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avatar for Nicole States

Nicole States

University of Iowa
Graduate Research Assistant


I am a graduate student at the University of Iowa working under Renée Cole conducting Chemistry Education research. My current research is analyzing aspects of facilitation (instructional approaches and task design) and the role they play in shaping classroom norms. I compare this alongside student interactions to determine what instructional practices promote or hinder student engagement in a large lecture hall setting. Outside of my research activities I am the executive assistant for the Graduate Student Senate (GSS). This allows me to meet with the deans of the graduate college and have an impact on many issues across campus. Within GSS, I am a part of a teaching committee as well. In this position, I have helped develop and facilitate microaggression trainings for teaching assistants. We began this endeavor by developing it for the chemistry department because the most motivation lied there. I am now helping to transform the training to have a broader scope so it can be implemented across campus. With this I will also be involved in training facilitators to implement the training within their departments and providing tips on how they can customize it. Additionally, we hold events that aim to connect teaching assistants across campus to discuss concerns and celebrate successes in teaching and build comradery across disciplines. Within the chemistry department, I am a member of the Graduate Student Advisory Board where we work as an intermediary between the graduate students and faculty of the department to implement changes and activates. We host events to connect graduate student across groups and work to provide panels for graduate students with alumni and members of the scientific community. I am also a part of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Cohort in the department where we are working towards making a more equitable and inclusive environment in the chemistry department. I have led an endeavor to make resources across campus more accessible and been involved with hosting meetings about different topics such as anti-racism and facilitated discussion from an equity challenge that United Way developed. I believe that I have gone above what an average graduate student has done to get involved in not only the chemistry department, but at the university level as well.


POSTER TITLE: Effects of instructional practices on student interactions

THEME: Student experiences and affect

ABSTRACT:
The classroom environment is shaped by factors such as: facilitation style, curricular design, and classroom layout. These factors are all inputs into student framing of the classroom environment and affect a student’s comfort interacting within it. Promoting student discourse in active learning environments provides students the opportunity to explain their thinking and develop their understanding of natural phenomena. However, it is often difficult to successfully implement these practices in large lecture environments. Additionally, although active learning strategies have been seen to increase learning gains; the level at which students are performing is unequal across student populations. It is important for programs to create inclusive and equitable learning environments so that all student populations feel accepted into the scientific community and persist throughout the program. Undergraduate introductory chemistry lectures were investigated to identify the effects that instructional practices had on student engagement. Instructor facilitation, task design, and student interactions were analyzed and compared to provide insights into what instructional practices may promote or hinder student engagement in a large enrollment course.

Unsure if this will work:
file:///R:/Cole%20Group/Presentations/Posters/Conference%20Posters/States_Nicole_XDBER2021Poster.pdf
Monday, March 1
 

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