Welcome to the Tuesday Teaching, Tech,  & Tidbit


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

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This weeks rundown at 8,000 feet

GIFTS - Great Ideas for Teaching Students

Back by popular demand, GIFTS will return on April 15, 3:30pm, via zoom. GIFTS sessions unfold much like a “speed-dating” session. Every ten minutes, four Denison colleagues present an idea to four different groups of attendees using Zoom breakout rooms. The goal of this session is for attendees to carry away an assortment of activities/assignments that they can adapt to their courses.

Come hear great ideas from professors:
  • Lina Yoo, Biology/Data Analytics
  • Nausica Marcos Miguel, Modern Languages
  • Luis Villanueva, Economics
  • Laura Russell, Communications

Please sign up here

Teaching - The Quick Tip: How to Make the Most of the Last 5 Minutes of Class

Denise Magner of the Chronicle reminds us to not waste those final minutes trying to cram in eight more points or call out as many reminders as possible. Here are two tips she gives, based on a piece by James Lang

  • The minute paper. Wrap up the formal class period a few minutes early, and pose two questions to your students: (1) What was the most important thing you learned today? And (2) what question still remains in your mind? Students benefit from recalling the day's material and putting it in their own words. Plus, reading their responses, even if you don’t grade them, will give you a quick picture of how well the class went.
  • Closing connections. Finish class five minutes early, and tell students they can leave when they have identified five ways in which the day’s material appears in contexts outside the classroom. You’ll be amazed at how quickly they can come up with examples.

Tech - What we've learned with Dr. Sarah Wolff

How do we know students are understanding the basics of our course before it's too late? Dr. Sarah Wolff has found a way to use Notebowl to provide formative feedback to her students. She uses a cobination of short videos and discussion boards to make sure her students keep on top of their learning.

Interested in trying Sarah's approach to formative feeding using Notebowl discussion boards? Check out this video on how to create class discussion boards in Notebowl. Sarah uses the post visibility option of "Hide other posts until student has 1 post" so that the students cannot see what others have posted until after they post their own response. 

Need support with designing your class assignments in Notebowl? Sign up for a consultation with an EdTech. They can help you think of ways to achieve your goals using available technology.

Tidbit - inclusive teaching resources

The Association of College and University Educators has a nice resource for supporting inclusive learning with ten helpful practices.  As their website points out:

A classroom, whether physical or virtual, is a reflection of the world in which we live. Research has shown that students from underrepresented groups often face additional challenges. By implementing inclusive teaching practices, faculty create learning environments where all students feel they belong and have the opportunity to achieve at high levels.

Dr. Philip Stark, Professor of Statistics at UC-Berkeley, will present "Do student evaluations of teaching measure teaching quality? Do they help improve teaching? Are they fair?" Please join us for a lively talk and discussion!  This talk is free and open to the public.

Wednesday, April 14, 12:00-1:00pm, via Zoom

Please sign up here.

Please join members of the teaching faculty and Dr. Stark to discuss how we can move forward in re-envisioning our method of acquiring and using student feedback.  We will discuss what kinds of new questions we might use and how other institutions are changing their evaluation forms and procedures. This talk is free and open to the public. 

Wednesday, April 14, 4:40-6:00pm, via Zoom
Please sign up here.

Telling the Semester’s Story: helping your students reflect on their learning in your class and translate the skills developed 

Wednesday, April 28, 1:00-2:00pm virtual session with Dr. Julie Mujic.

Wrap up this Spring semester by helping your students reflect on their learning in your class and translate the skills they’ve developed into language that employers understand. We’ll review the eight career competencies most desired by employers and help you think about how to lead your students in a discussion about the assignments and projects that showcased those skills this semester.

Please sign up here.

Lew Ludwig
Director, Center for Learning and Teaching

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