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Douglas C Needham

Classrooms are radically changing across the nation's campuses. Rooms that were once dominated by bright lights, chalkboards, and overhead projectors are being transformed into multimedia “Master Classrooms,” complete with task lighting, video projectors, visualizers, laserdisk and videotape players, soft boards, and computers. What are these pieces of equipment, how much do they cost, and how can they be implemented into horticultural curriculum? Just as our college students teethed on television programs such as Sesame Street when they were toddlers, they now are continuing to learn through a combination of audio, video, and kinesthetic stimulation in the classroom. Computer hardware and software empowers today's educator with a multimedia development studio on his/her desktop to create simple “slide” presentations or complex, interactive multimedia applications. However, it is not multimedia itself, any more than it was the chalkboard, that makes a powerfully educational presentation; rather it is the educator's creativity, utilization of instructional methods, and delivery. Interactive, multimedia development software allows the educator to address different styles and paces of learning as he or she develops a lesson. Through on-screen hot spots, movable objects, buttons, etc., the educator engages the learner's attention and provides the opportunity for the learner to rehearse a concept as often and repeatedly as necessary to encode the information for later retrieval and application to new concepts. Given the power of this new medium to visually and audibly present information, how does the educator avoid overloading the learner? Although multimedia applications readily engage the learner, it takes careful programming by the educator to maintain and direct the learner's attention to ensure transfer of the information from short- to long-term memory.

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Douglas C Needham

Computer-based authoring tools, e.g. Macromedia Authorware©, allow one to produce interactive applications or computer-based training modules for horticulture teaching and extension. These applications are useful not only as presentation tools, but also as supplementary instruction, whereby a student can interact with an application at his/her own convenience and learning level. “Interactive Lessons for Introductory Horticulture©” is one example of an application used in OSU's HORT 1013: Principles of Horticultural Science course. Students are able to navigate to various topics by selecting chapters and topics within chapters. The information is not just presented, but rather acted upon by the student through movable objects, touch-sensitive areas, text, audio and video clips, etc. Student learning should be enhanced by the variety of stimuli and the ability to review an entire presentation or portion thereof at will.

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Douglas C. Needham

Classrooms are radically changing across United States campuses. Rooms that were once dominated by bright lights, chalkboards, and overhead projectors, are being transformed into multimedia “master classrooms,” complete with task lighting, video projectors, visualizers, laserdisc and videotape players, soft boards, and computers. What are these pieces of equipment, how much do they cost, and how can they be implemented into a horticultural curriculum? Computer hardware and software empowers today's educator with a multimedia development studio on his or her desktop to create simple slide presentations or complex, interactive multimedia applications. However, it is not multimedia itself, any more than it was the chalkboard, that makes a powerful, educational presentation, rather it is the educator's creativity, use of instructional methods, and delivery.

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Douglas C. Needham and Steven Dobbs

Twenty-three students of HORT 2212: Herbaceous Ornamental Plants divided into five teams, each selecting one of the ground beds at the television studio gardens of Oklahoma Gardening to design with the aid of MacDraw II and Macintosh computers. The team approach promoted cooperative learning, where those who were skilled in design worked cooperatively with those individuals more skilled at developing the theme gardens' cultural pamphlets. This project encouraged individual students to develop various communication skills to support their team's thematic garden-visual, in the form of a CAD plot of the garden design; written, in the form of a garden pamphlet; and telecommunication, in the form of Oklahoma Gardening television segments.

The students and OBGA Ambassadors started the seeds and, then, planted the gardens, resulting in a very practical experience. This design and installation project not only prepared students for the cooperative efforts that they are likely to encounter in the ornamental horticulture and landscape design and maintenance industries, but also imparted pride in their work, which was viewed by over 150,000 television viewers and visitors weekly.

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Douglas C Needham and Homer T. Erickson

Mean seed production in tetraploid × diploid crosses of Salpiglossis sinuata R et P. was similar to that in diploid × diploid crosses, but germination of the resultant triploid seeds was low (8%). Parental line selection resulted in some germination improvement. Triploid hybrids from these crosses were vigorous, with floral characteristics resembling tetraploids. The fertility indices of self-pollinations of triploids and pollinations by diploid and tetraploid plants were <1, 22, and 6, respectively, compared with 176 for diploid × diploid crosses. Thus, the self-pollinated triploids were virtually sterile.

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Douglas C Needham and P. Allen Hammer

Salpiglossis sinuata R. et P., a floriferous member of the Solanaceae, was studied for potential as a flowering potted plant when modified by growth retardants. Seedlings of an inbred line P-5 were covered with black cloth for an 8-hour photoperiod to permit vegetative growth to ≈16 -cm-diameter rosettes. Plants were then exposed to an 18-hour photoperiod for the duration of study. Flowering occurred 40 days after the plants were transferred to long days. Neither spray applications of uniconazole at 10, 20, 40, or 100 ppm, nor chlormequat chloride at 750, 1500, or 3000 ppm significantly retarded plant height. Applications of daminozide, ranging in concentration from 1000 to 5000 ppm, alone and in combination with chlormequat chloride, were effective at retarding plant height; however, concomitant restriction of corolla diameter was frequently observed. Chemical names used: 2-chloro- N,N,N -trimethylethanaminium chloride (chlormequat chloride); butanedioic acid mono(2,2-dimethylhydrazide) (daminozide); and (E) -1-(p-chlorophenyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2-(1,2,4-triazol-1-yl) -1-penten-3-01 (uniconazole).