As the wave of uncertainty continues to plague the country, faculty and students at Salt Lake Community College begin a sudden transition.
SLCC, along with other colleges throughout the valley, is experiencing monumental change as the COVID-19 pandemic widens its grip. Spring break was extended to Wednesday, March 25, to give instructors time to prepare for online delivery due to the abrupt change.
Assistant professor Lon Schiffbauer, Ph.D., dedicated a series on his YouTube channel, Nutshell Brainery, towards faculty on shifting in-person lectures to online.
“There are a lot of awesome solutions out there, we just need to know what they are and a little bit of insight into how to use them, so that’s all I wanted to do, was provide insight,” Schiffbauer said.
His eight-part Coronavirus special series shares important information on how to implement online tools to make the most out of remote lectures.
“It’s not a full transition to online, it’s a full transition to remote,” he said. “Remote classes have some element of scheduled synchronous contact with the professor and with the other students. That’s where the technologies such as Zoom, WebEx and live streaming technologies and so forth come into play.”
Schiffbauer believes there is a large focus on technology and there is a tendency to leave out the human aspect that comes with remote teaching.
“But technology is not going to address the people side of this equation,” Schiffbauer said in response to his second video in the series, “First Take Care of Your Students.”
“There’s a cycle that people go through when they go through change, it’s that transition change curve. It’s not enough to simply learn the technology and say, ‘Okay, all our classes are on this technology.’ You really need to help the students along the process,” he explained.
Schiffbauer expressed, “Embrace your constraints” as one of his valued principles.
“The reason that embracing this constraint is so powerful is you have to be creative, you have to use your imagination, you have to be innovative, to take limited resources and get maximum output and return for those limited resources,” he said.
Schiffbauer is planning on filming another video to share what has worked best for him during this transition.
“I’m very flexible in how I teach, and I enjoy new challenges and opportunities. This is going to make my future classes much better,” he said.
Brett Terpstra, an assistant professor of criminal justice at SLCC, applied changes to not only his face-to-face classes but his online assignments, as well.
“For my face-to-face classes, I am creating more videos to help clarify concepts from the textbook. I post videos as announcements and encourage students to post questions about the content covered,” Terpstra said.
Terpstra continues to share content related to encouragement and perseverance in hopes to entice students to share ideas and stay upbeat during the COVID-19 pandemic.