She is researching problem-based learning and its influence on students’ higher-order thinking skills. Quenette found the technique was effective for online and face-to-face students.
“Basically I used problem-based learning as the foundation of my courses and then I analyzed students’ higher order thinking as a result of that – their critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and argument quality,” Quenette said. “I found that students improved in all of these areas after taking the class but also, that students in online sections improved at similar rates to students in on-campus sections.”
She found that problem-based learning provides students with the ability to solve problems creatively and effectively and to clearly communicate their ideas, all qualities that are important for graduates that will one day occupy vastly different professions in a variety of work environments. The research determines that “instructors shouldn’t shy away from engaging problem-based learning in online courses as the outcomes are similar for online and face-to-face students."
As a researcher, Quenette focuses on political communication and the study of teaching and learning. In addition to her research on problem-based learning, she is interested in the effects of contract grading on student experiences and mastery of course outcomes. In 2019, Quenette received the Erwin and Priscilla Boschmann Scholarship of Teaching and Learning grant for a current research project examining the way grading is used as a communicative tool between faculty and students. In the field of political communication, her research examines the effects of political news content on citizens’ attitudes, behaviors, and emotions related to politics and their engagement with the political system.
Her research has been published in Mass Communication and Society, the International Journal of Communication, the Journal of Communication, and the Journal of Applied Communication Research. She is also co-author of a forthcoming book chapter examining the datafication of assessment. Quenette is a regular contributor at the National Communication Association annual conference.
Quenette is also interested in the role of the public speaking course to build speaking confidence for students in the introductory course. As the director of the Communication Center, she is focused on supporting presentation and speaking growth and development for students in their majors.
Quenette joined the IU East School of Humanities and Social Sciences in fall 2017. She earned her Ph.D. from Ohio State University.