Keep Teaching Faculty Spotlight – Kelly Taylor

Name: Kelly Taylor, MS, LMFTA

Department: Human Development and Family Science

College: Health and Human Performance

Course: Internship Courses HDFS 4991 and 4992

Course Description: Usually, I teach these as hybrid courses. The majority of their work is done at one of more than 120 internship sites locally, state-wide, and sometimes throughout the United States. Each student is responsible to work 352 hours on site over the course of the 16-week semester. I monitor students’ progress via monthly reports, internship fair participation, signed time sheets, evaluations from site supervisors and through written assignments.

Since we switched to online teaching, I have had to radically change my expectations for internship students. Because they can no longer safely work on site to complete their hours, I now plan to reduce the goal for hours from 352 to 275. To accomplish these hours, since being on site is no longer feasible, students will be able to accrue hours through alternate means.

I have asked site supervisors to set telework for their internship students when appropriate. Completion of work set by their site supervisors should take priority over other means of accumulating hours. Students will have optional online modules and trainings worth differing amounts of hours. They can select different options according to the number of hours needed to reach their goal and their preference of material. Such online offerings include trainings on child health and safety, teaching those with autism, anxiety reduction, child welfare, etc. Following the trainings, students will be responsible for completing a brief summary or reflection on what they learned before the hours are awarded to them. Students have the option of reading a book on emotional intelligence in the work place for some of their supplemental hours.

I chose this strategy, because these modules and trainings can be completed at home —whether their home is local or in another part of the state or country. They can also, for the most part, be completed on their own time table, so if they have spotty internet or have to share a device with family members it won’t affect their success. Additionally, several of these trainings have certificates attached to them, which will enhance our student interns’ resumes. Students can elect to do all of the modules and trainings if they are behind on internship hours or none if they worked ahead prior to Spring Break, or they can opt to complete them for their own professional development, if they have the time.

These spotlights are meant to spark ideas as we work together as a campus community to continue to facilitate student learning and engagement, possibly in new and creative ways. Some things we do during these unusual circumstances will be extraordinary, some will be good, and some will be just fine for now.

As we share ideas and keep our eyes on our mission, thank you Pirate Faculty, for your commitment to just keep teaching!