Use of the Guidelines in College Classes | eePRO @ NAAEE

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Use of the Guidelines in College Classes

Hello everyone! I wanted to reach out and see how various college professors (or guest lecturers) use the NAAEE Guidelines for Excellence in their college courses.

We are trying to get an EE minor started here at NC State University. I have introduced the Guidelines for Professional Development as a way of introducing the WHY of the course (and the minor). It is also closely aligned with our state EE Certification program, which is also based on the PD Guidelines.

We also use a class to introduce the Materials Guidelines. I always frame this discussion around classroom teachers being bombarded with materials that look pretty, flashy, new, and sound great..... but how do you really know if they are sound educational materials? We then pull out a wide variety of well known, and not so well known EE curriculum and then spend time looking through the materials and ranking them based on the key characteristics in the materials guidelines.

I just got to thinking about this after reading this article from PBS "Dueling Books Compete to Educate Kids on Climate Change" It just got me thinking about HOW we can share these materials widely with younger educators who are attending conferences, workshops, and receiving items in the mail. Most of the students in our classes are natural resources majors, with a sprinkling of education students.

What classes do you target with Guidelines information? Which ones do you use? Any tips for moving from the natural resource students to education student realm?

Hi Renee
I use the Nonformal programs Guidelines with my undergraduate Recreation Administration majors taking REC 345 Environmental Education. I attached the course schedule. I like this set of guidelines because student learning outcomes for the course are met along with exposure to the various sets of guidelines. I have received feedback from former students that they have been able to reference the guidelines in their post-graduate employment.

File course_calender_spring_2018_naaee.docx20.28 KB

Thanks, Jennifer! We have a similar course here at NCSU that a friend teaches. I love how you have really used the Key Characteristics to outline your agenda! I don't have much say in how our Methods of Teaching EE course is laid out, but I like the idea of linking it directly to the PD Guidelines as the main "headers" and then using pieces from our EE Certification program to fill in the spaces. I feel like it is currently set up the other way around. Thanks for the idea and resource!

I have been using the Professional Development Guidelines for more than five years to structure an environmental education semester at Colorado College ( We tie the PD guidelines for our three education classes in the program through the Colorado Alliance portfolio guidelines, which follow five themes from PD (they merge themes 4 and 5 from NAAEE into one theme). This proved very useful when applying for distinction to NAAEE.

I find this is a great way to organize the curriculum, and I have been thinking about writing a book-length project on how we do this.

We also use the Materials Guidelines in one class to have students evaluate a Project Learning Tree lesson of their choice. This meets one sub-theme of theme 4 of the portfolio (planning and implementing EE).

I would be happy to share more.

Thanks for sharing, Howard! I like the idea of actually building a class around the guidelines, but don't have that flexibility. I just use them whenever I have the chance... like tomorrow I am using a three-hour guest lecture in the Parks, Recreation, and Tourism program to introduce students to the EE Programs Guidelines.