CITL Teaching and Learning News: November 10, 2022

Nov 14, 2022, 10:49 AM
CITL Teaching and Learning News: November 10, 2022
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Instructor Voices

  Photo of Jim Miller

Surprised by How Motivating Group Work is for Students

While traditional lecture-style classrooms are still the norm, Professor Jim Miller (NRES) makes a case for incorporating small group activities into courses and creating flexible learning environments that support them. 

In this video, Miller discusses some of the positive impacts of small group work, including boosting students' engagement with the course materials and each other. He also shares a surefire strategy to get students talking. “The students will really take the ball and run with it given the opportunity,” he says. “In a way, it almost makes teaching easier. It certainly makes it more enjoyable.” 


CITL Announcements


Request for Proposals to Develop an eText@Illinois

Starting December 21st, CITL will award a limited number of $8,000 grants to faculty and instructors to put their locally-produced course materials for Summer or Fall 2023 on the award-winning eText@illinois platform. All instructor-authors are eligible, but those with large undergraduate enrollment courses (>300 seats annually) are encouraged to apply. Submit your proposal by November 30th. View the Request for Proposals here. Questions may be directed to Milind Basole, CITL.

Volunteer to Facilitate Microteaching at the January Grad Academy

Are you generally friendly and care about teaching? Do you have a little (or a lot of) teaching experience, either as a TA or instructor? Please help new TAs get ready to teach by facilitating Microteaching! TA training culminates in Microteaching, where new TAs teach 8-minute mock lessons on subjects of their choice. Microteaching facilitators help the TAs feel welcome, keep things running on time, and provide feedback on the lessons. We provide training. You get to learn a little bit about several different topics, and you end up with unique teaching development service to boost your CV. Contact Lucas Anderson if you would like to help. Microteaching will take place on Friday, January 13th, in the Armory building. Each session is 90 minutes long, and you can volunteer to help with one, two, or even three sessions. Thanks for your consideration!

Art of Teaching Looks at Hybrid Classrooms: December 1

Join us for the next Art of Teaching Lunchtime Seminar on Thursday, December 1st from 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. The hybrid classroom is often called the best of both worlds, and theories show that allowing students more autonomy increases satisfaction and learning. But data collected told a different story about student satisfaction. Aimee Barbeau and Eric Larson (Gies College of Business) will describe the role of social context in the classroom and discuss their findings on the relationship between autonomy and satisfaction, as well as the need for instructors to consider not just individual students but the whole classroom environments. Don’t miss this practical and informative lunchtime session. Please register for Zoom link.

Survey: Perceptions of Online Video Proctoring for Exams

You are eligible to participate in this study by Michele Gribbins (Ed.D. Candidate, Instructional Systems Technology, Indiana University-Bloomington and Director, Center for Online Learning, Research and Service, University of Illinois at Springfield) if you teach or have taught courses for a higher education institution. Experience using an online video proctoring service is not required. If you are interested in being included in the research study, please visit the Informed Consent Statement and Survey Instrument. The online survey should take 10-15 minutes to complete.


Workshops and Events


Academic Writing: Process Oriented Approaches for Student Assessment & Improvement
Thursday, November 10
11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Zoom, registration required
Presenter: James Steur, CITL Graduate Affiliate

Helping Your Students Establish a Sense of Belonging in Your Class
Friday, November 11
11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Armory Room 182, registration required
Presenter: Devyn Shafer, CITL Graduate Affiliate

Engaged Pedagogy
Thursday, November 17
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m., Armory Room 182, registration required
Presenter: Nicole Cox, CITL Graduate Affiliate

Cultivating Learning Communities
Tuesday, November 29
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m., Armory Room 182, registration required
Presenter: David Favre, CITL Teaching & Learning Consultant

Designing Effective Online Surveys
Tuesday, November 29
4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Zoom, registration required
Presenter: Dawn Owens, CITL

Art of Teaching: Lunchtime Seminar Series - Hybrid Classrooms
Thursday, December 1
12:00 - 1:00 p.m., Zoom, registration required
Presenter: Ava Wolf, CITL Teaching & Learning Consultant

See the CITL Event Calendar for all upcoming workshops. Looking for other training options? You might want to check out the Canvas Workshop Calendarand additional training opportunities provided through Training Services (formally FAST3).


Teaching Tips


Strategies to Warm Teaching While Maintaining High Expectations
(from Scholarly Teacher)

In a landmark article, Chickering and Gamson (1987) noted that a principle of good practice in undergraduate education is communicating high expectations. Hattie and colleagues (Donohoo et al., 2018; Hattie & Yates, 2013) reported that having high expectations is one of the strongest predictors of learning. It is noteworthy that these researchers speak of high expectations rather than rigor. Although some feel that high expectations are synonymous with rigor, these concepts are not the same. Increasingly, the meaning of rigor and how it is demonstrated is being questioned (Supiano, 2022).

Traditionally, the old-school concept of rigor leads to “washing students out,” teaching a “gate-keeping course,” and ensuring that many students earn lower grades. Some faculty wear student failure as a badge of honor that supposedly demonstrates their rigor. Jack and Sathy (2021) argue that it is time to get rid of “rigor,” and replace it with more inclusive teaching practices that still hold high standards for our students. In other words, moving from the teaching-oriented concept of rigor to a more learning-oriented concept of high expectations. To help students to do their best, along with maintaining high expectations, we can create warmer teaching strategies that focus on compassion and support for our students and their learning. Student success, not failure, should be our badge of honor. 

The Benefits of Using Students as Guest Speakers
(from Faculty Focus) 

Last year I received a grant to support bringing guest scholars to my class. The idea was to find students with some expertise relevant to my courses and invite them to present in class, thereby giving the class a perspective on the material that I couldn’t provide. The grant enabled me to pay the guest scholars a stipend for their work. I had both the guest scholars and students complete questionnaires after these visits to class. 

Here’s the rationale behind the idea. The task of the teaching professor is to educate, but what does that mean? The traditional notion is that education is something done to the students by the professor. The contrary radical notion is that education is something done by students for themselves—the old comparison between the student as container and the student as plant. A middle ground, which seems closer to reality than either of these theoretical positions, is that education is something done both by the professor with the students and by the students with the professor.

See our complete library of teaching tips here.
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