Center for Teaching and Learning
2013-2014 Learning Communities
The emergence of powerful web applications combined with the rise of mobile devices for teaching and learning in the classroom has created a unique opportunity for educators. With Active Learning pedagogies on the rise and new opportunities for Blended classrooms, many educators are asking “Where do I start?” This LC is focused on forming a community of faculty, staff and graduate students who are invested in the discovery of new technologies for the purpose of developing effective active or blended learning pedagogies, utilizing new tools for research, and transforming classroom experiences. The Active Blended Learning Environment Pedagogies (ABLE Pedagogies) Learning Community will focus on innovative strategies integrating new and engaging mobile and web applications into the “Active” or “Blended” learning classroom as well as into academic research.
The Active Learning and the Transition to Digital Learning Community focuses on integrating technology and pedagogy to foster active learning environments that challenge students to think critically and solve problems in creative ways. During meetings the community will actively investigate methods for employing technology in engaging and authentic ways to promote student learning; we will reassess instructional delivery styles and question how we teach with a goal of shifting pedagogy from traditional, instructor-focused methods to student-centered, community building and learning; and we will work to transform our pedagogical styles by sharing knowledge, resources, ideas, tools, and solutions. As we dialog about ways to adapt instructional strategies and employing new ideas and contexts, we will explore and share experiences on topics including: revitalizing the classroom with content delivery methods (wikis, blogs, Google apps, etc.); creating active learning environments (clicker technology, laptops in the classroom, etc.); and engaging students in new ways using technology (Prezi and Ignite presentations, screen cast tools, Facebook, etc.).
This Learning Community is designed to continue to develop digital humanities work at BGSU, following the successful inaugural Digital Cultures in the Age of Big Data Summer Institute in May 2013. (Note: while we refer to the humanities throughout the following text, this LC would also be appropriate for those who are involved in the social sciences as well.) The facilitator, who was one of the co-organizers of the weeklong Summer Institute, is committed to helping develop Digital Humanities projects on this campus. Given how education is being transformed by technology, and how Digital Humanities has become central to higher education and public intellectual life, it is vital to develop these skills on our campus. By linking faculty and graduate students across departmental and school lines, this LC will offer critical support for new DH projects.
This Learning Community exposes participants to digital humanities, leads them through the process of conceiving and managing a digital humanities project, and results in at least a draft of a grant application for vetting by a grant official at an appropriate funding source. This community will also help its members consider how their current research questions, or new ones, can be addressed through digital humanities methodologies. Over the course of the learning community, we will discuss how to conceive digital humanities projects, what resources are necessary, how to fund appropriate partners, how to budget, finding the best funding opportunities, how to write the grant proposal, and how to follow through on managing a digital humanities project. We will work together to review each other's proposals at each stage of the process.
Increasingly, university courses and programs are being delivered in a completely online format. Faculty migrating to this venue may be challenged in multiple ways. How do we engage students in dynamic learning experiences and build community in a virtual environment? This Learning Community will explore resources, techniques, and philosophies impacting our work in cyberspace. In this Learning Community, we will begin to investigate innovative practices in teaching and learning, especially as they apply to online education. We will concentrate on student needs, and explore avenues of providing a sense of community for students in online programs. Our focus will be on actively engaging learners in our cyber campus and we will share specific ideas and tools to continue to grow as faculty passionately committed to quality online experiences.
This learning community focuses on incorporating media into classroom activities to promote student comprehension and the development of critical thinking skills. By using popular culture examples that students are familiar with, students establish a connection between mediated examples and textbook ideas. Members in this learning community discuss media literacy as a pedagogical method and create their own classroom activities.
This learning community is a way for faculty to come together and share their concerns and questions about how best to engage students who may have different learning styles due to development and/or disabilities. The learning community will start with exploring any questions/concerns faculty has. Sharing successful experiences within the classroom and seeking out experts to come and share information about best ways to teach and engage students.
This learning community examines today’s digitally-connected student literacy behaviors and the obstacles faced during the writing, inquiry, research, and engagement processes across disciplines. Members of this Learning Community will collaboratively engage in the exploration, creation, and development of intra-disciplinary e-print and multimodal resources to enhance teaching strategies for digital literacy practices and that improve student learning and success.
|Improving Undergraduate Information-seeking Practices |
This community explores the undergraduate information research process across disciplines, investigate successful teaching strategies to improve student information-seeking practices, and develop methods of assessing the research process. Along the way, members will have opportunities to become more familiar with the University Libraries’ research tools and reflect on ways to enhance student learning through research projects in the classroom. As part of the work of this community, faculty and librarians who teach information literacy in the same subject area will work together throughout the year, share their different perspectives on the challenges students face in the research process, and their strategies for supporting student achievement. The pairs would also participate in the LC projects together and tailor them to their disciplines.
|Innovative Teaching Group |
Our learning community members will support each other as we innovate teaching strategies that significantly improve student learning and success. We will engage in the process of continual questioning of what we do and its improvement. We will help each other learn and disseminate ideas in our articles, webinars, blogs, workshops or other projects. In addition, together we will share what we are innovating with the broader BGSU community by organizing two activities per semester, which may take the form of interactive learning sessions, workshops, round-table discussions as decided by the group.
The New Faculty Learning Community facilitates the professional development and success of its members through a yearlong curriculum of active, collaborative programming. This learning community provides a venue for trans-disciplinary sharing and an opportunity to enhance each faculty member's individual performance.
|New Strategies for World Language Instruction |
One of the persistent challenges in world language instruction is the separation of language proficiency goals and cultural learning, especially at more advanced levels. The recommendations from various professional organizations, such as ACTFL and MLA, have called for the integration of proficiency development and cultural competence in literary and cultural studies to help students understand language in context and the perspectives of the target culture. Through the activities of the World Languages Community, participants will discover new approaches to teaching content in the target language in accordance with professional guidelines and will apply these proposals to their instruction. In addition, the community will foster collaboration among faculty who teach world/second languages and/or train future teachers to examine current curricula and make revisions that address learners' proficiency needs and cultural competence.
The aim of the learning community is to facilitate and aid in the creation of high quality courses using service-learning pedagogy leading to the effective achievement of the University Learning Outcomes. Proposals should emphasize approaches that can create distinctive coherent undergraduate learning experiences that integrate curricular and co-curricular programs, connect academic programs and research expertise to public purposes, and develop additional ways to transfer knowledge and application to the public. Members of the community will expand their understanding of service-learning pedagogy, dialogue with peers engaged in course redesign, and participate in an ongoing professional development support network during course delivery.
The STEM Hi Tech & Highly Engaging Learning Environments by Design focuses on ALL areas of scholarship: discovery, integration, application, teaching, and engagement). Student attitudes, motivation, and engagement are all predictors of student success. In this learning community, we will study and discover ways to design (application) learning environments integrating cutting edge learning technologies into our teaching practices to enhance student attitudes, motivation, engagement, and ultimately student SUCCESS.