Final Blog Post

I feel like we have covered so much in this semester. We began with what defines innovative teaching, moved to lecturing and active learning techniques (and how to blend the two), and then discussed and practiced and demonstrated online teaching. You wrote your own syllabus, reviewed your classmate’s syllabus, and made a final creation all your own. Then we delved deep into assessment and how to effectively assess your learning objectives. We rounded out the semester with a discussion on technology in teaching- and it’s related evidence, academic integrity, and copyright/fair use issues. We’ve covered a lot! Along the way you’ve blogged, had synchronous discussions, created, revised, and completed several assignments. You discovered new ways to present and learned what a Pecha Kucha is. Your excitement about teaching and learning is infectious and I am sure the future of dental hygiene education is in good hands. Future dental hygiene students will be lucky to have you as their teachers. What I take away, as the instructor of this class, is that even as an instructor, students can teach you so much. So thanks for teaching me a thing or two.

Blog Post 7: I’d like to know what was most valuable to you in this course. Were there a few things that you learned that you think you will carry with you as you enter your academic careers? Was there a certain topic you really felt like you connected with? Please write your blog about what you will take with you from this course. Be honest and heartfelt. I’ve really enjoyed this semester, I hope you have too.

Assessment Post 2

While we have focused a lot of attention to teaching and content delivery in this class that is only part of the equation. Developing ways to assess students’ learning is another skill that takes time and dedication to develop. Some faculty take the strategy of a traditional multiple choice quizzes and exams in order to assess student learning. And multiple choice exams have their role, don’t get me wrong, but they are difficult to write. Writing quality multiple choice questions takes time and effort and then takes time for analysis after the exam. To truly do this well it is more work than it sounds. Other forms of assessment allow students to demonstrate something more than just memorization of content. Some assignments allow the teacher to assess the students’ ability to critically think, problem solve, create a solution. These assessments are also challenging to build and require thoughtfulness and analysis. But when you can meaningfully assess a student’s knowledge and skills your teaching comes full circle and you have created a meaningful learning experience for students.

Blog Post 6: As you continue to learn about assessment and create your own assessments what have you found the most challenging? How did you overcome this challenge?


Writing only one blog post on all aspects of assessment has proven to be impossible, so I will just try to hit some highlights of assessment that we have covered this semester. Assessment is such an important part of education. It tells us if our students can actually complete the learning objectives of a course. There are so many types of assessments: quizzes, exams, projects, skills tests, papers, voice threads, blogs, etc. The assessment opportunities are endless. The book, The Nurse Educator’s Guide to Assessing Learning Outcomes by McDonald highlights many ways to assess learning. I know we haven’t read the entire book yet, but we are starting to delve into the meat of assessment.

Instructor teaching a student in clinic

The most important thing to remember about assessment is to align it with your objectives. For example if your objective was: List every cranial nerve and describe its function; then assessing that information on a multiple choice or short answer exam would be appropriate. If your objective was: Demonstrate correct use of an ultrasonic scaler; then assessing that objective with a multiple choice exam would be inappropriate. Dental hygiene has an array of different types of objectives that must be met, so one type of assessment may not be best for all courses.

Blog Post 5: From your experiences, knowledge, and opinions what are the best types of assessment for an entry level dental hygiene program? Be sure to take into account all the factors that exist, such as National Board exams, Regional clinical exams, critical thinking, CODA accreditation standards. In your post please include your justification for the type of assessments you have chosen.

Week 6: Online Learning

Workspace for Online Teaching

Donald Jordan “Workspace for Online Teaching” Jan 22 2014 via Flickr,Creative Commons Attribution

The past two weeks we have been investigating online and blended learning and actually throughout the past two semesters you have been learning in an online program-so you aren’t unfamiliar with this topic. The readings also discuss hybrid or blended learning strategies. As my teaching has evolved I have moved to teaching courses which are delivered entirely online. What I find most interesting about this transition is that there are many things that apply to both teaching online and teaching face to face. Especially when designing the course. Some of the principles of quality online course design are true of quality face to face course design. The differences for me are in the delivery. The delivery of content, activities, and information through only online mechanisms takes time, especially in the planning and communication. Instructions that might take 5 minutes to say at the end of a face to face class take me a good 30 minutes to write and communicate. So for the instructor teaching online is not always more efficient. My teaching has evolved from traditional face-to-face lecture style to teaching all of my courses entirely online. So I have learned along the way that while there are many things are similar, there is something inherently different about teaching online.

Blog Post 4: None of you are strangers to online learning. I’d like you to answer the following questions in your blog post this week. What are the similarities and differences you see in face to face and online teaching and learning? What are the benefits of online courses or programs? What are the challenges? Finally, how do you feel about online teaching and learning?

Week 4 Reflections on The Lecture

Lecture Theatre

Ian Barbour, “Lecture Theatre” January 8, 2014 via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution


While lecturing is not my preferred teaching method, on occasion I do find it a necessary skill to have in the classroom and as a professional. And while it is not my preferred style of delivering content I do think it is an important skill to have. Some of my personal thoughts on lecturing are:


  • easy- easy to prepare, deliver (mostly…)
  • comfortable- everyone has attended and can imitate a lecture
  • control- I have control over the direction of the content and the class


  • boring- no one likes a boring lecture
  • limits active learning- in general it limits active learning, but hopefully through this course you can learn ways to “spice up” the lecture
  • limits what you can do in the class
  • lacks a “fun” factor

I have attended some amazing lectures. Ones where there was even little to no audience interaction and participation. These people are truly skilled in the art of lecture and I’m guessing that some of them have worked hard at perfecting their techniques. I also enjoy watching Ted Talks. These lectures are genuinely engaging, short, and interesting-even when I am just watching them on-line after the fact. If you’re interested in viewing them head here: I wish every lecture I gave, or have listened to in my career were as good as some of these Ted Talks. If you feel you tend towards a boring lecturer, never fear! There are strategies and techniques you can use to enhance your lectures. We will spend two weeks and even a little more discussing some of these techniques.

Students Blog Post #3: For Blog Post #3 I want you to reflect on the best lecture you’ve ever heard. It could have been in an undergraduate instructor, a CE presenter, etc. I want you to pick an experience where you were physically in the audience, not just watching the lecture on-line. Please describe the lecture, the setting, the topic and then tell us why it was so good. Remember to use course material to support your writing and follow the rubric posted on Carmen. Don’t forget to add your own opinions and conclusions.

Week 2: Innovative Teaching

The title of one of our texts and many of the themes in this course deal with innovative teaching. We all may have different ideas of what an innovative classroom might look like and that is just fine! Each teacher creates innovative environments that complement their skills, styles and fields.

The readings from the second week are about creating an innovative classroom. These are some of the highlights I found while reading  Chapter 4:

  • Healthcare educators…..need to be knowledgeable about changes in practice and technology in both fields.
  • Health professions classrooms are also more culturally diverse than before.
  • Innovative teaching strategies can range from simple to complex.
  • Students will remember more if they can make their own discovery.
  • The Process of Innovation
  • Innovative teaching strategies must be based on both learning objectives and student learning needs.

I think an innovative classroom can look very different depending on the instructor, students, course content, and objectives. For Week 2: I’d like you to think about what an innovative classroom means to you. In your blog post please write about what an innovative classrooms means or looks like to you as an educator. Don’t forget to review the rubric for blog posts before you begin. I’m looking forward to reading what innovative means to you.

Welcome to DH 7100!

Welcome to our course, DH 7100 Innovative Teaching Strategies in Dental Hygiene. This is the second course in our three part graduate education curriculum. This course focuses on how to deliver content to students in innovative and creative ways. We will explore the traditional method of delivering content, lecture, but will focus most of our study on alternative content delivery techniques. You will be asked to explore numerous ways to deliver content. You may find that not all of the techniques we discuss fit with your personal teaching style, and that is ok. I hope you will not only learn new ways of delivering content, but also new ways of approaching teaching and learning. I look forward to sharing ideas and discussing the content of this course with all of you.

Blog Post #1: I’d like you to discuss in your first blog post what you would most like to learn in this course. Are there things you would like to further explore? Is there something you have heard of, but would like to know more? In this post I’d also like you address any concerns or reservations you might have about the content or your participation in this course. Does writing a syllabus make you cringe? Do you fear our discussion of technology? These are just a few examples. Take a  look at the syllabus before you complete this post and let me know your thoughts.