This virtual conference presents many sessions from the 2021 Teaching Professor Conference held June 4-6 in New Orleans. While we missed seeing you in person, this event platform allows for the next-best opportunity for learning about the latest research-based, classroom-tested best practices to enhance your knowledge and drive ever-better outcomes for the students you teach. View plenary presentations and sessions in all the conference tracks and ask any questions through the presenter Q&A feature.
Join us virtually to celebrate teaching in all its aspects and come away refreshed and inspired.
Most decisions are based on internal cost-benefit analyses. “Do I work an extra hour or go out with my friends?” “Do I write the term paper or buy one online?” The decision to buy a paper makes sense if the perceived marginal benefit from buying is greater than the perceived marginal cost. Put another way, a student will buy the paper/HW/assignment (or just not do it) if the marginal benefit of completing it is less than the marginal cost of time and effort. As cheating has become more sophisticated, so has the academy’s responses, with a great deal of attention on reducing access to the “supply” side of the market. Frequently missing from the conversation are the ways teachers can (and I would assert should) influence demand. Join us as we explore: circumstances and factors associated with academic dishonesty; course characteristics designed to reduce motivation and opportunity to cheat; and instructional strategies that promote academic honesty.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. In an era of academic scrutiny and escalating student debt, it is critical that academic programs meet industry needs. Employers want graduates who can demonstrate workplace competencies and career readiness. Directors of our Pharmacy Tech Certificate, BSHA, MHA, and MSN programs, reached out to stakeholders and authoritative leadership in their respective disciplines to identify workplace competencies for career readiness. We started with a base of outcomes, blended in competencies, added dashes of spicy assignments and folded in individual student learning plans within the LMS. We developed this with no outside resources within our existing LMS. We believe that other schools have the opportunity to cost-effectively leverage their LMSs to accomplish the same outcomes. Join us as we share what we have cooked up and participate in recipe sharing ideas! Takeaways from our menu include “Are we designing courses from an academic perspective or with stakeholder and industry input? Do too many cooks really spoil the broth?” and “Do we need a new set of recipes in course development?” While this is a healthcare example, this recipe is applicable across academics. Bon appétit!
Audience: Is new to this topic. We know that feedback is crucial to improve learning, yet research suggests that it is the timing of the feedback and the ability to act upon the feedback that brings about the most learning gains. However, in higher education, we often rely upon high stakes summative assessment strategies (tests, papers) as our primary feedback tools; these traditional assessment strategies provide little or no opportunity for the professor or the student to act upon misunderstandings or gaps in knowledge. This interactive session will focus on formative, fast, frugal, and fun strategies that we can use every day in our classrooms to more effectively assess understanding and foster deeper learning.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. Has the specter of academic integrity become more critical in this environment of remote instruction? Focusing on the actual learning with mixed-mode, online, or in-the-classroom assessments, you can both measure learning with integrity and provide your students with a meaningful learning activity. Your assessments can, and should, have a lasting impact on what your students learn when you start with what counts as evidence and that they have met your learning objectives. Creating assessment strategies that align with those learning objectives will, as a result, have the potential to lower the incidence of cheating attributed to student perception of unfair tests, poor study skills, or test anxiety. In this interactive presentation you’ll practice and reflect on how to do that efficiently by using tech tools and assessment strategies that collect and measure that evidence. In addition, we will discuss the concerns of academic integrity in assessment that seems to drive so much of how we evaluate students.
Curiosity is defined as having a strong desire to learn or know something. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all our students had this level of curiosity about our subject matter? Curiosity can lead to increased knowledge and help students make connections among various pieces of information. So how can we create an environment where students are curious to learn more? In this session, I will provide a concise overview of best practices for teaching and learning, as framed by the field of cognitive science. Participants will take part in practical teaching strategies that can be implemented in the classroom immediately. The session will focus on the ways that online tools can be used in innovative ways to make teaching more effective and student learning more durable. Participants will leave with a collection of resources that can be implemented immediately, and will be able to integrate activities to spark curiosity in their classroom; use technologies to help students deepen understanding of content; and communicate to students learning strategies to help them take more ownership of their learning.
Audience: Is new to this topic. In today’s society, connectedness and relationships are important for students’ learning experiences. Online instructors may be tempted to think it is too challenging to fully engage all of their students. How can instructors maximize the power of best practices in order to whet their students’ appetites and keep them coming back for more? In this interactive session, we will peruse the student engagement buffet and sample a collection of strategies just right for cultivating your online course. We will start with an “appetizer” of research foundations, move to an “entree” of best practices, and end with a sweet “dessert” application to our own online courses. Participants will walk away with robust “ingredients” that can be implemented immediately to help them become Master Chefs of Student Engagement.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. In response to restrictions required due to the COVID-19 pandemic, rapid changes have been made to teaching environments. These changes left educators puzzled on how to acheive the same quality onsite education online without losing the social, experiential, and many other dimensions of the learning process. These concerns are very serious in Science, Engineering, and Technology fields. Teaching engineering, science, and technology, in this uncertain environment forced instructors to find innovative ways of delivering the content, keeping the student engaged, and providing the required lab work and hands-on activities. In this presentation, successful strategies and tools applied in engineering classes will be shared. Solutions include integration of online simulation tools, such as TinkerCAD, CS2N, PhET, LabXchange, into class materials and using instant response tools, such as iClicker REEF, to compensate for the components missed due to remote setting. Presentation will include examples and hands-on practice of some of these tools.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced teaching and learning into an online environment that has proven challenging for both educators and students. These challenges, however, have compelled many to reconsider the role online learning holds in terms of improving learning opportunities for marginalized populations. Hyflex course models provide students with opportunities to engage in learning environments that allow them to overcome some of the hurdles and issues that have kept them from success in more traditional course modalities. In this session, the facilitators will present various models of hyflex learning and explore the advantages and disadvantages of the presentation mode in terms of improving equity to all students. Participants will be given an opportunity to share their insights and suggestions for increasing motivation and engagement for marginalized students.
Audience: Is new to this topic. How do we design and teach a course that is inclusive and equitable for all students and their learning? How do we address diversity, inclusion, and accessibility issues without feeling awkward and uncomfortable? In this session, we will explore key inclusive pedagogical practices from perspectives for course design that strive to serve the needs of our students and support their success. Topics include an inclusive classroom environment, an equitable course structure (scaffolding to support rigor and maintain high expectations for all students), additional support and accessibility for all, grading for equity, and incorporating diversity into our classroom and curriculum. Participants are expected to participate in small group discussions and will brainstorm and personalize inclusive teaching practices to redesign their classrooms.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. Safe, efficient, and effective real-time supervisory feedback in educational settings has always been challenging. Student clinicians and educators consistently indicate specific, immediate feedback during clinical sessions is their preferred instructional method (Lorino, Delehanty, & Woods, 2016); however, it has become extremely difficult during the COVID-19 pandemic. One speech and language clinic found the use of smartwatch technology an innovative way for educators to provide “bug in the ear” feedback to students in real-time with minimal disruption to the session. During this session, participants will learn how to incorporate wearable technology into their supervision, learn effective methods of giving feedback in this format, and adapting level of supervisor supports as applied to Anderson’s Continuum of Supervision.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. Professors lecture a lot, even though research says lecture is not the most effective strategy for student learning. The faithful “hammer” in your teaching toolbox, lecture is easy to wield in any teaching format and it makes you feel comfortable. But if student learning is what you truly desire for your classes, you need some new tools. You don’t have to completely abandon your trusty hammer, just put it down now and then so you can engage students in “learning moments”. Learning moments are those times in class when all students are working with course material, and you have stepped out of the way. Surprisingly painless and easily implemented, many strategies are available to construct these learning moments. Focusing on intentional questions to drive student retrieval, we will help you add a variety of powerful tools to your repertoire. During the session be prepared to participate in and create learning moments.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. Many teachers, particularly new teachers, grapple with engaging students deeply with assigned course readings. Some scholars have suggested that digital reading habits complicate efforts to instill deep reading habits (Miller, 2016). Teachers often report a variety of reasons why students may not engage deeply with course texts, including workload, ability or skill level, interest in material, and surface reading habits. The literature on assigning course readings, however, suggests that students will engage with readings when teachers embed intentional and scaffolded reading activities into their course design (Brown et al, 2014; Miller, 2016; Nilson, 2016). By the end of this session, participants will be able to: choose the right readings, integrate readings into their course design, frame course readings, and teach effective reading strategies. Participants will leave the session with some new resources, tools, and practices that they can try in their own classes.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. Teaching is an art. Just as there are basic principles that make great art, there are also fundamental concepts any teacher can learn to create great teaching and learning. In this presentation for newer university-level teachers, we will cover five fundamentals for effective teaching, regardless of your background or discipline, including: efficient and effective course design, inviting meaningful student participation in learning, creating and maintaining good student rapport, preparing engaging and relevant lectures, and clear and fair assessments. Participants will leave empowered to create and deliver an effective course that yields more positive student evaluations in their formative university teaching years.
Audience: Has some experience with this topic. In a changing demographic affected by economics, exposure to trauma, and now a pandemic, the new college student is non-traditional in almost all aspects and requires a new set of skills that has the potential to energize the learning environment and motivate the professor. Come away prepared to form more effective relations with students which build trust and accountability, increase participation through strategies that offer unique opportunities for equity of expression and performance of understanding, and gain a better understanding of the effects of trauma and poverty and how this should inform your classroom pedagogy on a daily basis.
Learn how a cross-disciplinary group of online instructors both contributed to and benefitted from the Online Teaching Faculty Toolkit, an online teaching resource that served as a bridge between technology and pedagogy to help faculty as they prepared to teach online. The Online Teaching Guides within the toolkit offer instructional solutions and strategies that help instructors engage their students and deepen their learning. In addition to offering concrete, evidence-based instructional strategies, these guides link to Ed Tech Aids that provide instructions for using various tools in faculty-friendly language, a list of references, and a growing number of two-minute videos made by instructors who tested and refined the strategies in their own online classes. Social and collaborative learning theories informed our thinking about the importance of not just offering at-the-ready resources but also establishing a community of online instructors. In connecting faculty, we fostered collective efficacy and benefited from the same kind of socialized learning experiences that we strive to create for our students in the online environment. Participants in this session will critique a faculty-developed Online Teaching Faculty Toolkit that supports the design and delivery of quality online courses; recognize the value of a community of online instructors with a pedagogical focus that works collaboratively to solve common problems of instructional practice; and discuss ways to build the capacity of faculty mentors who can share their online instructional expertise with each other, including those who are new to online teaching.
Audience: Is new to this topic. Traditionally, professional development for higher education faculty has consisted of a one-size-fits-all approach that is lecture-based or outside expert-led sessions. Instead, current research highlights the need for faculty development efforts that are responsive to faculty members’ needs and reflective of higher education’s ever-changing landscape. Coaching can fill this need. Establishing a higher education faculty coaching program alongside other professional learning programming can support educators’ continued learning. Transformational coaching provides a structure for this type of coaching program. This session will share how one institution implements the use of transformational coaching within faculty development efforts. Participants will walk away with a theoretical basis for such a program, a better understanding of the benefits of coaching, and ideas for implementing a coaching program.
Teaching through the pandemic forced higher education to closely examine the student experience in ways it never has before. Previously related to online classes, now even face-to-face courses faced scrutiny as more attention was paid to what worked better to help students learn. Many faculty learned new instructional methods to teach remotely and discovered how much they missed some old practices. Teaching will be different after the pandemic. How will it be different? What will be keep from remote teaching? In answering these questions, the presenter will first take a spirited trip along the evolution of teaching to then focus on the role played by synchronous teaching (live class sessions) and how it illustrated the importance of student-instructor rapport, building community, and the value of ‘being human’. At the end of this plenary, participants will be able to: Describe the many ways the pandemic changed teaching; Analyze the relative value of different contributors to learning; Evaluate different modalities of teaching; Explore ways to teach in a post-pandemic era
Educational institutions are spaces for learning, but more specifically, they are spaces for social learning. There is no one-size-fits-all set of best practices for building a learning community, whether on-ground or online. Right now, we should begin our efforts toward building community by designing for the students who need that community most, the ones most likely to have been feeling isolated even before the pandemic: disabled students, chronically ill students, students of color, queer students, and students facing housing and food-insecurity. Our ability to develop community will depend on our willingness to acknowledge trauma that members of our community have and will experience. bell hooks writes, “As a classroom community, our capacity to generate excitement is deeply affected by our interest in one another, in hearing one another’s voices, in recognizing one another’s presence.” So, our ability to develop community will also depend on our willingness to continue feeling joy, having epiphanies, asking hard questions, and sharing our curiosity with one another.
For the last 20 years discussions in higher education have circulated in and around diversity, equity, and inclusion. We are called to do more in this time in history. This is especially this case with discussion regarding classroom culture and effective teaching practices of minoritized, racialized and under-represented student populations. This interactive plenary session will explore psychological aspects of culture, its impact on faculty and students and specific strategies to improve teaching and learning outcomes for all who desire them. It is time to take our teaching practices to the next level.