Faculty-led Inquiry into Reflective and Scholarly Teaching (FIRST)


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Course portfolio developed as part of the UNL Peer Review of Teaching Project (peerreview.unl.edu)

Copyright (c) 2016 Maital Neta


In this portfolio, I am assessing student learning in a mid-level Psychology course, Psyc 287: Psychology of Personality. The course introduces students to the major theories of personality, and covers a wide array of topics intended to provide a broad overview of issues in the field. The course attracts a somewhat representative sample of UNL students, including non-majors, and therefore most are from Nebraska. The course is not a prerequisite to any other courses, but it could be a useful foundation course for students pursuing a career in psychology research, and it could also help people to consider issues related to differences across people in a wide variety of work and social environments, where it is vital that we coexist in a peaceful and productive manner. In this large lecture-based course, my goal as the instructor is to provide a platform for which all kinds of students – regardless of their motivation for taking the course – can benefit. In-class activities include lectures and videos, with an opportunity to demonstrate learning through a series of practice exam questions from each lecture presented at the end of that lecture. Assessment is based on four exams, two papers, and a series of short writing assignments. Here, I outline the changes made to this course, and the impact of these changes on student learning. For example, I found the second paper and the short assignments to be useful in helping students achieve the course objectives, and I also found that exam questions that require students to apply their knowledge were useful. Finally, I outline my plans for future changes to this course, based on the valuable experience acquired through this program.