Pamela Vargas, HOJ Chief Editor
Dr. Marcela G. Cuellar, Invited Co-Editor
Welcome to the Fall 2020 edition of the HETS Online Journal! Like everything in 2020, it’s been a challenge This edition marks the second time that HETS and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) have collaborated to bring you an even more informative Journal. By working together, we can offer a larger variety and number of articles. The HETS Journal recognized the valuable collaboration of Dr. Marcela G. Cuellar from the University of California, Davis, who represented HACU as an invited editor.
As always, the Journal focuses on ensuring the success of Hispanic students in higher education, which is at the core of the missions of both organizations. Many of the articles include the use of technology in student success, while all include information designed to help Hispanic students access higher education and succeed in their studies. In light of the pandemic and all of the other challenges of recent months, learning from the experiences of others has become even more vital. In this edition, you’ll find the following articles:
1- A National Portrait of STEM Trajectories through Two- and Four-Year Hispanic Serving Institutions, explores the undergraduate profiles and outcomes of STEM majors who begin post secondary education at two- and four-year Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs).
2- The article, Assessing the Needs and Experiences of First-Generation Students’ Transition to Remote Learning Due to COVID-19 Pandemic at a Hispanic Serving Institution, describes an evaluation research project undertaken to determine the impact that the shift to remote learning has had on first-generation college students’ learning and the challenges that they faced in the process.
3- Estrategias de apoyo a la facultad en tiempos de pandemia: la respuesta de dos instituciones, presents successful strategies that two institutions employed during the rapid transition to remote teaching that was necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
4- La oferta universitaria en línea de Puerto Rico: Actualización a otoño 2020, provides an update of the distance learning offerings at colleges and universities in Puerto Rico and identifies the institutions, disciplines and level of programs offered under this teaching modality.
5- La tecnología virtual: su importancia en la enseñanza-aprendizaje de la contabilidad, explores the use of virtual technology in an accounting course and discusses how it can influence motivation and academic performance.
6- Social Presence: An Imperative in Online Learning Contexts, discusses the role of culture in social presence and how teaching and learning, faculty disposition, and cultural competence can be used to encourage a sense of belonging to an institution.
7- In the article, Student and Faculty Perspectives on Student Evaluation of Teaching: A Cross-Sectional Study at a Community College, the usefulness of Student Evaluation of Teaching (SET) is examined from both the student and faculty views, with the goal of making these evaluations more useful for faculty while also providing a better learning experience for students.
8- Teaching Using a Flipped Classroom Approach: Impacts for Students of Color, considers whether the use of a flipped classroom teaching method for undergraduate quantitative research methods had an impact on undergraduate students’ academic achievement, as measured by their performance in course assignments, as well as on quizzes, exams, and the final paper.
9- The Effect of a Kernel Sentence Combining Technique on the Reading Comprehension Levels of Basic English Students at UPR-Cayey, investigates and analyzes the implementation of the Kernel-Sentence-Combining Technique and how it helped Basic English students at UPR-Cayey to improve their reading comprehension levels.
10- The purpose of the article entitled, What are the best practices for online student engagement among Hispanic-Serving Institutions? A narrative review, is to explore how post-secondary education instructors at HSIs can increase learner engagement and improve course retention rates, particularly at a time when many courses within post-secondary institutions are being delivered online.
We hope you will enjoy this edition, and that you will also consider sharing your expertise and experiences for a future edition of the HETS Online Journal.
Happy reading, and, above all, stay safe!
Pamela A. (Krauser) Vargas
HETS Online Journal Chief Editor and
Director, Research and Grant Development
Southeast Missouri State University
This Fall semester, HETS commitment will be to continue providing support and services to its member institutions and academic communities, locally, nationally, and international challenged to offer their courses remotely in this academic scenario. This requires training and skills that allow in these environments to achieve equal results or the same objectives that are achieved in face-to-face courses. As a pioneer organization in the use of technology in higher education with enormous expertise and services ready to be used by our academic communities, HETS announces its offering for the Fall semester that includes the following:
- Free webinars with HETS Student Ambassadors to promote services free of charge at the Student Placita in the HETS Virtual Plaza, and expert resources in topics like leadership, entrepreneurship, job search, among others.
- Virtual Student Leadership Showcases in Spanish and English for PR, Latin America, and the US, to reinforce student leadership skills and promote HETS services and tools free of charge for them.
- More than 10 webinars in Spanish and webinars in English regarding Distance Learning and related topics to support faculty and administrators on this new modality.
- A Fall Issue, Volume XI of the HETS Online Journal to share articles that offer insights and suggestions that are pertinent to our current environment.
Besides these offerings during this semester, HETS services include tutorials in Spanish and English on how to use technology and access to the HETS Student Placita. Also, access to recordings of pasts free virtual events and webinars, in English and Spanish, focusing on distance learning, which is crucial and valuable in our new academic reality. Likewise, access to more than 100 peer-reviewed articles at the HETS Online Journal, sharing best practices regarding the use of technology for teaching and learning.
We invite you to click on the links to benefit from these services and help us promote it among your colleagues, students, and anyone you estimate pertinent. For additional information, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Executive Director’s cellular phone (787) 616-3201. Also, follow HETS as hestorg on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn for the latest news regarding its events and services.
Dr. Carlos Morales, was elected HETS Chair
HETS Executive officers’ election were held during an historically virtual Board Meeting celebrated through Zoom digital platform, on June 25, 2020. More than 30 Board Members and special guests connected from Puerto Rico, United States and Colombia. As part of the meeting agenda, Dr. Carlos Morales, President, TCC Connect Campus of Tarrant County College from Texas, was elected as HETS Chair. Collaborating with Dr. Morales will be, Mr. Manuel J. Fernós, President of the Inter American University of Puerto Rico, as Vice Chair, Eng. Gladys Nieves, President of EDP University as Treasurer; and Dr. Carlos Vargas, President of Southeast Missouri State University as Secretary. Elected as Regional Representatives were: Dr. Tomás Morales, President, California State University San Bernardino; Dr. Havidán Rodríguez, President, University at Albany (SUNY); and Dr. Maritza Rondón, Chancellor of the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia. All appointments will start term on July 1st, 2020 for two years as stated in HETS Bylaws. We would like to recognize the hard work and commitment of the past officers during their tenure. We truly appreciate that they will be continuing serving as officers in a new role. To learn more about the newly appointed Officers visit: Meet the Executive Committee.
This Board meeting ends academic year 2019-2020, an intense year for the organization and its members, as it embarked on the implementation of recently new strategies evolved as the response of the new academic reality due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The strategic plan framework corresponding to years 2017-2020 focused on core areas of access, retention and successful completion, and online learning / technology integration was extended for an additional year in order to complete and adapt it to our new reality and provide better support to our member institutions and its communities.
Among the news shared with the Board were highlighted the major activities to support the organizational programmatic goals and added services such as: tailored workshops and webinar offerings; additional tools and services added to the HETS Virtual Plaza and HETS Website. Also, the results of our main events the HETS Best Practices Showcase, Student Leadership Showcase and Online Tours were presented, in which Student Ambassadors program participants shared with their peers the tools and resources free of charge available for them at the Student Placita of the HETS Virtual Plaza. Board members also welcomed representative from new member institution: Los Angeles Community College District and concluded the meeting with a virtual session with corporate members such as Blackboard, InQmatic, Inter Staff, and COBIMET.
For more information about HETS services, please visit www.hets.org, contact us via email email@example.com or just call us at (787) 616-3201.