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The Alverno Story: QL in the Disciplines Sue Mente Qu. IRK/PKAL Workshop October 10 – 12, 2008
Overview of Session • Setting context • About Alverno College • QL Courses
Session overview Getting off the ground ◦ Administration ◦ Faculty ◦ Students Sustaining the program ◦ Faculty support ◦ Training for faculty new ◦ Monitoring Nursing Infusion of Quantitative Literacy Business Education Arts & Science
Setting Context Alverno College ◦ Demographics ◦ Ability based curriculum QL Courses Math is a way to describe, analyze and understand our world. – M. Frankenstein
Explore This Scan pp. 63 - 67 Examining the poverty line and the supplement Yardstick of poverty needs fixing Review p. 68 The story behind the numbers Why would we ask faculty from across the disciplines to engage in this activity?
Reasons for engaging faculty See a broader view of QL • See QL is different than “old math” • See connections to their disciplines • See own potential projection of attitude • We asked for help with data/topics/articles. Why?
QL in the Disciplines Further demonstration of QL ◦ Limited graduation requirement (Shhhh) ◦ Anecdotal external evidence ◦ Transferability concerns context in math vs. math in context
“Yesterday I read an article for Social Science that dealt with a lot of numbers like fractions, decimals and percents. I understood everything except the percents, which still confuse me. But I was proud of myself because I stopped and questioned the numbers to see what they really meant. It was weird to sit and question a social science paper. ”
What do students say? Survey of graduating seniors ◦ See page 69 EXPLORE THIS Comments on our survey? What would you want to know? Generate some questions.
Administration Buy – in & Implications Iron was hot NSF grant $ Needed to have specifics commitment from disciplines and general education
Faculty Buy – in • Set ground work first • Personal contact with key people • $NSF for Summer work time • Does this mean I’d have to teach math? • Some faculty have fears & forgotten skills (“To be honest, I skip the graphs in the text. ”)
Defining QL as a common learning goal Multidisciplinary Not team more math Characteristics that cross disciplinary boundaries Elicit quantitative dimension of your discipline
Power of Criteria Creates Gives a picture of ability faculty language Helps faculty expectations (can expect levels 1 & 2 in level 3) See page 70 for Alverno criteria
Summer workshop EXPLORE THIS See p. 71 opening activity #3 Why might this be effective for faculty? Multidisciplinary Modify groups an assignment/assessment
Sustaining the program See page 72 for follow up questions and inservices Training for faculty new to QL (we are weak here) Monitoring for level of expectation
Database of activities
On-going monitoring Collect We sample assessments and activities would also be interested in your insights on whether your work with QL in the courses you teach for validation has influenced your teaching in other classes.
Re the question of teaching - I LOVE QUANT LIT!!!! It makes the students responsible to their daily studio time and also has them reflect upon how to apply this learning in their own future studio, art therapy or art ed situations. It has also made me much more verbal as a teacher. Before I used to just apply my technical responses to solve problems, now I find in demos that I list the possible reactions and solutions of materials as a component of anything that I present. The road to technical excellence is now less of a secret and physical problem solving and is now more of a discursive studio tactic.