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Queen's University
 

Centre for Teaching and Learning

2012 Cross-Faculty Teaching Forum 

Engaged Teaching | Engaged Learning

Notes from the discussion groups focused on three questions


1. What was the most interesting point in Maryellen's presentation from your perspective?

  • Emphasis on transparency and ownership
  • Concrete Examples with Story Telling
  • Passion for Subject/ Topic
  • Ownership and Agreement between Students and Teacher - Participation Policy
  • Forms of Participation Valued in the Classroom
  • Nurturing the Classroom Climate
  • Developing Lifelong Learning Skills and articulating the Learning Process
  • Importance of student ownership
  • Challenge of delivering content versus time for engagement activity
  • Takes a lot of work to engage in learning – set that expectation with the students from the beginning
  • Importance of student participation that will result in a deeper level of understanding – how do you know that is happening?
  • Importance of getting students excited about learning
  • Make students feel as though they will develop skills vs. being intimidated by difference in their skills
  • Importance of lifelong learning by teachers
  • Ways to get students motivated (engagement with tasks; negotiating tasks, policies; give students ownership)
  • Telling students what teacher needs to do job
  • Participation policy – turned into assignment (participation partner; would work better in small classes; need specific rubric for evaluation; has a risk factor alongside freedom)
  • Strategies for getting students to identify wrong answers
  • Introvert comment – how they learn (students and instructors)
  • Lifelong learning skills – helping students to develop this
  • Developing both content knowledge and learning skills
  • How activities build upon each other (instructional design)
  • Student ownership, instructors not doing everything
  • People are interested in their own learning – students will set objectives for themselves  if you set those expectations
  • Insight into the definition of active learning – getting students to do the messy work, not doing it for them.
  • “tell me the wrong answer”
  • Felt validated by her talk – being self-deprecating/silly as an instructor

2. What implications does this have for your teaching - your learning?

  • We want to make sure that students are involved in the learning process; that they know the questions we will address in the course and care about answering those questions – those questions that we answered together could very well be the exam questions
  • Being and Active Learner and Active Teacher
  • Explicitly identifying the reason for why and how they are learning it
  • Focusing on the learning skills and content mastery (e.g., setting the stage and expectations)
  • Experiment with different teaching strategies among different groups of students
  • Providing an appropriate timeline
  • What does it mean to develop a classroom climate for a one-off session
  • “stand and deliver” is not enough for students or teachers
  • There is a responsibility to show expertise but also to support active learning that leads to understanding
  • Integrated senses of assignments that read to skill development as well as an increase in content knowledge
  • Skill building as a process that goes on throughout the course – sequence of assignments
  • Engagement by students can lead to instructors learning
  • Not good to let student default to passive learning
  • How do you feel about trying new things? (Challenging -- to instructor and to student; keep it interesting)
  •  Helps to get feedback part way through
  • Redesign of course to get time to cover material
  • Students being able to do something with learning
  • Read the reading list!
  • Feeling validated by the notion that the assignments should build upon each other (skill development)
  • What to do when coming from a content-heavy background?  What about using less content? 

3. What are some examples of high levels of engagement both inside and outside the classroom?

  • Games, activities, change of pace, just doing something different/out of the ordinary, showing students you care about their presence; creative (open) assignments
  • The example of the Questions in the Box and retrieving during class time
  • Different modes of communicating content material
  • Self-Reflections, Self-Regulation, promoting Autonomy in learners
  • Sharing the ownership in assessment (e.g., pooling exam questions, building rubric)
  • Teaching with Silence as an example of high level of engagement
  • Twitter – allowing a live feed of comments to open communication/ feedback/ discussion
  • What does it mean to develop a classroom climate for a one-off session
  • “stand and deliver” is not enough for students or teachers
  • There is a responsibility to show expertise but also to support active learning that leads to understanding
  • Integrated senses of assignments that read to skill development as well as an increase in content knowledge
  • Skill building as a process that goes on throughout the course – sequence of assignments
  • Engagement by students can lead to instructors learning
  • Worst/best teacher/class discussion
  • Level 1 engagement proportional to simplicity/engagement(narrowing specificity better)
  • How to retouch students who become disengaged
  • Taking learning outside classroom
  • Less content, more skills?
  • Grad students should get the training they need to teach well.  Mandatory course?  More value placed on teaching (e.g. from NSERC?).  TA’s to mentor each other?
  • How to analyze what instructors do intuitively…how to explain it to others.
  • Instructors and students should have expectations of each other (e.g. participation)

     


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