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Academic Innovation & Effectiveness
Academic Innovation & Effectiveness
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May 2006 Commencement Marching Card Results


Total number of undergraduate respondents = 582 (out of 599 marching graduates = 97% response)

What do you think makes for a truly inspirational teaching professor? Please rank the traits in order of importance (1 being most important).

_____Integrates and connects new learning with prior learning

_____Introduces new, surprising, even shocking ideas

_____Cultivates academic, one-on-one relationships with students

_____Holds high expectations that challenge limits of performance

_____Opens new opportunities

_____Manifests great content knowledge

_____Develops cooperative behavior so students learn from each other

_____Encourages active, self-motivated learning

_____Gives prompt feedback on student performance

_____Respects diverse talents and ways of learning

_____Other_________________________________________

_____Other_________________________________________

Commentary: The traits listed here are those that SIUE graduating students chose as identifying an inspirational teaching professor, not merely an adequate one or even an excellent one. Consistently ranking at or near the top were "integrates and connects new learning with prior learning," and "cultivates professional, one-on-one relationships with students." However, some traits that students recognize as valuable and that researchers in the field know to be important for good learning, such as "gives prompt feedback on student performance," did not attain a high ranking here. A low ranking for such traits does not imply that they are of low importance to students or that they are not the marks of an effective teaching professor. We believe it does mean that while such traits are appropriately regarded as important for teaching and learning excellence, they were not identified by SIUE graduating students as the distinguishing marks that separate out the inspirational teaching professor.

I ntegrates and connects

Introduces new ideas

Cultivates academic relationships

Holds high expectations

Opens opportunities

Manifests content knowledge

Develops student cooperation

Encourages active learning

Gives prompt feedback

Respects diverse talents

Arts & Sciences

(N=201 out of 213 = 94% response)

Mean Ranking

4.46

5.85

4.69

4.83

5.4

5.63

6.31

5.1

6.68

5.93

Standard Error

0.21

0.21

0.21

0.22

0.18

0.18

0.19

0.19

0.2

0.21

Business

(N=113 out of 114 = 99% response)

Mean Ranking

3.73

5.05

3.75

5.83

5.35

6.6

5.75

6.02

6.21

6.25

Standard Error

0.22

0.28

0.26

0.29

0.24

0.23

0.25

0.27

0.27

0.28

Education

(N=177 out of 179 = 99% response)

Mean Ranking

4.61

6.88

4.19

4.84

5.44

6.68

5.74

4.12

7.38

4.99

Standard Error

0.19

0.2

0.21

0.21

0.19

0.19

0.19

0.2

0.19

0.22

Engineering

(N=60 out of 62 = 97% response)

Mean Ranking

3.37

5.07

4.57

5.75

5.31

5.48

5.69

6.07

6.03

7.19

Standard Error

0.33

0.38

0.36

0.42

0.33

0.31

0.33

0.34

0.39

0.37

Nursing

(N=31 out of 31 = 100% response)

Mean Ranking

3.57

5.3

4.19

4.97

5.62

5.27

6.55

5.8

6.5

6.6

Standard Error

0.4

0.53

0.52

0.52

0.51

0.5

0.4

0.55

0.56

0.57

Students wrote in other traits. While the number of times these traits were mentioned was not high enough to acquire ranking status in the table above, the traits themselves are listed below. The number of times each was mentioned is shown in parentheses.

Arts & Sciences: Humor (12), ensures a friendly learning environment (11), respects and believes in students (11), doesn't make judgments based on students' GPAs, politics, or religions (11), learns names and makes personal connections (1), helps make learning enjoyable (1), acts with professionalism (1)

Business: Has real-world knowledge (1)

Education: Is personable (11), cultivates creativity (2), motivates enthusiasm (1), provides a student-centered environment (1), inspires excellence in every aspect of life (1)

Engineering: Listens (11), is entertaining (2), speaks English clearly (1)

Nursing: Connects with students on their level (1)

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