Faculty Focus

HIGHER ED TEACHING STRATEGIES FROM MAGNA PUBLICATIONS

Teaching and Learning

Applying Learning Agreements in the Classroom

As a former editor in the business profession and now educator, I see connections between business and classroom best practices, especially applying professional development plans and performance reflection exercises as academic learning agreements in order to promote student leadership and engagement.

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What Happened When I Stopped Policing and Started Teaching

I’m not sure how to say this without appearing either arrogant or ignorant, but I have discovered that there is a difference between being a police officer and being a professor. I have recognized the difference for some time now, but it has taken me the better part of my 40 years as a college professor to feel fairly comfortable in my new skin.

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Teaching and Learning Award Winners Announced

Congratulations to the winners of the inaugural McGraw-Hill – Magna Publications Scholarly Work on Teaching and Learning Award. Announced last week at the sixth annual Teaching Professor Conference, the award recognizes outstanding scholarly articles on teaching and learning, and includes a $1,000 stipend from McGraw-Hill to the authors of the winning article.

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Using Media Materials to Set the Stage for Learning: A Strategy for All Disciplines

Humanities and social sciences instructors have long borrowed from media communications to drive home concepts. For example, a business instructor might clip a magazine article pointing out how inappropriate attire can negatively influence the outcome of an interview with a company. Philosophy professors might motivate a classroom discussion on hedonism by discussing the antics of popular young superstars as reported in the tabloids.

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Student-Centered Teaching: The Academic Leader’s Role in Shifting Paradigms

During the past 10 years or so, higher education institutions have made strides in transitioning from an instructor-centered approach to a learner-centered approach to teaching. These strides, both large and small, have transformed the college classroom environment to provide students with greater opportunities for active learning, collaboration, and engagement.

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Do Learning Styles Matter?

There’s been a lot written about learning styles. More than 650 books published in the United States and Canada alone. Do a Google search on “learning styles” and you get over 2,000,000 results. Most people know if they’re a visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learner, and instructors often try to design their courses to accommodate the different learning styles so as to ensure that each student’s strongest modality is represented in some fashion.

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Why do students procrastinate

Why Students Procrastinate and What You Can Do About It

It’s easy to lay the procrastination problem on students and certainly they must own a big part of it. But this research indicates that professors are not powerless. There are ways assignments can be designed and courses structured that can decrease the amount of procrastination.

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Does It Really Matter Where Students Sit?

Do better students sit in front, or does seat selection contribute to better grades? A recent study examined this question and found that students who sat in the back of the room for the first half of the term were nearly six times more likely to receive an F.

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Strategies for Teaching Large Classes

Once I passed my 50th semester of introductory biology, I began to regret that my profession doesn’t have a real apprenticeship for teaching—why should every young professor facing his or her first big class…have to make the same mistakes I did and, perhaps more important, why should they not know that everybody…has the same problems?

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