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Professional Resources for Teaching & Learning

News and resources for faculty and staff

Assessment, Cheating and Online learning

Sunday, April 13th, 2014

Explorations of the assessment, cheating and delivery of online learning continues.  A recent article regarding how students cheat in online courses was further explored.  Additional resources for assessment of online and hybrid delivery are provided by Quality Matters.  Assessment and efficacy of online learning is explored by several organizations, f or grading rubrics,  including Assessment of learning in Higher Education. Other sources include Three reasons teachers hate grading and what to do about them. Another resource, Prof Hacker at Chronicle of Higher Education continues to post hints on grading, from tools, digital tools, and rubrics.

National Resources on assessment and grading rubrics, mostly by discipline and interdisciplinary organization include American Association of Colleges and Universities AACU-LEAP rubrics and assessment at AACU-LEAP as well as the  National Institute for Learning Outcomes and Assessment at NILOA.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

located at NILOA National Institute of Learning Outcomes and Assessment and AACU American Association of Colleges and Universities LEAP.

First Day and Syllabus

Monday, January 13th, 2014

Your first day course materials and classroom activities set the tone for the semester.  Many experts on creating course materials, assignments and activities, suggest a learner centered approach.   Learning centered pedagogy is the feature of one effort. Most suggest that you use the first day to develop a sense of community and connection among the students.  Many icebreakers and activities are located at Teaching Tips.  Another strategy,  Backwards design suggests a three step process: identify learning outcomes,  develop assessment strategies, and plan instruction.  MCCC day faculty must include these materials in first day handouts and MCCC DCE faculty must included these materials.  You may also wish to review past posts, such as Creating a syllabus 3, and  use the ‘search’ feature on the teaching and learning site,  for syllabus,  first day handouts, classroom pedagogy and assessment.

Syllabus Preparation and Lectures

Monday, January 13th, 2014

ProfHacker of the Chronicle of Higher Education regularly posts ideas, fixes, make-overs, and concrete suggestions for syllabus creation.   Teaching resolutions for the new semester provides some syllabus guidelines.  Previous posts on Teaching and Learning site also provide other syllabus ideas.  A new view of the potential value of multiple choice exams is also provided.  For those who teach online, an article on adapting your powerpoint lectures may be useful.  Additionally, HASTAC recently published Why students complain about grades and what we can do about it.

Civic Engagement and value of college education

Monday, June 10th, 2013

Civic engagement and value of a college education with liberal arts courses in increasingly important to employers.  A case for liberal arts degrees and courses suggests both may increase civic engagement after graduation. Additionally, employers want broadly educated college graduates a new survey reveals.   Using digital media in all courses with a focus on popular culture, justice and equity may enable students to see the relevance of everyday experiences in courses as well as promote civic engagement.  The Pew research center also reported how digital media suggests  electronic ways in which citizens engage in politics and community.   Political activity is growing online but “slacktivism”  remains a challenge.  Still the completion of at least  some college courses provides citizens with speaking and writing abilities, making them more likely to speaking public and contact legislators.

 

 

 

Massachusetts CC Advising Conference

Tuesday, May 21st, 2013

 Massachusetts Community College Advising Association conference

Friday, June 14th from 8:30 – 3:30 at North Shore Community College . Diane O’Hearn and Shane Hammond will  be conference presenters.  Contact Anna or Julie if you would like to attend.  MCCADA Registraion Form 2013 and MCCADA Session Descriptions .

MOOCs, retention, and more challenges

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

Recent stories about MOOCS and San Jose State were in the news.  San Jose State professors pushed back against EdX, one of the top three providers of MOOCS.  An open letter from Professors at San Jose State to Professor Michael Sandel to request he take a stand on how some public universities may use MOOCs to force curriculum and content onto their professors and classrooms.  Professor Sandel responded supporting San Jose State professors, suggesting that his MOOC on Justice and Philosophy was never intended to replace face to face classroom discussions.  Another report by Todd Tauber suggest that students are bored in online courses and that  MOOCs have less that 5% retention rate, even though thousands sign up for the course, raising the question, if MOOCs can ever really replace institutionally designed online courses and web enhanced courses. Finally, Georgia Tech and Udacity have made an agreement to offer a master’s program in computer science and questions about the the quality of the potential program has been raised.

Grading, machine scoring and more

Monday, April 29th, 2013

Recently the news has described the challenges to machine scored essays.  One group suggests that machine scoring can not do what human professors and teachers can accomplish.  Others suggest that robo-readers can accurately score essays and writing. Other articles discuss the role of humans in grading differently, and more inclusively. Another sources discusses the pros/cons of grading with letters/numbers. Ultimately, the decisions about how to grade and whether machines can grade essays will be with college professors for some time.

MOOCs: Retention rates, challenges, and more

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

A recent NY Times article, reminds us that MOOCs {Massive Open Online Courses]  and their usefulness for credit bearing degree programs still may remain illusive.  While the article rates the usefulness, the interaction with the ‘star’ professors, the variability in course content, the retention rate is still dismal.  The author also indicates for many of the MOOCs he enrolled in, the student to professor and the student to student interaction was poor.  Additionally, Amherst College  rejects joining EdX, one of the three major MOOC providers, and questions MOOC viability for  transfer for credit into their curricula.  A further NY times blog questions the potential high costs of MOOCS>

Dealing with Trauma

Thursday, April 18th, 2013

In the wake of Boston Marathon tragedy,  some of these resources may be helpful for discussions in classes or offices.  The American Psychological Association provides a series of helpful strategies on a number of topics and is easily searchable.  The APA has several suggestions for Managing Traumatic  Stress.  Other sources, such as Massachusetts Government help center has suggestions and links for helping children. Some experts suggest that you turn off media especially around children.  Turn off the news  Additional information regarding serving returning veterans may also be helpful.  Center for Study of Traumatic Stress provides helpful information for anyone working with or living with vets. Psychological First Aid is a useful reminder handout. The Pew Research Center also provides research about military personnel transitioning to civilian life.

Understanding Vets in Community Colleges

Monday, April 8th, 2013

Professional Development Day for GCC faculty and Staff, will be held on Friday April 12.  Agenda Staff Development Day April 12, 2013  Program will be in the GCC Dining Commons   8:30 am – 4:00 pm.  From military service to college campus life:   Reintegration challenges for returning veterans

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