January 2018: Quick Takes 3-2-1!

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3 books, 2 blog posts, and 1 video about faculty development. They’re informative and affirming, and the video might just make you laugh!

3 Books

Engaging Ideas: The Professor’s Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking, and Learning in the Class by John Bean (2011). Bean’s book works like a toolkit in the best sense: On nearly every page is a hack, a tool, or a tip that will help you use writing to improve students’ learning and thinking, and to promote a more engaged, learner-centered classroom.

Creating Significant Learning Experiences: An Integrated Approach to Designing College Courses by L. Dee Fink (2013). I know. The semester is underway. Your course is locked down. Fink might invite you to productively re-think what you’re doing, and why. Working in a paradigm of “significant learning,” the book outlines steps a faculty member may take to shift a class’s framework to engage students in meaningful learning and even inspire them.

A Practical Education: Why Liberal Arts Majors Make Great Employees by Randall Stross (2017). No, I’m not insisting we put the job market at the fore of every decision we make about our courses. Thankfully, neither is Stross. His book is a thoughtful contribution to the debate over the relevance, meaning, and significance of liberal education. We need more philosophers. And it turns out liberal arts graduates make sterling employees.

2 Blog Posts

Could a test on the second day of class work in your favor? Read the insights of one Economist. You might re-think what work exams can do.

The syllabus is done. Your semester is planned. What difference could it make to give students input into the direction and emphases your class will assume? Faculty at the University of Dayton asked this question too, and liked the answers.

1 Video

It’s been a hard winter. We’ll put professional development on hold for just a moment. This video, featuring that certain family I so adore, is likely to make you laugh, at least a little. And to my Southern friends: No disrespect, only affection and admiration. I love ya’ll.

Posted Date 
Friday, January 19, 2018

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