I am Michelle Ruiz, an instructional designer specializing in online learning in higher education. I design memorable, inclusive, and engaging digital learning experiences. I am passionate about finding creative and research-informed strategies to deliver successful online academic programs.
Research and Equity Scholarship in Student Trajectories in Education
I contributed to The Research and Equity Scholarship Institute in Student Trajectories in Education, at San Diego State University by designing the institute’s logo, website, and promotional material. I also produced videos that showcased the stories of underrepresented students who participated in focus groups and shared their educational experiences of pursuing a career in a STEM field. I had the opportunity to apply my media and design skills to increase the visibility of research efforts pertaining to equity in education.
EnviRN – Evidence is a National Library of Medicine Express Outreach Award funded online training program that enhance nurses’ skills and knowledge of environmental health, and allow them to integrate environmental health into their professional practice. Additionally, EnviRN – Evidence familiarize nurses and health professionals with accessing evidence based information from the National Library of Medicine’s TOXNET® resources.
In this project, I guided USF librarians, serving nurses, and a USF subject matter expert in the use of educational technology and online learning methods. I led the audio and video production of digital assets that resulted in interactive Adobe Captivate lectures and screencasts. The project was created in partnership with Education Committee members of the international Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments.
At USF’s Center for Instruction and Technology, I developed Canvas lessons and resources for faculty instructors. After a series of iterations and feedback, the lessons became part of a resource page that aids faculty in setting up their course and ideas on how to integrate Canvas into their teaching.
Thanks to the Jesuit Grant Foundation, Barbara Sattler, RN, DrPH, FAAN Professor in the USF School of Nursing and Health Professions, and I developed an online learning program that aims to inspire and inform nurses about the actions they can take to combat climate change. The project titled Climate Change and Health: What Can Nurses do About Climate Change? is a direct response to the current need to help nurses articulate and respond to climate change problems.
360˚ video is a fantastic medium to learn about human emotions and empathy. Students are able to truly immerse themselves in real life scenarios and social contexts. I had the opportunity to collaborate with UC Berkeley professor Evan vanDommelen-Gonzalez, DrPH, MPH to develop video lessons for her course “Health and Social Behavior”. The videos helped students from the online MPH program understand social behavior and social determinants of health.
My first foray into the world of podcasting. Online courses for working professionals should be designed with their time limitations in mind. Podcasting gives students the opportunity to learn on the go and be more efficient with their time. In data science course such as epidemiology, I produced 10 podcast episodes in where Dr. Jade Benjamin-Chung and Dr. Jack Colford, interviewed Epidemiologists on studies they have conducted. These interviews gave students the opportunity to learn about why certain studies were conducted, why a particular design was used, what the researcher’s main concerns were about the study, and how the study’s findings influenced policy and public health practice.
Quartz Composer (QC) is a node-based graphical programming language, a powerful programming language that has the capability of connecting with devices such as the Microsoft Kinect. Building upon previous Scratch lessons, my colleague Bofan Ren and I taught a group of 15 middle school students from our Digital Technologies for Teaching and Learning practicum the use of Kinect Skeleton Macro Patch. This patch produces a numerical structure of a users’ body, in this case, the students used this structure to create “puppets” and their stories.