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Incoming WFU 2015 Students: What They Know (and Don't Know) about Academic Reading and Writing

Based on written essays and surveys from the entering 2015 class of students, Dr. Aull and two URECA fellows will offer faculty insights into the “state of the state” of our incoming students’ perceptions and proficiency in academic reading and writing. She will especially discuss patterns in students' self-reported experiences with types of academic reading and writing as well as linguistic and rhetorical patterns in students essays related to evidence and argumentation. She will share examples of problematic issues, answer questions, and discuss the implications for teaching writing to these first year students.

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Learning that Lasts: What to Do After a Semester-Long Project Ends

In Fall 2014, Lisa Blee instructed a Public History course that culminated in a major student-directed collaborative project: an exhibit displayed in a downtown gallery.The students completed most of the work during the fall semester, but the exhibit opening and associated programming took place in the months after the winter break. Several students then completed a related spring internship and undertook an independent summer exhibit project, now on display at Sawtooth School for Visual Art. In this workshop, Blee and Public History student, Mallory Allred, will discuss the course and Mallory’s continuing work informed and inspired by the Public History project. We will consider how students might continue to learn from and reflect on their project after end of the semester, and opportunities at WFU for students to apply new skills to future endeavors.

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TA and PostDoc Series: Writing Effective Learning Objectives

Let’s talk about how focusing on student learning can save you time both in and out of the classroom. Clearly articulating what you want students to learn in your courses helps you target your efforts and design learning experiences to ensure students are meeting those expectations.

 

 

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Speed Up with Specifications Grading

Learn about a new method of assessment published in Linda Nilson's recent book, Specifications Grading . All assignments are evaluated on a high-standards pass/fail basis, and students' final course grade is determined by the number of assignments or units successfully completed. This system fosters student motivation, maintains high standards while reducing instructor workload, and puts the emphasis on achievement and constructive feedback rather than on numbers or letters. Prof. Gellar-Goad will present the basics of the system, some tips for making good assignment checklists, and the advantages and disadvantages of working with specs grading.

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TA and PostDoc Series: Active Learning: Why and How to Incorporate Active Learning into Your Classroom

All of the recent research into learning and how learning occurs, points to the effectiveness and necessity of actively engaging students in the classroom. It is not enough for instructors to ‘show and tell’ information, answers, processes, etc.; students have to engage with the material and come up with their own interpretations, answers, steps and understandings. In this workshop we’ll learn some basic techniques to promote active learning in the classroom.

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Flipping Your Class: Tips and Strategies

Are you thinking about flipping your classroom or just interested in knowing more about flipping? In this session, we will review some of the fundamental ideas behind flipped learning and its implementation. Dr. Christa Colyer, from the Chemistry Department, will discuss techniques used in her courses to move content coverage outside of class time; allowing for more engaged learning in the classroom. Options for reallocating the distribution of tasks for student learning even in more traditional class formats will also be presented.

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TA and PostDoc Series: Teaching Inclusively: Creating a Climate for Learning

The pedagogical choices we make as instructors can have a major impact on the climate for learning in our classrooms. Join us as we explore instructional strategies that promote learning success through intentional course design. Inclusive teaching strategies strengthen the performance of all students and also function to lessen the generational divide in academic expectations.

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TA and PostDoc Series: Writing a Teaching Philosophy 1

If you intend to apply for academic positions, it is likely that you will be asked to submit your philosophy of teaching statement as part of your application. During this session, we’ll examine sample philosophies and evaluate them using a rubric developed at the University of Michigan. We will also discuss format and style expectations and you will begin articulating your ideas and values around teaching. This will assist you in crafting a teaching philosophy that effectively communicates who you are as a teacher.

 

 

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TA and PostDoc Series: Writing a Teaching Philosophy 2

During this second session, we’ll refine our teaching philosophies through the use of peer feedback from other attendees. You’ll also have the added benefit of viewing a variety of different types of philosophies through this process. Bring your completed teaching philosophy and a keen eye!

 

 

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Designing Experiences that Support Student Motivation and Engagement in Science Labs

Understanding student motivation is an essential aspect of effective course design. Since student motivations are related to learning outcomes ranging from critical thinking to creativity to lifelong learning, helping students develop positive, internalized drive for learning is critical for the engagement and success of tomorrow’s STEM graduates. In this workshop, we will introduce the basic needs for intrinsic student drive according to Deci and Ryan’s self-determination theory (SDT) and explore specific roles instructors may play in influencing students’ activity-level, or situational, motivation. The workshop offers an opportunity for instructors to identify specific ways in which they may design their own laboratory courses to positively influence students’ motivational responses and engagement.

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