Data for Discussion

Exploring Correlation Data on Popular Websites

Professor Nathan Kaplan uses popular websites and online data to generate discussion about the topic of correlation in his math gen ed, "Fat Chance." According to Kaplan, the purpose of the activity is to show students that correlations are everywhere, even in movie rentals, library cards, etc., and part of the era of big data is that companies will know lots of things about people even if they don't tell them. 

Patient Interviews

One unique feature of SCRB 167, "Stem Cells and Regeneration in the Pathobiology and Treatment of Human Disease," is the use of in-class patient interviews, in which students spend the final hour of a three-hour class asking questions of a live patient about his or her illness and experience. 

Provocations and Discussions

Professor McCarthy's class has student "provocations" in discussion sections each week. Students have to provoke the discussion in some way (debate, video analysis, commentary from contemporary news linked to week's readings, etc.) Students are paired before section to plan the provocation and how they would moderate the debate/discussion. They also meet as a pair with their TF. In class, they moderate the discussion/debate, often involving audio-video materials.

Thought Essays

In his Freshman Seminar, Professor John Dowling assigned both basic textbook readings and supplementary readings.  Since students were to lead the discussion of the supplementary readings, John ensured that they would have something to say by assigning weekly 1 page "thought essays" that required students to draw on ideas from the readings.

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