University of Wisconsin–Madison

Engaging Environmental Toxicology Graduate Students in Curriculum Design

What I wanted:

AT consultants were invited to provide three seminars for Environmental Toxicology graduate students interested in teaching and learning with technology. We recognized that one of the many dilemmas that new or future instructors face is balancing the need to cover content coupled with the desire to teach outcomes.  Rather than diving directly into the technology, we framed the sessions within the larger context of thinking about backwards design in order to align their interest in tools/technology with their learning goals.

What I tried

Students were asked to think/pair/share on the following:

With what skills, values, and approaches would you want to equip a student in order to solve a toxicology-related problem?

By working backwards from this, the participants were then able to think about their own instructional activities within the larger context of their learning goals and then discuss the affordances of appropriate tools and techniques.  This allowed for a larger group discussion rather than a one-way lecture.



Next time I would…

Have more of the questions we asked during the sessions assigned as homework so we could have had the students more prepared for the discussion during the limited face to face time during the seminar.

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