Resiliency during a challenging time

Submitted by Todsapon T. / University of Evansville on Thu, 12/17/2020 - 12:45
Reflection Piece 2

For many of us, the past two semesters may have been the most challenging semesters that we have ever had, not only with classes suddenly being shifted online, but also many other administrative issues like a decrease in enrollment and academic support that negatively affect our morale and our ability to teach.

A Welcome to the Chemistry Learning and Teaching Community

Submitted by RTMacaluso / University of Texas Arlington on Wed, 12/16/2020 - 09:08
Reflection Piece 2

As I reflect over the past two years as a VIPEr Fellow, I cannot help thinking about Raphael’s fresco, Scuola di Atene (School of Athens). Now, to liken the VIPEr fellows with Plato and Aristotle would be far-fetched.

Becoming the instructor I knew I wanted to be

Submitted by Caroline Saouma / University of Utah on Wed, 11/11/2020 - 21:37
Reflection Piece 2

I signed up to be a VIPEr fellow the first year I taught undergrad chemistry. The class was taught traditionally, and I struggled to teach it effectively. Many of my students have families and/or work, leaving little time for studying outside of class (course enrollment ~ 60-80 students). I relied on this website extensively for ideas to make class time more fun and interactive, so being a fellow made sense to me. In addition to being more effective at teaching, I wanted to create a nurturing and inclusive environment. 

If a tree falls in the forest (lecturing on Ligand Field Theory) but no one’s listening, does it make a sound?

Submitted by Gary L. Guillet / Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus on Mon, 09/28/2020 - 15:54
Reflection Piece 2

My charge with this reflection is to try and communicate how being a Fellow impacted my teaching of inorganic chemistry and, more broadly, how participation as a Fellow impacted me as an educator between the 2019 school year, the workshop the following summer, and the 2020 school year.

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Solids

Submitted by Kari Young / Centre College on Mon, 08/10/2020 - 15:51
Reflection Piece 2

For VIPEr Fellows, there are two types of people: bonding and solids. Fellows are asked to pick one of these two common topics in foundational inorganic chemistry courses as a specific focus for our course transformation efforts. When I became a Fellow, I joined the “solids” group for two reasons.

Building confidence one workshop at a time

Submitted by Todsapon T. / University of Evansville on Wed, 10/30/2019 - 13:43
Reflection Piece 1

The workshop was an eye-opening experience on how I develop, implement, and assess my inorganic chemistry class.  Information shared by the other fellows were highly valuable and instructive.  I learned a lot about different styles and new ideas of teaching.  I have to be honest that I was (still am) more of a traditional instructor and I was skeptical of implementing online materials such as those in the IONiC VIPEr website.  However, the workshop included many hands-on experiences which gave me directions and built my confidence in incorporating online materials in class.

Neoteric Views on setting up the teaching goal

Submitted by Weiwei Xie / Louisiana State University on Wed, 10/23/2019 - 13:54
Reflection Piece 1

I had been teaching Advanced Inorganic Chemistry for three years before the workshop. I was struggling with various students' backgrounds: some are undergraduate students, some are graduate students; some graduate students already learned advanced inorganic chemistry when they were undergraduate students; some had not. It seemed impossible to set up concordant goals for the class. 

A community of like-minded people yields a rich experience

Submitted by Carmen Gauthier / Florida Southern College on Mon, 10/07/2019 - 07:19
Reflection Piece 1

The opportunity to be a VIPEr fellow has provided me with a new network of colleagues that share a common objective – teaching inorganic chemistry. This program has given me the opportunity to reflect on my teaching and adopt new strategies that I can bring to the classroom and share with my students, and for that I am forever grateful.  For example, I plan to include more current literature discussions, not only in my inorganic chemistry courses, but also in the forensic chemistry course I teach.

How Can Being a VIPEr Fellow Work for Me?

Submitted by Anne Bentley / Lewis & Clark College on Mon, 09/23/2019 - 17:29
Reflection Piece 1

Let’s be honest, everyone. Being a VIPEr Fellow is not always as easy as enjoying beers at Ford’s Garage in Dearborn or discussing the nuances of hard soft acid base theory while walking back to the workshop hotel in the Michigan sunshine. Being a Fellow is hard work! There are consent forms and surveys to organize, classes to video record, and conceptual questions and an ACS exam to deliver. And all of this work falls on top of teaching our usual engaging and thoughtful foundation-level courses. Some days, you may wonder if it’s all worth it.