I feel your pain about what some of our Criminal Justice and Bio folks initially disdainfully referred to as the "touchy feely crap." My tack that works most -- not all -- of the time is to drive them back to DWF (Drop, Withdraw, Failure) numbers and complaints of "lazy, unmotivated" students. I always frame this for them in terms of my experience with my own courses, as I had my Fink-inspired "Should had a V8 moment". I too grumbled and huffed and puffed about those darn student slackers, but had never asked myself the hard question about what I CONSCIOUSLY and BY DESIGN  built into my courses to motivate or engage my students at a personal level. nor had I looked hard at my DWF rates and wonder WHY they gave up on the class...

Usually I have the advantage of working with our faculty when they are vulnerable and quasi-receptive as they are creating distance versions of their courses, which I think helps this discussion -usually- move faculty out of the defensive "touchy feely" trenches and consider the real merits of this approach.

Finally, while this is indeed tricky water for quantifiable success and requires persistence  --certainly a tactic that will motivate one student may not phase or touch another - I think that the *attempt* itself is important and transformative.

I too would like to know other ways folks are navigating these waters??

PS - Our Department refers to our course design consults as proselytizing Finkism ;D

Mike Welker
History Adjunct Faculty
& Interim Coordinator, Distance Learning
North Central State College
Mansfield, Ohio
(419) 755-4706 - ofc.
[log in to unmask]
Room 163 Kehoe (Shelby)
Campus Mail: AT-27

"Remember, I'm pulling for you... we're all in this together. Keep your stick on the ice." -Red Green

On Wed, Jun 9, 2010 at 12:48 PM, Denise Domizi <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Hi folks,
I work at the Center for Teaching and Learning at UGA and we have gone through the course design process with many faculty members now (in-house we affectionally call it, "Finking your course") through workshops and even a week-long Maymester Institute. In the fall I'll be teaching the process to a group of graduate students through a semester-long course.

The question we constantly hear from faculty is, how do we assess for things on the left side of Fink's taxonomy? And what if they don't achieve those goals? ("Do we flunk them if they don't develop caring goals?"). While I am very comfortable with the taxonomy, many faculty we talk to are very unsure of having goals that can not be (in their words) "measured." My impression is that I'm not answering their concerns to their satisfaction because I feel like I still see a hint of doubt in some of their eyes. I'm wondering how others deal with this question.


Denise Pinette Domizi, Ph.D.
Associate Coordinator of Faculty and TA Development
Center for Teaching and Learning, North Instructional Plaza
University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602 - (706) 542-6572