Lessons Learned: Making the Transition to Online Teaching
Lesson 1: There are a myriad of options for assistance at UArizona - including weekly online "teaching support groups," where I learned how to navigate delivering my lectures via Zoom, including the use of breakout rooms, white boards, and Google docs to engage students in the lectures;
Lesson 2: Students love to learn that "professors are people too!" Each week I would begin my lecture with stories of social distancing, and would encourage the students to talk about their lives. Each student in my class was experiencing upheaval, and providing them with an opportunity to talk about life during the pandemic, and to share my own personal upheavals, made us all feel less alone;
Lesson 3: Students are resilient. After 5 weeks of online lectures, each student turned in a well-written scientific review paper on a unique topic. Paper topics included: measurement of bacterial irrigation water quality, the history of Native American water policy, how to grow mushrooms for food, and using biochemical tracers to monitor surface water contamination.
The US Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) has announced a call for author nominations (due Saturday, November 14, 2020) for the 5th National Climate Assessment (NCA). Gregg Garfin, UArizona Associate Professor/Extension Specialist, University Director, Southwest Climate Adaptation Science Center, and Deputy Director for Science Translation and Outreach, Arizona Institutes for Resilience, reflects here on his experiences heading extraordinary teams of authors on the Southwest chapter of the 3rd (2014) and 4th (2018) NCAs.
Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson is a marine biologist, policy expert, widely published writer, and founder of the Urban Ocean Lab, a think tank focused on the future of coastal cities.
WRRC Director Sharon B. Megdal participated in two virtual programs the week of October 12, 2020. She joined two panelists from Mexico to provide remarks comparing groundwater depletion and water security in the Rio Grande Basin and Colorado River Basin at the United States - Mexico Transboundary Groundwater Conference held October 14-15.