The growth of knowledge within your discipline is what makes being a professor so exciting, but it also presents new challenges–particularly when it comes to teaching. Because the time allotted for each course remains constant and the content that could be included in any course continues to grow, you may find it difficult to try to cram all this information into a course.
HIGHER ED TEACHING STRATEGIES FROM MAGNA PUBLICATIONS
Once upon a time people told stories to share experiences and to teach. With the growing popularity of distance learning modalities educator have been searching for ways to enhance social presence and reflective thinking in the online learning experience. The use of digital storytelling might be a strategy to bring human thought and emotion into online education.
One of the common objections to group work is that bright, capable students are held back when they share group activities and grades with students of lesser ability. This is of concern to teachers and students. Often very good students strongly oppose group work. They worry that an ineffective group with weak or nonproductive members will compromise their grades. Many openly express the belief that they can do the activity, project, paper, or presentation better on their own and would prefer doing it that way.
Blended learning is gaining momentum in higher education…and for a very good reason. According to the U.S. Department of Education, blended learning can improve learning outcomes. To achieve better learning outcomes, however, blended courses need to be carefully structured to engage learners.
Given the difficulty most faculty have getting students to read for courses, even assigned reading in required textbooks, reading lists may not be used as extensively now as they were 20 years ago. Nonetheless, they still figure prominently in the delivery of independent studies, special topics courses, and senior and graduate seminars.
When you undertake a blended learning course, you can’t just think about what assignments and activities you are going to move online. You have to reconceptualize the entire course. This means starting with your learning goals. The place to begin is by asking yourself: What do I want students to learn?
A biology class works with a local environmental organization to test water samples from the Chesapeake Bay. A graphics design class helps a non-profit organization build a new website. A childhood development class serves as mentors to at-risk students in an after-school program.
If Web 1.0 was about information, then Web 2.0 is about sharing information. This second generation of the web is more personalized, more collaborative, and more engaging. Is it any wonder faculty are looking for ways to leverage these capabilities in their courses?
To meet the needs of today’s students, colleges and universities are offering more courses in block time formats. These courses meet once a week for three hours, extended hours over fewer weeks, or on weekends. Typically, the students who take these courses are working full time, are interested in career advancement, and want classes that keep them engaged.