illustration by Clare Reid I often talk to faculty about the importance of explaining what they’re looking for in the tests, papers, and projects they assign to students—and sometimes I get pushback. “Doesn’t that just give them the answers?” they ask. In other words, “Doesn’t that just amount to spoon feeding?” Well, as Balloo and… Read more »
Posts By: David Ebenbach
illustration by Clare Reid Whether we find ourselves in face-to-face classrooms or unexpectedly virtual ones, teaching well involves a lot of on-the-job, and frequently self-directed, training. Very few of us who teach in colleges and universities were given formal pedagogical instruction in our graduate programs. Fewer still were given any help thinking through the way… Read more »
illustration by Clare Reid In light of the challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Georgetown will not be using this semester’s student evaluations of teaching to help make merit decisions—which actually makes the current moment a good, less-fraught moment to look thoughtfully at this kind of student feedback.
illustration by Clare Reid All of us, including people in higher education, are eager for this COVID-19 crisis to be over; many are just looking forward to things getting back to normal. But some folks suggest that the world—including the world of higher education—may not ever be the same after this experience. And, as David… Read more »
photo by Miguel Á. Padriñán from Pexels In this moment, teaching well often feels like working against the constraints imposed by the current COVID-19 pandemic—technology struggles among faculty and inequities among our students, finding ways to keep your course accessible to everyone now that it’s remote, trying to keep class interactive without being face-to-face, etc. And yet… Read more »
illustration by Clare Reid People may be thinking more than usual about teaching online, given the spread of COVID-19 and the possibility that classes may by necessity become temporarily virtual—and great learning can happen in online courses, but only if students stay engaged. Unfortunately, the online space can be one where students more easily disengage…. Read more »
As news about COVID-19 continues to develop, we’re talking increasingly about the possibility of online teaching—and of the need for us all to be ready to make that shift. With that in mind, we wanted to highlight Georgetown University Press’ recent Tumblr post “Tips for Teaching Remotely,” which lays out helpful ideas for online and… Read more »
illustration by Clare Reid A positive classroom climate—one in which students feel personally connected to one another and where they feel respected and seen by the professor—can feel like a luxury. But, as Barr reminds us in his 2016 review of the literature (IDEA Center), climate matters.
illustration by Clare Reid In “Legitimating Reflective Writing in SoTL” (Sept. 2019, Teaching and Learning Inquiry), authors Alison Cook-Sather, Sophia Abbot, and Peter Felten argue that reflection—a powerful teaching and learning tool—is discounted by many teachers because of “dysfunctional illusions of rigor.”
illustration by Clare Reid In “Interpreting Students’ Experiences with Academic Disappointments Using Resourcefulness Scores as a Lens” (2019, Teaching and Learning Inquiry), authors Rebecca Martin and Deborah Kennett describe their qualitative study of twenty college students who had experienced academic disappointments. Crucially, these students varied in terms of resourcefulness (defined here as the ability to… Read more »