Professor Barney Beins participated in two symposia and Associate Professor Judith Pena-Shaff participated in one symposium at the annual convention of the American Psychological Association (APA) in Orlando, Florida, this past August.
One of Dr. Beins symposia “Why Joseph Jastrow Would Not Have Texted While Driving” featured ways to incorporate ideas from the history of psychology to teach current concepts. Psychologists have studied people’s ability to multitask, such as driving while texting, and have found that we can’t multitask all that well. But the basic ideas were established by Joseph Jastrow in the 1890s, before the era of cars and telephones. Related findings have surfaced regularly since then. By bringing this historical context into the current classroom, we can show students that the past is still with us. His second presentation titled “The connected world: Books for psychology as a liberal art” focused on the connections Psychology offers across varied disciplines. In this presentation, he discussed nonfiction books that connect psychology to the world around us even though they are not primarily about psychology. The discussion showed how teachers how can incorporate compelling examples of psychology from many different aspects of life and introduce their students to captivating books.
Associate professor Judith Pena-Shaff was the discussant in the symposium titled “Teaching With Affordable Technology to Increase Student Learning: What Works”
This symposium focused on the use of alternate affordable technology in higher education institutions’ psychology courses such. The number of psychology professors adopting Open Educational Resources (OER) that are free to students (e.g. free and editable textbooks and free course management systems such as Moodle) is increasing and therefore it is important to evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. In a time when the costs associated with higher education are jeopardizing students’ access to education, this symposium evaluated the impact of these technologies on student learning and retention.