St. Petersburg College communications professor Dr. Jennifer Haber received a national award for using social media and technology to engage her students.
Haber is the 2013 recipient of Crestron’s Summum Bonum Award. Latin for “the highest good,” the national award is presented to teachers with a track record of improving student achievement and making a difference in the lives of their students.
A national provider of classroom equipment, Crestron will present Haber with a plaque and a check for $2,000 at an event on the Tarpon Springs Campus on Jan. 15, 2014.
“Technology is everywhere and evolves constantly,” Haber said. “As educators it’s important that we keep trying new technologies that can help our students be better learners.”
Haber finds time to learn about and test new technologies by utilizing the resources and expertise her campus Instructional Design Technologist (IDT) provides.
“Jennifer is always reaching out to explore new ways to solve challenges with technology,” said Karen Hesting, Tarpon Springs IDT. “She is not just adding technology to make her course shiny. She is doing it to help her students succeed.”
Each term she picks one or two new technologies to learn about and decide if they will help her students be more successful. This term it was Facebook groups and ANGEL rubrics.
On Facebook, students not only are responding, but also are initiating conversations on content and reaching out to her and other students.
“It’s not about being complicated or overly techie but about knowing your audience and learning how to communicate with this generation where they are at,” she said. “I login to ANGEL maybe once a day to check for student communications. Facebook notices on my phone are an ongoing conversation with my students. I want them to know I am available. It’s not like I respond instantly all the time. But when I can and it matters – I do.”
Sample Facebook Group conversation with students.
ANGEL 8 includes a grading rubric that connects to drop boxes, discussion forums, and essay type assessment questions. Check out a recent Technology Project and the Rubric developed for the assignment.
Top Tech Tools
Here are a few of Haber’s top technology and social media picks and how she uses them:
- ANGEL rubrics – for grading
- Google Voice – for communication
- Facebook – for discussion
- Twitter – for content/readings
- SnagIt – for paper review
- Turnitin – for paper review and plagiarism detection
- YouTube – for content
- Camtasia – for content
WITS Blog Resources
Awards and conferences
In addition to the recent Crestron award, Haber also received the CETL Critical Thinking Grant (2012) and Travel Grant (2013). Funds from the travel grant were used to present at the Sloan Blended Learning Conference in July 2013 in Milwaukee, WI. She also attended the Campus Technology conference this summer in Boston.
Dr. Jennifer Haber has been teaching at SPC for 15 years, full-time for the last 12. Her educational background is in teaching and technology. Her bachelor’s and master’s degrees are in English from the University of Florida and University of Central Florida respectively. Her Ph.D. is in Curriculum and Instruction with a cognate in Instructional Technology from the University of South Florida. At home, she is a soccer mom with two children ages 8 and 11. She loves to travel with her husband and children and has a goal for her children to visit all 50 states.
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