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CTL Schedule

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CTL Schedule, Spring 2018                                                                                          


Cooperative Learning: Three Strategies to Use Right Now

The research is pretty clear.  Well-designed cooperative learning activities increase student engagement and achievement.  Participants in this session will learn three simple but effective cooperative learning strategies that work in many disciplines, yet don’t require instructors to re-organize an entire course. Door prize:  Small Teaching

Presenter:  Brian McBurnett (chemistry)

Tues 1-23 (noon, lunch) and Fri 1-26 (9:00, breakfast) in Admin 212


To Flip or Not To Flip

In the flipped model, students get a first introduction to the content before class meets, often through short videos.  This early preparation allows more class time for problem-solving or other active learning.  The session's participants will learn strategies for making the most of this model, as well as ways to avoid some of its potential problems. Door prize:  Collaborative Learning Techniques

Presenter:  John Stankus (chemistry)

Tues 1-30 (8:00, breakfast) and Thurs 2-1 (noon, lunch) in Admin 212


Writing with (Almost!) No Grading

Informal writing, sometimes called writing to learn, consists of short, in-class writing activities focused on class content.  Cognitive scientists, such as the authors of Make It Stick, note its effectiveness in helping students retain key ideas. Participants will learn several informal writing prompts as well as simple but effective ways to assess this work. The first ten faculty members to register and attend each session will receive $100 stipends.

Presenter: Amanda Johnston, Writing and Learning Center

Tues 2-6 (8:00, breakfast) and Fri 2-9 (noon, lunch) in Admin 212


“You Made that Video?”

Despite the videos available in every corner of the internet, sometimes the best videos are the ones we make ourselves, perhaps discussing a textbook passage or reviewing a tricky procedure. Kaltura allows us to create videos from anything on our computer screen. Participants in this BLENDED session will complete a little online preparation, and then do the hands-on work of creating a video during the session. Each session is limited to 5 participants.  Door prize: a microphone headset.

Presenters: Adela Gott and Terry Peak, Instructional Technology

Mon 2-5 (noon, lunch) and Wed 2-7 (4:15, drinks and snacks) in Admin 212


Writing Multiple Choice—not Multiple Guess--Items  

Join colleagues to listen to and discuss a podcast in which Jay Parkes and Dawn Zimmaro discuss their new book, Learning and Assessing with Multiple Choice Questions in College Classrooms. When asked about the book’s focus, Parkes and Zimmaro commented that with multiple-choice items “everywhere,” it makes sense to use them well.  Participants will learn ways to write effective multiple choice items and to identify situations where they are most suitable.

Door prize:  Learning and Assessing with Multiple Choice Questions in College Classrooms.

Mon 2-12 (noon, lunch) Alicia Rodriguez de Rubio and Tues 2-13 (8:00, breakfast) Laurie Singel in Admin 212


Lessons from Academically Adrift

In their 2011 book, sociologists Richard Arum and Josipa Roska argue that many students emerge from college with a degree but limited learning, especially in the areas of problem-solving and critical thinking.  However, they accompany this disturbing claim with some practical suggestions for faculty.  Join colleagues for a brief presentation on Academically Adrift and a discussion of ways to help students increase their focus on learning.  Door prize:  What the Best College Teachers Do

Facilitator: Roger Barnes (sociology)

Wed 2-21 (4:15, snacks and drinks) and Mon 2-26 (noon, lunch) in Admin 212


Borrowing Video Resources from the Kahn Academy

Short, on-line videos are common ingredients in college classes, but constantly making them from scratch can become time-consuming.   The Kahn Academy offers a variety of short videos that instructors can use to introduce concepts or provide extra review. Participants will view sample videos and discuss strategies for using such resources. Door prize:  a wireless clicker.

Presenters: Adrienne Ambrose (religious studies) and Bonnie McCormick (biology)

Wed 2-21 (8:00, breakfast) and Thurs 2-22 (noon, lunch) in Admin 212


Talking About Grades

When students are struggling, talking to them about their grades may be difficult. Conversations can easily become heated and move in unhelpful directions. The presenters, with expertise in counselling and motivational theory, will suggest how to de-escalate conflict and help students focus on ways to improve their performance. Door prize:  What the Best College Teachers Do

Presenters: Christie Melonson (Counselling Center) and Stefanie Boswell (psychology)

Wed 2-28 (noon, lunch) and Fri 3-2 (9:00, breakfast) in Admin 212 


Dialogue and Diversity

After experiencing three ways students might “talk in class”--discussion, debate, and dialogue—participants will discuss the traits of each. The session’s participants will learn the rewards and challenges of promoting dialogue among diverse groups of students.

Presenter:  Sandy Guzman (education)                

Tues 3-6 (noon, lunch) and Thurs 3-8 (4:15, drinks and snacks) in Admin 212


What Next?  A Crucial Question in Improving Writing

Identifying what has gone well and what needs work promotes all kinds of learning, including the complex task of improving a piece of writing.   The National Research Council endorses this process—called metacognition-- for its solid research base. Participants will learn to design and use “essay wrappers” and other tools that help students take a metacognitive look at their writing. The first ten faculty members to register and attend each session will receive $100 stipends.

Presenter: Amanda Johnston (Writing and Learning Center)

Mon 3-5 (noon, lunch) and Wed 3-7 (8:00, breakfast) in Admin 212  


Gamification: What Do Legend of Zelda and Grand Theft Auto Have to Do with Learning?

Whether they involve building a tower with virtual blocks, defending the kingdom of Hyrule, or plotting auto theft in Los Santos, games engross our students—and often us, too. Many of the principles that make games so engaging can be applied to course design.  Participants in this session will visit the educational gaming platform BreakoutEDU and discuss ways to apply principles of gamification to their own courses. Door Prize: gift card for gaming supplies

Presenter: Lucretia Fraga (education)

Tues 3-27 (4:15, drinks and snacks) and Wed 3-28 (noon, lunch) in SEC 2034


Don’t Just Look at That Paper—Edit It

Failing to edit well prevents writers from presenting their best selves. But when asked about their editing, students often say they “looked over” the paper, a singularly ineffective approach to the task.  Participants will learn five more effective approaches to editing; they can be provided to students in a handout or occasionally practiced in class.   The first ten faculty members to register and attend each session will receive $100 stipends.

Presenter: Amanda Johnston (Writing and Learning Center)

Tues 4-3 (4:15, drinks and snacks) and Fri 4-6 (noon, lunch) in Admin 212



Dynamic Lecturing: Research-Based Strategies to Enhance Learning Effectiveness by Christine Harrington and Todd Zakrajsek

In discussing lecture as a teaching method, Zakrajsek recently commented, "If bad teaching were considered a crime, I think we’ve arrested the wrong suspect." The authors, arguing that lecture can be a useful tool, describe the situations where lecture is effective and other activities that complement it. Limit: ten participants

Facilitator: J. T. Norris (accounting)

Mondays 2-19, 2-26, and 3- 5 (noon, lunch) in Gorman 120


Register for any session at the following link: