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By Emily Steves, '15
With the launch of new teaching
standards ญญ like the Common Core
-- across the nation, the future of ed-
ucation requires a cohort of talented
and prepared young teachers to main-
tain those standards. St. Bonaven-
ture's education majors, armed with
electronic portfolios (eFolios for short),
not only meet those standards, but
can prove they meet them.
"Right now the teacher evaluation
in public schools is very rigorous," said
Dr. Nancy Casey, an associate profes-
sor of education and chair of the Ele-
mentary Education and Childhood Studies
departments. "We have very robust require-
ments right from the start."
While New York state requires teachers to have
500 hours of in-classroom experience as under-
graduates, St. Bonaventure's School of Education
has set even higher standards, requiring 1,000
hours before graduation. Plus, during their junior
years, education majors must delve into the
worldwide web to create a portfolio.
"They don't have to go to an interview bur-
eFolios for education majors replace bulky paper method
Equipment in the Health and
Human Performance Lab gives
students hands-on experience with
tools used in the health and well-
ness professions. The Reilly Center
lab is used jointly by students and
faculty in the biology, sport studies
and physical education programs.
Students learn how to assess body
composition (body fat), muscular
endurance, cardiovascular indices
(EKG, blood pressure, heart rate,
oxygen saturation), muscular
power and how to determine the
cardiovascular/muscular limita-
tions of an individual. These learn-
ing tools accompany lectures in
nutrition, fitness and wellness,
biokinesiology, and exercise physi-
ology. The long-term goal is to offer
a community center where stu-
dents help children and families
that are coping with diseases such
as heart disease, stroke, and dia-
Sophomore strategic communica-
tion and digital media major Emily
Doherty from Syracuse, N.Y., found
the flipped classroom approach to
teaching to be very effective.
Lecture Videos:
Due before each class, for home-
work we would visit professor Laurie
Branch's YouTube page and watch a
10-minute-or-less lecture video on
the topics we would be covering in
class. In these videos, Laurie would
not only discuss the topic and give
easy to understand examples, she
would also hold up sheets of paper
with notes and diagrams for us to
copy down in our notes. When we
would show up to class, we would
take a quiz based on the video using
our notes. This was extremely helpful
because it encouraged me to take
better notes. I loved that the videos were avail-
able whenever we needed them. I definitely took
advantage of that by rewatching lectures before
exams. It helped tremendously.
Class Time:
By having the lectures online, class time was
dedicated to hands-on learning. Every class, we
would take the lecture quiz, go over it and ask
any questions we had about the lecture, and
then break up into groups to
complete an exercise that
brought the material from the
lecture to life. By doing these
activities, it allowed us to not
just know the terms/concepts of
the business world, but how
they actually work and are
Comment Sheets:
After every class, we would fill
out anonymous feedback forms
to comment on the video. This
enabled Laurie to see how she
could change or adjust the class
to best fit our learning styles. To
have a teacher that interested in
our learning preferences was
amazing. It makes the learning
experience and process a team
effort between the student and
professor. It isn't just what the professor wants or
just what the student wants. It is all about work-
ing together.
Overall, I believe Laurie's flipped classroom
teaching strategies have helped with my note-
taking skills, study skills, and have helped me re-
tain more information. I did not just spend nights
trying to memorize vocabulary words or topics
that would be on the exams. I was able to learn
what the topics were and how they worked.
Flipped Through the Eyes of a Student
Adjunct business pro-
fessor Dr. Laurie
Branch (above) and
her teaching assistant
John Mattia describe
their approach to the
flipped classroom:
Paperless Portfolios
The Entrepreneurship Center in
the Swan Center exemplifies
the School of Business' high-tech,
high-touch approach: Spacious
meeting space is coupled with
plenty of Internet connectivity to
make for a cutting-edge workplace.
For example, the room has two 50-
inch monitors to facilitate group
meetings and long-distance collabo-
ration. Above, Nick Garuckas, who
earned his graduate degree in May,
is working with an undergraduate on
a project.