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How do you get your students to engage with the content so they better retain it? How do you get your students to engage in discussion so that everyone is talking and everyone feels empowered to use their voice? The concept of student engagement is broad, but today, we're going to talk about how to incorporate min-lectures, the importance of a prediscussion post, and how you can use drawings, a multimedia starter, or social activity to engage students with your content. Recommended Resources:20-Minute Mentor:  How Do Mini-lectures Improve Student Engagement?20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Structure Class Discussions to Maximize Student Engagement?20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Maximize the First 10 Minutes of Remote Teaching to Spark Student Engagement?Learning Path: Teaching Professor Conference 2021 On-Demand: Student Engagement
How do you get your students to complete the readings you assign? More importantly, how do you get them to engage with and retain the readings you assign? In this episode, we’ll talk about strategies to help students master deep reading, a reading discussion or literature circle you can implement to foster student engagement through reading roles, and a technique to encourage students to do the reading prior to class.From roles such as a discussion leader, passage master, devil’s advocate, illustrator, creative connector, and reporter, you’ll have students not only talking about the reading but engaging with one another as well. Additionally, Maryellen Weimer offers a technique to encourage students to do the reading prior to class and how to reiterate reading as an essential part of the course.Recommended Resources:20-Minute Mentor: What Interventions Help Students Master Deep Reading and Engage with Assignments?Magna Online Seminar: Maximizing Student Engagement with Course Readings20-Minute Mentor: How Do I Get Students to Read Their Assignments Before Class? 
In this episode, we talk with Jeremy Rentz about the positive aspects that come from students doing work in class. By allowing students to figure things out for themselves, and giving them time to discover and interact with one another, students can have powerful learning experiences. By including examples that students can work on during class and encouraging in-class exam reviews, Rentz says students can support each other and he can essentially help “coach” them through the examples. “While they are in the class, they have their neighbors to help them, their neighbors can support them, they can ask them questions, they can make them feel good about themselves...and then the other positive that it brings is I can help coach essentially every student in class,” Rentz says. Lastly, Rentz encourages that instructors and teachers work together and learn from their colleagues as often as they possibly can.“One of the things that I want to make sure that I highlight in my session is that I have a few good answers, but collectively, as a group, we have many, many good answers,” Rentz says. Recommended resources:Best of Teaching Professor Conference 2021 Free ReportThe Teaching Professor Conference
We’re chatting about co-construction circles, empathy mapping, and the Teaching Perspectives Inventory with Cynthia Alby, Karynne Kleine, and Caralyn Zehnder who will be presenting at our Teaching Professor Conference. They discuss how co-construction circles help give each student something different to focus on in a reading. Someone may be coming up with discussion questions, while someone else is focusing on reading connections, and when students come together in class, they all have something different to bring to the table. Additionally, they dive into empathy mapping and how instructors need to ask the question of, Who are we designing for? Empathy mapping fosters an incredible joy for them in designing for diverse groups of students. “We do that through building narratives that describe diverse student experiences and perspectives…”They also use a tool called the Teaching Perspectives Inventory to get a notion of who they are as teachers and how to better appreciate their colleagues. Rather than having a perspective of “good” and “bad” teachers, they ask the question of, What can we appreciate from that person’s perspective?You won’t want to miss out on the magic of the Teaching Professor Conference in Atlanta from June 3 – 5.  
In this episode,  we discuss and chat with a few of our Teaching Professor Conference presenters. First up, Mary Norman and Lisa Low talk about radical empathy and burnout, and how you can use empathetic strategies to empower yourself and students for success. “I think that radical empathy is something that's very important to talk about, because it's so needed right now. Our students are really being inundated with stressors that we've never before seen,” Norman says. Additionally, both Norman and Low add empathy tactics to help read their classroom and ask questions like, “How are you feeling about this class today?” and “How are you feeling right now?” This helps students be seen and heard both in class and within their personal lives. Julia Osteen, another Teaching Professor Conference presenter, also uses the analogy of menus, master chef, and ingredients to guide engagement strategies that work in her class. “So, just like great chefs create menus with a variety of ingredients, teachers need to put together a variety of strategies and techniques to reach today's learner,” says Osteen. “What's oftentimes overlooked is an end reflection. And this would be like complimenting the chef. It’s much like when you're in a restaurant and a server comes to your table, and they say, ‘How was it?’ and you say, ‘Oh, it was delicious,’ right? But this encourages in our students the development of metacognition.”Recommended Resources:The Teaching Professor Conference, June 3-5 in Atlanta
What better way to empower students to make a change in the world than working on their own campus?  In this episode, Beth Choate explains how campuses can motivate students and instructors to make positive changes in their future homes, future jobs, and all of the places that they'll go.  Choate explains how the students and teachers at Allegheny College have conducted solar panel installation at local churches, used Geographic Information Systems to map out the city and figure out what residents are at greatest risk for flooding, grown their own food in a 3,000 sq. foot garden, and increased the refill filtered water stations from two to 28 stations. She says there are numerous ways to prepare both instructors and students to help facilitate environmental sustainable goals and help your campus go green."If everyone isn't at the  table, then we can't fully understand the depth and breadth of these environmental issues," Choate says.This week's episode is sponsored by the Teaching Professor Conference. 
How do you know that student learning is actually happening? Usually through assessment, right? But how can you assess students without just a quiz or paper? How can you empower them and motivate them to learn and want to learn, so that assessment becomes something that is both powerful for you as an instructor and to the student as a learner? In today’s episode we’ll talk about authentic assignments and authentic assessment, specific active learning assessment strategies that you can use in your class, and how to use Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to help mold your assessments.Recommended Resources:Magna Online Seminar: Using Authentic Assessment to Assess Student LearningMagna Online Seminar: On-the-fly Assessment Strategies for the Active Learning ClassroomMagna Online Seminar: Using UDL to Create Effective Educational AssessmentsMagna Online Seminar: Assessment Strategies for Mastery Learning in Large Session ClassesMagna Online Seminar: Incorporating 360-Degree Assessment into Your ClassroomThis week's episode is sponsored by the Teaching Professor Conference. Join us in-person in Atlanta from June 3-5 to pursue your passion for teaching.  
The syllabus…it’s where everything lives. From due dates to policies to your office hours to who you are as a teacher, it’s all-encompassing. And with that, the syllabus can get pretty lengthy, it may sometimes get overwhelming for both you and your students, and maybe even boring for students to read. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In today’s episode we’re going to talk about:How you can add creative flair to your syllabus and specific tools you can use to do thisHow you can get your students to actually read your syllabusWhat to look for when you’re creating an inclusive and antiracist syllabusRecommended resources:20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Create an Engaging, Student-focused Syllabus?20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Write a Course Syllabus That's Worth Reading?20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Build an Antiracist Syllabus?20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Create an Effective Syllabus for My Online Class?Magna Online Seminar: Beyond Pedagogy: Infusing Equity into Your Syllabus, Assignments, and Course ContentNotion: https://www.notion.so/ Coda: https://coda.io/Craft: https://www.craft.do/
As we consider online learning moving forward, we must continue to explore and implement best practices for teaching online. In this episode, we’ll do just that. We’ll explore online learning best practices and specific ideas that you can implement into your own courses.From incorporating FAQs into your course design to implementing a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Challenges (SWOC) analysis to checklists and a three-week feedback form that uses student-centered questions, there are numerous opportunities and ideas that you can incorporate into your own online courses. Join these instructors as they provide clear, practical, and proven online learning best practices. Recommended Resources:20-Minute Mentor: What Are Best Practices for Online Pedagogy? 20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Incorporate Best Practices into My Online Teaching? Magna Online Seminar: Learning from Pandemic Pedagogy: Best Practices for a Quick and Inclusive Transition to Online TeachingThis episode is sponsored by The Wellbeing Elixir, a course about understanding and managing your physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual wellbeing so you can experience more joy and less stress. 
Tanya Boucicaut always dedicates a few minutes of class to integrate mindfulness (both online and in-person). From positioning herself from a side view during deep breathing exercises so students can see her, to implementing body scans and mindfulness prompts that put students in different sceneries, her classes have always wedded mindfulness. "Students are moving so fast. They have so much to do, and mindfulness gives students a chance to be present in the moment, to breathe in the moment, to take care of themselves in the moment," says Boucicaut . "Mindfulness helps give students grace to say, 'I can't do it all right now.'"Additionally, Boucicaut recently  implemented an empathy experiment in her class, where she asked students to think about the impact of the pandemic on someone outside of themselves (professor, family member, food service worker, hospital worker, etc.). "When we're thinking about wellness it is so important to think about ourselves and to be embodied in our experiences, but also to realize we don't live in this world by ourselves," says Boucicaut. "There are other people going through things themselves, and that same grace you extend for yourself, you also want to extend it to others.Additionally in this episode, she covers a post-it project, a pilot program that helped initiate mindfulness on her campus and pushed wellness to the forefront, and her new YouTube channel dedicated to helping students navigate this time as a learner. Recommended resources:Mindfulness is a superpower: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6T02g5hnT4 Booce Teaches - YouTubeMagna Course: The Wellbeing Elixir 
In this episode, you’ll join Seena and Stuart Haines on their journey of meditative practices, how you can illuminate the power of mindfulness in your own lives, and how you can use gratitude as a therapeutic superpower. You’ll learn about becoming more aware of your thoughts and emotions, where you can start to reframe them and take a pause of awareness. Additionally, this husband-and-wife duo will cover the importance of taking micro-moments throughout the day to calm your mind and how yoga can help calm us, center us, and ground us. They'll explore the setbacks and failures we all encounter, and how being grateful for these difficult moments can take your mindset in a different direction. Rather than dwelling on our setbacks, we can appreciate them for the journey they take us on and for the discovery they provide. They also explain the concept of the “heartbeat of our why” and how exploring your belief system and mindset matters—especially when paying attention to the environment around us.“The environment matters—be on the lookout for the things that might make us step backwards instead of forward,” said Stuart. “There’s a wealth of resources and data that can help guide us and set our course in the right direction.”Seena and Stuart are also the presenters in Magna’s brand-new Wellbeing Elixir course. They hope this course provides individuals an opportunity for self-reflection, provides motivation and time to think about core values, highlights steps to take deliberate action towards the things that mean most to you, emphasizes the importance of a community of shared learning and the power of connection, and encourages you to try something new. Recommended resources:Magna Course: The Wellbeing Elixir Yoga Apothecary with Seena Haines
As we enter the new year, your list of goals and intentions for the year may be a well-crafted and well-thought-out plan. And perhaps on that list of yours are ways to be more mindful and effective when teaching online, specifically if you’re using Zoom or other alternatives. If that’s the case, stay tuned, because this episode will cover mindful techniques you can implement into your online classroom. We’ll even dive into specific Zoom features and other techniques that can help increase student interactivity, from polling to the annotate function to the Wheel of Names.Recommended resources:Implementing Mindful Online Teaching Using ZoomWheel of NamesAn Online Educator's Guide to Using Zoom Features to Enhance Student Interactivity Engaging and Interacting with Students in Online CoursesTeaching Professor article (paid subscription): Simple Tips for Engaging Students in ZoomFaculty Focus article: Simulating the Classroom Experience with ZoomThis week's episode is sponsored by the Teaching Professor. 
"We can choose to look at the current teaching situation as a risky situation where anything could go wrong, or we can look at it as an opportunity to have courage and take risks and try new things. The more you dare to be creative, the better you become," Carine Chisu says.In this episode, Carine Chisu and Christine Boyko-Head explain how entrepreneurial thinking can be applied to learning and teaching when assessing the risks educators and learners are taking–especially now with new codes of virtual learning and teaching. Additionally, they dive into reciprocal teaching, where learning and teaching has become more of a continuum because teachers are learning and learners are teaching.  "I can teach students something, but they can certainly teach me. Let's share in the knowledge and the places we're at," Boyko-Head says.Lastly, they explain how turning an activity, no matter how small or how big, into a ritualized activity is by 3D-briefing it. They dive into the 3D-briefing process where you ask students: "What?" "So what?" "Now what?"  Where the "What?" is an identification question. The "So what?" is part of the analysis and interpretation. And the "Now what?" is the evaluation and creation stage. Fundamentally, this process helps students understand what they are doing and why they are doing something. "It's more like a bridge that gives you an opportunity to transform from one state to another state," Chisu says. Recommended resources:Building an Entrepreneurial Thinking Environment in Education: https://www.facultyfocus.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Entrepreneurial-thinking-in-HE-white-paper-012021-C_Chisu.pdf Reciprocal Learning and Learners: (Re)framing the Post-Secondary Learning Experience to Meet a Complex Future: https://www.facultyfocus.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/TD.11.2._Boyko-Head_Reciprocal_Learning.pdfDesigning Empowered Curriculum: Thinking Preferences, 3D-Briefing and the Adult Learner: https://www.facultyfocus.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/Christine-Boyko-Head-IJTDC-612-2018-235-244.pdf No Such Thing as Just a Game: A Briefing on 3D-Briefing: https://www.facultyfocus.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/No-such-thing-as-just-a-game_3D-Briefing-IJTDC.pdf
When it comes to public speaking and the constant butterflies your students may get from presenting, "it's all about trying to get the butterflies to fly in formation," David Sandler says. We practice public speaking as a waiter at a restaurant, in a Teams meeting for a job, on a podcast, and yes, in front of a podium, which is what we may associate most with the word "public speaking," but every day we perform different acts of public speaking. Sandler says this is one reason why teaching public speaking skills to students is so vital. “The world loses out on whatever good ideas students may have to share. The ability to articulate what’s going on in your unique mind—it’s a life skill and that’s the paradigm I use to have people think about my course.” From working on eye contact while reciting the ABCs to practicing walking up to the podium to a Q&A session, Sandler offers advice on how you can help students find their voice. Additionally, Sandler talks about how people tend to think they’re either an extrovert or introvert and the impact that may have on their speaking abilities, but there's been research on another category called an ambivert. An ambivert lands in the middle but leans toward a side of being an extrovert or introvert. Sandler reminds us that wherever you are on that "timeline," you can still be a good public speaker.  Recommended resources:NCSL On-Demand: Communication (for students)How Can I Extend My Research to the Public with a PodcastHow Do I Include Introverts in Class Discussions?How Can I Improve My PowerPoint Presentation Skills?How Can I Teach Routine Courses with Energy and Enthusiasm? 
Humor in the classroom, it’s definitely not as easy as we think. For instance, making a joke can fall flat in an online class. You may not see the reactions from your students in their blank, virtual boxes, or your audio might freeze and they miss the joke. But despite these hurdles, it doesn't mean you should give up on fostering humor and positivity into your class—whether you're face-to-face or online. Humor can improve memory, comprehension, and can even improve engagement. In this episode, we'll dive into different tactics you can use to integrate humor into your course, such as memes which can be used as an assessment, as a learning tool, and can provide you with content that you can use later on, and how you can leverage both humor and positivity to achieve this, and finally, how you can be successful at this even in an online environment.Recommended Resources:Using Humor to Engage Students in the ClassroomHow Do Master Teachers Create a Positive Classroom?Using Humor and Levity to Enhance the Online Learning EnvironmentHow Do I Establish an Engaging Atmosphere in My Online Classroom?
Time. There’s just never enough of it. You’ve got a million and one things to do when it comes to teaching, and your list is always growing. Intermix that with your personal life, and it becomes a matter of how do you balance it all? In today’s episode, we’ll touch on how you can use a teaching calendar, how you can better manage your class time in a flipped learning environment so you’re not only utilizing your own time effectively, but also your class time effectively, and finally, we’ll cover tips for managing your workload in an online environment. Although we can’t cross everything off the list for you, we may be able to offer some helpers that can alleviate some of the stress that comes with an instructor’s workload.  Recommended resources:Magna 20-Minute Mentor: How Can a Teaching Calendar Help Me Be More Effective and Efficient in the Online Classroom?Magna Online Seminar: Time Management for Faculty and Students in Flipped Learning EnvironmentsRobert Talbert's multi-part series: rtalbert.org/gtd Magna 20-Minute Mentor: What Are Practical Solutions for Managing My Online Teaching Workload?Magna 20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Be a More Productive and Effective Teaching?
In this episode, we dive into how Judy Klimek uses a group exam review to go over answers from the final, individual exam. From fostering engaging conversations to pinpointing challenging questions, each small group reviews the results from their individual exams and comes to a consensus as to why answers were right or wrong. As an instructor, Klimek also explains how the group exam review allows her to reassess exam questions in the future and engage one-on-one with students who might need extra assistance. Recommended Resources:How Can Post-Exam Reviews Become a Powerful Teaching Strategy?How Can Understanding Group Dynamics Lead to Better Group Work?Are Group Exams a Viable Testing Option?How Can I Write Better Exam Questions to Measure Student Performance and Learning?
Diversity and inclusion in higher education...It’s important. It’s imperative. And it’s an essential part of teaching. In this episode, we talk about how you can infuse inclusive teaching strategies into your online classes and your in-person classes. From small scale to large scale incorporations, each inclusive strategy and diversity-related topic matters. Whether you incorporate these strategies into your syllabus, curriculum, or project-based learning activities, you can start to think about how this will improve how your students engage with your course and how you can better establish a classroom culture.Recommended Resources:Magna Online Seminar: Effective Diversity and Inclusion Strategies20-Minute Mentor: How Do I Infuse Equity into Any Online Class?Magna Online Seminar: Bringing Diversity and Inclusion into Your Quantitative CourseMagna Course: Practical Solutions for Faculty: Creating an Inclusive Classroom Climate and CultureMagna Online Seminar: Beyond Pedagogy: Infusing Equity into Your Syllabus, Assignments, and Course ContentMagna Online Seminar: Online Engagement and Assimilation Strategies for Nontraditional and Marginalized Students
In this episode, we talk with Melissa Schettler who presented at our Teaching Professor Conference. Here, she discusses how you can increase student engagement through the use of an engagement rubric. You'll identify desired behaviors, undesired behaviors, challenging behaviors, and then finally, define what you think "perfect participation" looks like with engaged students.Schettler explains how you can develop and implement your own student engagement rubric to help communicate expected behaviors to your students. What will make your heart sing when you visualize perfect participation and how do you accomplish that? Find out in this episode! Also, feel free to download the engagement rubric Schettler uses in her own classes to inspire your own engagement rubric.Recommended resources: Melissa Schettler's Engagement Rubric ResourceTeaching Professor Virtual Conference available through Sept. 30, 2021Practical Solutions for Faculty: Engaging StudentsHow Do Mini-lectures Improve Student Engagement?Maximizing Student Engagement with Course ReadingsUsing Active Listening to Deepen Student Engagement in Live Remote Classes
Creating exams…it’s not an easy task. From crafting exam questions to trying to make your exams more accessible while also trying to promote academic integrity – there are numerous elements to consider. In this episode we talk about exam accessibility including time restraints, how you can write better exam questions, and what you can do about online exam security.  Although there’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to designing online exams or in-person exams, there are numerous factors you can take into consideration to more effectively asses your students and to be more conscious when creating your exams. Recommended Resources: 20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Make My Exams More Accessible? 20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Write Better Exam Questions to Measure Student Performance and Learning? 20-Minute Mentor: How Can I Increase Exam Security with Custom Question Banks Magna Online Seminar: Writing Better Multiple-Choice Questions20-Minute Mentor: How Can Students Use Self-Compassion to Reduce Test Anxiety?Faculty Focus article: Fourteen Simple Strategies to Reduce Cheating on Online Examinations
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