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Writing Instructional Objectives

Elaine Turner at the chalkboard.
Good teaching begins with well-written instructional objectives. Instructional objectives identify the knowledge, skills, and abilities that students will possess upon successfully learning the material. This four-page fact sheet outlines the three types of objectives (cognitive, psychomotor, and affective) as well as the different components of objectives (condition, performance, criterion). A well-written instructional objective will lead to clear teaching and ultimately, student success. Written by R. Kirby Barrick and Andrew C. Thoron, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Teaching Behavior and Student Achievement

Master Gardeners teaching and working with youth in a garden
Student achievement can clearly be enhanced through effective teaching behaviors, but what kinds of teacher behaviors lead to higher achievement among learners? This six-page fact sheet describes five different teacher behaviors that can lead to higher student achievement. These behaviors are clarity, variability, Enthusiasm, task oriented and/or businesslike behavior, and student opportunity to learn criterion material. Written by R. Kirby Barrick and Andrew C. Thoron, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Principles of Teaching and Learning

Horticulture Professor Balasubramanian Rathinasabapathi (Saba). Teaching, students, lecture, classrooom.
Effective teaching involves careful consideration and planning. There are several different principles that can be used to guide teachers in planning their lessons. This two-page fact sheet provides information on how to organize and structure subject matter, motivate students, effectively use reward and reinforcement, and other techniques for instruction. Written by R. Kirby Barrick and Andrew C. Thoron, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Principles and Practices to Secure and Hold Interest

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Securing and holding student interest is a major challenge for teachers. Once the curriculum is set, then teachers must decide how to teach the content, particularly how to build lasting interest in the content being taught. Students learn more and retain what they have learned longer when they are interested in the content, see its usefulness, and are motivated to learn and apply what they have learned. This three-page fact sheet discusses what makes a topic or lecture interesting for students and ways to improve teaching methods to keep students engaged and interested in the subject matter. Written by R. Kirby Barrick and Andrew C. Thoron, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Safe Harbor Agreement: A Regulatory Assurance under the Endangered Species Act

Red cockaded woodpecker
The involvement of the private sector is critical for the conservation and recovery of many species, but landowners’ fears that increased management restrictions could keep them from enjoying their land can present a challenge to securing their trust and assistance in conservation efforts. A Safe Harbor Agreement is a regulatory assurance that removes the risk of additional regulation in the future and encourages landowners to maintain important habitat on their lands. This three-page publication written by Melissa M. Kreye, Elizabeth F. Pienaar, Raoul K. Boughton, and Lindsey Wiggins and published by the Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Department provides Extension agents, decision-makers, and landowners with a basic understanding of a landowner’s obligations and the benefits of enrolling.

Pureed Foods: Texture Testing with the Slump Test

Figure 6. A) puréed canned beets with water separation; B) puréed canned beets with the addition of a small amount of puréed kidney beans and showing no water separation (cylinder filled to 2? marking).
For individuals with dysphagia, the texture of puréed foods is extremely important. If the puréed foods are either too thick or too thin, it can make it more difficult to swallow. The slump test is a quick, easy, and inexpensive way to assess the texture of foods. This four-page fact sheet describes the slump test, how to perform a slump test, and how the slump test can be used to evaluate the texture of puréed foods. Written by Wendy J. Dahl, and published by the Food Science and Human Nutrition Department.

Teaching Students with Disabilities: Autism Spectrum Disorder and Asperger's Syndrome

Students in an auditorium classroom.
Teachers of all subjects must familiarize themselves with the specific needs of the students in their classrooms, especially in the case of students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and Asperger’s syndrome because students may vary greatly in the degree to which they are affected by these disabilities. This four-page fact sheet explains the differences between autism and Asperger’s syndrome and how instructors can modify their lessons to effectively meet the needs of learners with these disabilities in different types of learning environments and achieve greater classroom success for the educator and the learner. Written by Sara E. LaRose and Andrew C. Thoron, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Making Decisions Using Force Field Analysis

Some home occupants are more bothered by their utility bill than others.
Should I adopt water conservation practices? Should I start a community garden? Should I stop using fertilizer on my lawn? These kinds of complex decisions are often difficult because many factors are at play, each with different degrees of importance. Conducting a force field analysis is a simple technique that can help an individual or groups more effectively make decisions and also more holistically consider key factors. Force field analysis allows you to make decisions based on the idea that a point of equilibrium exists within any system. Any proposed change causes a shift in this equilibrium. This four-page fact sheet describes how to conduct a force field analysis, provides a relevant example, and suggests possible applications. Written by Seth Heinert and Sebastian Galindo-Gonzalez, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Smart Strawberry Advisory System for Mobile Devices

Freshly harvested strawberries.Like the web-based SAS, the SAS: Strawberry Advisory System mobile app monitors real-time and forecast weather conditions that increase the risk for Botrytis (gray mold) and anthracnose fruit rots, providing risk level information for each disease. The app provides easy access to the information growers need to make spraying decisions in the field, saving them time, helping improve disease control, and avoiding unnecessary fungicide applications. This 3-page fact sheet provides an overview of the SAS mobile app. Written by Clyde W. Fraisse, Natalia Peres, and José Henrique Andreis, and published by the UF Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, August 2015.

The Savvy Survey #6d: Constructing Indices for a Questionnaire

Theresa Ferrari, left, extension youth development specialist in the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, and Steve Jacob review findings form the citizen survey.
One of The Savvy Survey Series, this article will help Extension agents understand indexes and how to use them when evaluating an educational program. This six-page fact sheet provides an overview of constructing indices for a questionnaire. Specifically, it will discuss why composite measures like index numbers are important, what the index number means, the difference between indexes and scales, steps for the construction of indexes, and recommendations for use by Extension educators. Written by Anil Kumar Chaudhary and Glenn D. Israel, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

The Savvy Survey #18: Group-Administered Surveys

colorful people around a table
Group-administered surveys are a great way to collect information from participants about the outcomes of an event or program. These kinds of surveys are best used for documenting short-term outcomes and can make use of an audience response system. This four-page fact sheet details how to develop a group-administered questionnaire, how to use an audience response system, and how to prepare and implement the survey. Written by Glenn D. Israel and Jessica L. Gouldthorpe, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Basics of Quantifying N Sources and Fates on the University of Florida Campus

John Cisar, a professor of Environmental Horticulture at the University of Florida's Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center, is studying how turfgrass and other landscape plants can help prevent nitrogen from leaching through the soil into groundwater, Wednesday - Aug. 13, 2003. He said three years of research have shown that turfgrass is most effective in reducing nitrogen leaching and should be used in Florida landscapes. Other plants require more time to become established and slow nitrogen leaching through the soil.Landscapes, recreational areas, and sports fields are important parts of the University of Florida campus that receive nitrogen (N) fertilization to maintain the health and quality of their plants. However, nitrogen can be lost from the landscape through runoff in storm water or leaching into groundwater, both fates leading to pollution of the receiving water bodies. Human activities can also cause losses of nitrogen. Therefore, educating people about nitrogen cycling in the urban environment is critical for the development of solutions to the environmental problems caused by nitrogen loss. This 5-page fact sheet discusses nitrogen mass budgets, land uses in a major university, and nitrogen sources and fates associated with different land uses on campus. Written by Jiexuan Luo and George Hochmuth, and published by the UF Department of Soil and Water Science.

Environmental Stresses and Your Florida Lawn

Figure 1. A lawn showing nitrogen deficiency symptoms.
Florida lawns are subject to many environmental stresses. These can include nutrient deficiency, salinity, temperature extremes, over- or under-watering, soil problems, and prolonged exposure to shade or traffic. The use of proper cultural practices will help keep your lawn healthy and more stress-tolerant. This two-page fact sheet explains how to choose the most appropriate grass, fertilize properly, mow to the correct height, and irrigate for your lawn’s needs. Written by L.E. Trenholm, and published by the Environmental Horticulture Department.

Volunteer Training Series: Recognizing Young People

The 4-H Legislative program helps youth "learn by doing." They participate in a mock legislative session and have a chance to meet and work with state officials in Tallahassee.Developing a sense of belonging is one of the Essential Elements of a positive youth development experience. Creating an inclusive environment in your 4-H club programs and activities can help you achieve this goal. Providing many forms of recognition for all, not just for those who excel in competition with other youth, also supports this sense of belonging. This 5-page fact sheet discusses recognition of participation, progress toward goals, standards of excellence, peer competition, and cooperation in the context of 4-H Clubs. Written by Georgene Bender, Tracy Tesdall, and Judith Levings, and published by the UF Department of 4-H Youth Development, November 2015.

Water and Nutrient Management Guidelines for Greenhouse Hydroponic Vegetable Production in Florida

Hydroponically grown plants
Many small farms are implementing greenhouse hydroponic systems. Perhaps the most challenging aspect of crop management for smaller growers is the control of water and nutrient delivery in a soilless media system. This six-page fact sheet focuses on relatively inexpensive strategies to help small growers know both when to start irrigation events and how long to run a single event when growing in soilless media. Written by Robert C. Hochmuth, Natalie B. Parkell, Wanda L. Laughlin, and Sean C. Rider, and published by the Horticultural Sciences Department.

Guidelines for Writing Quality Impact Statements for Workload and Marketing

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There’s nothing like a great story to catch people’s attention. Extension faculty can use storytelling techniques to develop strong impact statements that communicate the results of their programming. This three-page fact sheet dissects the different elements of an impact story, explains how to connect a story to the large impact of the program, and provides an example of a success story with impact statement. Written by Amy Harder and Ruth Borger, and published by the Agricultural Education and Communication Department.

Healthy Living: Reliable Websites

Laptop computer. Portable electronics, technology, computing. UF/IFAS Photo: Thomas Wright.The number of resources available online grows every day. Unfortunately, there are no regulations to ensure that the information on these websites is accurate. Older adults can readily access reliable information on the Internet by focusing on government and education sites. This 2-page fact sheet is a major revision that provides a list of trustworthy Internet sources related to nutrition, health, food safety, and general interest for older adults. Written by Linda B. Bobroff and Leigh Ann Martin, and published by the UF Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, revised January 2016.

De Compras Para la Salud: Mariscos

Sea Grant seafood app photography at Wild Ocean Market on Friday, August 24th, 2012. Fish.
El marisco es un término general para todo tip de pescados y mariscos (USDA 2010). Los mariscos son parte del “grupo de alimentos de proteína” de MyPlate y también proporciona otros nutrientes necesarios para una buena salud (USDA 2011). Como hay muchos beneficios para la salud associados con la inclusión de los mariscos en la dieta, se recomienda que los adultos consuman al menos ocho onzas de una variedad de mariscos cada semana. Mientras que comer más mariscos se recomienda como parte de una dieta saludable, es importante tener en cuenta su presupuesto al hacer compras de mariscos. Este artículo explica los beneficios para la salud de los mariscos y ofrece algunas estrategias para ahorrar dinero para hacer los mariscos más asequible. This four page fact sheet is the Spanish language version of, written by Michelle Brown and Wendy J. Dahl, and published by the Food Science and Human Nutrition Department.

Ejemplo Ilustrativo de los Costos y Rentabilidad de la Produccion de Aguacates en el Estado de la Florida

Avocados growing on a tree. Avocado fruit. UF/IFAS Photo by Tyler Jones.
Los cultivos de árboles frutales son de gran importancia económica en la agricultura del estado de la Florida; en este segmento, la industria del aguacate ocupa el segundo reglón económico tras los cítricos. Aproximadamente el 80 por ciento de la cosecha se vende fuera del estado; por lo tanto, la industria aporta una cantidad considerable de “dólares nuevos” al estado, lo que resulta en un impacto económico total de cerca de $100 millones por año. Este artículo proporciona una estimación de los costos y rendimientos asociados a la producción de aguacate en el Condado de Miami-Dade y un breve análisis de la rentabilidad de la industria.
Written by Edward A. Evans and Ingrid Bernal Lozano, published by the UF Department of Food and Resource Economics in December 2014, and translated into Spanish in November 2015. The English version, titled Sample “Avocado Production Costs and Profitability Analysis for Florida,” is available at (UF/IFAS Photo by Tyler Jones).

TAP Sampling for Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP) Field Sheet

TAP Sampling for Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP) Field Sheet Page 1
This new field sheet provides information on Tap sampling for Asian Citrus Psyllid (ACP). Monitoring ACP populations is an important tool in the integrated management of citrus greening. The most efficient way to estimate field populations of this insect is by monitoring adults. Tap sampling has proven to provide data needed to make informed decisions for managing this insect pest. Written by Phil Stansly, and published by the Entomology and Nematology Department.

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