New Teaching Plan for the iMEP Program

The following information was emailed to DKU iMEP students on February 1, 2020 from Junjie Zhang, Director of the iMEP Program

New Teaching Plan for the iMEP Program, Spring 2020

Due to the outbreak of the coronavirus, the DKU campus will not reopen until Feb 24th at the earliest per instructions from DKU.

As a consequence, the iMEP program will have to reschedule at least three weeks of classes. Since each iMEP course is different in nature, we plan to take a hybrid approach to teaching in the program.

We will use WebEx to create synchronous online courses. In cases with slow internet access, we will adopt the asynchronous approach by videotape or record the courses and distribute online. For the sessions that were originally designed to teach on site, we will use the spring break (from March 9th – 13th) and Fridays from February 24th onward to make up for these classes. In the worst-case scenario that the whole spring semester is canceled, all classes will be taught online.

The online teaching will start on Feb 3rd at the regularly meeting time unless being rescheduled by individual instructors. Accordingly, the instructors will revise the syllabi to reflect the new academic calendar, methods of teaching, and assessment and grading. The new syllabi will be provided by the individual instructors by Feb 10th, 2020.

Below is the plan for each course.

Master’s Project II (Coraline Goron) **

  • MP II will stick to the original schedule.
  • The introductory session on quantitative methods (Feb 6th) and qualitative methods (Feb 13th) will be videotaped; the readings will be distributed, and Q&A sessions will be organized.
  • The class of Feb 20th will, as originally planned, involve individual meetings with the MP II Instructors and small group works; these will take place online.
  • If DKU campus remains closed after Feb 24th, the following classes and group work sessions will be arranged via videotaping and online discussions.
  • The “shut-up-and-write” sessions will be coordinated remotely via WeChat for those students who want to attend until we have access to DKU again.
  • Students need to follow the initial assignment schedule, which has been slightly adjusted to reflect the cancelling of the spring break. Please note that students must schedule their first (online) meeting with their advisor and submit the report for this meeting by Feb 10th. It is recommended that, during this meeting, students work out a completion calendar with their advisors.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to expedite their master’s projects during the class moratorium.

Kick-start MP Class (Coraline Goron) *

  • The Kick-start MP sessions will be taught on the originally scheduled date.
  • The session scheduled on Feb 5th will be taught remotely.
  • The schedule for finding a topic and supervisor will remain unchanged.

Nature Resources Management – Field Trip (Binbin Li)

  • The field trip to Sichuan Province will take place in late spring.
  • If travel is still restricted by late April, we will consider taking a local field trip or other plans.
  • If the spring semester is completely canceled, the field trip will be scheduled to the summer.
  • The students may also request using an independent study report to substitute for the field trip, subject to the approval of the instructor.

Environmental Sciences (Binbin Li) *

  • The instructor will create a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online connected courses.
  • Every lecture will be videotaped.
  • Students are required to read materials and watch instruction videos.
  • Discussion sessions will be organized online using the Sakai forum.
  • Discussion leaders will prepare questions to lead the online discussion. Participation in the online discussion will be evaluated similar to classroom discussion.
  • Student presentations will be made up on Fridays if the campus reopens at all.
  • If the spring semester is completely canceled, all these sessions will be held online.

Environmental GIS (Binbin Li)

  • The instructor will create a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online connected courses.
  • Every lecture will be videotaped.
  • Students are required to read materials and watch instruction videos.
  • Students will finish the lab and assignment on their own.
  • Q&A will be organized online, and weekly lab and assignment will be submitted through Sakai.
  • For the lab sessions, a server of GIS with remote access will be provided.
  • The computer time will be assigned to students who cannot access GIS at home.
  • Some sessions will be made up in the spring break and Fridays if the campus reopens at all.
  • If the spring semester is completely canceled, all these sessions will be held online.

Environmental Policy Process (Kathinka Furst) *

Environmental Law, Governance, and Regulation (Kathinka Furst) **

  • The instructor will create a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online connected courses.
  • Some lectures will be videotaped.
  • Students are required to read materials and submit blogs on Sakai as originally scheduled and watch instruction videos.
  • Discussion session will be organized online using the Sakai forum following the instruction video.
  • Q&A and classroom discussion will be organized online.
  • The classroom simulation will be made up in the spring break and Fridays, pending the reopening date of the DKU campus.
  • If the spring semester is completely canceled, the simulation sessions will be held online.

Environmental Economics Policy Practicum (Patrick Ward) *

  • The instructor will create a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online connected courses.
  • Some lectures will be videotaped.
  • Students are required to read materials for each class session and watch instruction videos.
  • For client-based projects, students will be required to arrange conference calls with their clients on the same frequency with which in-person meetings had previously been decided.
  • For sessions in which students give presentations, synchronous remote sessions will be arranged.
  • Q&A and discussion sessions will be organized online.

Environmental Economics II (Patrick Ward)

  • The instructor will create a combination of synchronous and asynchronous online connected courses.
  • Every lecture will be videotaped.
  • Students are required to reach the required readings and submit PowerPoint slides (5) summarizing the reading(s) prior to each session.
  • Students are then required to watch the instruction videos.
  • For class sessions in which students give presentations, synchronous remote sessions will be arranged.
  • Q&A and discussion sessions will be organized online.

Planetary Health (John Ji)

  • This class will be changed into a flipped classroom format.
  • The instructor will send online videos and reading materials, as well as videotape some lectures.
  • Students are required to read materials and watch instruction videos.
  • Some items related to global health and epidemic controls in the syllabus will be moved up to more recent classes to be helpful to the students in understanding the current events.
  • Students will still have to do news presentations, for this, the instructor will ask students to record a video, and engage in discussions online.
  • For the in-class debate, students will be divided into two groups, and will be given more time to work together online and prepare rebuttals.
  • The case study writing will not be affected, as it is individual work.

Independent Study

  • Independent Study will stick to the original schedule.
  • The students should approach their advisors to schedule virtual meetings regularly.

The iMEP staff team will provide full technical support for the spring semester. For any question, please contact iMEP program director Junjie Zhang and admin assistant Guozhen Shen

* denotes required courses for the first-year students

** denotes required courses for the second-year students