Featured Stories


2015-2016 COIL Fellows selected


Five faculty members will be receiving assistance during 2015-2016 to incorporate international experiences into their courses. Three faculty members from Zanesville, as well as one from Southern and one from Lancaster, are among the Ohio University Regional Higher Education faculty members selected as Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) Fellows.

Successful COIL Fellows from the Zanesville Campus include Lisa Haven, associate professor of English; Sheida Shirvani, professor of Communication Studies; and Gabriela Popa, associate professor of Physics. In addition, Purba Das, associate professor of Communication Studies from the Southern Campus, and Pam Kaylor, associate lecturer of Communication Studies at the Lancaster Campus, were selected.

The COIL initiative, modeled after the SUNY COIL model http://coil.suny.edu, is an example of the innovative pedagogies listed in the Association of American Colleges and Universities’ “High Impact Practices” (HIPs) (https://www.aacu.org/leap/hips). The Diversity/Global Learning practice is in direct alignment with Ohio University’s system-wide global learning strategy. 

The COIL model for curriculum integration of global learning, which involves connecting technologically with an international partner in the classroom, will allow participating faculty fellows to incorporate strategic activities into their curriculum. The program will support developing opportunities for students to experience collaborative learning with faculty and students from other countries who are studying the same or complementary material.

The courses identified for the initial COIL Fellows project include Haven’s American Literature 1918 to Present course, Popa’s Introduction to Astronomy course, Shirvani’s Women and Gender course, Das’ Communication with Culture and Women and Health courses and Kaylor’s Communication Between Cultures course. Each faculty member proposed aspects of their courses that would enhance instruction for their students, but are open to mentoring from those who have already participated in COIL courses.

“I want my students to make connections with students from England, and find out for themselves what those students in England observe on the night sky at a certain time,” explained Popa. “I would like my students to share live observations with students from England and be able to compare and contrast their data and draw their own conclusions.”

Haven stated, “Bringing in the voices of international students and faculty interested in American literature will help to provide our students a new perspective on the 20th and 21st century literature of their home country.”

The five faculty fellows will participate in a COIL Fellows learning community where they will read and discuss the book Globally Networked Teaching in the Humanities and will be mentored by Jenifer Cushman, dean at the Zanesville Campus and associate professor of German, and Korcaighe Hale, associate professor of History at the Zanesville Campus, who will be teaching a multidisciplinary course during Spring Semester.

In Hale and Cushman’s course, students will connect technologically with students in a German-speaking country. Participants will learn about European history, art and culture between WWI and WWII and will follow a German Family in the 1920s while learning basic German. The COIL Fellows will observe the course to gain firsthand experience in the COIL pedagogy.

During Spring Break 2016 the fellows will participate in a COIL-focused training led by Ohio University Academic Technologies in preparation for developing their own COIL courses with international partners. In addition to the training, the fellows will participate in the 2016 SUNY COIL Conference. “It’s one of the most cutting-edge academic/pedagogical conferences I’ve seen,” Cushman shared. “There the fellows will hear about good practices in COIL courses among other valuable information.”

In an article written by Southern Campus’ Traci Tillis, Das stated, “I want students to have first-hand experiences via interaction with faculty or possibly other students from various parts of the world so that they are prepared to work with a diverse workforce in a globalized world.”

“This provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for some regional campus students who may never be able to travel outside the United States,” said Kaylor. “The main reason for my desire to implement COIL in the course is to provide students with an opportunity to practice cultural competence.”

A global experience for the students of Southeastern Ohio underpins all of the fellowship proposals. Shirvani, who is working with colleagues at the regional campuses to investigate the feasibility of infusing COIL throughout the Communication Studies program, stated, “The term globalization means shrinking world and strengthening the awareness in the field as a whole.”

The Ohio University Regional Higher Education (RHE) COIL Fellows program is sponsored by the Ohio University Senior International Management Team in support of the University’s global learning strategy. For more information about the interdisciplinary course being offered Spring Semester, see sidebar story. For more information about the COIL initiative, contact Cushman at cushmanj@ohio.edu.

Interdisciplinary History and German Courses offered Spring Semester 2016

Looking for a unique learning experience to round out your undergraduate experience? Students will connect technologically with students in a German-speaking country in this brand new learning experience scheduled for Spring Semester. Participants will learn about European history, art and culture between WWI and WWII and will follow a German Family in the 1920s while learning basic German.

To gain the full experience register for both HIST3640 (course #11644), Europe between World Wars 1919-1939, a three-credit hour course taught by Dr. Korcaighe Hale that will meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 10:50 a.m. In addition, register for  ML2900 (course #12569) Special Topics in Modern Languages, a one-credit online basic German course, taught by Zanesville Campus Dean and associate professor of German, Dr. Jenifer Cushman. The German course will be conducted online with occasional synchronous meetings.

Both courses are both fully accessible either in person at the Zanesville campus or through OULN or WebEx. All course materials, narrated PowerPoints, and weekly assignments will be posted on Blackboard. For more information, email halek@ohio.edu or cushmanj@ohio.edu.