In Episode 5 of the Pedagogo podcast, host Dr. Allison Case continues the conversation about planning for a successful Fall 2020 semester.
The first guest, Dr. John Murray, Provost at Barry University in Miami, Florida, envisions the return of on-campus learning in Fall 2020, with an emphasis on the safety of the entire university community. John is leading an academic planning task force at his institution and working to develop a portfolio of plans for a variety of scenarios in the Fall, whether classes are remote, face-to-face, or a hybrid of the two. For John’s office at Barry University, success in the Fall 2020 semester is defined by strong enrollment, continued campus community service, and delivering the quality of education students have come to expect. Some programs at Barry adopted tools in Spring 2020 to maintain this academic rigor, including proctoring software to preserve the quality of high-stakes assessments in a remote setting. John notes that the successful implementation of a tool requires the availability of financial resources, a dependable system of technical support, and perseverance when faced with inevitable bumps in the road.
The second guest, Aaron Cyr, Director of Assessments and Evaluation at Arizona College, describes the process of planning for remote testing at his institution without a proctoring service by switching to essay-style, open book exams. In a change of plans, Arizona College quickly acquired and trained on a remote proctoring service for high-stakes assessment. Aaron describes his institution’s plans for the Fall 2020 semester, including front-loading more didactic coursework in the current semester in anticipation of returning to on-campus classes in the Fall. Aaron describes success in the next semester at Arizona College as maintaining the same quality and level of education that they had offered on campus, continuing to meet learning outcomes and keeping students calm in a chaotic time. Aaron attests to the importance of tagging assignments to categories and learning outcomes, as these categories can help lend consistency to new classroom formats. By making a habit of tagging to programmatic outcomes, institutions can determine whether their approaches to learning are meeting required criteria and make adjustments where necessary.