Engineering Instructors’ Teaching Experiences During a Forced Move to Remote Instruction

Event Date: April 22, 2021
Speaker: Dr. Grace Panther
Speaker Affiliation: Assistant Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Nebraska – Lincoln
Time: 3:30 - 4:30 PM
Location: Online
Priority: No
School or Program: Engineering Education
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Grace Panther
Dr. Grace Panther

Many universities announced in mid-March 2020 that all courses taught in classrooms would be delivered online for the remainder of the semester due to the alarming spread of COVID-19. This requirement meant that instructors had no choice but to change their teaching practices immediately. The requirement to rapidly change teaching practices across the country has rarely occurred and may mark a critical time of change in how university courses are taught and how university instructors view teaching. The unfolding response to the COVID-19 mandate to teach remotely (online) provided a unique, one-time opportunity for ground-breaking research to study how forced changes to instruction influenced instructors’ teaching experience. 

The overall goal of this NSF RAPID grant was to identify cognitive and emotional themes concerning instructors’ adaptability and community engagement during a forced change. To accomplish this goal, surveys and interviews were used to track the teaching experiences of instructors. Two research questions guided the project: 1) During a crisis, how do engineering instructors’ experience a sudden change in course delivery (with a focus on cognition, emotions, and community engagement)? 2) How do these experiences vary throughout the duration of the crisis? 

This seminar will focus on the data analysis conducted thus far and share preliminary results. Additionally, due to the on-going nature of the work, future directions will be discussed. 

Speaker Bio

Dr. Grace Panther is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln where she conducts discipline-based education research. Her research interests include faculty change, 3D spatial visualization, gender inclusive teamwork, and studying authentic engineering practice.  Dr. Panther has experience conducting workshops at engineering education conferences both nationally and internationally, has been a guest editor for a special issue of European Journal of Engineering Education on inclusive learning environments, and serves on the Australasian Journal of Engineering Education advisory committee.  Dr. Panther received both her Ph.D. and M.S. in Environmental Engineering from Oregon State University.