83rd Annual

Sunday, 9 February 2003
The Phase-Wise Infusion of AMS Online Weather Studies Materials in Hybrid Science Courses at Paine College, Augusta, GA
C. R. Nair, Paine College, Augusta, GA
Paine College (HBCU/MSI) is a church related, four-year, coeducational, residential liberal arts college, which strives to achieve academic excellence by producing self-sufficient and productive citizens who are committed to intellectual pursuits and esthetic appreciation in a global society. Over twelve decades of its existence, Paine College has been preparing men and women for positions of leadership and encourages them to serve the African American community, the nation, and the world by fostering intellectual growth through courses in humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, mathematics, business administration, and education. One of the important goals of the College has been to stimulate students to develop the spirit of inquiry and critical thinking skills while educating them in the use of emerging technologies. The College is receptive to the fact that there is an acute underrepresentation of minorities in the area of Earth and Environmental sciences, and is currently addressing this challenge.

The College has Internet–ready classrooms where web-based educational materials can be accessed for instructional purpose. For the past three years, the College has been using web-based learning resources from NASA, EPA and DOE for redesigning two hybrid courses: Environmental Science Fundamentals (ESC 101) and the Physical Sciences (PHS 111). Although the College does not offer any fully online course at present, ESC 101 and PHS 111 are conducted partly on-line and partly in-class. They are offered for both science and non-science majors, across the campus. Recently, after attending the AMS/NSF sponsored Course Implementation Workshop at NWSTC in Kansas City, MO, the College faculty got necessary instructional skills and real-time web access for the use of latest weather data, maps, forecasts, and satellite and radar imagery from US National Weather Service as teaching tools for revising these courses by infusing online-weather studies modules. During Fall 2002, the first phase of course implementation took place. The geosciences module in the ESC 101 course was substituted with AMS Online Weather Studies materials. In order to sustain the student interest, throughout the module, daily weather events were discussed with special emphasis on the impact of weather on their daily lives. Students were given ample opportunity to examine daily weather maps and perform daily weather briefings. For the spring semester of 2003, we look forward to the second phase of implementation, with integration of AMS Online Weather science materials along with hands-on laboratory components for the Physical Science (PHS 111) Course. The poster presentation will cover the issues and challenges associated with building the infrastructure that supports a modular approach for the integration of online weather studies materials in preexisting on-line hybrid courses.

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