Desert of My Real Life

Category: Open Pedagogy

Advocating for “Open”

Because NH students have the highest student loan debt in the country, I think every instructor in public higher education in the state has an obligation to minimize student expenses in whatever way we can. One of the things faculty can individually control is our choice of educational materials. To me, this means that faculty…

Integrated Clusters, General Education, and the Creative Commons

Plymouth State University's president came to campus three years ago with a vision that, at the time, he called "Strategic Clusters" (which has since been rebranded as "Integrated Clusters"). I thought (and still think) the vision is exactly the direction that higher education should move in. As we have begun to implement this vision at…

Why is PSU Moving to Clusters?

President Birx wrote a blog post (which I've referenced more times than I can count) about the Four Tools of Clusters. It's important to note that three of the four tools are directly related to the General Education program at Plymouth State University. I am starting to take on my responsibilities as the new (first!)…

PCA 2018

I went to the Popular Culture Association Conference last week.  My presentation was called Wicked Problems in Popular Culture: An Open Pedagogy Experiment in Engagement in which I talked about my experience with the First Year Seminar. Although it doesn't include everything I said during my presentation, you can see my slide deck here: Presentation.

Guest Post from Alex Richard

A couple of weeks ago, my First Year Seminar (FYS) classes discussed ways that we might assess the learning outcome in our class related to General Education. In particular, at the end of FYS, students should understand the purpose of general education and make connections between general education and major coursework. The class brainstormed ideas…

General Education and Clusters Revisited

Back at the beginning of the semester, I wrote about the realization I had that President Birx's Four Tools of Clusters mean that when we talk about "cluster curriculum," we are talking about General Education.  In particular, I have said that from a student's perspective, clusters are General Education. In the last week, I've had…

Lessons Learned Five Weeks In

The semester is five weeks old and my experiment with open pedagogy in Plymouth State University's First Year Seminar has been an up and down experience so far. I have had some of the most rewarding moments of teaching when students say things like, "I'm starting to understand what we're trying to do in the…