Highlights from the F2Y Implementation Team January 26-February 1, 2019

 

What is the Team Up To?

The team wrapped up the process of evaluating different digital portfolio vendors and recommended to CAO Latty, CSSO Doore, and President Khoury that we adopt Portfolium:

 

[excerpted from the FIT recommendation]

The F2Y Implementation Team recommends adoption of Portfolium to provide a platform for students to create digital portfolios, both for the purpose of demonstrating competence with respect to FLOs, PPLOs and degree program LOs, and for the purpose of creating outward-facing displays of their achievements and skills for potential employers. This platform will enable faculty and student support teams to develop a variety of pathways through which students can earn “badges” demonstrating skill mastery and readiness for work or further study. Portfolium will also support assessment at the institution and degree program levels.

 

FIT members and focus group members (Cartier, Coughlin, Gilbert, P. DeHart) overwhelmingly preferred Portfolium to the other products, in part because of its seamless integration with the Canvas learning management system and its capacity to support integration of academic and co-curricular programming through pathways and “badging.” Other features of Portfolium that the team valued included its networking potential and ongoing, free access for alumni. The assessment functions of Portfolium will support program-level and institution-level assessment and data can be disaggregated by metadata categories (e.g., student age, degree major, etc.). Moreover, tagged assessment products (such as student assignments submitted in Canvas) can also be collected and sorted. So, for example, to support program-level assessment, we could sort all laboratory reports submitted for BI 2004 and create a subset consisting only of those belonging to conservation law enforcement majors. CLE faculty could then score these artifacts for evidence of program-specific outcomes associated with biology content knowledge.

 

We engaged in some brainstorming to inform ongoing marketing work, including the process of selecting a name for the program affectionately known as “F2Y.” Part of this work involved identifying challenges that we are responding to (that is, why are we designing F2Y in the first place?) and then describing strategies or design features to address those challenges. To give an example, we talked about the challenge of sustaining our enrollment as the population of high school graduates declines steadily (especially in the Northeast) over the coming years and we talked about the challenge of attracting more diverse students to our college. Developing robust and ongoing relationships with metropolitan regions across the country (something we are proposing to support the sophomore practicum experience) is one strategy that could help us to become more visible to (and attract) more diverse students. Erica shared the results of our brainstorm with marketing consultants and is continuing to direct the work of naming the program and developing recruitment materials.

 

Several team members will be joining Admissions staff on a trip out west in early March. We will visit The Science and Math Institute (SAMI) of Tacoma Public Schools to learn about how they design and support immersive interdisciplinary learning experiences in authentic contexts. We will also learn how they structure faculty work in order to provide time and resources for necessary collaboration. While in the Tacoma area, the team will attend the South Sound Sustainability Expo and visit the University of Puget Sound where we will learn about their Experiential Learning and Civic Scholarship program and how they use digital portfolios to support students’ learning. We will also learn aboutRISE, an internship program for sophomores, and successful strategies they have used to identify internship opportunities and support second-year students in those experiences. Finally, the group will round out its western adventure by travelling to Dillon, Montana, where they will visit Montana Western University to learn about the Experience One program and successful strategies for supporting faculty members transitioning from traditional instructional contexts and course structures to intensive block-style programming. We’ll also hear about how students have responded to the Experience One structure and what support services have been essential for their success.

 

Kayla and Jen are reaching out to professionals who might be interested in working directly with our staff and faculty to provide F2Y-related training (e.g., design of immersive learning experiences, differentiated instruction and/or tasks within cohorts, etc.).

 

The academic team has been very busy this week – preparing updates of documents addressing various design challenges (including scope & sequence, professional development planning, and a model for providing instructional resources for delivering the learning expeditions). Discussion of these updates will be the focus of FIT work in the coming week.

 

 

How is the Campus Community Engaging in the Work?

CAPC members continue to work on refining the analytical rubrics.

 

The academic team facilitated a discussion with faculty on Thursday (1.31.19) centered on the proposed general education curriculum for F2Y (this is part of the scope and sequence update mentioned above). As always, many excellent questions emerged from the discussion and the team will take these onboard as we continue our work.

 

Please reach out to any member of FIT if you have questions or ideas. We really want to hear from you!

 

Respectfully,

 

— Jen

 

 

 

 

Jennifer L. Cartier, Ph.D.

Director of Curricular Innovation

Associate Professor of Education

Unity College

Unity, Maine 04998

(412) 215-6511

 

Office: Unity House, Room 2

F2Y Office: Constable Hall