Man in the moon

PowerPoint Presentations
from the
2005 Case Study Teaching in Science Conference


•   Classic Research Articles as Problems (357 KB)
Harold B. White III, Professor of Biochemistry and Director of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Undergraduate Science Education Program, University of Delaware, halwhite@udel.edu

Classic research articles achieve their status by resolving long-standing problems or providing new ways to view the world. They silently underlie textbook narratives that mostly deal with the results and not the experiments or data. Having students read and understand classic research articles by working through them as problems in small groups provides them with many important skills and conveys the nature of scientific research. My presentation will describe a course built around this concept, focusing on how we know what we know about hemoglobin.

•   Assessing Case-Based Instruction (880 KB)
Mary A. Lundeberg, Professor and Chair, Department of Teacher Education, College of Education, Michigan State University, mlunde@msu.edu

Recent research assessing faculty perceptions of student learning and motivation in the context of case-based instruction, along with challenges faced in implementing case-based instruction, will be presented. New directions for effective assessment of student understanding include considering priorities for assessment, selection of tasks to assess performance, and procedures for data interpretation and analysis. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss action research designs to investigate learning/engagement in science classrooms using case-based instruction.

•   Preparing Peer Facilitators for Cooperative Learning Groups (97 KB)
Harold B. White III, Professor of Biochemistry, University of Delaware, halwhite@udel.edu

A challenge of constructivist pedagogy is to organize and monitor effective group activities in classes beyond about 25 students. Students who have taken a course can return to become group facilitators and greatly improve the groups’ effectiveness. Peer facilitators need to be prepared for their role. This workshop deals with providing the knowledge and skills that facilitators need to function well.

•   The Empowerment of Higher Order Reasoning: Case Teaching, Collaborative Learning and Self-Reflection (6922 KB)
S. Deborah Lucy, Associate Professor and Professional Program Chair, School of Physical Therapy, The University of Western Ontario, London, Canada, deblucy@uwo.ca

Transition to a professional entry-level Physical Therapy Master’s Program in 2000 afforded us the opportunity to implement and evaluate a curriculum intentionally redesigned to focus more directly on fostering knowledge translation and critical thinking skills in support of higher order reasoning. Highlighted in this presentation will be: the key underpinnings of our new pedagogical approach; collaborative learning teams, case- and discussion-based participative learning, and self-reflection/evaluation; and the results of our systematic formative evaluations of learning outcomes supporting improved critical thinking and research-related behaviours in our initial cohort of Master’s level entry students.

•   Concept Mapping to Bring Closure to Problems (276 KB)
Harold B. White III, Professor of Biochemistry, University of Delaware, halwhite@udel.edu

There are ways other than quizzes and examinations to assess student learning. One such way is with concept maps constructed by students working in groups. This workshop will provide an overview of concept mapping and how it can be used in the classroom. Participants will experience the process of constructing a concept map.

•   The “Case Difficulty Cube” in Case Writing: Putting The Pieces Together (2138 KB)
S. Deborah Lucy, Associate Professorr, School of Physical Therapy, The University of Western Ontario, London, Canada, deblucy@uwo.ca

Cases enable students to learn by doing. The beauty of cases lies in the versatility to promote thinking skills along Bloom’s continuum from lower- to higher-level. The trick is often in matching the educational challenge as written with the desired level of learning outcomes. In this session we will examine how the Case Difficulty Cube with its three-dimensional framework can be used as a skeleton for building cases of variable educational challenge. Join us and leave the workshop with simple writing tips for progression of case and curricular complexity.

•   Using Case Studies in Large-Enrollment Courses (1085 KB)
Peggy Brickman, Assistant Professor of Plant Biology, Division of Biological Sciences, University of Georgia, brickman@uga.edu

The impediments to using cases studies in large-enrollment courses can be overcome with a little creative technical support. I’ve successfully implemented case studies in my introductory biology course with an annual enrollment of 2,300 students. In this session I will cover some of the tools and techniques for doing that, ranging from: Web-CT, which I use to assign students into permanent small groups (as well as assign groups to regions of a stadium-style lecture hall)—to hand-held response systems (aka “clickers”), which the students use to collaboratively solve cases during each class period—to having students tackle bi-weekly exams in groups after first taking them individually.

Paper Session

•   Learning Built on Case Studies—A Holistic Approach (2231 KB)
Alan Cheville, Assistant Professor, and Charles Bunting, Associate Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering, Oklahoma State University, kridnix@okstate.edu, reverb@okstate.edu

Learning isn’t an all-or-nothing proposition. It requires students who are able to fit information into what they already know, interest in what is being taught, and repeated exposure over time. Too often, however, learning is simply downloading information, more suited to a computer than a human being. By making concepts interesting and fitting them in the students’ existing conceptual framework, case studies help fertilize the ground so new ideas can germinate. But case studies aren't a panacea—they don’t directly address many of the concerns that faculty have such as “Will my students learn the concepts I have to cover better?” This presentation examines new roles for case studies, and how we are using case studies as a vital part of a larger curriculum reform effort that addresses specific deficiencies in how and what students learn. A case study becomes a tool that helps faculty reexamine what is taught in a course, restructure information, choose other effective teaching methods, and reevaluate the definition of what it means to learn something.

•   The Concept-Case Connection (951 KB)
Kathy Gallucci, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, Elon University, gallucci@elon.edu

It is very tempting for an instructor to try to fit interesting cases into a course, especially with so many excellent cases now readily available. A neophyte case study instructor who finds interesting published cases may risk disappointment with the case study method because the prospective cases are not quite congruent with their learning objectives. The case studies may provide a very positive experience for the students, but they may not necessarily promote concept learning. Incorporation of the case study method requires that we take a serious look at our course objectives and practical constraints, as well as the needs of our students, with the lens of our own pedagogical content knowledge. This presentation describes my personal experience to inventory the concepts in my introductory non-majors biology class, and the difficult process of selecting corresponding case studies to teach those concepts.

•   Strategies to Integrate Case Studies into Health Sciences Courses (2141 KB)
Otto Sanchez, Associate Professor, Department of Health Sciences, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, otto.sanchez@uoit.ca

At the new University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), we are taking advantage of the opportunity of creating and designing new Health Sciences courses in which case studies are a core tool to integrate basic science concepts into future clinical practice. Case studies are embedded into these courses so that students use newly acquired knowledge to develop clinical reasoning skills and see “basic sciences” as useful pillars to strengthen their professional skills. This presentation summarizes a variety of strategies used by faculty and learners to address course content with the use of case studies. Specifically, it contrasts our use of case studies in problem-based learning, large group, and online formats to discuss and apply course content. In addition, it describes our experiences using case studies for course evaluation, with students taking active roles in the development and presentation of case studies that allow us to assess group and individual student performance.

•   Integrating Laboratory, Literature and Lecture Using Case Studies (602 KB)
Ann T. Taylor, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, Wabash College, taylora@wabash.edu

Case studies are a powerful technique for linking content and skill goals for a course, and can be used to integrate primary literature resources and laboratory techniques more seamlessly into courses. “The Case of the Tainted Tacos” explores the issues associated with genetically modified foods using primary literature papers, bioinformatics exercises, lecture discussions, and a laboratory experiment. Strategies for finding and using primary literature papers, developing bioinformatics activities, and integrating all of the components of the case study will be discussed.