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9253Burlington Abstracts

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  • <dianne.chidester@...>
    Apr 16, 2014
      Below are the abstracts I have listed for the meeting. Please check your abstract to make sure your names are listed and spelled correctly and your academic affiliation and location are correct.

      I appreciate your help!


      (alphabetical by first author's last name)

      Aguilera, Kelsie & Weirong Cai

      Teaching Cultural Relativism with Diversity: Hawaiians in Oahu and Hispanics in Miami

      Leeward Community College is one of the seven community colleges in the University of Hawaii system. The majority of our students are from the island of Oahu with Native Hawaiian and Asian-Pacific cultural backgrounds, others are from the United States mainland. Miami-Dade College is the largest and most diverse college in the nation, graduating the most minorities, in particular, Hispanics. In our presentation, we discuss some issues in teaching cultural relativism to demographically diverse student populations, comparing our experiences within the contexts of both Leeward CC and Miami-Dade College. We also introduce how one cultural anthropology course offered at Leeward CC and place-based learning at Miami-Dade College can make cultural relativism most relevant to our students.

      Balzano, Balzano (Sussex County Community College, Newton, NJ)

      Feeding Homo assessmenicus:
      Critical Thinking and Assessment Across the Anthropology Curriculum.

      Accreditation agencies, dominated by the Homo assessmenicus subspecies, are no longer satisfied with well-stated course competencies and academic objectives. It has become increasingly common for Homo assessmenicus to be fed statistical evidence that learning is actually taken place. Community colleges in New Jersey are administratively decentralized with a high degree of local control over curriculum so academic objectives and their assessment are reinvented and customized on every campus. This session will focus on one type of learning outcome: critical thinking skills. Critical thinking skills common to introductory courses across four-field anthropology, applicable by all instructors in every course offering, are identified. The next step, one that is more crucial, is to develop a variety of assessment tools to generate statistical evidence for students learning achievements.

      Beasley, AnnMarie (Cosumnes River College, Sacremento, CA)

      A Seed of Change: Researching and Designing the Flipped Classroom

      With the idea of "flipping the classroom" entering the lecture halls, many faculty are increasingly interested in this methodology and its potential to increase student success, particularly for underprepared and most at-risk students. Conceiving the flipped classroom as one in which students are provided with the tools to acquire core content outside of class and a greater proportion of in-class instruction is allocated to higher order thinking through instructor-guided collaboration and application, we have used the flip to transform instruction of core concepts in our biological anthropology course. A summary of research on flipping methodologies will be shared, as well as the matrix we developed to identify course concepts that would most benefit from flipping and guide the creation of flipped activities.

      Codr, Brad (North Idaho College, Coeur d'Alene, ID)

      "Accepted but Misunderstood":
      Narratives of Evangelical College Students Experiences

      Recent literature in higher education suggests that evangelical Christian students often feel marginalized at public colleges and universities. This paper explores the lived experience of evangelical students through 35 in-depth interviews. What emerges is not a marginalized community, but individuals that are attentive to stereotypes and stigmas associated with their spirituality. Many seek to break such labels through the identity work of living an "authentic" Christian life. Results from this study help us to better understand the evangelical student experience and deconstruct prevailing tropes surrounding this diverse community of learners, while providing knowledge and strategies to help instructors address the needs of this student population when teaching anthropology courses.

      Davis, Dorothy L. (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC)

      Anthropology and the Outer Limits Revisited: First Contact

      UNCG continues to support and broaden its Learning Community programs. At the meetings in Austin, I presented a paper that described the procedures that went into choosing a topic and creating a program for a new learning community in Anthropology. This innovative new LC required that students take three anthropology classes in their first semester of their freshman year. The classes include the standard entry level courses in biological and cultural anthropology and introduced a new class, Anthropology and Science Fiction or Apeman to Spaceman. In this paper, I will review how we structured the course as well as what worked and didn't work from both the faculties' and the students' perspectives.

      Diefenderfer, Alison (Northampton Community College, Bethlehem, PA)

      Cooking Critical Thinking and Metacognitive Munchies in the Online Classroom

      Students' isolation from fellow students, faculty, and support staff formulated much of the earliest critical literature on online higher education. Critics believed online courses faced decreased student motivation, higher withdrawal rates, and generated fewer moments for critical thinking. As those of us who have taught online can attest, these concerns were largely unfounded, although we still need further recipes for success. My hope is to explore what additional pedagogical pathways online anthropology professors can devise and implement for years to come. This endeavor would (1) continue our quest for parity among course offerings, (2) lead to increased persistence, motivation, and "critically reflective" (Brookfield, 1995; Brookfield, 2011) learning for students, and (3) cement online teaching and learning as an option for anthropology going into the future.

      Donohue-Lynch, Brian (Quinebaug Valley Community College, Danielson, CT)

      The College of Wherever, Whenever:
      An Anthropological Look at the Transformation of Higher Education

      Higher education is experiencing a convergence of factors of culture change, which is bringing about a fundamental transformation in the roles and functions of our institutions. These factors spell disruptive change in the institutional certification of learning, and ultimately in where and how we consider certifiable learning to take place. Technologies of online learning and information management are merging with trends in learning assessment; one result is a move away from institutional certification by credit hours and grades, toward effective certification of what students actually demonstrate they are learning, anywhere, any time. As learning is assessed on this basis, rather than on how long students sit in formal classrooms, colleges and universities will have to redefine themselves in relation to this disruptive culture change.

      Fulp & Georgiou (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC)

      Gorrell, Nikki (College of Western Idaho, Nampa, ID)

      Creating Partnerships as a Path to Student Success

      Community colleges may face challenges in providing opportunities for academic success, professional development, and service to the community. By creating partnerships with local universities, state and federal institutions, faculty can provide such opportunities by offering resources and infrastructure that might not be available. By offering interaction with like-minded students and professionals within their area of interest, partnerships provide experiences for curriculum vitaeas that have a lasting impact both scholastically and professionally as students transition onto their career paths. Building such collaborative relationships can place our students on a trajectory that gives them a greater degree of success. This presentation will demonstrate the effectiveness of partnerships through two case-studies that the College of Western Idaho's Anthropology Club students have participated in over the 2013-2014 school year.

      Harasta, Jesse (Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY)

      Playing Malinowski:
      Pedagogical and technical challenges adapting ethnography to a commercial strategy card game

      This paper examines the results of a three-year process of converting a lesson plan about Trobriand Kula Ring economics into a commercially-published strategy card game. In the game, students take up the roles of village leaders struggling for ascendency within a system of tributary economics and competitive feasting. This paper will examine both the pedagogical and technical challenges faced in this project. Major pedagogical concerns included: effectively balancing ethnographic concepts (e.g. tribute, non-state power structures, etc) with gameplay, promoting anti-racism, and adapting the game to a class-room setting. The technical challenges included: determining the proper legal status, acquisition of funding, game design, contracting, and advertising. The uses of crowdfunding (kickstarter) methods will be discussed.

      Johnson, Melvin Arthur (University of Wisconsin Colleges, Manitowoc, WI)

      So, you think satellite global positioning is flawless!!!

      The use of global positioning instrumentation is so come today, that most people rely solely upon its use. The average individual has become very lazy in assuming that this instrumentation is completely accurate at all times. This assumption of accuracy, however, is flawed. In fact there are several flaws in the systems so that the resultant data can be compromised. This paper reviews the problems associated with geospatial positioning instrumentation and the issues as they relate to field work for the archaeologist and the physical anthropologist.

      Mueller, Barbara (Casper College, Casper, WY)

      Volunteering at Teton National Park

      Volunteering to conduct tours and present talks at a National Park is both personally satisfying and an enriching summer opportunity. The speaker will share her experiences and the perks she has received as a volunteer "guest ranger" at Teton National Park for the past six summers. She will also explain how she obtained this position capitalizing on her anthropology teaching experience.

      Mustafic, Danira (The University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD)

      In Her Own Words: An Ethnography of Bosnian Women Refugees in Sioux Falls

      Women belonging to the Bosnian diaspora of Sioux Falls have moved past initial displacement anxieties towards lifestyle and socioeconomic stability. Using a narrative analysis approach I found that despite high levels of resiliency, satisfaction and low levels of perceived discrimination, the Bosnian women struggle with the loss of community, normalcy, identity and traditional family structures. Traditional roles of motherhood, rooted in nostalgic visions of past; defined by strict social hierarchies, a safety net grounded in heavy social involvement and scrutiny coupled with rigid gender norms were lost in the uprooting process, leaving many struggling between Americanized lives and the desire to salvage their Bosnian identify.

      Paskey, Amanda (Cosumnes River College, Sacremento, CA)

      Cultivating Lecture Transformation: Flipping the Instruction of Key Concepts

      Reimagining our biological anthropology course by implementing activities that flipped instruction, we hoped to increase engagement, understanding of core concepts, and course success rates. Selecting topics with semester-long significance likely to have the greatest effect on student success, three core concepts were chosen: the scientific method, natural selection, and biological classification. For each, new activities and teaching methodologies were adopted, incorporating both take-home and in-class components to allow for more student interaction with material outside of lecture and also stimulate increased engagement with classmates and the instructor to guide what is often the most challenging task for students - application. Specific activities will be shared, along with preliminary results and reactions. Broader discussion of how to transform other classes using this method will also be facilitated.

      Sullivan, Tim (Richland College, Dallas, TX)

      Searching for Sasquatch: A Case Study in Critical Thinking

      Current academic trends stress assessment of learning outcomes, and at the top of that list is the ability to demonstrate understanding and application of scientific knowledge and critical thinking. Contemporary events such as a recent (2012) claim in the Huffington Post that DNA from scat analysis 'proves' the existence of Sasquatch, provide grand opportunities to capture student attention and assess how well students have mastered the learning outcomes we designed into our courses. Most of our students are not likely to become scientists, but this case study illustrates how the scientific method can be used to assess student ability to recognize unreliable and untested (and untestable) claims that so often (re) appear in our popular media.

      Dianne Lynn Chidester, Assistant Professor
      Anthropology & Sociology
      Greenville Technical College
      P.O. Box 5616 MS 1042
      Greenville, SC 29607



      "You've got to be taught to hate and fear
      You've got to be taught from year to year
      It's got to be drummed in your dear little ear
      You've got to be carefully taught"
      --Rodgers & Hammerstein South Pacific

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