Welcome to the Tuesday Teaching, Tech,  & Tidbit

three bi-weekly tips centered on teaching, tech, and higher-ed related topics from the Center for Learning and Teaching at Denison University.

Searchable TTT archive.
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The week's theme: student participation

A quick rundown of topics

Teaching - how to access participation

Class discussion plays a key role in many of our classes at Denison. So much so that many of us include class participation as a percentage of the course grade. But how do we access participation? Is it just how many times a student speaks in class? Does this reward the risk-taking extrovert and penalize the introvert who needs time to process?
Below is a partial list of "...some specific behavioral examples of good participation..." from Stephen Brookfield, author of The Skillful Teacher.

  • Ask a question or make a comment that shows you are interested in what another person says.
  • Bring in a resource (a reading, web link, video) that is not covered in the syllabus but adds new information or perspectives to our learning.
  • Post a comment on the course chatroom that summarizes our conversations so far and/or suggests new directions and questions to be explored in the future.
A complete list, as well as a treasure trove of discussion methods, can be found in this short chapter by Brookfield. The whole book is available on-line through CONSORT.

Teaching II - how is class going?

Trying something new this semester? It's never too early to get feedback from your students. Here is a simple feedback technique I head from Dr. Sarah Wolff in Mathematics she calls KQS. Students complete the following:

  1. Keep doing this
  2. Quit doing this
  3. Start doing this
It only takes a few minutes, and is a low-cost way to get some valuable feedback and act as a conversation started of why you do something a particular way.

Tech - discussion boards on Notebowl

Back in classrooms does not mean we have to leave behind the opportunities to create meaningful asynchronous class discussion in Notebowl. This summer, ETS hosted a workshop titled “Engage Students with Meaningful Discussion Boards.” This ETS blog post covers the main takeaways from the workshop, and it also includes resources for creating discussion boards in Notebowl (on the ETS YouTube Playlist).
As always, if you need help designing a discussion board post in Notebowl, reach out to your instructional technologist or email

The HistoryMakers

The HistoryMakers, the nation’s largest African American video oral history archive, has awarded its 2021 Faculty Innovations in Pedagogy and Teaching Fellowship to Terrance Dean, Assistant Professor of Black Studies at Denison University. Dean is one of seven awardees. Dean’s fall course, Black Women's Spirit of Justice: Women, Race and Power in the Black Church, will use The HistoryMakers Digital Archive to critically examine the relationship between Black women and the Black Church. It will make use of practical and theoretical frameworks in womanist ethics, Black religious thought, gender and sexuality, and Black Church studies to uncover the experiences, leadership, power, and contributions of Black women to the church from slavery to present day. Now in its second year, The HistoryMakers Faculty Innovations in Pedagogy and Teaching Fellowship is designed to foster classroom innovation and teaching, and to diversify curricula while furthering student learning and research skills during the upcoming academic year. Award recipients will receive a $7,500 award and the opportunity to demonstrate how faculty can creatively incorporate The HistoryMakers Digital Archive into a semester course and syllabus.

Creative dramatics and building inclusive classrooms

The Center at Lafayette College has generously opened their upcoming series on creative dramatics in the college classroom across the curriculum. Below are the dates and titles. Here are the links for sign-up and session descriptions.

  • September 22, 12 - 1:00 pm ET
    "The Magic If": Using Creative Dramatics Techniques Across the Curriculum 
  • October 5, 12:15 - 1:15 pm ET 
    Film as Pedagogy
  • November 9, 12:15 - 1:15 pm ET
    Inclusivity from Students' Perspectives
  • November 17, 12 - 1:00 pm ET
    Critics Picks!: What Creative Dramatics and Integrative Arts Techniques Worked Well in a Lafayette Classroom 

Mindfulness for Healing and Resilience

Mindfulness has the power to support our capacity to handle adversity and live a more full and joyful life. This new course offers four weeks of experiential learning and practice that dives into the science around resilience and how to move through life’s challenges with greater ease. Each week will focus on a different theme and research-backed strategy, with time to process, reflect, and practice together as a community. 

Facilitated by Cecilia Shanahan, qualified Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher.  Details and sign-up.

Have something you would like to share or ideas we should explore? Please send suggestions to Lew Ludwig by the Friday before for consideration.
Lew Ludwig
Director, Center for Learning and Teaching

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