July 25, 2008

Privacy Policy

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FacultyFocus.com is a website of Magna Publications Madison, WI 53704 This website is owned and operated by Magna Publications.  We are committed to protecting the privacy of our visitors while they interact with the content, products, and services on this site


July 19, 2008

Creating Successful Interdisciplinary Programs

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The University of Oklahoma’s (OU) College of Arts and Sciences has a long history of successful interdisciplinary programs. Each was created under different circumstances without a standard process, but they all share several characteristics that have helped them thrive. Academic Leader recently spoke with Paul B. Bell, Jr., dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and vice provost for instruction, about what makes these interdisciplinary programs successful…


July 18, 2008

10 Tips From a Distance Learning Trainer

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As a distance learning trainer at the University of West Georgia, Christy Talley helps develop online courses, trains faculty in online instruction, provides student support, conducts student surveys and evaluations, and delivers online professional development. Part of her role is to give advice to online instructors. The following are her top 10 tips for online instructors:…


July 17, 2008

Curriculum Development: Department-less Interdisciplinary Program Provides Flexibility for Returning Adult Students

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The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies (BAiLS) program, an interdisciplinary program at Northern Arizona University designed to meet the needs of returning adult students, is less structured than programs with similar goals at other institutions. This looser structure encourages collaboration among disciplines and provides for greater flexibility, says Larry Gould, associate dean of the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences…


July 16, 2008

Student Learning Outcomes Initiative

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In 1989 the administration at Central Arizona College made a decision to move toward a competency-based curriculum for all of its courses and certificate and degree programs—a wise decision given all the changes taking place within the community college’s district and within higher education in general, says Linda Heiland, CAC’s associate vice president for institutional effectiveness and chief academic officer…


July 14, 2008

Effective Classroom Management: A Helpful Handout for Students

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Sometimes we (or our colleagues) don’t always deliver material in ways that expedite note-taking. We may not be able to take class time for a session on note-taking but all of us can probably find time to distribute a handout that students might find helpful. Consider this one, a slightly condensed and modified version of material that appears in the reference below. These are research-based recommendations…


July 11, 2008

Instructional Design: Moving Toward a Less Structure, More Learning-Centered Environment

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“Being classes,” as the authors refer to them, rest on the belief that students themselves control what they are learning. Teachers cannot learn content for students — that one’s easy. But neither can teachers force students to learn what they are teaching. From any given learning experience, students will take vastly different things. They learn in different ways and filter all learning experiences through the unique set of past experiences. If you doubt these premises, the authors challenge you to take a learning experience that has occurred in your class, maybe a good student presentation, an exercise or an especially animated discussion, and immediately after its conclusion, ask students to write a paragraph about what they learned.


July 10, 2008

Blogs: An Asynchronous Learning Trend

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Alex Halavais, assistant professor of communication and graduate director of informatics at the University at Buffalo, has incorporated blogs in his courses to encourage students to think beyond a single course, to integrate their learning across the curriculum, and to provide opportunities for feedback as students’ work evolves. Halavais has written a chapter on this topic for the forthcoming book International Handbook of Virtual Learning Environments (Kluwer Academic Publishers). Online Classroom recently spoke with Halavais the evolving pedagogical uses of blogs.


July 9, 2008

Improving Lectures

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“Is The Teaching Professor anti-lecture?” the sharply worded e-mail queried. “No, we aren’t,” I replied, “We’re anti poor lectures … just like we’re against group work that doesn’t work and any other instructional approach poorly executed.”

But the note did remind me that we haven’t provided much on lectures recently, and in all the classrooms I visited this semester, lectures were certainly alive and well (although some were not very healthy). My search for current resources uncovered the article referenced below, which identifies 10 “worthwhile considerations” that should be addressed by those who lecture. The author teaches in a science area and pulls examples from that content.