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Basic Skills in Science?!

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  1. Basic Skills in Science?! Kim-Leiloni T. Nguyen, MD, MPH Professor of Anatomy & Physiology Mt. San Antonio College Los Angeles, CA

  2. Overview The problem globally: shortage in future talents in STEM The problem locally: high drop-out rates

  3. Overview Observation: Science is usually content-dense very different from other disciplines Logic: Success in Science courses will require different skills than other disciplines, skills that many students don’t have

  4. Overview Possible Solution: Teach students these necessary skills Basic Skills in Science *oxymoron because Basic Skill Initiative does not include Science but it does include study skills

  5. Overview 0.5 unit course Credit or no credit Portfolio assignment 8-9 hrs Built on neuroscience research on learning and logic

  6. Curriculum What to do before first day of class What to do before lecture What to do during lecture What to do after lecture What to do before exam What to do during exam What to do after exam

  7. Outcome Start a similar class on your campus Improve student success in the Sciences

  8. Introduction Mt San Antonio College East Los Angeles County, CA 60,000 students largest one-college district Biological Sciences Anatomy & Physiology

  9. What to do before first day of class Time-Management Learning Style* Right vs. Left Brain* Selecting appropriate course time & day Contacting professors for syllabus Registering for course Positive thinking* Must attend first day to add/succeed*

  10. What to do before lecture First exposure to content* Reading techniques process content while reading* Goal: become familiar w/ content Expect to struggle but still try not understand everything takes time Study environment, time, duration, frequency* Break time, activities, duration, frequency*

  11. What to do during lecture Where to sit* Note-taking techniques Goal: listen* (not multi-task)

  12. What to do after lecture Ebbinhaus memory curve How the brain remembers Inputting techniques Memorization strategies Creative flashcards Study groups (tutoring, SI) Goal: get correct info into the brain Sleep & nutrition & emotions*

  13. Ebbinghaus’ Forgetting Curve % retention

  14. What to do before exam Outputting/Review techniques Teaching others (Study groups) Brainstorming Practice test Labeling Goal: practice retrieving content* Sleep & nutrition & positive thinking* Buy supplies

  15. What to do during exam Paper exam vs. practicum Test-taking techniques Goal: remain calm Avoid last-minute crammers & cramming Accept you don’t know everything Positive thinking

  16. What to do after exam Post-Test Analysis Learning from the past to improve the future

  17. Results 2 years 250+ students All have felt this was worthwhile Success stories

  18. Follow-up Contact info: knguyen@mtsac.edu