Accreditation and Compliance, AskOnline, the Office of Institutional Research, the Office of Assessment, and the College Directors of Educational Technology and the College Curriculum Innovation Centers. HCC Structure For QEP Sustainability College Presidents Instructional Deans Daniel Seymour, VC for Planning and Institutional Effectiveness Charles Cook, Vice Chancellor for Instruction Steve Levey, AVC Academic Madeline Burillo, AVC Workforce Martha Oburn, Ex Director for Institutional Research Directors, Educational Technology Chairs, Depts/ Divisions Larry Markey, Dir, Curriculum Lorah Gough. Dir, Distance Ed Eagle Online Model Courses, QEP Modules Curriculum Innovation Centers Program Coordinators Maria Straus, Dir, FSC, LC Angela Secrest, Dir, Library Online Science Toobox Science Faculty Juan Carlos Reina, Dir, Acad Grants David Diehl, Dir, Center for TLE Science Student Clubs Judy Cantwell, Dir, Accreditation Tineke Berends. QEP Director 54 Faculty Development Norma Perez, Director of Assessment Ask Online (tutoring)
  • 58. Houston Community College 7.1.1 Faculty Leadership HCC has five regional colleges (Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest) and one specialized college (Coleman College for the Health Sciences), each with a President, Deans, faculty, and staff. All of the regional colleges offer a complete array of transfer academic courses and programs and have fulltime instructional faculty who are grouped into Departments or Divisions. Departments consist of a single academic Program at the college and Divisions consist of multiple Programs. The Department or Division is managed by a Chair (faculty) elected by his/her peers and serves a three-year term. Department/Division Chairs report to a Dean at his/her home college. The Instructional Deans meet in Councils with the staff of the Vice Chancellor for Instruction (VCIN) and other key personnel. To ensure program quality and consistency across all colleges, HCC created Program Committees consisting of all faculty who teach in that Program (e.g., English) throughout the colleges. These Committees are led by Program Coordinators who work with the College Department/Division Chairs. Whereas the Collegebased Chairs handle the day to day instructional operations (hiring and supervision of faculty, scheduling of classes, student concerns, etc.), Program Coordinators lead the program committees in curriculum development (including hosting of the program advisory committee meetings), textbook selection, program reviews, and annual learning assessment and program planning reports.. The HCC INSPIRE Director and committees will work directly with appropriate college Department/Division Chairs, Program Coordinators, and Program Committees to coordinate activities and instruction. 7.1.2 Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (CTLE) HCC’s CTLE provides learner-centered faculty professional development programs and instructional design strategies for both in-person and online delivery. The CTLE provides programs that focus on enhancing faculty knowledge of learner-centered and program-specific pedagogy, and the effective use of instructional technologies in teaching and learning. Workshops are mostly developed by faculty for faculty. These workshops focus on the Community College Student Survey of Engagement (CCSSE) benchmarks for effective educational practice: Active and Collaborative Learning, Academic Challenge, Support for Learners, Faculty-Student Interaction, and Student Effort. The CTLE also provides workshops to implement the primary HCC Achieving the Dream (ATD) strategies: student success courses, and bridge courses. All of these efforts will strengthen and be strengthened by the HCC INSPIRE QEP. Numerous instructional technology and multimedia support services are also offered. For example, extensive faculty training for HCC’s learning management system, Eagle Online, is provided. 7.1.3 Eagle Online HCC has migrated all of its learning management system (LMS) courses from Blackboard to Eagle Online, an HCC adaptation of the open source Moodle LMS. This migration was completed by January 1, 2012. Using Eagle Online (EO), science instructors are able to design robust learning environments in which students act and collaborate using resources and activities that support real-world learning. This is enabled through the combination of the visual design of Eagle Online, EO tools, and HCC intensive instructional design strategies. Used appropriately, these tools and strategies support essential, learner-centered design and teaching strategies that not only directly prepare for real-world experiences, but also provide enriching active and collaborative learning experiences. This LMS is available to all faculty, whether in person or through distance education, who have completed training. 55
  • 59. Houston Community College 7.1.4 Distance Education (DE) Being a national leader in offering distance education (DE) courses, HCC has one of the largest and most comprehensive services of any community college in the nation, enrolling approximately 16,000 students in the Fall 2011 semester. Classes are also provided to students in formats other than fully online DE, including hybrid (50 percent online and 50 percent in-person) and web-enhanced, where all classes are taught in the physical classroom yet course materials and activities are also significantly supported by HCCs online learning management system (LMS). Each course is taught by a fully credentialed HCC professor, trained specifically to use Eagle Online. The DE staff will help with the implementation of science learning modules that will be used within science courses for use in DE, hybrid, and web-enhanced class sections. Some services include: • Distance education-specific student services staff. DE Counselors and Advisors address the unique needs of these students from admission through graduation – helping ensure student persistence and overall success • Full technical support both from internal and outsourced services • Mandatory online orientations the provide students with a comprehensive introduction to the class, technology, DE operations, and other information • A very successful Online Early Alert system which faculty use to refer at-risk students to counselors and advisors for intervention • An HCC-hosted online tutoring program AskOnline. • A highly beneficial online learning readiness assessment which provides students with resources and extensive feedback on their ability to succeed in an online course. HCC uses an Online Course Evaluation Rubric for DE and hybrid courses. The rubric is one of several data sources used to assess the effectiveness of online instruction. The rubric serves as a guide for both the creation and evaluation of learner-centered online courses at HCC. The rubric will be used for evaluating all LMS-based and other online course materials used in the QEP. Overall, distance education courses can be, in their most basic form, a solitary learning experience. In some cases, the tools can be static – providing Word documents and requesting isolated student postings. However, when faculty understand more interactive approaches to support student success, they can envision and implement ways to use not only forums, chat, and group teamwork tools, but additional engaging strategies for real-world collaboration and active learning that encourage successful critical thinking and transfer of knowledge and skills. HCC INSPIRE will continue to build on the best practices of student engagement in teaching and learning. 7.1.5 Educational Technology Services and Curriculum Innovation Centers Educational Technology Service (ETS) departments are located at each regional college. They are responsible for securing, supporting, and updating all educational technology, including computers in classrooms and labs, teaching stations, and college-owned mobile computing devices (such as iPads, iPods, Kindles, etc.). ETS staff also provide software and hardware maintenance, testing and installation of new software, virus protection, technology replacement, inventory control, and protection of the college’s overall investment in classroom technology. Finally, ETS staff maintain and support Curriculum Innovation Centers (CIC) at each college. CICs employ technicians as well as web developers to assist and train faculty and departments in using instructional technology most effectively. 56
  • 60. Houston Community College 7.1.6 Library The HCC Libraries support students and faculty by providing the most relevant learning resources, services, and instruction applicable to coursework and lifelong learning. They do this by ensuring access to learning resources for all students and faculty regardless of location and by using a variety of inclusive and userfriendly technologies. The libraries currently support all HCC programs and will be available to support the goals of the QEP. The Libraries will serve as a ready resource for students who require additional assistance with Subject Plus. Libraries are located at each regional college. Extensive information on HCC Libraries can be found at: http://library.hccs.edu/. The libraries offer class instruction at the request of course instructors which may also be customized. HCC teaches Information Literacy using a curriculum based on the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) standards. Information Literacy instruction is provided to classes, small groups, and to individuals. Most libraries provide spaces for collaboration, whether they are for small group study rooms or computer labs. Libraries are prime locations for this collaboration because of their proximity to an abundance of learning resources and assistance. A Platform for Subject Plus The libraries have experience in and currently use an open source tool named Subject Plus for listing a wide variety of resources divided by subject, format, and resource type. Resources may be websites, e-books, pointers to in-house resources, individual files or folders, and much more. A secure staff interface is used to add and create resources which can be easily modified. Resources are entered once and then simply directed to various subject pages. All guides and resources developed as part of the QEP will be Creative Commons licensed. Creative Commons licenses allow for the distribution of copyrighted works, when citing the author, without any associated fees. While the science modules will be incorporated into the LMS for use within courses, the materials within the modules will also reside within the library collection in Subject Plus so that potential faculty can use them and librarians can incorporate them into library instruction for science courses. HCC librarians will provide students with assistance for out-of-class, online activities associated with in-class science modules. 7.1.7 STEM Council The HCC STEM Council meets regularly to discuss various science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and computational science issues, including facilities, human and financial resources, sources of external funding, and strategic academic and technology directions. Membership on the STEM Council is diverse, including representation from the Vice Chancellor’s Office of Planning and Institutional Effectiveness, faculty and staff/administration from each of the colleges, Student Services Financial Aid, Advising, and rotating members from the Academic/Workforce Dean’s and the P-16 Councils. Staff support is provided by the Office of Institutional Research and the HCC Grants Office. 57
  • 61. Houston Community College Typical STEM Council agenda items include review of STEM-based curriculum issues, external grant opportunities, focused student scholarships, faculty opportunities and fellowships, and collaborations and partnerships with public schools and universities. The STEM Council will be a resource for the colleges’ student science clubs. The STEM Council will also provide a forum for faculty to discuss the learning modules and how to incorporate them into related courses for improved teaching and learning. 7.1.8 Tutoring Both online and in-person tutoring is available to HCC science students who require assistance with both content and the new kinds of instruction that the active and collaborative learning activities in the online science modules incorporate. Community college students are finding it increasingly difficult to access traditional tutoring services during times convenient to them. With family, work, child care, and other obligations, students are turning to a tutoring alternative involving more accessible, online services at HCC that don’t involve additional travel or scheduling. HCC’s online tutoring program is supported by an application called AskOnline, which is selfhosted by HCC administration and faculty. All administrators and tutors are HCC employees – not tutors from across the country as is the case with commercial services. As a result, tutors are much more familiar with content and its context in the HCC curriculum. HCC’s program operates asynchronously, providing services on a 24/7/365 basis. Since its inception in 2006, it has experienced significant growth and success to become one of the leading self-staffed online tutoring programs in the country. In person science tutoring is available at various locations across the district. HCC provides a searchable database via its Find-a-Tutor link, which allows students to access current information on the availability of on-campus tutoring in every program offered. Students and faculty may search by college, subject, or both to find out what is provided where, when, and also whether tutoring is available on a walk-in basis or requires an appointment. 7.1.9 Student Clubs In support of HCC INSPIRE Goal Three to provide student engagement activities through the promotion of science clubs at all of the colleges, HCC will need to work with the Student Fee Advisory Committee (SFAC) at the district level and the College Activity Boards (CAB) and Student Life Coordinators (SLC) at individual colleges. According to HCC, the term “student organization” refers to a formal group, organized according to HCC procedures, to become a member of the campus community. These organizations provide enriching and developmental experiences for students while enrolled at HCC. All student organizations have written constitutions and by-laws, officers, faculty/staff advisors, and a program of projects or activities through which they carry out their goals and objectives. In addition to providing institutional support through recognized structures, the student-led SFAC and CAB manage funding raised through student activity fees. By state law, the SFAC and the constituent CAB must be composed of a majority of student members. HCC INSPIRE will work with College CABs to seek funding of science club activities to provide full student engagement The oversight of the student groups and CABs falls under the Vice Chancellor for Student Services at the district level and the respective Deans of Students at the local colleges. The offices provide instruction in HCC policies and procedures. 58
  • 62. Houston Community College 7.1.10 Office of Institutional Research The Office of Institutional Research (OIR) is responsible for developing and implementing data-based, decision support systems across the district. OIR will assist with the development of data collection processes from sources including classroom, online, and HCCs PeopleSoft system to support all phases of QEP implementation. It will develop reports and analyses from these data sources and assist with the completion of annual reports that are part of the formative evaluation process. The Executive Director, OIR, serves on the QEP Steering Committee and the Director of Research Support Services is part of the QEP Assessment Team. In addition, the OIR staff includes six professional analysts who have broad and varied technical and analytical skill sets. 7.2 Budget The budget on the following pages has been presented to HCC’s Chancellor and Deputy Chancellor and has received their commitment to provide the financial, physical and human resources represented and required. Further, the HCC Board of Trustees has officially approved the first two years of the budget as part of HCC’s regular biennial budgeting process. The Board recognizes and is committed to providing resources that are necessary for a five-year period and beyond to incorporate the changes to improve teaching and learning. HCC has approved an institutional budget that includes sufficient funds for the QEP. The following chart shows the planned budget allocations for five years including in-kind contributions from existing HCC personnel and departments. See Total Budget Projection for Five Years of the QEP on next page 59
  • 63. Houston Community College Total Budget Projection for Five Years of the QEP Line Item 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 Totals 1. QEP Director $16,400 (20%) $82,000 (100%) $82,000 (100%) $82,000 (100%) $82,000 (100%) $344,400 2. Secretarial and clerical support $30,917 $37100 $37,100 $37,100 $37,100 $179,317 3. Organizational and administrative support (in-kind) $28,840 $28,840 $28,840 $28,840 $28,840 $144,200 4. Faculty alternative assignments and stipends $50,000 $75,000 $102,400 $75,000 $75,000 $377,400 5. Office of Institutional Research (in-kind) $18,000 $20,000 $25,000 $25,000 $30,000 $118,000 $5,000 $8,000 Personnel 6. External Evaluation 7. Center for Teaching & Learning Excellence (in-kind) $3,000 $5,000 8. Center for Teaching & Learning Excellence $10,000 $10,000 $10,000 $40,000 $10,000 $5,000 $10,000 $10,000 $30,000 9. Distance Education (in-kind) $4,000 $4,000 $4,000 $4,000 $4,000 $20,000 10. Library (in-kind) $3,000 $5,000 $5,000 $2,000 $2,000 $17,000 11 PR & Communications (in-kind) $18,800 $18,800 $18,800 $18,800 $18,800 $94,000 12. Instructional supplies, materials and lab equipment $16,722 $7,722 $40,000 $35,000 $25,000 $124,444 13. Supplies and general expenses $3,000 $6,000 $9,000 $6,000 $6,000 $30,000 14. QEP Director’s and QEP secretary’s office equipment and furniture $10,000 Supplies, Materials, and Equipment $10,000 Travel 15. Travel for QEP Director and Committee members $5,000 16. Student science club activity support Total for each year $209,679 $294,462 $5,000 $5,000 $5,000 $25,000 $2,500 $5,000 $2,500 $2,500 $7,500 $382,640 $341,240 $341,240 $1,569,261 60
  • 64. Houston Community College 1. QEP Director—The QEP Director, Dr. Tineke Berends, is a full-time faculty member teaching biology at HCC’s Northwest College. She will work on the QEP project for 20% of her time during the 2011-2012 academic year while she completes an obligation to direct a USDA-SERD grant. Dr. Berends will have a full release beginning in September, 2012 continuing through August 2017. 2. Secretarial and Clerical Support—Secretarial support to the QEP Director and general clerical support to the other members of the QEP team across the HCC district will be provided by a full-time secretary reporting to the QEP Director and occasional part-time help as needed anywhere in the district. 3. Organizational and Administrative Support—Because of its District-wide implementation, central administrative control and direction will be required. A significant portion of time on the part of the Accreditation Compliance Director will be spent on the QEP. Also, the Vice-Chancellor for Instruction, both of his Associate Vice-Chancellors, as well as Presidents and Deans will be involved. 4. Faculty Alternative Assignments and Stipends – Both full-time, as well as adjunct faculty members are integral to the QEP As strongly recommended by our best-practices research, they will be compensated for their participation, either by stipend or release time. 5. Office of Institutional Research (OIR) – Personnel from OIR will be directly involved in the assessment of the QEP. Over the course of five years OIR will set up, pilot, and finalize data collection processes, analyze baseline data, and perform analyses of face-to-face and online classroom data (including comparisons). In the fifth year, OIR will prepare a complete summative report for HCC’s Fifth Year Report to SACS. 6. External Evaluation – To ensure that the QEP meets its goals, HCC will engage a consultant as an external evaluator. Two evaluations will take place. During the third year, the evaluator will meet with students, faculty and staff to review the progress to date and determine strengths and opportunities for improvement. Recommendations for change will be made based on this report. During the fifth year, the evaluation will include a detailed analysis of all data related to implementation as well as interviews and focus groups with key executives, administrators, and faculty. 7. Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence (in-kind) – This row represents the CTLE in-kind contribution. The CTLE is responsible for planning and implementing in-house faculty development. As faculty adopt or create the science modules, the CTLE must prepare them to develop training for other faculty to incorporate the modules into their courses and how to assess student learning after their use. 8. Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence – Some costs incurred by CTLE will be directly reimbursed through the QEP budget. Activities are the same as described in row 7. 9. Distance Education (DE) – The new online science modules will reside within Eagle Online. As a result, the advice and technical assistance of DE staff will be required throughout the project. 10. Library - Some of the materials in the science modules, as well as online out-of-class activities that will be part of the science-centered first year experience course, will be made accessible to students through the library’s online catalog and class reserves system. Librarians will also provide student instruction on how to access and utilize library materials. 61
  • 65. Houston Community College 11. PR & Communications – HCCs PR & Communications Office will assist with activities such as QEP report design/printing and all other QEP-related publications and marketing. 12. Instructional Supplies, Materials, and Lab Equipment – Implementing new science modules may require the purchase of new or updated equipment, software, and other materials for labs across the district. 13. Supplies and General Expenses – Office supplies and other general expenses are required to operate general QEP office activities. 14. QEP Director’s and QEP Secretary’s Office Equipment and Furniture – The QEP Director and her secretary are new positions. HCC will provide office space and furniture for each. 15. Travel for QEP Director and Committee Members – Travel may be required for faculty involved in choosing, creating, or training other faculty to use science modules. They may need to see how active, real-world, problem-based learning activities have been incorporated elsewhere. It is also intended that students in the science clubs will be involved in regional competitions and other activities. 16. Student Science Club Activity Support – District-wide student science clubs will provide activities for motivated students to translate their classroom real-world, active learning experiences into more sophisticated group and research opportunities. Funding for travel, operating supplies, entry fees to competitions, and other activities will be provided. 62
  • 66. Houston Community College 8. Assessment of HCC INSPIRE 8.1 Outcome and Process Assessment strategies HCC INSPIRE addresses critical issues directed toward the goal of improving student learning, engagement and success in the sciences. A comprehensive Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INPSIRE has been developed to evaluate the achievement of improved student learning, engagement and success as well as the QEP processes that are being implemented to meet these goals (See Section 9.3). Both outcome and process assessments will be used. Outcome assessments will evaluate the attainment of the Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs). SLOs have been identified and are detailed in this section. SLOs have been specified for the science-based first year success course (S-FSC) as well as the Eagle Online science modules. The relevance of QEP SLOs to the core objectives of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board have been detailed in section 5 of this document. Outcome assessments will evaluate the attainment of the SLOs using both direct and indirect measures. Direct measures will evaluate student achievement of content knowledge and academic performance utilizing faculty-written pre-tests, posttests, and scoring rubrics. Indirect measures will provide information on student perception regarding the realization of these outcomes. Process assessments will focus on the progress of the implementation of the QEP itself. Direct and indirect measures will be used as appropriate. The implementation progress of the S-FSC, course-specific Eagle Online modules and science clubs will be measured directly. Retention and success data as well as students’ perception of learning, engagement and success will be used to assess attainment of QEP goals. The tools to be used for indirect assessment include data from the Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE), which has been administered at HCC for over five years. The CCSSE is administered annually during the spring semester and is used to determine students’ opinions regarding classroom activities and the overall college experience. Specific survey items will be used to indirectly assess students’ perception of learning and engagement. In addition, the college will collect student evaluation of instruction data on an instrument called Evaluation for Greater Learning Student Survey System (EGLS3), focusing on key dimensions of teaching effectiveness: Organization and Explanation, Learning Environment, and Self-Regulated Learning. Baseline data from CCSSE and EGLS3 collected prior to the implementation of the QEP will provide an opportunity to compare student perceptions of faculty teaching, learning and student engagement. Implementation of the assessment plan will be coordinated by the QEP Director with the support of the Director of Research Support Services and the Director of Assessment. The QEP Assessment Team has primary responsibility for overseeing the assessment process and reviewing the results of assessment. Annual updates in the form of written reports will be submitted to the QEP Steering Committee. The Assessment Team includes participants from a cross-section of the College’s faculty and staff and will meet at least three to four times per year. 63
  • 67. Houston Community College The responsibility of the Assessment Team is to: • review the QEP Assessment Plan to ensure appropriate measures and tools have been identified • recommend modifications of measures and tools to improve the assessment process • assist in data and report compilation • analyze data related to each measure • develop annual reports related to assessment for the QEP Steering Committee • review reports from groups such as faculty, science club sponsors, etc. HCC INSPIRE Assessment Team Name Tineke Berends Mario Heredia Norma Perez Lorah Gough Judy Cantwell Pauline Warren Tom Loesch Yiyan Bai Bindu Chakravarty John Barry Title QEP Director Director of Research Support Services Director of Assessment Director of Distance Education Director of Accreditation Compliance Dean of Instructon Department Chair, Biology Department Chair, Chemistry Faculty, Chemistry Faculty, Physics 8.2 QEP Goal Assessments Goal 1: Ensure science course readiness: Science Based First Year Success Course Process and outcome assessments will be used to evaluate the Science-based First Year Success Course (S-FSC; Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INSPIRE, objectives 1.1-1.5). The process assessment of the S-FSC will be carried out by the QEP Director and the Science Program Committee beginning fall 2013. S-FSC assessment will be based on the production of a course curriculum, course materials, approval of the Curriculum Committee, and course catalog listings. Student enrollment data and number of sections offered will be collected to assess district-wide implementation of the course. As explained earlier, Four SLOs have been specified for the S-FSC. They are: • Students will demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehension of scientific information • Students will demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills • Students will be able to interpret scientific information, figures and tables • Students will understand the scientific method 64
  • 68. Houston Community College Outcomes will be assessed by pre-tests and exit tests, scoring rubrics and the CCSSE. Faculty-written pre-tests, exit tests and scoring rubrics will be used to directly assess the students’ abilities to achieve the objectives. The CCSSE will be administered each spring to students enrolled in S-FSC sections to assess students’ responses regarding “learning effectively on your own”. These data will be collected annually by the Office of Institutional Research (OIR) beginning spring 2014. Science course retention data will be used to measure improved overall student success. Course retention data will be used to determine if the students who complete the science-based first year success course do better in their future science courses than students who did not take the course. Course retention rates of students who completed the S-FSC will be compared to students who did not complete the S-FSC course. Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world, active and collaborative learning in science courses: Eagle Online Modules Process and outcome assessments will be used to evaluate the program-specific Eagle Online learning modules in science core courses (Implementation and Assessment Plan objective; 2.1-2.5). The process assessment of the Eagle Online modules will be based on the creation and implementation of three highquality discipline-specific learning modules into BIOL 1406, CHEM 1411 and PHYS 1401. The implementation of Eagle Online modules into core courses will be assessed by the number of participating sections and student enrollment. Faculty will be trained in Eagle Online learning module delivery. Faculty feedback will be collected and evaluated by the QEP Director and CTLE Director for formative purposes. The overall quality of the learning modules will be determined by surveys distributed to participating faculty. Six SLOs have been specified for the Eagle Online modules. They are: • Students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge • Students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources • Students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables • Students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data • Students will be able to solve a real-world problem, answer a research question, or address a challenge • Students will be able to communicate scientific concepts, scientific principles and/or socio-scientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations 65
  • 69. Houston Community College Goal 3: Offer district-wise science enrichment opportunities: Clubs Process assessments will be used to evaluate the formation of district-wide science student clubs to promote student involvement in extracurricular science activities. At least one club will be organized at each of the five HCC colleges. The number of science clubs registered with the Office of Student Life will be collected every fall by the QEP director. A baseline number of science club student members will be determined in summer 2012. Each fall thereafter, science club faculty sponsors will provide the number of science club student members to the QEP Director. A district website will be established to disseminate information on science club activities. A baseline to establish the numbers of hits to the website, activities listed and active student participants will be established in fall 2013. Website usage data will be collected yearly by the QEP Director from web services and online analytics data sources. Once the final reaffirmation and the QEP plan approved, HCC INSPIRE will be referred to the College’s Institutional Review Board for review of any implications it may have on human subjects by the QEP Director. Please see Section 9.3 for the detailed Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INSPIRE. 66
  • 70. Houston Community College Appendices 67
  • 71. Houston Community College 9.1 9.1 HCC INSPIRE Summary Chart HCC INSPIRE Summary Chart QEP Focus and Overall Goal: Improving student learning, engagement and success in the sciences QEP Student Learning Outcomes: As a result of QEP implementation, HCC science students will be able to: • • • • • • • • • • QEP GOALS GOAL 1: Ensure science course readiness GOAL 2: Institutionalize real-world, active & collaborative learning in science courses GOAL 3: Offer districtwide science enrichment opportunities demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehension of scientific information demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills interpret scientific information, figures and tables understand the scientific method identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data solve a real-world problem, answer a research question, or address a challenge communicate scientific concepts, scientific principles and/or socio-scientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations STRATEGY Science First Year Success Course Eagle Online science modules Extracurricular science clubs OBJECTIVES OBJECTIVE 1: Develop science-based Science First Year Success Course OBJECTIVE 2: Train faculty to teach Science First Year Success Course OBJECTIVE 3: Offer and implement Science First Year Success Course OBJECTIVE 4: Improve student science learning & study skills (an SLO-driven objective) OBJECTIVE 5: Improve student success in science courses OBJECTIVE 1: Develop high quality, comprehensive Eagle Online science learning modules OBJECTIVE 2: Train science faculty to deliver the Eagle Online modules OBJECTIVE 3: Implement Eagle Online modules in science courses OBJECTIVE 4: Improve science student engagement OBJECTIVE 5: Improve student science content knowledge & science process skills (an SLO-driven objective) OBJECTIVE 1: Establish science student clubs at five HCC colleges OBJECTIVE 2: Establish online, district-wide coordination of science club engagement activities OBJECTIVE 3: Offer district-wide science club engagement activities 69
  • 72. Houston Community College 9. 2 Definitions The College has adopted the following definitions in insure consistency in the interpretation of key terms used in this QEP. Achieving the Dream: Achieving the Dream (ATD) is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping more community college students succeed, particularly students of color and low-income. ATD began as a grant project funded by the Lumina Foundation. HCC was one of the original 27 community colleges funded in 2004 and was named an ATD Leader College in 2009. Active Learning: Student-centered learning. Students are engaged participants in the learning process. The instructor assumes the role of facilitator or coach. Depth is stressed over breadth. Critical thinking is encouraged. Does not involve passive reception of ideas followed by rote memorization. Involves student communication and frequent self-assessment. CAAP: The Collegiate Assessment of Academic Proficiency (CAAP) is the standardized, nationally normed assessment program from ACT that enables postsecondary institutions to assess, evaluate, and enhance student learning outcomes and general education program outcomes. HCC has utilized the CAAP since 2009. CCSSE: The Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE) is an assessment tool that provides information on student engagement, a key indicator of learning and, therefore, of the quality of community colleges. The survey is comprised of items that assess institutional practices and student behaviors that are highly correlated with student learning and student retention. HCC has utilized the CCSSE since its inception in 2004. Collaborative Learning: Involves students working together in groups (possibly with an instructor) to accomplish a specific goal, solve a problem, answer a question, gain in-depth understanding, or develop a product. The emphasis is on cooperation. Each individual depends on others in the group and all are accountable to each other. Conceptually-Oriented Tasks: Seeks to improve scientific conceptual understanding by actively engaging students with a real-world topic rather than isolated facts. Students are expected to generate solutions to real-world problems, challenges, or scientific questions using creative approaches, identifying common misconceptions along the way. Conceptually- oriented tasks do not tend to involve hands-on activities. Communication: The activity of conveying or exchanging meaningful information orally, through writing, or other forms of presentation. Critical Thinking: That mode of thinking about any subject, content, or problem in which the thinker improves the quality of his/her thinking by skillfully analyzing, assessing, and reconstructing it. Critical thinking is self-directed, self-disciplined, self-monitored, and self-corrective thinking. CTLE: The HCC Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence provides faculty with professional development opportunities. 70
  • 73. Houston Community College Data Interpretation: Forming conclusions from scientific data in accordance with accepted scientific methods. Educational Technology Services and Curriculum Innovation Centers: Each of the HCC Colleges has a Director of Educational Technology Services who updates instructional hardware and software and operates the college-based Curriculum Innovation Centers. Experimental Design: Mentally or physically employing the scientific method. Freshman Success Course: HCC requires all new to HCC students with less than 12 semester credit hours of college-level course work to enroll in a Freshman Success Course (FSC) in their first semester. Currently, students may choose from introductory courses in Engineering, Education, Health Professions, or Workforce Leadership, or if undecided, may choose College and Career Exploration. The FSC provide students with an in-depth orientation to college, stress necessary skills for student success, and career exploration. The institution is moving to a more rigorous course that also includes the study of learning and teaching theory. Information Literacy: The activity of locating, evaluating, and effectively use information using appropriate technology. Learning Guide: A roadmap to quality materials on any given subject, both a starting point for learning and research and a guide to digging deeper. The guides are freely available on the HCC Library homepage, although licensed resources (where access is restricted to the HCC community) are also listed, with icons denoting access terms. The intent of these learning guides is to present a wide array of learning and research options integrated into a single organized and indexed page. Model Courses: HCC is committed to the creation of model courses for all high enrollment courses. The model courses are created by a team of HCC faculty subject matter experts and instructional designers. The model courses provide a foundation of curriculum and pedagogical content which ensure consistency and quality across the district. Module: A set of online materials for instructional use covering a substantial, complex topic. A module should be equivalent to a minimum of one textbook chapter. A module is designed to replace two to four traditional classroom and/or lab sessions. A module will contain content-based learning objects, learning activities, student assessments, and rubrics (scoring criteria) by which the assessment will be evaluated. A module will be embedded and taught via Eagle Online whether for in person or distance education courses. Problem Solving: The systematic, interactive, and sometimes creative process of working through the details of a problem or challenge to reach a solution Scientific Literacy: The knowledge and understanding of scientific concepts and processes required for personal decision making, participation in civic and cultural affairs, economic productivity, or integration in a larger body of scientific knowledge. It also includes the ability to distinguish between real science and pseudoscience. 71
  • 74. Houston Community College STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics STEM Council: HCC provides a STEM Council of HCC faculty and staff from related science, technology, engineering, and math programs. The purpose of the STEM Council is to coordinate related STEM curriculum, activities, grant projects, and student opportunities (scholarships, internships, clubs, etc.). Subject Plus: A set of online materials for students’ use to enhance their understanding and knowledge of a particular science-related topic or to improve their science-related skills in general. This may contain power-point presentations, videos, animations, self-assessments or other learning tools. Subject Plus Toolbox will reside in the HCC Library and will be freely available to students and faculty to use as part of assigned coursework or to improve learning in general. 72
  • 75. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 1.1.a. S-FYSC curriculum completed OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON Fall 2013: QEP Director Fall 2013: QEP Director RESPONSI BLE Summer 2013: QEP Director YEAR 1 2011-2012 Summer 2013: S-FYSC curriculum completed YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: S-FYSC Curriculum approved by Science Program Committees Fall 2013: S-FYSC Curriculum approved by Curriculum Committee Fall 2013: 5 S-FYSC instructors trained YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: Additional 5 S-FYSC instructors trained YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 10 S-FYSC instructors trained S-FYSC curriculum approved S-FYSC curriculum approved S-FYSC curriculum completed SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 9.3.1 Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INSPIRE Program Goal 1: Ensure science course readiness: 1.1. Develop Science Freshman Success Course (SFYSC) 1.1.b. S-FYSC curriculum approved 1.2. 10 S-FYSC Instructors trained Approval of S-FYSC curriculum by Curriculum Committee Completed S-FYSC curriculum with defined course student learning outcomes and course materials Approval of S-FYSC curriculum by Science Program Committees 1.2. Train faculty to teach S-FYSC Every Fall 2013- 2014: data collected by CTLE Staff, and assessed by QEP Assessment Team 1 73
  • 76. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) S-FYSC listing in catalog ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Spring 2014: QEP Director Number of course sections offered, student enrollment data Every semester Spring 2014Spring 2016: data collected by OIR and assessed by QEP Assessment Team Summer 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2014, Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: data collected each semester Spring 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Science facultydeveloped S-FYSC pre-and exit test, and scoring rubrics CCSSE 12i: Learning effectively on your own 1.3. Offer and implement S-FYSC 1.4.a.i. CCSSE Item 12i mean score of 3.39 on a 5.0 scale in targeted S-FYSC sections compared to Spring 2011 baseline of 3.09 1.3. 40 S-FYSC sections offered district-wide (800 students) 1.4.a. S-FYSC students will demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehension of scientific information 1.4.a.ii. 50% increase in S-FYSC student success rate (ABC grade) in the ability to YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: 5 sections offered (100 students) YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: 10 sections offered (200 students) YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2014: S-FYSC listed in HCC catalog Spring 2014:: 5 sections offered (100 students) SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 S-FYSC listed in HCC catalog 40 S-FYSC sections offered district-wide (800 students) Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2016: 10 sections offered (200 students) Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: Preand exit test administered 50% increase in S-FYSC student success rate Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2011 baseline (from 3.09 to to 3.39) in targeted SFYSC sections Spring 2015: 10 sections offered (200 students) Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2014: Pre- and exit test administered and data 2 74
  • 77. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 1.4.b. S-FYSC students will be able to demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehension of scientific information on S-FYSC exit test vs. S-FYSC pre-test 1.4.b.i. CCSSE Item 12i mean score of 3.39 on a 5.0 scale in targeted S-FYSC sections compared to Spring 2011 baseline of 3.09 1.4.b.ii. 50% increase in S-FYSC student success rate (ABC grade) in ASSESSMEN T METHOD CCSSE 12i: Learning effectively on your own Science facultydeveloped S-FYSC pre-and exit test, and scoring rubrics FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE by S-FYSC Instructors and QEP Director Summer 2014, Spring 2014 and Fall 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2014, Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: data collected YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 3 2013-2014 YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: Preand exit test Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected and data collected Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected collected Spring 2014: Pre- and exit test administered YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 (ABC grade) in the ability to demonstrate effective note taking, text annotation, outlining and creation of graphic organizers to aid in the comprehensi on of scientific information Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2011 baseline (from 3.09 to to 3.39) 50% increase in S-FYSC student 3 75
  • 78. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 1.4.c. S-FYSC students will be able to interpret scientific information, figures and tables 1.4.d. S-FYSC students will understand the OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) the ability to demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills on S-FYSC exit test vs. S-FYSC pre-test 1.4.c. 50% increase in S-FYSC student success rate (ABC grade) in the ability to interpret scientific information, figures and tables on SFYSC exit test vs. S-FYSC pre-test 1.4.d. 50% increase in S-FYSC student success ASSESSMEN T METHOD Science facultydeveloped S-FYSC pre-and exit test, and scoring rubrics Science facultydeveloped S-FYSC pre-and exit test, FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE each semester by S-FYSC Instructors and QEP Director Summer 2014, Spring 2014 and Fall 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2014, Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: data collected each semester by S-FYSC Instructors and QEP Director Summer 2014, Spring 2014 and Fall 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2014, Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 SUMMATIVE YEAR 4 2014-2015 success rate (ABC grade) in the ability to demonstrate effective science vocabulary study skills YEAR 5 YEAR 3 2013-2014 administered and data collected 50% increase in S-FYSC student success rate (ABC grade) in the ability to interpret scientific information, figures and tables YEAR 5 2015-2016 and data collected Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: Preand exit test administered and data collected 50% increase in S-FYSC Spring 2014: Pre- and exit test administered and data collected Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: Pre- Spring 2014: Pre- and exit test 4 76
  • 79. Houston Community College scientific method OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) and scoring rubrics ASSESSMEN T METHOD Retention data in science courses, parsed by S-FYSC completion history. rate (ABC grade) in the ability to understand the scientific method on S-FYSC exit test vs. S-FYSC pre-test 1.5. Improve student success in next science courses 1.5. 10% higher retention of S-FYSC completers vs. nonS-FYSC completers in next science course. FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE data collected each semester by S-FYSC Instructors and QEP Director Summer 2014, Spring 2014 and Fall 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2015 and Spring 2016: data collected by OIR and assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 and exit test administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Spring 2015 science course retention data collected and analyzed YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2016 science course retention data collected and analyzed; SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 student success rate (ABC grade) in the ability to understand the scientific method 10% higher retention of S-FYSC completers vs. non-SFYSC completers in next science course. 5 77
  • 80. Houston Community College 2.1.a. i. Science faculty online discussion forum established OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Online discussion forum web presence ASSESSMEN T METHOD Faculty forum postactivity survey Complete BIOL1406 module materials uploaded in Eagle Online shell FREQUEN CY & PERSON YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Every Fall, 2012-2015; QEP Director Spring 2012: Science faculty online discussion forum established Summer 2012: QEP Director Summer 2012: BIOL 1406 module uploaded Fall 2012: survey administered and data collected RESPONSI BLE Spring 2012: QEP Director Fall 2013: survey administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: survey administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 70% online forum approval rating among participating science faculty High-quality BIOL1406 Eagle Online module completed Science faculty online discussion forum established SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 9.3.2 Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INSPIRE Program Goal 2: Institutionalize real-world, active & collaborative learning in science courses: OBJECTIVES 2.1. Develop highquality, comprehensive Eagle Online science learning modules 2.1.a.ii. 70% online forum approval rating among participating science faculty 2.1.b. One high quality, comprehensive BIOL1406 Eagle Online module completed 6 78
  • 81. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) 2.1.c. One high quality, comprehensive CHEM1411 Eagle Online module completed ASSESSMEN T METHOD QEP Assessment Team-developed rubric for assessment of module quality (distributed by survey to participating faculty) Complete CHEM1411 module materials uploaded in Eagle Online shell QEP Assessment Team-developed rubric for assessment of module quality (distributed by survey to participating faculty) FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Fall 2012, Spring 2013, and Fall 2014: data collected from participating faculty by QEP Director, data analyzed by QEP Assessment Team Summer 2012: QEP Director Fall 2012, Spring 2013, and Fall 2014: data collected by QEP Director and analyzed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: survey administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2013: survey administered and data collected Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: survey administered and data collected Summer 2012: CHEM1411 module uploaded Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: survey administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 High-quality BIOL1406 Eagle Online module completed High-quality CHEM1411 Eagle Online module completed High-quality CHEM1411 Eagle Online module completed 7 79
  • 82. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.2. Train science faculty to deliver the Eagle Online modules OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Complete PHYS1401 module materials uploaded in Eagle Online shell ASSESSMEN T METHOD Number of faculty Number of faculty development workshop completers QEP Assessment Team-developed rubric for assessment of module quality (distributed by survey to participating faculty) 2.1.d. One high quality, comprehensive PHYS1401 Eagle Online module completed 2.2.a. 37 (100%) of 37 FT BIOL1406, CHEM1411, and PHYS1401 faculty trained in Eagle Online learning module delivery: * 17 FT BIOL1406 * 14 FT CHEM1411 * 6 FT PHYS1401 2.2.b. 45 (50%) of FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Summer 2012: QEP Director Fall 2012, Spring 2013, and Fall 2014: data collected by QEP Director and analyzed by QEP Assessment Team Fall 2012, Summer 2013: QEP Director Spring 2014, and Spring 2015: CTLE Director and QEP Director Every YEAR 1 2011-2012 Summer Summer 2012: FT faculty trained: * 4 BIOL, * 4 CHEM, * 2 PHYS YEAR 2 2012-2013 Summer 2012: PHYS1401 module uploaded Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: survey administered and data collected Spring 2013: Spring 2013: Additional FT faculty trained: * 5 BIOL, * 3 CHEM, * 1 PHYS Spring 2013: YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2014: Spring 2015: Additional FT faculty trained: * 4 CHEM * 1 PHYS Fall 2014: Fall 2014: Additional FT faculty trained: * 4 BIOL, YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2014: Additional FT faculty trained: * 3 CHEM * 2 PHYS Fall 2013 : Fall 2013: Additional FT faculty trained : * 4 BIOL Fall 2013: survey administered and data collected Fall 2013: YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 High-quality PHYS1401 Eagle Online module completed High-quality PHYS1401 Eagle Online module completed Total 37 (100%) FT faculty trained: * 17 BIOL * 14 CHEM * 6 PHYS Total 45 8 80
  • 83. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) development workshop completers ASSESSMEN T METHOD Post-activity survey 87 PT BIOL1406, CHEM1411, and PHYS1401 faculty trained in Eagle Online learning module delivery: * 24 PT BIOL1406 * 16 PT CHEM1411 * 4 PT PHYS1401 2.2.c. 70% training approval rating among faculty trainees FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE semester, Fall 2012-2015: CTLE Director and QEP Director Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, and Spring 2015: CTLE Director and QEP Director YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Additional PT faculty trained: * 8 BIOL, * 6 CHEM, * 1 PHYS Spring 2013: data collected Spring 2014: Additional PT faculty trained: * 5 CHEM, * 2 PHYS Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: data collected Additional PT faculty trained: * 8 BIOL YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: Additional PT faculty trained: * 5 CHEM, * 1 PHYS Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: data collected Additional PT faculty trained: * 8 BIOL YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 (50%) PT faculty trained: * 24 BIOL * 16 CHEM * 4 PHYS 70% training approval rating among faculty trainees 9 81
  • 84. Houston Community College 2.3. Implement Eagle Online modules in science courses OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Number of participating BIOL1406 sections, student enrollment data ASSESSMEN T METHOD Number of participating CHEM1411 sections, student enrollment data 2.3.a. BIOL1406 Eagle Online module taught in 250 BIOL1406 sections (5000 students) 2.3.b. CHEM1411 Eagle Online module taught in 150 CHEM1411 sections (3000 students) FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Fall and Spring, 20122016; data collected by OIR, data analyzed by QEP Assessment Team Every Fall and Spring, 20122016; data collected by OIR, data analyzed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 3 2013-2014 YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2015: BIOL1406 module taught in 48 sections (960 students) Spring 2016: BIOL1406 module taught in 50 sections (1000 students) Fall 2015: CHEM1411 module taught in 36 sections (720 students) Fall 2014: BIOL1406 module taught in 36 sections (740 students) Spring 2014: BIOL1406 module taught in 36 sections (720 students) Fall 2014: CHEM1411 module taught in 22 sections (440 students) Spring 2016: CHEM1411 module taught in 36 sections (720 students) Fall 2013: BIOL1406 module taught in 20 sections (400 students) Spring 2013: BIOL1406 module taught in 6 sections (120 students) Fall 2013: CHEM1411 module taught in 12 sections (240 students) Spring 2015: CHEM1411 module taught in 22 sections (440 students) Fall 2012: BIOL1406 module taught in 4 sections (80 students) Fall 2012: CHEM1411 module taught in 4 sections (80 students) Spring 2014: CHEM1411 module taught in 12 sections (240 students) Fall 2015: BIOL1406 module taught in 50 sections (1000 students) Spring 2013: CHEM1411 module taught in 6 sections (120 students) YEAR 5 SUMMATIVE BIOL1406 Eagle Online module taught in 250 BIOL1406 sections (5000 students) CHEM1411 Eagle Online module taught in 150 CHEM1411 sections (3000 students) 10 82
  • 85. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.4. Improve science student engagement OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Number of participating PHYS1401 sections, student enrollment data ASSESSMEN T METHOD CCSSE 4.a: Asked questions in class or contributed to class discussions 2.3.c. PHYS1401 Eagle Online module taught in 5 5 PHYS1401 sections (1100 students) 2.4.a. CCSSE item 4a mean score of 3.01 on a 5.0 scale in targeted module sections compared to Spring 2011 baseline of 2.74 FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Fall and Spring, 20122016; data collected by OIR, data analyzed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Fall 2012: PHYS1401 module taught in 2 sections (40 students) YEAR 2 2012-2013 Spring 2014: PHYS1401 module taught in 5 sections (100 students) Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Fall 2013: PHYS1401 module taught in 5 sections (100 students) YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: PHYS1401 module taught in 9 sections (180 students) Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Fall 2014: PHYS1401 module taught in 9 sections (180 students) YEAR 4 2014-2015 Spring 2016: PHYS1401 module taught in 11 sections (220 students) Fall 2015: PHYS1401 module taught in 11 sections (220 students) YEAR 5 2015-2016 PHYS1401 Eagle Online module taught in 55 PHYS1401 sections (1100 students) YEAR 5 Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline (from 2.74 to 3.01) SUMMATIVE Spring 2013: PHYS1401 module taught in 3 sections (60 students) Spring 2013: CCSSE survey administered and data collected 11 83
  • 86. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.4.c. 10% increase in EGLS3 Item 10 mean score in targeted module sections over Fall 2012 baseline (4.0 scale) 2.4.b. CCSSE item 4r mean score from of 2.79 on a 5.0 scale in targeted module sections compared to Spring 2011 baseline OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) EGLS3 10: My instructor encourages me to develop new viewpoints CCSSE 4r: Discussed ideas from your readings or classes with others outside of class (students, family members, coworkers, etc.) ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Fall 2012 Survey administered data collected and baseline established YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline (from 2.54 to 2.79) SUMMATIVE YEAR 2 2012-2013 Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2015: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 Spring 2013: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2014: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2013: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected 12 84
  • 87. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) EGLS3 11: My instructor arouses my curiosity ASSESSMEN T METHOD Count the number of graduates receiving Associate of Science degrees EGLS3 12: My instructor stimulates my creativity 2.4.d. 10% increase in EGLS3 Item 11 mean score in targeted module sections over Fall 2012 baseline (4.0 scale) 2.4.e. 10% increase in EGLS3 Item 12 mean score in targeted module sections over Fall 2012 baseline (4.0 scale) 2.4.f 5% increase in number of Associate of Science degrees awarded over 2011 AY baseline of 636 FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Reported by OIR annually in November Number to be noted by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Spring 2013: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 Spring 2014: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected Spring 2014: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 November 2015 AS graduates reported Spring 2015: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected Spring 2015: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline SUMMATIVE Fall 2012 Survey administered data collected and baseline established Spring 2013: EGLS3 survey administered and data collected November 2014 AS graduates reported YEAR 5 Fall 2012 Survey administered data collected and baseline established November 2013 AS graduates reported YEAR 5 2015-2016 November 2012 Associate of Science graduates reported Increase number of Associate of Science graduates 5% over Nov 2011 baseline of 636 13 85
  • 88. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.a.i . CCSSE Item 5e: mean score of 3.22 on a 5.0 scale from Spring 2011 baseline of 2.93 in targeted module sections OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) CCSSE 5e: Applying theories or concepts to practical problems or new situations ASSESSMEN T METHOD CCSSE 5b: Analyzing the basic elements of an idea, experience or theory 2.5.a Science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge 2.5.a. ii. 10% increase in CCSSE Item 5b mean score from Spring 2011 baseline of 3.13 to 3.44 on a 5.0 scale in targeted module sections FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline (from 3.13 to 3.44) Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline (from 2.93 to 3.22) SUMMATIVE YEAR 2 2012-2013 Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 Spring 2013: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2013: CCSSE survey administered and data collected 14 86
  • 89. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.a.iii. 70% of science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 70% of science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge 15 87
  • 90. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.b Science students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) 2.5.b.i. CCSSE Item 5d: mean score of 2.92 on a 5.0 scale from Spring 2011 baseline of 2.66 in targeted module sections ASSESSMEN T METHOD Faculty-designed departmental exam CCSSE 5d: Making judgments about the value or soundness of information, arguments or methods FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Spring 2013-2015: data collected by science departments Every summer 2013-2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Spring 2013, 2014 and 2015: data collected by OIR Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: exam administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Spring 2015: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2014: exam administered and data collected Spring 2014: CCSSE survey administered and data collected Spring 2013: exam administered and data collected Spring 2013: CCSSE survey administered and data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 70% of science students will be able to identify and demonstrate basic scientific principles and factual knowledge related to a real-world problem, research question or challenge Increase mean score 10% over Spring 2012 baseline (from 2.66 to 2.92) 16 88
  • 91. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.c. Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module ASSESSMEN T METHOD Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module 2.5.b.ii. 70% of Science students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources 2.5.c. 70% of Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 1 2011-2012 RESPONSI BLE Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected FREQUEN CY & PERSON Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 70% of Science students will be able to collect and correctly assess the validity of scientific information from a variety of sources 70% of Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables 17 89
  • 92. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.d. Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data. OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) 2.5.d. 70 % of Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data. ASSESSMEN T METHOD Faculty-designed departmental exam Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module Spring 2013: exam administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 1 2011-2012 RESPONSI BLE Every Spring 2013-2015: data collected by science departments Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected FREQUEN CY & PERSON Every summer 2013-2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team SUMMATIVE YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: exam administered and data collected 70% of Science students will be able to formulate a testable hypothesis and identify relevant variables YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2014: exam administered and data collected Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected 70 % of Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data. 18 90
  • 93. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 2.5.e. Science students will be able to solve a real-world problem, answer a research question, or address a challenge OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) 2.5.e. 70% of Science students will be able to solve a real-world problem, answer a research question, or address a challenge ASSESSMEN T METHOD Faculty-designed departmental exam Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module Spring 2013: exam administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 1 2011-2012 RESPONSI BLE Every Spring 2013-2015: data collected by science departments Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected FREQUEN CY & PERSON Every summer 2013-2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team SUMMATIVE YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Spring 2015: exam administered and data collected 70 % of Science students will be able to collect, analyze and correctly interpret scientific data. YEAR 5 2015-2016 Spring 2014: exam administered and data collected Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected 70% of Science students will be able to solve a realworld problem, answer a research question, or address a challenge 19 91
  • 94. Houston Community College 2.5.f. Science students will be able to communicate scientific concepts, scientific principles and/or socioscientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations OBJECTIVES 2.5.f. 70% of Science students will be able to communicate scientific concepts, scientific principles and/or socioscientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentations OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Faculty-designed scoring rubric embedded in module ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Fall and Spring 20122014: data collected by module instructors Summer 2013, 2014 and 2015: data assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Fall 2012 and Spring 2013: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013 and Spring 2014: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014 and Spring 2015: rubric administered and data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 70% of Science students will be able to communicate scientific concepts, scientific principles and/or socioscientific arguments in a real-world context through written, performance and/or oral presentation 20 92
  • 95. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 3.1. a. At least one science club each of at five HCC colleges OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Number of science clubs registered with Office of Student Life ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 YEAR 5 SUMMATIVE Fall 2012: data collected At least one science club at each of five HCC colleges 9.3.3 Implementation and Assessment Plan for HCC INSPIRE Program Goal 3: Increase district-wide science enrichment opportunities: 3.1. Establish science student clubs at five HCC colleges RESPONSI BLE Every Fall 2012-2015: Data collected by QEP Director from Student Life Coordinators, assessed by QEP Assessment Team 21 93
  • 96. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 3.2. Establish online, district-wide coordination of science club activities OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Number of science club student members ASSESSMEN T METHOD STEM Club Network presence established 3.1.b. 100% increase in the total number of number of student science club members 3.2.a. Establish STEM Club Networks (comprised of faculty Club Sponsors) FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Fall 2012: baseline data collected by QEP Director , Student Life Coordinators and Faculty Sponsors Every Fall 2013-2015: data collected by QEP Director from Science Club Faculty Sponsors, assessed by QEP Assessment Team Fall 2013: determined and assessed by QEP Director YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 YEAR 5 dissemination STEM Club Network for coordination and SUMMATIVE Fall 2012: baseline data collected 100% increase in the total number of number of student science club members over Fall 2012 baseline Fall 2013: determined by QEP Director of science club activities 22 94
  • 97. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Science Club web portal established ASSESSMEN T METHOD Number of hits 3.2. b. Establish online STEM Club Network web portal and Facebook group for dissemination of science club activities 3.2.b. 10% annual increase in science club web page traffic FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Fall 2013: determined and assessed by QEP Director Google Analytics data retrieved by QEP Director; assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: determined by QEP Director Fall 2012: baseline data collected Fall 2013: data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 SUMMATIVE YEAR 5 Online STEM Club Network web portal and Facebook group for disseminatio n of science club activities 10% annual increase in science club web page traffic over Fall 2013 baseline (21% total increase by Fall 2015) 23 95
  • 98. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 3.3.a. 25% annual increase in number of district-wide activities offered to science clubs OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Number of activities disseminated online ASSESSMEN T METHOD Number of student activity participants 3.3. Offer systemwide science club activities to science clubs 3.3.b. i. 10% annual increase in total number of student club member participating in science club activities FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Every Fall 2013-2015: determined by QEP Director; assessed by QEP Assessment Team Every Fall 2013-2015: Data collected by QEP Director from Science Club Faculty sponsors, assessed by QEP Assessment Team YEAR 1 2011-2012 Fall 2012: baseline data collected YEAR 2 2012-2013 Fall 2013: data collected Fall 2013: data collected YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: data collected Fall 2014: data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: data collected Fall 2015: data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 YEAR 5 SUMMATIVE Fall 2012: baseline data collected 25% annual increase number of district-wide activities offered to science clubs over Fall 2013 baseline (56% total increase by Fall 2015) 10% annual increase in total number of student club member participating in science club activities over Fall 2013 baseline (21% total increase by Fall 2015) 24 96
  • 99. Houston Community College OBJECTIVES 3.3.b.ii. 70% club activity approval rate among postactivity survey respondents OUTCOMES (by YEAR 5 of QEP) Post-activity survey ASSESSMEN T METHOD FREQUEN CY & PERSON RESPONSI BLE Fall 2013, 2014, and 2015: Data collected by Faculty Sponsors (after each QEPdisseminated event) YEAR 1 2011-2012 YEAR 2 2012-2013 YEAR 3 2013-2014 Fall 2014: data collected YEAR 4 2014-2015 Fall 2015: data collected YEAR 5 2015-2016 YEAR 5 SUMMATIVE Fall 2013: data collected 70% club activity approval rate among postactivity survey respondents 25 97
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