Research on Teaching & Learning

Manuscripts in Progress

Mindes, Samuel C. H. “More than just busywork: How requiring more discussion board activity leads to better student enjoyment and outcomes.” (In preparation for Teaching Sociology)

Summary: As more college classes move online and technology overtakes our face-to-face courses, how can we ensure that these newer methods of teaching are leading to the outcomes we hope? In this project, I evaluate an online discussion board assignment for an online class over three different iterations. By adjusting the requirements for this debate format assignment, I found that increasing the required number of posts and requiring students to engage with peers with opposing views led to better outcomes, measured by the presence of social knowledge construction. Despite added work, course reviews show the discussion board assignment to be the best part of class.

Regular Presentations

Mindes, Samuel C. H. 2017. “‘Taking Sides’ in Virtual Debates: Facilitating Essential Discussions in an Online Teaching Forum.” 92nd Annual Conference of the North Central Sociological Association (NCSA). Indianapolis, IN. April 1, 2017.

Poster Presentations

Mindes, Samuel C. H. 2017. “‘Taking Sides’ in Virtual Debates: Social Knowledge Construction in an Online Discussion.” MSU Graduate Fellows Reception and Poster Presentations. April 14, 2017. (available here)

Invited Speaker/Panelist/Brownbag

“Students Learning Environments in an International Context.”
Invited Panelist, Annual Conference of the North Central Sociological Association (NCSA). March 31, 2017.

“Taking Sides’ in Virtual Debates: Social Knowledge Construction in an Online Discussion.”
Brown Bag Speaker, James Madison College, Michigan State University. March 24, 2017.

“How to Succeed as an Instructor in a Virtual Space: Tips for Teaching Online.”
Invited Speaker, Graduate Sociology Collective, Michigan State University, February 24, 2017.

“Using Student Feedback to Improve Teaching and Learning”
Invited Panelist, Calvin College, August 2010