Student Eval Comments
Remember: "No one rises to low expectations."
Selected recent verbatim Student Comments from Dana Vaughan's Teaching Evaluations & Correspondence
BIO 212 Human Physiology:
- I have been meaning to email you since the end of the summer physiology course. I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed your class and teaching style. Having taken phys at Madison just this past spring (2013), I already had a good grasp on a lot of the material. However, my professor at Madison had very bland power points with a lot of text, few graphics, and suggested a lot of memorization. Coming to your class was like night and day different. The way you taught class with drawings/graphics and so much energy made the material so much more understandable and I took way more out of your class. I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciated and enjoyed your class!
- Hello Dr. Vaughan, A few years ago I was in your physiology lecture. Well I graduated from UW-Oshkosh's nursing program in May and just passed my boards. All through nursing school I always told myself that when I graduated I would email you and say thank you for doing such a great job teaching phys and always helping me whenever I had a question. (I even stopped by your office once when I was in nursing school because I was struggling to grasp a concept in patho.) I know that the key to my success in nursing school was having such a solid foundation in phys! I would pretty much relate everything back to phys and "Joe Cell". If I knew the phys behind something I could handle it. I just wanted you to know you made a huge difference in my college education and I am extremely grateful of that! Thank you for being such a great teacher and always taking the time to help a student in need. You are a difference maker!
- I was just reading about the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system for literally the fourth time since starting the [Accelerated Nursing] program, and I thought that I would write to you and tell you that I am sure glad I took phys with you and that you cemented that stuff into my brain. It keeps coming up!
- The layout of the exams were hard to get used to. I like being able to narrow my choices. Vaughan responds: Exams are true/false, in a "multiple-choice-choose-all-that-apply" format.
- Hard material, but very well taught, excellent professor.
- One of the best teachers I've ever had and this is my 5th year.
- Should provide answers of past tests for students to study from - otherwise we may be studying the wrong info. Vaughan responds: My policy is to give out old exams but to "force" students to learn to think by NOT providing the answers. If I gave out the answers, it would be nothing more than memorization and that is simply not a winning strategy in physiology. My policy is that any student who thinks s/he has the answer to an old exam question, can present it to me, and then I will explain why it's right or wrong... but I don't just give the answer; students must study!
- Great professor! Really makes a difficult subject intresting and fun to learn. She is VERY helpful with questions!
- I feel Dr. Vaughan does not explain things in simpliest terms for an introductory course. Also exams are rushed, with 100+ ?'s for one hour class.
- Very effective analogies - one of hardest subject - yet she makes it bearable!
- Really awesome professor.
- Powerpoint presentations on D2L would make notetaking much more efficient - we could listen rather than worry about making sure we write down everything on the projector. Vaughan responds: I hear this a lot. Unfortunately, providing the slides ahead of time has two bad effects: 1) Class attendance falls, which provides for a very unsatisfying and (usually) unsuccessful class experience, and 2) Most students become passive observers in class. The "old fashioned" take-notes-on-the-fly is also a useful skill to learn (you might use it when taking a patient history, for example). Finally, professors are only human: if we know you have the notes in front of you, we may go faster than we should, and another problem arises.
- Your class and teaching opened up a whole new way of thinking for me, and I'm now wanting to do more than I ever have in the past because I have this thirst for knowledge! I really believe your class had a lot to do with it because you really made us think and I realized how valuable that was. So thank you for doing what you do because you help people like me come to know, not only what the brain does :), but how to use it in the best way!! I hope to keep in touch with you throughout my education since you have been such a mentor for me :)
- Felt like exams didn't truly test your knowledge; more like they tricked you.
- It would have been very helpful if notes were posted online. Dr. Vaughan moved way too fast in class. Also the true/false 100+ exams were too long & I always felt I didn't have enough time. Vaughan told me this was nursing program's exam style which I found out isn't true. Vaughan responds: This student seems to have misunderstood my statement that I follow the NCLEX (nursing boards) exam style of questions and multiple answers that require candidates to carefully read the question and all the answer choices, in a timed fashion, before marking an answer. Stop by my office to see my own personal copy of the NCLEX prep book and see if I'm right about this. You aren't a nurse until you pass your boards, so I do all I can to help my students develop effective test-taking skills early in their college careers.
BIO 306 Neurobiology
- I graduated from UWO in spring '07. You may or may not remember me, but I am writing this email to say THANK YOU!!! I am in my second week of PA school and we are discussing Action Potentials and all their glory. If it wasn't for your explanantions from Neurobiology, I would be VERY lost at the moment based on my current professor's explanation.
- Very friendly. Helpful in office hours. Good use of recent research as well as common metaphors to help get point across! Excellent!
BIO 310 Biology of Gender:
- "I took your Biology of Gender class right before graduating in 2011 and I wanted to thank you for creating that class and teaching it so well. I am currently almost halfway through [chiropractic school], and have referred/remembered information from your class that has been relevant to many classes I have taken here. It has been so helpful to have this background knowledge and have a greater understanding of the human body, the differences there can be and how they happened, and the pressures/effects of society. Thank you again for having such a well rounded, open, and informative class."
BIO 319 General Animal Physiology
- I wanted to thank you again for your instructing. I had to explain the mechanism in which organophosphates are toxic for my public health toxicology course. After completing all of the required reading, I decided to sum it up in an illustrated diagram - a technique you taught me. I first diagrammed it on copy paper quickly, then for a final draft, I borrowed and modified an illustration I found online (cited the source) - and proceeded to complete the necessary steps. I attached my complete assignment so you could be proud of what you taught me. I have a feeling I will be doing this quite often in med school. I learned the mechanism in NO TIME.
- Throughout my years in college, I was fortunate enough to meet some exceptional professors. I consider you to be among them... You are an amazing professor and I am thankful that you never scared me into dropping your class!!
- I wanted to let you know that you are one of three professors that really had an impact on me at UWO. Your class was the most difficult, but also my most favorite class. Your use of analogies was very helpful, but what stood out the most to me about you, is how honest you are... Thank you for being such a great teacher and also a very compassionate person.
- Dr. Vaughan is a great teacher. There are so many things that I can take away from this class and I appreciate her expertise. She is also very considerate of people's schedules and w/giving advice.
- Enjoyed the class & learned a lot. She is very helpful during office hours & is very easy to get along with.
- Great teacher. Made subject very interesting. I wanted to learn more. Also taught clear easy to understand & pay attention. Best Biology teacher I have had!
- Overall Dr. Vaughan helped me as well as the rest of the class understand in a number of ways. By writing & visual aids. She also was a nice person and was there for me as a person when she didn't have to be.
- I found this instructor to be thoroughly effective in teaching the material. The level of difficulty was perfect for an upper-level college course. I felt as if I walked away from each class learning a great deal of material.
- Dr. Vaughan's lecture are very watered-down and then expects TOO much of technical answers on her exams.
- I've taken every class taught by Dr. Vaughan... and if she taught any others I would be the 1st person to sign up. Excellent professor w/genuine concern for students and field of study.
- This instructor really cares about her students. She was very willing to help me, when I was in a difficult situation and fell behind the class. Also cares about the students' futures. Overall a very wonderful teacher.
- The best class I have ever had - enjoyable, informative, worthwhile. Vaughan has SPIRIT!