How course design can help students succeed

You may or may not know about all of the challenges your students are facing. The pedagogical framework of Universal Design for Learning can help accommodate these needs and provide more flexibility while maintaining academic rigor.

Facilitate active learning online

We learn better when we are involved in constructing our own knowledge. Some of us know this from experience — it’s why we do research, why we collaborate, why we ask our kids questions when we read to them. But this is also a finding backed by decades of...

Invite students to publish

Are you interested in encouraging your students to create work to share with others? Adding your voice to the domain knowledge–which shapes our education–is a strong motivator. As teachers, writers, designers, and artists we long to create and share.  What...

Examining hybrid designed course structures

This is the second in a two-part series of Teaching Tips based on Hybrid Pedagogy. While the first teaching tip provided some background and definitions, this tip focuses more on specific changes instructors can make to their classes to cultivate instructional factors...

Explore hybrid course design

Asynchronous online and face-to-face are the most familiar modes of course delivery but you may want to consider a hybrid delivery model to meet student or program needs.

How to update due dates in Blackboard

You may have noticed the familiar Set Grade Center Due Dates tool has not been available recently. This handy tool has become incompatible with the current version of Blackboard. While we hope that it can return in the future, there is another way to edit all of your...

Should you use Google Classroom?

The answer isn’t the same for all classes or for all faculty. Google Classroom lacks built-in integration with the Blackboard Grade Center but does integrate easily with other Google apps.

Reflecting on your teaching

With all the logistics that go into wrapping up the semester, it’s hard to think about almost anything else — painful to think about the whole semester that you’re just trying to move beyond. But of course, as teachers we know that there’s great value in...

Practice object-based teaching

Though I’ve long practiced the technique of Object-Based Teaching (OBT) in face-to-face and online classrooms alike, I’d never really looked into the scholarship behind it until recently. I’d also not really considered the pedagogical principles behind it, nor whether my pedagogy needed any scrutiny and modification. It turns out that there were some aspects of my practice I needed to modify.

Try inclusive class agendas

An agenda creates transparency and welcomes inclusion in the classroom. If these are qualities you strive for in your teaching, consider these principles for creating open, inclusive class agendas.

Get students in the lab early

The early immersion approach gets students involved in the research process as early as possible. Students are able to conceptualize, design, conduct and disseminate research faster when included from the beginning.

What does innovation in the classroom actually mean?

We tend to think of innovation as the creation of something brand new that completely revolutionizes the way we do or think of something but it can also be thought of as putting ideas into practice. When we think of innovation in these terms, it is easy to see how stepping back, re-thinking and trying something new can lead to discovery.

Grade efficiently with Gradescope

Gradescope is a grading tool that can save instructors time. UAF instructors are already using it in their courses, including Professor of Mathematics Gordon Williams. Learn how to take advantage of this resource and how he is using it to streamline the grading process in his courses.

Make your videos interactive with PlayPosit

Adding interactivity has the potential to allow students to better understand your video content. PlayPosit is a tool that allows instructors and students to add quizzes, polls, discussions and extra information to an existing video.

Designing effective online labs

A strong laboratory component is at the heart of any science program, but it is also one of the most challenging features to do effectively at a distance. As more science courses in higher education are being redesigned to move online, there is growing interest in...

Accurate video captions in minutes

UAF eCampus, in collaboration with OIT, is excited to announce the launch of a new auto-captioning service in Kaltura. It is faster and more accurate than Kaltura’s previous service and makes it easy to edit your captions once they’ve been created. Captions and searchable transcripts have big benefits for all your students, so if you use video content in your course, now is a great time to learn how it works.

How UAF instructors are improving accessibility

What does it mean for an online course to be accessible? How do you begin to make it accessible? Many UAF instructors have already gone through the journey of addressing accessibility in their courses. Here, several of them share their experiences on the challenges and benefits.

Sharing the responsibility of accessibility

If you are teaching an online course at UAF, you have a clear support structure to provide reasonable accommodations for students. Here, UAF eCampus and UAF Disability Services detail available resources and the responsibilities that are shared with instructors.

Rebuilding your course

As faculty, at some point you’ll have to rebuild and refresh your existing course or rebuild and rebrand one you inherit. If you’ve found yourself in this situation for the upcoming semester, read on. I’m right there with you and these are the steps I’ve taken:

Looking back on five lessons learned

I can’t say that I’ve mastered the art of a balanced life, but I do have some tips for those new to teaching. These are some hard-won lessons I’ve gathered over the last two decades teaching at UAF.

Our journey with Quality Matters

UAF’s Master of Education in Special Education program became the first online special education program in the nation to earn the Quality Matters’ Online Program Design Certification. Here’s how they did it and how you can earn Quality Matters certifications for your course or program.

Animate your course banner

The GIF format is ideal for creating animated images and they are commonly used to propagate memes, grab attention, succinctly explain a step-by-step process and otherwise communicate visual information quickly. We see them in news articles, our social media feeds and even in instruction. Is a GIF an element you would consider incorporating into the banner image of your online course?