Teaching Strategies and Techniques

Observations about Questioning

I was looking at one of my old teaching and learning books, Kenneth Eble’s 1988 book The Craft of Teaching. Some parts are now a bit dated, but many are not. It was one of those books that greatly influenced how a lot of us

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Tips From the Pros: Blended Learning Advice

Differences in content and teaching style can lead two instructors to take different approaches to blended course design, said Thomas Cavanagh, associate vice president of distributed learning at the University of Central Florida, in a recent Magna Online Seminar.

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Does Discussion Make a Difference?

Here’s the scenario: Students are taking a chemical thermodynamics course. The instructor solicits clicker responses to a conceptually based multiple-choice question. Students answer individually, write a brief explanation in support of their answer, and indicate how confident they are that their answer is correct. They

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Assessing Team Members

Teachers who use group work frequently incorporate some sort of peer assessment activity as a means of encouraging productive interactions within the group. If part of the grade for the group work depends on an assessment by fellow group members, students tend to take their

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Using Self-Determination Theory to Improve Online Learner Motivation

According to self-determination theory, a theory developed by Deci and Ryan, three basic psychological needs affect motivation: autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Susan Epps, associate professor of Allied Health Sciences, and Alison Barton, associate professor of Teaching and Learning, both at East Tennessee State University, have

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Would They Play? Would They Learn?

What began as a routine summer workshop on incorporating games and game-like elements into instruction turned into the surprise of the summer; two weeks of fun and intense online game play by an engaged and committed cadre of faculty and staff who were working to

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Do Faculty Grade Participation?

We all know faculty who do; often we do so ourselves. But overall, how many faculty grade participation? Would you guess a majority? What reasons justify our decisions to grade or not to grade participation? Those questions help get at our assumptions about participation, and

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The Art of Asking Questions

At one time or another, most of us have been disappointed by the caliber of the questions students ask in class, online, or in the office. Many of them are such mundane questions: “Will material from the book be on the exam?” “How long should

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