EKU instructor, Yinglin Ma, believes in taking an active part in her student’s educational experience and encouraging them to take the lead in their own education. She goes above and beyond to ensure her online students have opportunities to interact and engage with her. Ma’s enthusiasm for teaching, and dedication to helping students prepare to make their mark in the field makes her a particular point of pride on EKU’s campuses, both in-person and virtual. We take great pride in offering the chance to get to know her a little better.
What brought you to EKU?
I am excited to be part of the Department of Government at EKU. EKU’s student-centered teaching and learning align with my approach to student education. In addition, the Department of Government’s emphasis on promoting diversity and equity in teaching and research aligns with my values and professional goals.
Tell us a little about your work in your field.
My research and teaching interests include organizational theory and behavior, nonprofit management, and diversity and equity in the public and nonprofit sectors. My research focuses on the self-development of community service volunteers. This is where I investigate how volunteers’ self-efficacy and perceived managerial support shape their learning during volunteering. Another line of my research examines how the COVID-19 pandemic affects different types of nonprofit organizations’ missions, service delivery, and service beneficiaries.
What is your approach to online teaching?
I emphasize structure and focus in my online teaching. I create a political science course map to provide students the overall directions and organization of the class. I make the class content accessible at all times so that students can take the lead in their own learning. For synchronous classes, I incorporate creative learning activities so students can participate and share their ideas to counter Zoom fatigue.
What tactics or approaches do you use to aid in your student’s success?
One of my goals in teaching is to help students build their self-efficacy, the belief that they can achieve their learning goals through hard work. In particular, I offer a variety of interactive learning activities in the classroom to facilitate students’ motivation and proactivity in learning. In addition, I offer timely and constructive feedback to help students improve. Further, I integrate real-world examples and practical wisdom into my teaching to help students understand the importance of their learning. To help them become competent and ethical public and nonprofit professionals in the future.
What have you been up to lately? (Research, projects, awards, etc.)
I am currently working on several research projects including a paper on the impact of COVID-19 on the trends in human service nonprofit organizations in the United States. I also serve as a track chair for the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) conference.
What advice would you give to someone who’s considering finishing their degree, or starting for the first time as an adult?
E.B. White said: “Every morning I awake torn between a desire to save the world and an inclination to savor it. This makes it hard to plan the day. But if we forget to savor the world, what possible reason do we have for saving it? In a way, the savoring must come first.”
I encourage you to work diligently and appreciate the positive impact you can make on the betterment of the world.
Interested in a bachelor’s degree in political science?
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