Several Trocaire College faculty received Faculty Initiative Grants for the Spring 2018 semester. This small stipend is to be used to promote initiatives and innovation in the classroom that will enhance student learning, engagement, and retention.
We will highlight one faculty member per week on the Trocaire Trailblazer blog to highlight this important and exciting work and give a glimpse into what our hard-working faculty members have planned for their classrooms.
Bruce Maki, PhD
My teaching philosophy combines guaranteeing adequate presentation of content while ensuring student engagement in the subject matter before, during and after all class sessions. It is my belief that this model … ensures that students take ownership of their own learning.
Human Biology, Essentials of Anatomy and Physiology (w/ Lab), Anatomy and Physiology 1&2 (w/ Lab), Pathophysiology and Pharmacology, Neurology, Pathophysiology
Faculty Initiative Grant project:
This project is designed to improve student engagement in the laboratory of the Anatomy and Physiology 1 course while outside of the lab, in order to ensure mastery of content inside of the lab. In order to do this, I have created a number of graded “pre-lab” assignments which will improve learning of a session’s content prior to entry into the lab. During the laboratory session, students will practice their knowledge on models and also engage in a new exercise designed for this grant called “Clinical Connections.” This exercise is a challenge problem set that requires application of concepts in a number of the career paths of interest to our students.
What do you hope to gain from the project?
The goal of this project is simple: improve student success in a challenging gateway course to many of the college’s majors. Using data from previous semesters, I have identified a significant correlation between student engagement outside of the laboratory and student success. These activities will encourage all students to engage in the course throughout the week, while the enhanced laboratory activities will provide each student with a greater appreciation of how these concepts will be used in their ultimate career.
More about Dr. Maki:
- SUNY at Buffalo
Bachelor’s of Science, Neuroscience
Bachelor’s of Arts, Mathematics
- University of Rochester
Time at Trocaire:
My teaching philosophy combines guaranteeing adequate presentation of content while ensuring student engagement in the subject matter before, during and after all class sessions. It is my belief that this model makes learning a fluid and gradual process that continues throughout each week and ensures that students take ownership of their own learning.
As a neuroscientist, I am curious in how individual synapses shape human behavior. Specifically, how are our synapses formed, altered and destroyed with our subjective life experiences, and what are the organismal consequences of each one of these neural events?