Using images of science and ethics from popular culture in a Focus course

Amy Laura Hall, Director of the Doctor of Theology Program,
Associate Professor of Theological Ethics, Duke Divinity School

Project description

Teaching a Freshman Focus course for the first time, Amy Laura Hall received a CIT Course Design Grant to design class activities that would introduce the students to collaboratively researching and analyzing images and would allow her to integrate her research with teaching.

Students in the course investigate the development of views about ethics and science and how they are reflected in popular culture. Hall wanted students to learn how to research and analyze images from magazines, advertisements and other sources and wanted students to share images for class discussions and use in papers and other projects. Hall explored how she could best organize and present the student images and projects using blog, wiki and discussion board tools in Blackboard, and located resources students could use through the Library to find and scan images.

Hall had mixed results in using Blackboard for the activities, since the software is not designed for easily sharing and sorting images for student use. She continued refining the syllabus and activities, eliminating aspects of the course where the students assembled metadata concerning the images and the redesigned course was taught in Fall 2007.

Project start date: 4/2006
Funding awarded: $5,000