Faculty Profiles

Mina CarsonMina Carson


Liberal Studies, Department of History

How long have taught online?
I developed my first course in 2000.

What subjects have you taught?
I've taught HST 368, Lesbian and Gay Movements in Modern America, HST 362 and 363, Women in American History, HST 475, the Civil War and Reconstruction, HST 477, the Progressive and New Deal Eras, and a topics course, Social Change and American Popular Music. Is that it? I think so! Colleagues are now teaching the Civil War (Stacey Smith) and the second part of the women's history sequence (Marisa Chappell).

What made you become interested in offering your classes through Ecampus?
I love computers and the internet! I think that the possibilities for presenting material on the internet, and interacting with students (and having students interact with each other) are endless.

What would you tell a student who was interested in taking your courses?
Keep up with the reading and make a calendar of assignments with alarms. If you're not actively engaged it can be way too easy to watch the weeks slip by and suddenly it's the end of term!

How do you incorporate interaction and discussion in your online classes?
I use the discussion board primarily for interaction. Again, I find it easier to keep track of interaction when it's all in one place. I love watching people find each other on the discussion board. It really is a miracle, this talk across the nation (and sometimes overseas). We've started taking it for granted because of the fabulous social networking sites out there now. I use Flickr and even Facebook all the time now.

What do you see as the advantages of taking classes online?
Definitely the biggest advantage is the freedom to schedule your own time. The companion advantage is that the student is not place-bound.

What do you enjoy about instructing online?
I love having students from all over the country AND here in Corvallis. Particularly in the summer when I'm traveling with my family I enjoy being able to keep up with my courses from wherever I might be located.

What has been the biggest surprise to you about online learning?
How fast the term goes by! Really, the biggest surprise also leads to the biggest challenge, for both instructor and students - to keep up with the assignments before finals week rolls around.

What's one thing about yourself you'd like distance students to know?
I have two middle-grade kids, so I know what it's like not to own your own time!

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