Teaching Professionalism in an Online Environment

Concurrent Session 6

Brief Abstract

Learning outcomes are often tied to knowledge and skills needed for student career choices, but standards of professionalism are left unaddressed, leading many students to enter the workforce without crucial professional attributes. Join us as we discuss strategies for making your online classroom the perfect training ground for budding professionals.

Presenters

Dacia M. McCoy, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor- Educator at the University of Cincinnati in the Behavior Analysis Programs. In 2015, she earned her Ph.D. in School Psychology from the University of Cincinnati. She previously worked in the education field in a number of different positions since 2006 that included being an elementary school teacher, middle school special education teacher, and Board Certified Behavior Analyst at the doctoral level. She enjoys finding ways of incorporating strategies of effective instruction within the large enrollment online courses at the University of Cincinnati and participates in collaboration and leadership roles within her School and College to support Best Practices in Teaching and more specifically in supporting online students.

Extended Abstract

Learning outcomes are often tied to knowledge and skills needed for student career choices, but standards of professionalism are left unaddressed, leading many students to enter the workforce without crucial professional attributes. Furthermore, unprofessional communication or behavior from students unique to the online environment can leave instructors frustrated and with conflicted feelings on how to proceed. Research shows that professionalism must be taught explicitly and used in authentic contexts (Brown et al., 1989; Cruess & Cruess, 2006). There is an opportunity within each academic course to implement professional development activities for students and apply them specifically to their intended career fields.

As indicated by a recent article from Sherrer and Prelip (2018), published research on best practices for career and professional development training for academic programs is limited. According to Shivpuri and Kim (2004), professional development skills, including networking, teamwork, and leadership give students a competitive hiring edge. Implementing professional development activities are recommended in multiple studies (Wendlandt & Rochlen, 2008 and Murphy et al., 2010) that explore college-to-work transition models. College student success is important to the university and program reputation, as well as the student’s trajectory. Emphasizing professional development within a student’s program can enhance success and help to foster continued relationships with community partners employing and mentoring future students.

Individuals attending this presentation will be able to discuss several strategies for teaching professionalism in an online environment. They will be able to describe a preventative approach in which behavior and low engagement are reframed to standards of professionalism. Time will also be provided for attendees to apply the information shared to their own endeavors, and provide and receive feedback with other session attendees regarding the unique adaptations of the session information.

References

Brown, J. S., Collins, A. & Duguid, P. (1989). Situated cognition and the culture of learning. Educational Researcher, 18, 32-42.

Cruess, R. L., & Cruess, S. R. (2006). Teaching professionalism: General principles. Medical Teacher, 28(3), 205-208.

Murphy, K., Blustein, D., Bohlig, A. & Platt, M. (2010). The college-to-career transition: An exploration of emerging adulthood. Journal of Counseling & Development, 88(2), 174-181. doi:10.1002/j.1556-6678.2010.tb00006.x

Sherrer, K. J., & Prelip, M. L. (2018). A Multifaceted Approach to Public Health Career and Professional Development Training. Health promotion practice, doi: 10.1177/1524839918783744.

Shivpuri, S. & Kim, B. (2004). Do employers and colleges see eye-to-eye?: College student development and assessment. NACE Journal, 65, 37-44.

Wendlandt, N. & Rochlen, A. (2008). Addressing the college-to-work transition. Journal of Career Development, 35(2), 151-165. doi: 10.1177/0894845308325646