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Midweek Mentor Blog

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Using Microactivities in Your Classes

By Dr. Lynn Bartels (Psychology)

September 11, 2019

Our last Midweek Mentor video focused on microactivities which are short activities you can use to break up class and get students engaged with the material.  Microactivities provide an opportunity to assess student learning.  The presenter, Wren Mills, makes the case that it’s important to break up the class material because attention spans are short (around 15 minutes) and students need multiple opportunities to interact with the material to learn it (Hattie & Yates, 2013).


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How Can I Plan (or Revise) My Courses More Efficiently?

By Jennifer Albat (Instructional Design & Learning Technologies)

April 30, 2019

Faculty are always looking for ways to save time. In last week’s Midweek Mentor (MWM) session, we discussed this topic as it relates to planning or revising courses. Dr. Lolita Paff of Penn State Berks went over a number of strategies to employ. The first of these is to start with the big picture. As you are teaching, you should be taking notes of what you would change for the next time. When I was teaching, I would just start a Word document called, To Change Next Time so I had a referenc...

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Creating Transparent Assignments

By Dr. Lynn Bartels (Psychology)

February 20, 2019

Do your students express frustration when working on your assignments?  Do they say things like “I didn’t know what you were looking for” or “I had no idea how to even get started?”  If so, then your assignments may be in need of some transparency.  Mary Ann Winklemes of University of Nevada Las Vegas has developed a simple, but effective technique for creating transparent assignments to make them clearer and more mea...

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How to Motivate Students to Come Prepared for Class?

By Dr. Chaya Gopalan

January 21, 2019

The flipped classroom is a teaching method where the first exposure to the subject occurs in an individual learning space and time and the application of content is practiced in an interactive guided group space. Freeing up class time by shifting traditional lecture outside of class allows the instructor more time for student-centered activities and formative assessments which are beneficial to students. The flipped teaching model has been shown to benefit students as it allows self-pacing, enco...

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