Symposium report on “Examining the Changing Landscape of Course Delivery and Student Learning”: Experimental Biology 2017


An APS Teaching Section symposium entitled “Examining the Changing Landscape of Course Delivery and Student Learning” was offered at the Experimental Biology conference on April 24th, 2017, in Chicago, IL. The symposium focused on alternative delivery modes of physiology education, from undergraduate to professional programs. Lecture used to be the gold standard and proven method by which students learned, but the course delivery method is rapidly changing. While there is still significant skepticism about the quality and level of student engagement in online learning, it is being offered widely due to increased demand and due to other benefits, such as the flexibility and convenience. Universities with several campuses may now synchronize lectures between campuses, utilizing video conference technology, thus bypassing the need for instructors on each campus. Other modes of delivery include online lectures with laboratories scheduled on campus. Offering biology laboratories online is on the rise but to counter skepticism, more studies are needed to demonstrate that online laboratories effectively meet laboratory objectives. The Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) offers many courses for free and challenges the role of universities. Assessment of the effectiveness of MOOCs and online courses is critical, as some of the concerns raised about them include level of student engagement in learning and the social aspect of interaction with peers and faculty.

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Advances in Physiology Education


American Physiological Society

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