Leading & Managing
Course Instructor—Spring 2016, UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School
While many students focus on their skills in finance, accounting, operations, and other core areas of business, these skills will be useless unless you can work effectively with human beings. You must rely on others to be productive, innovative, and influential—as an employee, a team member, and a manager. Your success in the workplace depends on how you communicate with those around you.
Organizational Behavior provides this window into human behavior in the workplace. OB brings together insights from psychology, sociology, and economics to explain how individuals and groups behave in business settings. These insights can elevate you from a technician to a leader. Over the next 14 weeks, we will discuss the basic concepts of organizational behavior and management. This course examines OB at three levels: individual, groups/teams, and organizational. At the individual level, we will cover decision making, personality, and motivation. At the group/team level, we will cover negotiation, power, and team effectiveness. At the organizational level, we will cover leadership, organizational culture, and how to effectively manage change.
Course Instructor—Summer 2009 & 2010, Texas A&M University
Course Description (from syllabus)
The field of social psychology encompasses everything from romantic relationships to prejudice and stereotyping. Social psychology is the study of how people think of and influence one another. We will also spend a great deal of time discussing the power of the situation—do people commit certain acts because they are evil or careless, or would most people have done the same thing in the same situation? In addition to learning the theories and concepts, my goal for this course is for you to learn to draw accurate conclusions about your observations in daily life. You should also be able to discuss concepts and theories in terms of everyday life. Apply what you are learning to your daily life, and you’ll take in a lot more of the subject.
Examples of Assignments
Show & Tell. Students found examples in popular culture (books, magazines, Youtube videos, etc.) that illustrated a concept or theory in social psychology. They gave 5-minute presentations describing their S&T item, then explaining the social psychological theory/concept it illustrates. They also wrote short summaries of their presentation, which were compiled and distributed to the class as study aids. This assignment was designed to heighten awareness of social psychology in the world, and it worked well for a small class size.
Proverb paper. The goal of this assignment was to use evidence from the social psychological research literature to address whether or not there is support for a popular proverb or saying. Students chose a proverb, then found several peer-reviewed articles that were relevant to their proverb. They described the methods and results of each article and stated whether it supported or refuted their proverb. Based on the quality of the evidence they reported, they made a conclusion about whether the proverb is true. Some proverbs included:
- Birds of a feather flock together.
- No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
- Actions speak louder than words.
- Never judge a book by its cover.
Course Instructor—Fall 2009, Texas A&M University
I requested for the Psychology Department to offer this course, which had never been offered in this department. Along with Dr. Gerianne Alexander, I developed the curriculum and assignments, then gave lectures and led a class discussion. My lectures included the following topics: research methods, sexual development in adulthood, attraction and love, sexual fantasy, sexual coercion, sex and the law, and sex and religion.
Course Description (from syllabus)
This course is an introduction to the exciting science of human sexuality – a science that attempts to understand how we develop as sexual beings. You will be introduced to its wide variety of theoretical and research perspectives (including studies of hormonal influences, learning processes, cultural differences, sexual response, love and attraction). In doing so, you should gain a broad understanding of this interesting and complex domain of human behavior.
Lab Instructor—Spring 2009 & 2010, Texas A&M University
I gave a weekly lecture on analyzing data in SPSS, then reporting results in APA style. I also mentored student groups in creating and presenting posters of their findings at a departmental poster session.
Course Description (from syllabus)
In the lab, you will complete a project as a scientist. During the first class, you will form a group and develop a research idea and a list of variables to include in the study. The data you collect will form the basis for the projects that you complete for the rest of the semester. You will learn to conduct relevant statistical tests in SPSS and will learn to make appropriate inferences from the results and to report the results to others. You will also learn to write about results in APA format. In this course you should gain the following:
- The ability to understand and explain to others the statistical analyses in reports of psychological research.
- Preparation for more advanced courses in psychology.
- The ability to write succinctly in accordance with APA style.
In small groups, students chose a research topic, then selected several predictor and outcome variables. Each group used their dataset to conduct analyses throughout the semester, including descriptive statistics, t tests, ANOVAs, correlations, and linear regression. Students wrote short papers on each type of analysis. They described their research question, reported the results, and interpreted the findings. These papers required students to think critically about why they used a particular statistic to answer the research question and whether data problems (e.g., outliers) may have influenced the results. At the end of the semester, each group created a poster to feature their most interesting results. They presented their poster at a departmental poster session.
Experimental Psychology (Research Methods)
Lab Instructor—Fall 2008, Texas A&M University
In this weekly research methods lab, I taught students to collect and analyze data for a class project, then write a complete APA-style manuscript. This included giving detailed feedback on first drafts of writing assignments.
In this lab, students collected data as a class. This data served as the basis for all assignments and papers. I led students through the research process, from generating research ideas to finishing a manuscript. Students learned to conduct literature searches, to analyze and interpret data, and to write a complete manuscript in APA style. The lab was designated as a writing-intensive course. As such, my efforts centered on improving the content and clarity of students’ writing.
Additional Teaching Interests
Groups and Teams