–Dr. Tim Kochery–
Chair of the Business Program
Jeff Shmidl, Chair of the Business Department, has been an instructor at LCCC for the past eleven years. An innovator, Jeff enjoys implementing new ideas and applications for instruction to improve his student’s learning experience. An important aspect of his teaching philosophy is to get students more involved and engaged with their own learning by creating a variety of active learning opportunities.
Last semester, Jeff implemented a flipped classroom model to incorporate more hands on actives and more opportunities for students to review and process important course content. As part of this new design, Jeff records his lectures through the Tegrity video capture system which then links these lectures to his D2L course site, where they are available to his students on an anytime/anywhere basis. The class then meets to review these lectures, ask questions, and discuss key concepts. Next, Jeff presents the class with case studies and problem-based scenarios. Then the students work out solutions in small groups and share their results with the whole class.
However, he also wanted to offer more flexible access to his courses, especially to individuals that may not be able to attend any face-face classes. Jeff began working with the Center for Learning Technologies to develop online versions of his courses using D2L, and incorporating his recorded lectures. He was one of the first LCCC faculty to use the online course design template developed by the CLT. This template provides a standardized organization and navigation structure for the course, plus facilitates HTML 5 coding, enabling the course to be viewed on mobile devices such as tablets and cell phones. Jeff found this course template and the associated instructional design process “…very beneficial at helping him identify and apply best practices to transform his course for online delivery”. In addition, this experience motivated him to explore and investigate new strategies to improve his own design of online course materials and activities.
Jeff is very pleased with the CLT’s course template and course re-design process. He appreciates the orderly arrangement of course materials and the ease this affords students to navigate the course and readily find various course components. He also likes the standardization afforded by the template which can be applied to other courses within the program. Previously, the range of designs for the online Business courses caused difficulties for students to adapt to these various course structures, plus become familiar with navigating and locating the required course materials and activities. In order to provide a consistent and more familiar learning experience, Jeff hopes to have the Business Department use this template for all their online courses that articulate to the University of Wyoming. Additionally, Jeff has observed the beneficial impacts that an increased number of online offerings has made for the entire program. These courses have allowed a more diverse and wider range of students to access these courses and further advance their educational goals.