Fall 2012 CEIT Teaching Talk Series

Fall 2012 CEIT Teaching Talks and Teaching Tech Talks

Teaching Talks

Instructional Design: What Is It and Why Should I Care? Domenic Screnci, IS&T, Tuesday, 9/18, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

You’ve heard of “Graphic Design,” “Information Design,” Fashion Design, and even “Industrial Design” — but maybe not “Instructional Design.” Instructional design is about creating experiences that make learning more efficient, effective, and engaging.   This presentation will cover the historical context and help to define the discipline of Instructional Design.  It will also explore how a systems approach to developing instruction will serve your teaching needs.

Teaching Talk – Instructional Design

Mentoring Training Workshop: Bennett Goldberg, CAS, Wednesday, 9/26, 9:00-10:30 am, Photonics Colloquium Room

In Homer’s The Odyssey, Mentor was an Ithacan noble and trusted old friend of Odysseus, who together with Eumaeus cared for Odysseus’s son Telemachus when Odysseus left for the Trojan War. Later, the goddess Athena assumes Mentor’s form to guide, protect, and teach Telemachus during his travels. Mentor served as coach, teacher, guardian, and surrogate parent, sharing wisdom and promoting Telemachus’ career through a deep and close personal relationship.

In this workshop we will explore several techniques used to successfully introduce graduate students and postdocs primarily, but also faculty and undergraduates, to ideas, mental models and functional and operational elements of mentoring. We developed the workshop to help graduate students and post-doctoral fellows learn how to cultivate more worthwhile relationships with their mentors, to learn how to be better mentors to undergraduates in the lab, and to engage them with tools and resources to help in the process of building their own mentoring expertise. Research has demonstrated that training in mentoring is an effective means of improving communication and evaluation skills that are essential to good mentoring and that lead to improved research experiences for mentees and mentors.

Incorporating the New BU Libraries Search and Website Into Instruction: Tom Casserly, BU Libraries, Monday, 10/1, 9:00-10:30 am, Kenmore Conference Room

Library usability studies clearly point toward student preference for a single unified search of library resources.  Take advantage of this preference and effectively point students toward scholarly resources in the university’s collections (as opposed to less credible resources students find elsewhere).  The new BU Libraries Search identifies sources regardless of format – print or electronic – since much of the libraries’ collections no longer sit on shelves.  Incorporate BU Libraries Search and library services into your course to enrich your students’ learning experience.  This new search requires new approaches in thinking about how to access library resources. Consider using tools such as Refine My Results (facets) to educate students to think critically about materials the libraries collect, such as identifying genres and utilizing subject headings.  E-Shelf utility will be covered, where students can build bibliographies and email them, perhaps as assignments, or export them into bibliographic management tools such as RefWorks.  Understand what BU Libraries Search covers and when to point students to other library resources.

Soliciting the Voice of our Student Customers: Kabrina Chang, SMG, Sophie Godley, SPH, Muhammad Zaman, ENG, Wednesday, 10/10, 9:00-10:30 am, Kenmore Conference Room

Instructors typically collect students’ evaluations of their classes at the end of the semester, but at that time it’s too late to make any adjustments to the class to either affect student learning – or at least student impressions of the course. This Teaching Talk panel (strategically scheduled just before midterms!) will discuss why it’s useful — for both the instructors and the students — to solicit student feedback early in the semester and present ways to collect feedback in a way that will be constructive and actionable.

Teaching Talk – Sophie Godley

What College is and What it Should Be: Educating our Students: Beth Loizeaux, Professor of English and Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs, Tuesday, 10/16, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

What is a college education for, anyhow?  The national answer to that question—as parents and students contemplate the soaring cost of education and as the economy falters—seems to be “to get a job.”  And yet, and yet . . . there must be more.  But what? How can we challenge our students–who want to save the world, live meaningful lives, and, yes, be gainfully employed—to think about a college education in a 21st century democracy should be for them personally, for our society, and for the future of humankind.  How can we as faculty help expand a national conception of higher education that seems to be always and only about jobs—if we even think it needs expanding.

Engaging Students in the Learning Process: Andrew Duffy, CAS, Monday, 10/22, 9:00-10:30 am, Photonics Colloquium Room

In this Teaching Talk, we will discuss a few different ways of engaging students in the learning process. These include:

–  using clickers effectively in the classroom, using a multi-step process for each clicker question;

–  flipping the classroom, by having students submit short quizzes on class material before class, which helps both the students and the instructor prepare for class;

–  using an online forum (Piazza) to enable the students to engage in course-related discussions outside of class time.

The themes tying these methods together are (1) students learn most effectively when they take responsibility for their own learning and when they’re highly engaged, and (2) learning is a social activity.

Teaching Talk – Engaging Students

Teaching to the World: Copyright, Fair Use, and You: Vika Zafrin, University Libraries, Thursday, 10/25, 12:00-1:30 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room (Teaching Talk)

Questions of copyright and fair use are a hot and ever-moving target when it comes to teaching resources. Deciphering what openly available resources may be used productively in the classroom, and what resources of one’s own to make available online, can be daunting. Yet the power of open educational resources is undeniable. Students benefit from greater access to knowledge. Educators receive formal and informal feedback on their resources. Opportunities for collaboration and related work increase. In this talk, we will update you on the latest developments in questions of copyright and fair use within higher education, and discuss the Open Educational Resources movement. We will look at OER Commons, Creative Commons, and some individual educators’ activities, and discuss how they might be applied at BU. Finally, we will consider how (and why) we might want to add our own resources to the Commons.

Teaching Talk – Open Access

Everybody’s Flippin’ — An Update on the Flipped Classroom: Lorena Barba, ENG, Tuesday, 10/30, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room – Please note: This session will be rescheduled due to the late opening of the Charles River Campus.

A big driver for the flipped classroom has been the availability of online videos and the growth of broadband internet. It is important not to conflate videos with a flipped class, however. The idea of flipping the classroom is simply to move the transfer of content to the asynchronous “home work” and use class time for embedding knowledge through problem-solving (the old homework) and engaging activities. The effectiveness of interactive engagement, compared with passive-student lecture methods, is now supported by plenty of evidence. So how do you flip? Pre-classroom videos are now easy to produce or re-use from a variety of sources (You Tube, MIT OCW, Khan Academy, etc.), so they have become the popular flip aid. The bigger question is what you do in class! We will discuss examples and stories, which I will bring from my own experience, blogs and publications.


My essay about flipping my first class, on Spring 2012


“Flip teaching” wiki entry


Wired magazine feature on Salman Khan


The Flipped Class Manifest


Why ePortfolio? Janelle Heineke, SMG, Thursday, 11/8, 9:00-10:30 am, Photonics Colloquium Room

Electronic portfolios help to make learning visible – to the students and their peers, to instructors, and to the academic community as a whole.  They also offer opportunities to assess and evaluate a course or program against their stated goals and objectives. This Teaching Talk focuses on the uses of ePortfolios and initiates a discussion of the potential for their use in a variety of settings.

Teaching Talk – Why ePortfolio

Learning the Liberal Arts through Service: Sheila Cordner, CGS, Wednesday, 11/14, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

How can we help students strengthen the connection between their liberal arts education and the real world?  Come take part in a discussion of service-based learning as one possible answer to this question.  Projects from several Boston University English and Humanities courses that have enhanced students’ learning through service will be discussed.  Gather ideas for a future service project in one of your courses, and share your thoughts about how your project could benefit the curriculum.  Together we will brainstorm strategies for building partnerships with local organizations and developing tools for assessment.

Teaching Talk – Service Learning

From AP to BU: Guiding Students toward Higher-level Argumentative Writing: Marisa Milanese, CAS, Monday, 11/19, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room

Most BU students can write lower-level arguments, taking a side in a pro/con debate, answering a specific question posed in a prompt, providing evidence for a thesis provided to them. In other words, they have skills that earned them a 4 or 5 on the Advanced Placement (AP) English Language and Composition exam. To succeed at BU courses, however, they need to write higher-level arguments that engage existing scholarly conversations, anticipate potential objections, recognize the broader implications of their claims, and account for motivations deeper than simply fulfilling a class assignment. This talk will offer specific concepts and classroom strategies to guide students toward the kind of higher-level argumentation expected across disciplines, including ways to plan, pace, and refine the writing process.

So You Think You’re Visually Literate?  Domenic Screnci, IS&T, Monday, 11/26, 12:00-1:30 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room (Teaching Tech Talk)

Visual Literacy is the ability to interpret, negotiate, and make meaning from information presented in images – pictures, illustrations or graphic representations.  Visual literacy is based on the idea that pictures can be “read” and that meaning can be communicated through a process of reading images. As educators what do you need to know about Visual Literacy? This teaching tech talk will explore how you use can use an understanding of Visual Literacy theory and principles to create learning messages for a visually sensitive student population

Teaching Talk – Visual Literacy

Multiple Intelligence in the Classroom: Tom Hunt, SED, Tuesday, 11/27, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room

Is the multiple intelligence (MI) theory hype or does it have a place in the classroom? After exposure to MI, Learning Assistants (LAs) taking the pedagogy course have exhibited considerable change in teaching styles and expressed changes in learning habits. Examples of student feedback indicated the need for different teaching styles, and results of successful implementation are reflected in subsequent feedback.

This Teaching Talk will expose participants to the MI content of the LA course, including an assessment of MI strengths. To demonstrate how MI can change one’s mental models, attendees will participate in examples of successful classroom exercises. This will be followed by small-group exercises where participants will transform one of the group’s lessons to utilize an MI approach.

Teaching Talk – Multiple Intelligences

Introduction to MI

Copy of MI Assessment

Filling the Gaps—Using ePortfolios to Assess Student Learning: Natalie McKnight, CGS, Wednesday, 12/5, 9:00-10:30 am, Kenmore Conference Room

If colleges and universities across the nation are in the business of teaching students and developing their skills, why do they have so little, often no, student work to show for their efforts? Lists of names, grades and credit hours hardly suffice to demonstrate that students have really grown intellectually and developed the quantitative, communication, and other cognitive skills they will need in their civic and work lives.  ePortfolios give us the opportunity to capture student work throughout their years at Boston University. At CGS, all students (about 1,200) archive their formal and informal work on their ePortfolios. Their postings have been instrumental in keeping track of students’ engagement with their readings, in jump-starting discussions in classes, in gauging an individual’s contribution to group work, and in getting students to reflect on their own learning. Finally, using a rubric based on the stated goals of our program, our assessment committee can assess students’ progress in various areas of competency over their two years in our college and then use what we learn to improve our curriculum and pedagogy.

Learning by Doing: Using Hands-on Applications in Basic Probability and Statistics: Luis Carvalho, CAS, Tuesday, 12/11, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

We describe the main innovations in the redesign of MA213, “Basic Probability and Statistics,” the first half of a one-year basic statistics series offered by the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. The overall goals of the redesign were to emphasize statistical literacy and develop statistical thinking, provide hands-on experience working with real data, stress conceptual understanding of statistical theory, foster active learning, and integrate new technology in the classroom. These goals were achieved by exposing students to a combination of lectures, group problem solving in studio-style lab sessions, and project-based learning methods, enhanced by a variety of technological innovations including an audience response system (“clickers”) and statistical software. In this Teaching Talk we present and discuss these innovations and their implementation and impact in the organization of future iterations of the course. We conclude with an initial assessment of which new features were most successful in achieving our stated goals — as well as which features require further refinement — and offer recommendations for the redesign of similar courses.

Teaching Tech Talks

An Overview of New Technologies and the Role of the Educational Technologist: Domenic Screnci, Amod Lele, and Kacie Cleary, IS&T, Tuesday, 9/18, 12:00-1:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

This session will give participants an opportunity to discuss current and new educational technologies and how to incorporate them in their teaching. More importantly, this session will also present a space where instructors can have a candid conversation with the presenters and their peers about the use and value of these technologies in their teaching. Participants will also have an opportunity to interact with BU’s Educational Technologists about their roles and how instructors can collaborate with them to achieve their course goals.

Teaching Tech Talk – Educational Technology

The Uses and Abuses of PowerPoint: Amod Lele, IS&T, Monday, 10/1, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

Among the many technologies in use in education, Microsoft PowerPoint – along with similar presentation products like Apple Keynote – has one of the poorest reputations. Unfortunately, on some occasions this reputation can be deserved: poor application of PowerPoint can make a lecture blander and less inspiring. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Come explore how professors can use PowerPoint productively to add interest and excitement to lecture presentations. Bring your laptop (or iPad with Keynote) to try it out.

The Digital Transition: How B&N at BU Can Help: Jade Roth, Vice President, Books and Digital Strategy, Barnes & Noble, Steve Turco, General Manager, Barnes & Noble at BU

UPDATE: This session has been postponed. We will inform you of the new date.

Faculty are constantly faced with the challenge of selecting course materials and choosing delivery options. Barnes & Noble at Boston University is here to help. In this Teaching Tech Talk we’ll present the resources and tools available to support you through this process.

We will introduce Faculty Insight (course material selection tools), present an overview of publishing and research tools available, and provide an update on the digital transition in higher education.

Video/Desktop Conferencing Toolbox: Using the Right Tool for the Right Job: Domenic Screnci, IS&T, Monday, 10/22, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room

Faculty can choose from among many teleconferencing packages (Adobe Connect, Skype, FaceTime, Cisco TelePresence), but how can they determine which is most effective for their classes, what is offered and supported by the university and what is not, and why they should choose one over another? This presentation will describe the array of visual conferencing technologies available to you as an instructor and how to decide which option is best suited to meet your classroom or project presentation objectives.

Using Lecture Capture and Personal Capture with Echo360: Deborah Vaughan, MED, Tuesday, 10/30, 12:00-1:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room – Please note: This session will be rescheduled due to the late opening of the Charles River Campus.

Technology has changed the way our students want to learn and is beginning to change the way our faculty teach. Blended learning, which combines traditional lecture and online instruction, can meet both of these developments in this evolving era in education.

Boston University has recently licensed Echo360, which is a lecture and personal digital media capture system that faculty can use for creating blended learning experiences. In this session, we will discuss the implementation of this tool in the classrooms of our Medical School:  lecture capture in traditional lecture-based classes and personal capture for online lessons. We will demonstrate how you can create an instructional video using Echo360 personal capture software on your own computer, in your own space, in your own time.

How to Use ePortfolios: Amod Lele, IS&T, Thursday, 11/8, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, 111 Cummington Street, lab B27

Following the talk on the potential of ePortfolios for teaching, this talk will get you into the nuts and bolts: how to create your own ePortfolio and how to create Digication courses for students to share their ePortfolios with you and with each other.

Blogs for Teaching and Research: Amod Lele, IS&T, Tuesday, 11/13, 12:00-1:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room (Teaching Tech Talk)

A blog is a regularly updated website with new content featured first. It can allow you to keep current with both your students and a wider audience. At this talk, you will learn how a blog at BU can enhance both your teaching and your research.

Mobile Learning with Apple: Tools for the “Flipped Classroom” and Other “Self-Directed” Student Learning Initiatives: Paul D’Ascoli, Apple Inc, Higher Education Account Executive and Bob Trikakis, Apple Inc, Education Development Executive, Wednesday, 11/14, 12:30-2:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

Apple Education resources will provide an update on iPad Mini and will highlight and demonstrate innovative software like iBook Author and iTunes U Courses to help achieve a flipped classroom environment.  These tools combined with the use of iPad can help maximize your classroom time with students for meaningful discussion and collaboration.

Got Media? Using iTunesU to Enhance Teaching and Learning: Kacie Cleary, IS&T, Tuesday, 11/27, 12:00-1:30 pm, Photonics Colloquium Room

Have you ever wanted to incorporate more media into your class but never knew how? Come hear how iTunesU can help you share your class videos with students, both inside of BU and the world.

Managing First Impressions: Janelle Heineke, CEIT, Monday, 12/3, 12:00-1:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room (Teaching Talk)

Students begin to size up their instructors in the first few moments of a class, so making a good first impression in the classroom matters. First impressions are remarkably “sticky”; studies have shown that first impressions of an instructor typically correlate highly with end-of-semester instructor evaluations. This Teaching Talk introduces some fundamentals for making those first impressions positive ones and provides an opportunity for participants to share their wisdom and best practices.

Teaching Talk – First Impressions

Blackboard Learn: What Can It Do For You? Kacie Cleary, IS&T, Wednesday, 12/5, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

Come and hear how the new version of Blackboard can enhance your teaching experience, increase social learning and improve student engagement. This session will give you a sneak peek into the new system with the guidance of an educational technologist. You will also get to hear from faculty members who participated in the Blackboard Learn pilot and be able to see how it worked for them.

PDF in Education: Tim Plumer, Adobe, Tuesday, 12/11, 12:00-1:30 pm, Kenmore Conference Room

From the classroom to the back office to the home, learn how to use Acrobat and PDF make your job easier.

We all know that paper-reduction should be a good thing, but how? How do we actually turn workflows that are, today, paper-based into true time-saving and resource s-saving digital workflows? Adobe Acrobat Pro X can and will allow you to convert a variety processes to PDF.

You will learn about:

  • Building and distributing forms for data collection
  • Assemble syllabus packets that include just about any type of file—and paper
  • Creating, distributing and protecting student progress reports
  • Developing an ePortfolio solution for use by individuals or an entire department
  • Distributing manuals, workbooks, and guides in a complete, secure fashion

More than just demonstrating what you can do, we will show you how to use Acrobat and PDF together as a solution in education. So, bring your ideas and suggestions to the session and we will have a lively discussion about how to make them happen.