NMU classrooms are connecting with the world to increase learning opportunities. Kathryn Johnson, a history professor, is teaching a world history class (HS105) in which students are participating in three video conferences with experts throughout the world. Johnson said that these opportunities have provided another avenue to help students understand the concepts discussed in class.
In the first video conferences, students spoke with Nihal Abdulazim, a Fulbright professor from Egypt who is currently teaching at Indiana University - Bloomington. Abdulazim spoke about current events in Egypt and the connections of those to the country’s history. Johnson said that there was positive student response, and it helped students think differently about the history they were learning in class. About this experience, students wrote, “A great really conference. I’m sad not everyone on campus could be here,” and “Very interesting. Wish other courses did this.”
Since that first presentation, students have spoken with an expert from the Inner Asian & Uralic Natural Resource Center about the silk roads and an expert from the Smithsonian regarding Native American art.
Johnson said she was impressed with the students’ thoughtful and thorough analysis of the video conferences as seen by their written responses, and she hopes to do it again with her classes.