Teaching Lessons From COVID-19

One Department’s Story of Transformation -- An HBCU Narrative

Authors

  • Janice E. Smith Morgan State University
  • Jana Duckett Morgan State University
  • Laura Dorsey-Elson Morgan State University
  • Joonwoo Moon Morgan State University
  • Angela Hayward Morgan State University
  • David Marshall Morgan State University

Keywords:

e-learning, emergency remote teaching, pandemic, co-creative learning, compassionate teaching, reflexive strategies

Abstract

When the coronavirus pandemic hit the nation, colleges and universities in Maryland canceled face-to-face classes and switched to teaching their courses online in mid-March. The following exploratory study examines how the Department of Strategic Communication at Morgan State University (MSU), the largest historically Black university in the state, adapted aspects of its existing departmental culture in order to pivot to an emergency remote teaching environment during the coronavirus crisis. Through the lived-experience narratives of students, faculty, and staff, this study adds to the conversation about the value of compassionate teaching, community-building, co-creative learning, and course structuration. The article offers reflexive strategies and lessons for developing digital approaches to learning for the present and for crisis situations as a sustainable model.

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Author Biographies

Janice E. Smith, Morgan State University

Dr. Janice E. Smith, APR, is an assistant professor in the Department of Strategic Communication at Morgan State University, where she coordinates the work of The Strategy Shop, a student-run communications agency. Her teaching is informed by her more than 25 years as a public relations practitioner and manager. She has earned the Accreditation in Public Relations and her research interests include diversity and inclusion in advertising and public relations

Jana Duckett, Morgan State University

Jana Duckett is an assistant professor in the Department of Strategic Communication at Morgan State University. Her research interests include polymedia theory, social network theory, big data analysis, cloud protest, and media effects. Her most recent publication is a chapter entitled: “Together We Tweet: A Cloud Protest Exploratory Study Examining the Evolution of #TakeAKnee.” She is currently in the dissertation phase of a Ph.D. program at Regent University.

Laura Dorsey-Elson, Morgan State University

Dr. Laura K. Dorsey-Elson is Director of Instruction and an associate professor of strategic communication in the School of Global Journalism & Communication at Morgan State University in Baltimore, MD.  She specializes in a variety of oral communication areas including leadership and conflict management.  Her formal research explores the intersection of leadership, culture, and conflict in various organizational contexts as well as best practices in college-level teaching. She also often examines the benefit of experiential learning as a high-impact teaching practice in higher education. Her most recent publication is entitled Beyond Distraction: Using Technology to Support Communication Skills Development for Urban-Educated Millennials. (Lexington Books, 2018). 

Joonwoo Moon, Morgan State University

Dr. Joonwoo Moon is an assistant professor in the Department of Strategic Communication at Morgan State University. His research focuses on the intersections of health, digital technology, and strategic communication. He is also interested in health disparities in the United States, especially for African Americans. He has more than six years of university teaching experience as well as professional experience in the fields of entrepreneurship, leadership coaching, and educational curriculum development.

Angela Hayward, Morgan State University

Ms. Angela Hayward is an administrative assistant of strategic communication in the School of Global Journalism & Communication at Morgan State University. Before joining the Department of Strategic Communication, Ms. Hayward worked for the Graduate Program in Psychometrics, Department of Psychology, at Morgan.

David Marshall, Morgan State University

Dr. David Marshall, APR, is Professor and Chair of the Department of Strategic Communication at Morgan State University. His areas of interest are assessment and accreditation and student success. Dr. Marshall’s teaching practices center on the use of multimedia and digital engagement in his classes.

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Published

2020-12-31

How to Cite

Smith, J., Duckett, J., Dorsey-Elson, L. ., Moon, J., Hayward, A., & Marshall, D. (2020). Teaching Lessons From COVID-19: One Department’s Story of Transformation -- An HBCU Narrative. International Journal of Multidisciplinary Perspectives in Higher Education, 5(2), 13–32. Retrieved from https://ojed.org/index.php/jimphe/article/view/2551