I'm always amazed how quickly the 14 plus weeks of the semester seem to go by. At the end of this 43rd semester teaching introductory nutrition to undergraduates, I ask myself if they've been equipped to navigate the evolving and often confusing arena of nutrition. My university does not have a nutrition major and thus this is the only nutrition course most will ever take. The goal was not to create nutrition "experts", but to ignite their interest, expose them to the many facets of nutrition, acquaint them with credible sources of information to which they might return, and to heighten their nutrition literacy. It is my hope that they are better able to evaluate what they read and hear about nutrition through a discerning lens. I also seek to "free" them from dogmatic thinking and behavior around food. I have often thought back on the art appreciation and music appreciation courses I took in college - I never went to a gallery or a concert the same way again - I developed an appreciation for the fundamentals of these arts as well as the talent and nuances of artists and musicians. Intro nutrition is in a sense a nutrition appreciation course - intended to develop an understanding and cultivate appreciation for the complex and changing field of nutrition. And for the nutrition professionals that may cross their paths personally or professionally. Best to all!
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For most semesters, my classes were at least 75 minutes and sometimes even longer. I often incorporated media and in-class activities to both break up the lecture and to allow opportunity to apply and reflect on what was being covered. For me, including some of this content within a recorded or narrated asynchronous lecture make it too long and somewhat cumbersome. Thus, I set up reflection "quizzes” in my LMS (D2L – Brightspace) to follow (or could be adapted as pre-lecture reflections) viewing of the recorded lecture for each chapter. I set them up as credit for completion and primarily written response answers. Quite a few of the questions and links to articles or videos were part of my face-to-face class. These are intended as a way to apply or reflect upon lecture content rather than a graded assessment per se (I assign Learning Curve and Summative quizzes in Launchpad for that purpose). Students have commented that they actually enjoy these reflection quizzes - and I note some decide to complete them before the lecture. And I've actually enjoyed coming up with ideas and writing these. Please find attached the questions I've developed thus far for Chapters 1, 4, 5 and 6. Feel free to use or adapt them if interested! Per request, I’d be happy to share some of the student responses to some of the questions – been amazed at their insightful and often lengthy answers to some of the questions!
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