Every other week during the academic year, we add new links to our resources page. They are listed in no particular order. To learn more about teaching and learning, just browse or search our list.
Design your course, starting with learning objectives and working backwards to assignments and class activities that will help students achieve those objectives.
According to Dee Fink, significant learning involves not only information, ideas, and critical thinking but also integration, self-knowledge, interests, values, and learning how to learn. He walks us through the steps of designing significant learning in a 37-page .pdf document. Worksheets included.
So says Lolita Paff (Economics, Penn State Berks). Paff explains how she has moved away from a "contract" syllabus to one that sets a tone for "learning and intellectual development."
Ed Brantmeier et al. have created a comprehensive survey to help with designing an inclusive course.
Mary Ellen Weimer (author of Learner-Centered Teaching) lists "a few novel activities for using that first day of class to emphasize the importance of learning and the responsibility students share for shaping the classroom environment."
Another offering from Mary Ellen Weimer, published by Faculty Focus.
Barbara Gross Davis from the University of California, Berkeley, outlines "the three important tasks of the first day: handling administrative matters, creating an open friendly classroom environment, and setting course expectations and standards." From her book Tools for Teaching.
Delivee Wright from the University of Nebraska discusses anxiety, introductions, and expectations.
Suggestions from the Vanderbilt Center for Teaching on creating an inviting classroom and clarifying responsibilities and expectations.
A repository for practical tips. Founded by David Gooblar (University of Iowa).
If you subscribe, you get a regular infusion of helpful ideas. From Magna Publications.
The ultimate guide to our profession. For teaching and learning, try features like On Course and ProfHackers.
A new 30-to-40-minute episode every week, thanks to Bonni Stachowiak (Vanguard University).
From The Chronicle of Higher Education.
More from Brookfield and Preskill on the kinds of questions that will draw answers rather than blank stares. Posted by the Stanford Center for Teaching and Learning.
Want to help your students think like a specialist? Develop critical thinking skills? Develop problem-solving skills? Here are some strategies from Kelly McGonigal (Stanford University). Courtesy of the Stanford Center for Teaching and Learning.
Todd Finley (East Carolina University) offers lots of ideas for facilitating discussions with large groups. From edutopia.org.
Peter Frederick (Wabash College) suggests some simple exercises.
Fiona Macrae, Mail Online, July 23, 2013.
Maryellen Weimer, From Faculty Focus.
In 1999, Kathleen Gabriel estimated that, for students with poor vocabularies reading textbooks (and possibly even listening to lectures), "the meaning of every tenth word is unknown." In her book Teaching Unprepared Students, pp. 110-14, she outlines a strategy for helping students build their vocabularies. The book is available in the CTL Library (Ferguson 108).
There's an app for that! Actually there are quite a few. Here are some suggestions from Inc.
IDEA Teaching and Learning Resources. If you'd like some tips for how to achieve a learning objective or how to implement a teaching procedure, this is the place to get them.
In this 12-minute video, Amber Handy presents some of the research about classroom use of laptops and smart phones. The video is designed for teachers to show in class as a prelude to discussion in which the class would agree on a technology use policy. Two minutes in, we learn what our students with laptops are really doing in class. From the Kossen Center for Teaching and Learning, Mississippi University for Women.
A study by Douglas A. Duncan, Angel R. Hoekstra, and Bethany L. Wilcox; University of Colorado, Boulder. AER 11 (2012).
A study by Faria Sana, Tina Weston, and Nicholas J. Cepeda. In Computers and Education 62 (2013): 24-31.
A March 6, 2017 New York Times interview of social psychologist Adam Alter (Stern School of Business, New York University). By Claudia Dreifus. Alter is the author of Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked.
John R. Swallow (Carthage College) says things like, "When I became a professor of mathematics at a residential college, I quickly learned that sometimes half of the work of teaching calculus to my students was reducing their anxiety." From Inside HigherEd.
Flower Darby (Northern Arizona University) says things like, "You can make a big difference with a deliberate effort to be enthusiastic, positive, and optimistic about your students’ success." Also, "Smile. Make eye contact. Empathize with your students." From Faculty Focus.
In this 7.5-minute video, five college students explain how they cope and what they want professors to know. From the Chronicle of Higher Education.
It's not that far. Or is it? From "This American Life."
By Nick Morrison. "The problem lies not so much in whether they can afford to study at university but in how they feel when they are there." Published February 26, 2017 by Forbes.
By Mary Murphy and Mesmin Destin. This 2016 report begins with observations from Michelle Obama and Sonia Sotomayor. From The Century Foundation.
David Leonhardt (New York Times, March 25) reviews some statistics, comments on federal policy, and promises more articles to come.
Joy DeGruy's story illustrates the effects of stereotype threat and microaggressions as well as the difference that allies can make. From crackingthecodes.org.
What happens to low-income students who take out loans and then don't (or do) graduate. By Maggie Thompson, for talkpoverty.org.
Just one more example of how college wasn't designed for students who can't afford to go away for a week. By Anthony Abraham Jack, New York Times, March 17, 2018.
The psychology behind Kathleen Gabriel's teaching philosophy. It's a game-changer. From Stanford's Carol Dweck.
Read More >>
Many students come to college with very little knowledge of how college works. We, who know quite a lot about how college works, sometimes forget to explain it to them. Mary-Ann Winkelmes (University of Nevada, Las Vegas) shares some strategies for how we can be more transparent about what we're doing and why.
Read More >>
In this article, Christopher Grabau reviews methods to help students retain, retrieve, and sustain what they have learned.
Two strategies to help students (and teachers!) learn about what went wrong on an exam. Mary Ellen Weimer shares them in this Faculty Focus article.
Maryellen Weimer stresses active learning, explicit skill instruction, meta-cognition, student agency, and collaboration. Her book Learner-Centered Teaching is available in the CTL Library. You can find the first edition in the Albion College library.
Some classroom strategies and design guidelines from the Yale University Center for Teaching and Learning.
Twenty-three active learning strategies: why and how to use them. From the University of Minnesota Center for Educational Innovation.
Ideas and strategies for classroom role-play. From the Kendall College Center for Teaching and Learning.
All about activity-based learning. From The Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University.
Jim Eison (University of South Florida) explains active learning, argues for its utility, and (starting on p. 6) gives some practical tips about transforming traditional lectures into interactive lectures.
More tips from Richard M. Felder (University of North Carolina) and Rebecca Brent (Education Designs, Inc.).
Richard A. Gale (The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Learning) focuses on seminars, problem-based learning, emergent learning (that is, learning based on current events or critical issues), learning communities, and student portfolios.