Jennifer Lynn Lathem
Lecturer in Geosciences
Life Sciences 147
Phone: (812) 941-2017
I received my undergraduate degree in Geography from IU Southeast in 2006, went immediately into my graduate program at Indiana State University, then started teaching at my alma mater in the Fall of 2008. I love this university, and I am very fortunate that I was able to return "home" to share my passion for the natural world with our students.
In addition to being a Lecturer in Geosciences, I am also a wife and a mom to three very busy children.
- Indiana State University, Terre Haute, United States
- Master of Arts, Major in Geography
- Indiana University Southeast, New Albany, United States
- Bachelor of Arts, Major in Geography, Minor in Geology
As an educator of geosciences, I am very dedicated to encouraging my students to open their minds to the wonder of the world in which they live. I want my students to see the connection between what they learn in the classroom and the world around them. My teaching philosophy reflects one in which relatable examples and current research/events are used to teach concepts. I strive to help my students see the relationship between the things I lecture about in the classroom and the same concepts in the real world, especially at the local level. This helps students to understand the material, but it also helps to make the material more interesting and relevant so that they have a better chance of retaining this knowledge long after the semester has finished. To help with retention of knowledge, I practice the retrieval processes with students in my classes. The literature on learning suggests that long-term retention of knowledge increases when the student has plenty of opportunities to retrieve the information from their brains.
All students are different from one another, and, therefore, learn in a different manner. I find that it is very important that I use a variety of instructional material, teaching methods (including active and collaborative learning) and assessment tools (including the practice of the retrieval process) to reach my students’ diverse learning needs. This variety also helps to keep the students’ attention during class time. I create a very open and relaxed learning environment in my classroom as I feel that both are important to a students’ success. Students are encouraged to stop me to ask questions or to make comments, relating to the subject matter, at any time. This allows students to feel more comfortable and open to learning.
I am personally interested in the success of each student, so I strive to be as available as possible. I am always willing to make time to meet with my students outside of class as I feel that if the students recognize my willingness to help them they may feel more comfortable and dedicated to the course. I feel that a good rapport with my students provides for a more successful learning environment.
My goal as an educator of geosciences is to get my students to open their eyes and minds to see and understand what is happening in the world around them so that they will hopefully gain the interest and knowledge to help shape the future of our world.
My favorite courses to teach are as follows:
- Physical Geography (Lecture and Lab)
- General Geology
- Environmental Conservation
- Senior Seminar in Geography
Photography (nature and people)