Fall 2013 CEIT Teaching Talk Series

The following Teaching Talks were offered in Fall 2013.

Monday, September 9

What’s New and Improved in Blackboard Learn: Kacie Cleary, IS&T, 10:30-11:45 am (Tech Talk)

This summer, IS&T has been working on implementing several enhancements designed to improve the Blackboard Learn system and your course. This session will focus on what’s new in the system and demonstrate how you can enrich the learning experience for your students. During this session, we will highlight improvements to the calendar tool, show you the new inline grading feature for your assignments (which eliminates the need to download student papers) and take a tour of the updated discussion forums.

Student-Centered Learning: Relinquishing Control: Janelle Heineke, SMG & CEIT, and Domenic Screnci, IS&T, 12:00-1:15 pm

This session will focus on moving from instructor-centered (“Sage on the Stage”) to student-centered (“Guide on the Side”) teaching.  This change involves redesigning the learning experience from materials and technology to the evaluation of student learning. We will discuss the choices instructors can make to achieve more active, engaged learning and higher levels of student competency. Participants are encouraged to share their goals, their challenges, and their experiences.

Student-Centered Learning Presentation

Tuesday, September 17

The Heart of Teaching: Finding Your Place as a Teacher: Joseph Kyser, STH, 12:00-1:15 pm

There are days when entering the classroom is utterly daunting. It may feel like there are too many other commitments – from research to teaching to program or school activities. It may feel like there is not enough time to focus on the classroom. To create the holistic classroom experience for you and your students, we need to explore ways to find balance in our lives so that we may bring that balance into the classroom. This teaching talk will focus on developing or rediscovering your own teaching philosophy – how you approach the classroom, your students, and your teaching colleagues.

Heart of Teaching Presentation

Monday, September 23

Audience Response Systems in the Classroom: Jeff Mihok, Turning Technologies, and Arti Sharma, IS&T, 10:30-11:45 am (Tech Talk)

Student Response Systems (clickers) offer a powerful way to increase student engagement and improve learning. While clickers have great applicability in larger classes, they can be used in classes of any size. In this interactive session, we will review effective uses of clickers and discuss how to develop clicker questions.  In addition, we will learn about ResponseWare – a subscription-based alternative to clickers that can be used on any web enabled device with a wifi/Internet connection, including laptops, smart phones and tablets.

Turning Technologies Presentation

Collaborative Student Writing Assignments: Amod Lele, IS&T, 12:00-1:15 pm (Tech Talk)

When students graduate, they will most likely be expected to work in teams with others. Collaborative assignments help prepare them for this reality. New technological tools like Google Drive make the collaboration process considerably easier, and many of your students will be familiar with them already. In this talk, you will learn about how to successfully use these tools to help your students work together productively.

Wednesday, September 25

Making Your Blackboard Course Work for You: Kacie Cleary, IS&T, 12:00-1:15 pm (Tech Talk)

Let’s face it, Blackboard isn’t always the easiest tool to work with – but you still might feel like you want to get to know it better. This session will walk you through the five most essential elements of course design and show you how you can support your students in the Blackboard environment. The presenter will also demonstrate how you can take your Blackboard Learn course and enhance it with simple tricks that will make using Blackboard a bit easier for you.

Promoting Academic Integrity in the Classroom: Mary Ellen Mastrorilli, MET, 1:30-2:45 pm

Though not rampant, academic dishonesty is common in higher education, with some scholars describing it as “a regular feature” on most campuses (Aluede et al., 2006). Since the motto of Boston University’s strategic plan is “Choosing to Be Great,” it behooves faculty to promote academic integrity in the classroom and confront academic dishonesty when it occurs, as “greatness” erodes amid fraudulence and cheating.  In this teaching talk we will review strategies that promote academic honesty and discuss how to hold students accountable when ethical lapses occur.

Promoting academic integrity in the classroom Presentation

Thursday, October 3

Teaching Using a Hybrid Course Model: Crafting and Using Effective Out-of-class Activities That Engage and Prepare Students: Binyomin Abrams, CAS, 10:30-11:45 am

One of the most difficult things for our students to master is how to effectively use the time between course meetings – the time with the greatest potential for student learning.  As faculty, we expect that our students leave our lectures and use the time between classes to reflect on what they’ve learned and prepare for the next class.  Unfortunately, many of our students, especially those in their first year in college, interpret lack of assigned and graded work as an indication that they are not expected to do work.

In this talk you will hear about a hybrid approach to using the time between class meetings – here, students are presented with a short activity that is designed to guide their reflection on the past class and then transition them into preparing for the next lecture.  The “JUST” approach uses four logics for designing thoughtful activities that increase student engagement in (and out of) the course: (1) Just in time – making sure that students are exposed to problems and activities only when they are ready, not before; (2) Unburden – each activity taken home focuses on one topic at a time to maximize the focus and understanding on each component; (3) Show, Try, Ask – the activities are set up such that students are shown a concept, given the opportunity to try for themselves, and then asked thought provoking questions to help increase the depth of understanding; and (4) Transfer – some of the later activities revisit previous concepts to reinforce the information, allowing for a spiral approach to presented concepts.

Teaching Hybrid Presentation

Monday, October 7

Flip It: Get Your Students Engaged: Janelle Heineke, SMG & CEIT, and Tom Little, ENG, 10:30-11:45 am

“Flipping a classroom” means shifting lectures to homework assignments and using class time for more interactive activities that stimulate learning and engagement. In this session we will sketch the basics for flipped instructional design, then employ team-based participation to “flip” instruction on a sample classroom module.  Participants will present and discuss their results and we’ll conclude with experiences and lessons learned from teaching several flipped classes.

Flip It Presentation

Opportunities for the Educator: Contributions from Technology and the Neurobiology of Learning: Deborah Vaughan, MED, 12:00-1:15 pm

Our goal as educators is to facilitate our students’ learning, retention, recall, and ability to transfer and apply the learned information. Lecturing at students whom we expect to passively absorb our words and thoughts is outmoded, unfair, and unnecessary in today’s classrooms. Boston University provides various technologies to assist our efforts to engage students in their learning in both large and small classrooms. Insight into the biological mechanisms that support learning and memory, specifically those arising from neurobiological and cognitive neuroscience, has increased chronologically coincident with the use of technology in teaching. This teaching talk will focus on how we can use educational technology in conjunction with our understanding of the biological basis of learning and memory to optimize our effectiveness as educators.

Tuesday, October 15

Teaching Quantitative Reasoning to Math-Phobes: Eric Kolaczyk, CAS, 12:00-1:15 pm

A substantial portion of students reach college having long been convinced that they are “not a math person.” But increasingly, to operate as an informed citizen, it is necessary to be able to reason effectively in a quantitative fashion. In this session, I will discuss the experience of a group of BU faculty that has attempted to team teach non-trivial aspects of quantitative reasoning to this audience for the past five years in the course MA/CS109. Examples will be drawn primarily from the statistics portion of the course in which I am most directly involved.

Tuesday, October 22

Copyright in the Classroom: Dennis Hart, Office of the General Counsel, 12:00-1:15 pm

Dennis Hart, Associate General Counsel, will guide us on a tour of copyright and its effect on both teachers and students in the classroom. As educators, we create copyrightable works and also rely on the copyrightable works of others. How far does the doctrine of “fair use” take us? This talk will explore the legal basics of copyright, the limits of fair use, the risks of infringement and the establishment of best practices amidst legal precedents that one court has described as “so flexible as virtually to defy definition.”  That flexibility can seem like a curse, but, if thoughtfully handled, can serve as a blessing as we consider the nagging question: do I need permission to use this?

Dimensions of Online Courses and Student Perceptions: Tanya Zlateva, MET, 1:30-2:45 pm

Online courses are questioning traditional notions of education and learning. They vary in size from small research seminars to courses with tens of thousands of students and are delivered in a virtual space that allows the integration of an unprecedented variety of media (video, sound, text, animation) and interaction modes (discussion boards, video-webinars, online collaboration tools). While millions of students enroll in online courses and the transformative role of educational technologies is object of vigorous debate, we are still at the beginning of understanding how to effectively use the richness of the virtual environment to shape the learning process. In this presentation we explore how class size and qualitative dimensions of course design, such as structure of course materials, webinars, assignments, and instructor involvement, influence student perceptions. Our analysis is based on ca. 5,000 student evaluations from students enrolled in online graduate courses over four academic years. We will discuss the results and implications for structuring the online experience.

Joint work with Lou Chitkushev, Leo Burstein, Elizabeth Haines, Suresh Kalathur, Bob Schudy, Anatoly Temkin

Dimensions of Online Courses and Student Perceptions

Thursday, October 31

Teaching with an iPad: Rebecca Kessler Williamson, SMG ITS, 12:00-1:15 pm (Tech Talk) 

This session will focus on ways to use an iPad to enhance your teaching practice. We will cover various applications such as SlideShark (for presenting) and iAnnotate (for paperless grading) that are being used by SMG faculty in and outside of the classroom. Please bring your iPad if you would like to follow along.

Teaching with iPads Word Document

Facilitating the Transition from High School to First Year to Upper-level Learning: Retention Issues in the Quantitative Natural Science Curriculum: John Caradonna, CAS, 1:30-2:45 pm

Introductory Chemistry is a required class for a large segment of the undergraduate students who choose to major or minor in either the physical or biological sciences or to complete pre-professional academic requirements. Boston University offers three year-long major tracks in Introductory Chemistry (CH111/112, CH109/110, CH101/102), with two additional one-semester offerings designed for College of Engineering and Sargent College students. These tracks are designed to allow the greatest flexibility for entering students, yet still allow crossover between tracks at the end of the year for those students who change their initial academic concentrations. This built-in flexibility is a real strength of our curriculum, but presents a major challenge to the faculty. This seminar will discuss the correlation between student/faculty expectations and student backgrounds/collective strengths and weaknesses. The evolution of common and distinct teaching approaches designed to address the needs of each pool of students will be presented. This discussion will also include the description of alternative approaches, focusing on how they may affect retention levels both within particular science sequences and at Boston University.

High School to College Presentation

Monday, November 4

Synchronized Calendaring and Student Appointments: Aaron Stevens, CAS, 10:30-11:45 am

Do you waste time and need multiple emails to schedule appointments for your students to meet you at your office? An easy solution is to let students book an appointment via an online web calendar. In this hands-on workshop we’ll discuss synchronizing Google Calendars with iCal on your Mac, the Calendar application on your iPhone, and setting up online appointment bookings.

Analyzing Qualitative Data with NVivo: Amod Lele, IS&T, 12:00-1:15 pm (Tech Talk)

NVivo is a powerful tool that enables social scientists and humanists to analyze large or complex sets of qualitative data. BU now has a campus-wide license for NVivo – it is free to use for faculty, staff and students. During this session, we will discuss the benefits of using software for qualitative data analysis, how NVivo can streamline the task of examining large collections of interviews or even texts, and how it can give students an in-depth introduction to the process of qualitative data analysis. This session is intended to be an exploration rather than a technical training; we will make sure that additional trainings follow for those who are interested.

Friday, November 8

Self-Publishing Tips & Resources – Knowledge, Services, Tools, and Support to Empower You to Self-Publish Your Work Digitally: Arti Sharma, IS&T, 12:00-1:15 pm (Tech Talk)

This session will offer tips and resources on self-publishing.  Easy and widespread access to the internet has made self-publishing not only possible, but relatively simple.  Anyone with content to share can become a published author.  If you have wondered about publishing your own textbook or magazine, you may find this discussion relevant and helpful.

Self Publishing Presentation

Making Grading Faster with Rubrics and GradeMark: Kacie Cleary and Amod Lele, IS&T, 1:30-2:45 pm (Tech Talk) 

Want to grade effectively but spend less time doing it? This teaching tech talk will explore two technologies that can save you time on grading and free up time for teaching and research. The presenters will demonstrate the GradeMark technology in Turnitin, which automates frequently repeated tasks in grading. The presenters will also cover how you can incorporate rubrics into your Blackboard course to make grading faster, easier and more transparent for your students. This is a demonstration, but please feel free to bring a laptop if you would like to follow along.

Tuesday, November 12

Arts and Collaboration in the Classroom: MONSTER Case Study: Jim Petosa (CFA), Jack McCarthy (SMG), Michael Grodin (SPH), William Marx (CAS), Christopher Cavalieri (COM) and Anthony Wallace (CAS), 10:30-11:45 a.m., Co-sponsored by the Boston University Arts Initiative

Please join professors Jim Petosa (CFA), Jack McCarthy (SMG), Michael Grodin (SPH), William Marx (CAS), Christopher Cavalieri (COM) and Anthony Wallace (CAS) for an in-depth conversation on their recent use of the play MONSTER – a stage adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein by Neal Bell, to promote cross campus collaboration and bring arts into non-arts disciplines.