March 25 , 2011
IntroPsych News provides periodic announcements, course updates, and additional teaching resources for introductory psychology instructors at the University of Alabama.
Experimental psychologist: Beginning students often think of our field as consisting solely of psychotherapy. Laurie Santos is an experimental psychologist at Yale University who studies the evolutionary roots of economic behavior. Here's a 2-minute video in which she explains her work. It's from the "Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers" on the PBS NOVA site. You can find further details about her work in the most recent APS Observer: Monkey business.
Online course/instructor evaluations: Online evaluations are available to students April 16-May 1. Students can access them through myBama. I urge you to collect some type of narrative feedback from students as well.
Final day activity: We instructors devote considerble thought to how we begin the semester, but we give very little attention to the final day of class. Here's a brief activity intended to get students to reflect on the semester. I have students complete it without names. In smaller classes students post (with tape) their responses around the classroom and we spend time informally milling about and reading them. In larger classes students pass their replies to me and I read a sample aloud.
Mirror neurons: Here is a nice summary of what we know, presented in an accessible format: Reflections on mirror neurons. From the March 2011 edition of the APS Observer.
Final exam policies:
- Final exams are administered according to the tentative exam schedule published at www.myBama.ua.edu . Students should consult the final exam schedule before making plans to leave the campus at the end of the semester. Students may petition to reschedule exams if the following circumstances occur:
- A student has 3 or more exams schedule on the same day.
- A student has 2 exams scheduled at the same time.
- Students desiring to reschedule final exams due to three or more exams on one day or two exams scheduled at the same time must submit to their professor(s) documentation of their schedule. Priorities for rescheduling exam times are as follows:
- Exams for lower level classes have priority. For example, a 100-level course has higher priority than a 200-level course. The student should petition the 200-level course instructor for rescheduling.
- Exams for individual courses have higher priority than departmental exams regardless of level. The student with a conflict should petition the instructor of the course with the departmental exam for rescheduling. The exam is normally rescheduled for the time assigned to the individual course in the published examination schedule.
- For 7:00 - 9:30 PM exam conflicts, the daytime course has higher priority than the 6:00 PM or later course. The student should petition the instructor of the evening course for rescheduling.
A Brave New World has arrived: For a description of the learning environment that is quickly becoming the norm on large campuses, check out Tomorrow's college. From the Chronicle of Higher Eduaction.
Additional resources: Remember that there are several resources on the Teaching of Psychology course website. Resources for New Instructors contains information on assisting students and on teaching. The Multimedia Library is a compilation of videos, demos, and websites. You can find these resources by going to the Teaching of Psychology course website (http://bama.ua.edu/~sprentic/
695%20home%20page%20frameset.) and clicking on the desired link in the left margin. htm