Moving Forward: A Blog Plan for the Fall

We're making new BLOG-er-ific plans for the fall...stay tuned for all the reasons you are happy to be a member of HAPS!
We’re making new BLOG-er-ific plans for the fall…stay tuned for all the reasons you are happy to be a member of HAPS!

I love this time of year.  Even though I am sad that summer is winding down, I feel refreshed from the summer activities involving family and fun and sleep (!), and I start getting excited to gear up for a whole new semester.  Just like the rest of us, the HAPS blog is gearing up for a fresh set of posts.

So here’s the plan for the fall.  After a brief break, the Communication Committee will be doing a new series on all the cool things YOU can find on the HAPS website.  These posts will be published each Monday and our goal is to inspire folks to either renew their HAPS memberships or join for the first time.  HAPS is a really amazing organization that supports its members in such a personal and meaningful way.  Ask any HAPSter: The value of a HAPS membership goes FAR beyond the cost of the annual dues.   It will be fun to follow this set of posts and be reminded on a weekly basis just how many ways HAPS membership supports YOU.

We are also excited to start hearing from HAPS President-elect Betsy Ott .  This will be a great opportunity to learn more about Betsy and some of the exciting things she’s got planned for her time as HAPS President next year.

With this plan in place, if you get a wild hair and want to join the Communication Committee, I’d love to recruit you up to write for our blog!  Just shoot me an email and I’m happy to make it happen (I’ve got skills like that).  And in the meantime, enjoy these last few days of summer and happy new school year to all!

HAPS-I: Rational Course Design

Image from http://www.zazzle.com/rational_as_pi_tshirt-235552823010272068
Maybe I need some lessons on being RATIONAL.
(Tshirt available at Zazzle.com)

I am sometime surprised by the way I can squeeze time out of an apparently packed week. But just like students often “need” the pressure of a quiz to remain diligent in their studies, I find tasks easier to complete if they are linked with looming deadlines.

So! In a moment of brilliant justification, I decided to sign up for Margaret Weck’s HAPS-I course on rational course design. Ready for the justification? It is simple. I will be teaching Human Physiology in the spring semester and have already decided to re-work the entire course. I’ve taught Physio many times in the past and feel it needs a giant overhaul. This means new labs, new lectures, new projects…the whole deal. And of course, I’ve been wondering where I would come up with the time to DO this overhaul—(insert heroic music here!)—HAPS and Dr. Weck to the rescue!

The course description states:  Participants will produce syllabi for new or existing courses that demonstrate the principles of rational course design.  As part of this process sample assignments and assessments will also be developed that could be used in any course to demonstrate student achievement of the A&P Learning Outcomes.  Clearly, this is the perfect opportunity to learn from the amazing Margaret Weck, complete a comprehensive overhaul of my course, and  take advantage, yet again, of all the ways HAPS helps me become a better teacher.

So join me!  This will be a fun class!  You can earn two graduate credits for the course, or just take it for professional development.  And remember—you can still apply for a HAPS-I scholarship to help you pay for the course.  The deadline to apply for this generous award is Friday August 15.

 

HAPS-I Scholarships

The HAPS Institute offers working Anatomy and Physiology instructors the opportunity to earn graduate credits or just gain Professional Development in a variety of flexible formats tailored to their busy schedule.
The HAPS Institute offers working Anatomy and Physiology instructors the opportunity to earn graduate credits or just gain Professional Development in a variety of flexible formats tailored to their busy schedule.

This might surprise you (!) but we Anatomy and Physiology instructors are usually pretty busy people.  HAPS, as usual, aims to support us by offering opportunities for professional development via HAPS Institute (HAPS-I) courses.  These courses are designed to broaden our understanding of our subject by enabling us to participate in interactive learning communities made of peers who are also teaching anatomy and/or physiology.  HAPS-I courses include both subject-specific content as well as practical teaching and learning methodology and in this way exemplify the mission of HAPS as a whole.  Additionally, each course provides participants with the opportunity to publish their work in the peer-reviewed Life Science Teaching Resource Community.  Courses are available in two separate tracts to maximize flexibility for participants, allowing them to earn graduate credits or simply participate in the course for professional development.

The next round of HAPS-I courses are scheduled to begin between August 24 and September 15.  I’d personally like to take all of them.  Dr. Margaret Weck’s course on Rational Course Design “briefly reviews the major concepts associated with the “backwards design” model of rational course development, which stresses the value of thinking through the ultimate outcome goals (both in content mastery and cognitive skill development) for a course as a first step the course design process.”  I want to take that class!  And Dr George Ordway’s course on Advanced Cardiovascular Physiology will “provide college-level instructors with an opportunity to develop their understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the cardiovascular system, including key cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for function of the heart and blood vessels.”  Oooh!  I want to take that class too!  And then Dr. Chad Wayne will be offering THREE classes on reproductive physiology.  Whaaaat?!?!?!  I want to take ALL of those classes!

And not only does HAPS offer these amazing courses, they also offer scholarships to support you in TAKING these cool courses. In fact, the next scholarship deadline is August 15.  To be eligible for this scholarship, you need to be a HAPS member in good standing, you must be a regular full-time employee teaching anatomy and physiology, and you must have a teaching load that includes at least one section/class of anatomy and/or physiology.

So pick the fall HAPS-I course you’d like to complete, and apply for that HAPS-I scholarship by August 15.  And then vote on which class you think should I take!