CITL Teaching and Learning News: October 8, 2020

Oct 12, 2020, 14:45 PM
CITL Teaching and Learning News: October 8, 2020
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Instructor Stories
History Professor Clare Crowston  

Games & Simulations: Traveling to the Past to Make a Better Future

History Professor Clare Crowston was frustrated by the lack of emotional engagement and discussion participation by the students in her class. Students reported the content was too difficult and not relevant and that the outcomes were already predictable. She decided to revamp her course by implementing a creative, innovative method of teaching history through the program “Reacting to the Past.” In addition to being more engaged, the students enjoyed the course and developed skills of perspective-taking, leadership, and critical thinking. Here is Professor’s Crowston story.

Do you have your own story to tell?
CITL is collecting stories from instructors and students interested in sharing their experience of remote instruction. Whether you have an interesting innovation, simple course adaptation, or even an instructional misstep, we hope to share these stories so we can all learn from the collective experience of our campus community. Please take a few minutes to complete this short form to share your Teachable Moments.

Need Help in Transitioning to Blended or Online Instruction?

While our physical offices are closed until further notice, CITL is here to help! You can contact a CITL Online Learning Specialist to consult with you on strategies for transitioning your course. You may also want to visit the CITL website for the latest advice on transitioning your course to a fully online or blended format.

Study Tips and Strategies to Help Your Students Succeed in Online Instruction

Early in the Spring, CITL launched a series of Student Resources aimed at helping students perform better in their online courses. We are continuing to update these resources to meet the changing needs of students during the pandemic. Please make your students aware of these tips by sharing this link -

TechHub Virtual Office Hours

Join us for virtual office hours every Tuesday from 10am to 11am on Zoom. Jamie and Megan will be there to answer your questions about emerging technologies, other educational tech on campus, how you can access our spaces, and anything else of interest! If we don’t have the answer, we’ll point you to someone who does. Some of our specialties include PowerPoint, Zoom, 3D printing, virtual reality, augmented reality, and laser cutting.

While each week will be an open discussion, be on the lookout for special guests and topics!

CITL Events & Workshops

Monday, October 12
Leading Zoom Sessions with Confidence: Part Two
6:00 P.M. - 7:00 P.M., Online, register to receive Zoom link
Hosts: Ritvika Luthra & Hannah Darcy
Tuesday, October 13
TechHub Virtual Office Hours
10:00 A.M. - 11:00 A.M., recurring
Join us for virtual office hours every Tuesday from 10am to 11am on Zoom
Tuesday, October 13
The Power of Presentations: Enhancing Your Slides for Teaching and Engagement
2:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M., register to receive Zoom link
Speaker: Jamie Nelson
Wednesday, October 14
Fall 2020 Faculty Teaching & Learning Series Wksp #5: Innovative Multimedia Assessment of Student Learning: Going Beyond the Usual Papers and Exams
11:30 A.M. - 1:00 P.M., Online, register to receive Zoom link
Speaker: Cheelan Bo-Linn
Teaching Tips

How to Make Your Virtual Discussions Engaging, Effective, and Equitable in Eight Steps

(From Faculty Focus) The perfect class discussion can feel like something of an alchemy. From the instructor’s preparation to the students’ personalities, many ingredients can enable or challenge the social construction of knowledge in a class community. As Jay Howard suggests, quality discussions require a great deal of planning and an understanding of social, emotional, and intellectual dynamics (Howard 2019). In times like this, it’s urgent to consider how we can facilitate meaningful discussions in virtual environments. Challenges are understandable, but with practice there are some ways to reduce silence and uncertainty while bolstering engagement and equity in virtual discussions. If we’re open about trying new strategies, reflecting on them, and trying again, we can transform this moment into an opportunity to motivate and connect with our students. 

Listen to and Acknowledge Participants - Essential Abilities of Effective Presenters

(From Tomorrow’s Professor) Two deeply human desires are to be listened to and acknowledged. How we listen and acknowledge contributes much to the quality of our relationships, and how we as presenters listen to and acknowledge participants contributes much to the quality of their learning. As we think about participants in a learning environment, two tensions come to mind. First is their internal tension associated with not knowing or discovering that they don’t know. The second is a self-inflicted tension created when what an individual doesn’t know. What is ironic here is that for learning to take place, tension must be present. The key is not to eliminate tension; rather, it is to manage the tension by reframing it from being associated with emotional threat to being associated with cognitive challenge. When well-managed, the cognitive tension is high and the psychological tension is low.  The safe learning environment is a state of relaxed alertness.

See More Teaching Tips Here