Centralized course creation and student enrollment increase efficiency
A math emporium implements an enterprise solution to ensure that students meet learning outcomes
A longtime user of Pearson’s MyMathLab®, an adaptive online learning tool, Bowling Green State University (BGSU) decided to move to an emporium model for its developmental math and College Algebra courses in 2012. The university made this decision in order to help standardize the curriculum across sections. Although all the sections were using MyMathLab, individual instructors used different grading scales, assignments, and assessments, which impacted student learning outcomes.
By moving to an emporium model, the department could decrease the number of sections per course because each emporium section could accommodate seventy or more students versus traditional classes, which could accommodate approximately twenty-five students. Fewer sections meant fewer instructors who might modify the curriculum. But the emporium’s coordinators were still concerned that the course curriculum was not uniform enough.
The emporium’s coordinators were also concerned that the larger section sizes would impede student enrollment in MyMathLab. To enroll, students have to purchase an access code from the bookstore and create an account. Historically, many students waited until the last minute to buy their course materials and then needed instructor assistance to troubleshoot technical issues, delaying student learning. Increasing the number of students per section could increase the delays exponentially.
To address these concerns, BGSU decided to implement an enterprise solution when it moved to the emporium model. “We transitioned over to MyLabsPlusTM hoping to make our lives easier and our students’ lives easier,” explained Michelle Heckman, Mathematics Emporium co-coordinator and instructor, Mathematics Department. Since its implementation, the enterprise solution has greatly simplified course and section creation.
Michelle described the process: “We create the coordinator courses in MyLabsPlus and then from the coordinator course, build out the individual sections. We give instructors extremely limited access to what they can change. They cannot change assignments, exams, or quizzes. They can add an extra practice, but they can’t make it part of the student’s grade.”
The enterprise solution has also streamlined student enrollment. Instead of depending on students to purchase their course materials, create a username and password, and enroll, the process is now automated.
Michelle is thrilled with the efficiencies and standardization gained from the enterprise solution. “Last fall we went to nineteen sections of four different courses. So we built out seventy-six sections per semester in MyLabsPlus. It is so much easier now to set up those sections and control what can and can’t be done by other instructors who are teaching the course.”
We use MyLabsPlus because it makes our lives easier when it comes to student access to services and building courses.
Michelle Heckman, Mathematics Emporium Co-Coordinator and Instructor, Mathematics Department
Student enrollment and access issues have also improved with MyLabsPlus. “The students are pre-loaded,” Michelle noted. “When they go in, they hit their module button, and a new window opens. They’re automatically populated into the right course.” Students no longer have to remember a username and password.
Michelle concluded, “We really need our courses to be standardized. We use MyLabsPlus because it makes our lives easier when it comes to student access to services and building courses. It is a product we believe in.”
To learn more about BGSU’s MyLabsPlus implementation, read the full success story.
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