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February 23 Teaching & Learning Newsletter

Feb 27, 2017, 14:14 PM


View the CITL Teaching & Learning Newsletter February 23 Issue


2017 Annual Faculty Retreat - Save the Date: March 9, 2017

The theme of this year’s retreat is “The Power of Engagement: Igniting Students' Passion for Learning." We will highlight the many ways in which our faculty here on campus have engaged our students that have resulted in higher achievement, increased motivation and interest, and more meaningful learning. The year's program will have video vignettes, teaching simulations, and interactive activities by our exemplary teachers. Attendees can apply for retreat grants to implement ideas inspired from the retreat. Space is limited. Registration is now open for all faculty and academic professionals across campus.

Special Event Presented by Paul Diehl.  Turning Good Teaching on Its Head: A Thought Experiment

We are pleased to have Paul Diehl return to our campus for this thoughtful talk on Tuesday, March 7. Before going to University of Texas-Dallas to be the Associate Provost and Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, Professor Diehl was the Founding Director Emeritus of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Teaching Academy and Founding Director Emeritus of the Office of Undergraduate Research.  

Abstract of his presentation: There are some traditional ways and indicators of what we think of as award winning teaching.  Is there anything to be learned by taking the opposite of those?  The talk focuses on two examples and argues that there can be some important lessons about what is good instruction and how we might reevaluate, at least in part, how and to whom we teach.  We invite all across campus to attend this special presentation. You may register here.

Save the Date for the Create Your Own Online Course Series

CITL will be hosting the second iteration of the "Create Your Own Online Course" series of consecutive, 1-hour workshops on April 3,4, and 6 from 12:30 - 3:30 each day. This is open to all instructors who want to learn best practices for creating an online course. Detailed agenda and registration information will be shared in our next newsletter. 

Professional Development Fair for Graduate Students

The Graduate College is hosting the inaugural Professional Development Fair for Graduate Students! The fair will be Friday, March 3, noon - 2 p.m., Illini Union, room C. Come learn about services and resources designed to help you succeed during your time as a graduate student including CITL, the Illinois Leadership Center, Office of Volunteer Programs, the Writing Center, and many more! Need a new professional headshot? They've got you covered. Stop by anytime during the fair to have your headshot taken and receive a digital web resolution proof for free.

Sign up to join a TA Reading Group

How do the best college teachers teach? Find out by reading Ken Bain’s What the Best College Teachers Do with fellow TAs and a CITL facilitator. Meetings will be arranged to fit your schedule.  This is a great way to earn workshop hours towards our teaching certificates, especially if your schedule prevents you from attending our scheduled workshops.  Sign up for to be in a TA Reading Group by following this link – you will be matched up with other TAs and a facilitator with similar availability.  

Resources for Instructors in the Social Sciences

CITL Data Analytics Group has compiled a guide on data-related teaching resources provided by Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Science Research (ICPSR) -- the world's largest archive of digital social science data. Students and faculty have direct, free access to all of ICPSR’s data resources and user support.  Resources include: Data-driven learning guides, The Crosstab Assignment Builder, ICPSR’s exercise modules, instructional videos on teaching with data.

CITL Events & Workshops

Want to see what workshops and events are coming later in the system? Look at our full calendar for more information.


Wed Mar 1
Teaching with Technology Seminar Series: Media Commons
12:00 P.M. - 1:00 P.M., room 428 Armory Building
Speaker: Eric Kurt (Media Commons) 
Tue Mar 7
Special Presentation - Turning Good Teaching on Its Head: A Thought Experiment by Paul Diehl
12:00 P.M. - 1:00 P.M., room 210 Illini Union
Speaker: Paul Diehl (Associate Provost & Director, Center for Teaching and Learning, University of Texas-Dallas)   
Thur Mar 9
2017 Annual Faculty Event - The Power of Engagement: Igniting Students' Passion for Learning
8:00 A.M. - 2:00 P.M., room A,B,C Illini Union
Speakers: Various from Campus
Developing Your Teaching Philosophy Statement for a Faculty Job Search
2:00 P.M. - 3:30 P.M., room 428 Armory Building
Speakers: Lucas Anderson (CITL)
Fri Mar 10
Microaggressions and Teaching
12:00 p.M. - 1:30 P.M., room 428 Armory Building
Speaker: Audrey Neville (CITL) 

Training Opportunities Across Campus

Mon Feb 27
Illustrator CC Level 1
1:00 P.M. - 4:00 P.M., room 27, Illini Hall
Sponsor: Judy Geistlinger (Fast3/Webstore Training Services)
Tue Feb 28
Photoshop CC: Level 1
9:00 A.M. - 12:00 P.M., room 27, Illini Hall
Sponsor: Fast3/Webstore Training Services
Thur Mar 9
Newsletter in a Day
9:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M., room 27, Illini
Sponsor: Fast3/Webstore Training Services
Photoshop CC: Layers
9:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M., room 27, Illini
Sponsor: Fast3/Webstore Training Services 

Teaching Tips

Do Quizzes Improve Student Learning? A Look at the Evidence

There’s a lot of talk these days about evidence-based instructional practices. Recently I’ve been trying to locate the evidence that supports quizzing, wondering if it merits the evidence-based label. Tracking down this evidence in our discipline-based research is challenging because although quizzing has been studied across our disciplines, it’s not easily searchable. What this evidence tells us is that given a particular set of conditions, quizzes produce positive results, in most cases a range of them. And that gives us three things to consider: quizzes are an evidence-based instructional strategy only in a general sense; to determine if quizzes produce the desired results, evidence is needed; and consideration of the instructional design is of profound importance. Additional details are here

Three Guidelines and Two Workarounds for Tackling Makeup Exam Policies

Are you one of the many instructors who loathe makeup exam requests? Makeup exams often create more work and can put us in the awkward position of judging the truthfulness of our students’ excuses. Although we can’t avoid makeup requests entirely, we can better prepare ourselves and our students by having a transparent and fair makeup exam policy. When designing your policy, always ask yourself: Does the policy allow students to learn what you want them to learn in your course? Here are three guidelines for an effective makeup exam policy and two possible workarounds


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