Author: Elizabeth

Flipping Faculty from Guide on the Side to Mentor in the Center

The challenges for faculty working with students in the 21st century are rising. How can faculty meet the many challenges facing higher education? In the past, faculty could stand objectively in front of the class and provide didactic information to students via lecture. Students came to the classroom expecting information from a book and verbal lecture covering the content. Over time, student expectations and readiness have changed. Students in the 21st century enter the classroom armed with a vast array of knowledge just a swipe away on various digital devices. In addition, they have access to instant entertainment and innovative instruction on various websites, social media, and podcasts. Unfortunately, nationwide scores in math and reading are on the decline—these students often lack the skills to succeed in higher education. The challenge of identifying the best approach to educating these digital natives is on the mind of educators across the country.

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Taking Time to Refresh, Recharge, and Recommit

This article first appeared in the Teaching Professor on May 17, 2017. © Magna Publications. All rights reserved. 

I continue to worry that we devalue the affective dimensions of teaching—the emotional energy it takes to keep delivering high-quality instruction.

Most faculty are on solid ground in terms of expertise. We know and, in most cases, love our content. We don’t get tired of it—oh, maybe we do a bit in those foundation courses, but the content isn’t what wears us down; it’s the daily grind, having to be there every class session, not just physically present but mentally and emotionally engaged as well. Good teaching requires more energy than we think it does.

I’m posting this because it is the end of the academic year, and many us are feeling tired and used up. That makes it a good time for a gentle reminder: take time to refresh. Whatever time

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Switching the Spotlight: An Approach to Teaching Critical Analysis in Conceptual and Applied Learning

Here, a relatively simple approach to teaching and checking for student criticality is explained, where conceptual, alongside applied learning, is pervasive. It revolves around a two-directional spotlight approach of scrutinizing practice in the light of theory and scrutinizing theory in the light of experience.

The ability to critically analyze and evaluate is essential for student progression through degree courses. It is a key element in the higher levels of cognitive taxonomy and is reflected as such for sector quality (e,g. in the UK’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications, QAA, 2014) and for specific course design (e.g. in the language of learning outcomes for the later stage modules of programs). It is also depicted as a crucial graduate attribute both in terms of being effective citizens in democracy and being effective employees and leaders in modern organizations (Garcia, 2009), especially in the context of corporate social responsibility. Having said this, there

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Inspiring Your Students to Write, Cite, and Avoid Plagiarism

There may be no more serious issue for a student than facing an academic conduct hearing because of plagiarism. This certainly is not part of the expected college experience for students or parents. Faculty, however, often struggle with creating approaches that focus on why and how academic writing and the associated documenting guidelines enhance a student’s ability to communicate their thoughts and ideas.

Rather than focusing first on the negative impacts of not implementing citation guidelines, Moore (2019) confirms students with limited experiences in research writing at the college level will often make mistakes in documentation and attribution. She suggests four strategies to detect writing issues, avoid academic conduct issues, and help improve the student’s ability to avoid recurring mistakes by using “plagiarize-proof” assignments that: 1) evaluate your expectations for student research literacy, 2) include unique or individualized elements into assignments, 3) require an annotated bibliography before the assignment due

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Needed Education Reform Faces Hurdles

Special EducationPHOENIX Lawmakers have violated the Arizona constitution by failing to adequately fund faculty services and repairs, according to a lawsuit filed against the state on Monday by faculty districts and education teams.

The budget is insufficient to serve even those 900 of 5,400 college students in Flint Community Schools now eligible for particular education and associated providers, the lawsuit mentioned. The Special Education applications meet all of the standards for the preparation of skilled personnel in Special Education established by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) and the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). Listen to the audio version of this text: Download the Audm app on your iPhone to hearken to extra titles.

Our Ph.D. program is designed for individuals trying to pursue careers in leadership and larger training and luxuriate in careers as trainer trainers, consultants, and researchers. Grant funding is available to help doctoral students. Consists of roughly …

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The Last Class Session: How to Make It Count

This article first appeared in Maryellen Weimer’s blog in April 13, 2016. © Magna Publications. All rights reserved.

“First and last class sessions are the bookends that hold a course together.” I heard or read that somewhere—apologies to the source I can’t acknowledge. It’s a nice way to think about first and last class sessions. In general, teachers probably do better with the first class. There’s the excitement that comes with a new beginning. A colleague said it this way: “Nothing bad has happened yet.” Most of us work hard to make good first impressions. But by the time the last class rolls around, everyone is tired, everything is due, and the course sputters to an end amid an array of last-minute details. Here are a few ideas that might help us finish the semester with the same energy and focus we mustered for the first class.

Integrate the content

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Can We Improve Grading by Collaborating with Students?

What is wrong with grades?

Instructors and students have different ideas about what grades are supposed to measure: Should they be about how much students have learned? How much work they have completed? How well they have mastered the subject? (Arguably, they measure none of these well.) Grades can perpetuate bias, inequalities, and injustice, reduce student motivation and willingness to challenge themselves, and add enormous administrative burdens. No wonder many students and faculty dislike grades!

However, grades are not going away as a tool for evaluation, sorting, and gatekeeping by institutions and employers, and as a measure of success by students. But there is literature on how to adapt the grading process to avoid the drawbacks above, and improve student motivation and engagement, as well as instructor satisfaction. They go by names such as curving, ungrading, contract grading, and specifications grading.

In 2022, I experimented with

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Engaging Students in Research | Faculty Focus

Students’ experiences in higher education goes far beyond the curriculum in their programs. Beyond the classroom walls there are extra-curricular and social activities and numerous other opportunities to gain unique skills and experiences. One such opportunity is for students to become involved in research. This could be in the form of a paid research assistantship (RA), volunteering in a research lab, or by completing an independent project (out of general interest or as a thesis requirement). An additional opportunity to involve students in research could be by embedding it directly into the curriculum via course-based research. The types of research-related opportunities available to students will differ based on the type of institution (interested readers may refer to our previous article, “Writing Your First Grant,” (Cappon & Kennette, 2022) for tips to secure some funding). There may be more opportunities at a research-focused university than a community college or a school

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Disability as a Valuable Form of Diversity, Not a Deficit – Faculty Focus

Typically, educational professionals focus on how to help students better access what is considered ‘typical’ learning (Ong-Dean, 2005). This is considered ‘deficit thinking,’ or thinking that defines a diagnosis by its challenges, in order to treat, fix, or minimize specific features of a student’s disability. This kind of approach to education is challenging for autistic students. This article will explore how educators can move away from this kind of pathological approach to better help autistic students succeed academically.

Positionality statement

While I bring a dynamic perspective to this article due to my professional experiences (former special educator and special education administrator; current assistant professor of Disability Studies and Special Education) and personal identity markers (white, disabled, cisgender female), it should be noted that I am not autistic and therefore am presenting this from a biased, non-autistic lens. I acknowledge that I may reference ‘experts’ that autistic individuals

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Why Won’t They Ask Us for Help?

This article first appeared in the Teaching Professor on March 29, 2016. © Magna Publications. All rights reserved. 

After teaching statistics classes for more than 25 years and seeing so many students struggling to be successful, I became increasingly frustrated by the fact that no matter how much I believed myself to be approachable, available, and willing to help students outside of class, very few took advantage of the opportunity. I began to wonder not only what barriers existed between me and my students but also how to investigate those barriers and seek solutions.

Students are often reluctant to seek academic help from their instructors, despite the fact that many of them could benefit from the help. Teachers are being encouraged to develop supportive relationships with students, and most are willing to do so. In the case of students seeking help, what we need is clear information about those teacher

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