Open Geology Website

By | June 16, 2017

This post was contributed by Shannon Othus-Gault, Geology and General Science Instructor, Chemeketa Community College. It describes her process in having students contribute to the website GEO143 Mineral Webpages. Shannon received an OER Champion Award for open pedagogy in recognition of her innovative approach to using OER to teach geology. 

To begin the open pedagogy assignment, students got into groups of 3, and each group picked a mineral out of a hat. I made each student group a shared folder in Google Drive and placed a template in each folder. Groups were also given a sheet that described what would be required for each section of their webpage.

I required a bibliography and in-text citations. I was also very picky about their wording and sentence structure in order to avoid plagiarism. They handed in a first draft which I edited using suggestions and comments in the Google doc.

Students then had a few more weeks to revise and update their webpages before I added them to the website. I let them have a little leeway in formatting because I wanted their voices and personalities to come through. Groups also gave presentations on their findings to the class.

This was a very collaborative project, both between the students in their groups as well as with me. I’m pleased that I was able to improve the students’ skills in using Google docs, creating bibliographies and in-text citations, and working in a group. I have ideas about pieces to change for the next run since these students were my guinea pigs.