Heidi Olson managed paper-based correspondence courses in the ’80s, supported UAF’s first online offerings in the late ’90s, and has handled thousands of online courses since. She retired last week. Read her reflections on these changes over time and advice on giving students the best possible learning experience.
Courses that were already being taught online were not immune to the rapid changes brought on by COVID-19. After all, online courses exist in the world of humans and that world was not normal.
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.
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.
Teaching is a practice. We can look to the world of music for advice on how we as teachers can improve our performance in a focused, concentrated and effective way.
Nov. 5-9, 2018, is celebrated as National Distance Learning Week. UAF instructors employ a variety of ways to not only include non-local students but to actually use their differing locations to enhance a course. These three classes, in particular, are strengthened by students outside of Fairbanks:
Teaching online since 2011, Janene McMahan has learned some things along the way. In this tip she shares three ideas for making the best use of your time: set expectations, set up your workspace for good flow, and prep a layout once then replicate it.
How do you guide your students not only through course material, but through navigating the university, their professional ambitions, a balance between personal and academic lives? This is the work of the teacher-as-mentor.
Integrating issues and authorities in the classroom is common in academia because of its ability to demonstrate theoretical and applicable knowledge. Often more interesting to students are breaking news topics, such as disasters, which can present difficulties including them into established lesson plans. However, in this Teaching Tip we’ll look at some solutions.
Without practice and application, students can rapidly forget course material between academic semesters. Instructors can counter this effect by pointing students to and creating their own, opportunities to engage with subject matter during the breaks.
What happens when we put students in the director’s seat in terms of what, when, and how they learn and what might that look like in a course? There are many examples of democratizing the educational experience through a range of institutional and classroom levels and across the K-20 progression. There are likewise many opinions on this idea from steadfast proponents and those in opposition. In this Teaching Tip, we’ll take a brief look at imparting more academic power to students – the benefits, practical considerations, and potential pitfalls.
Let go of some of the how. How will the student generate the video? How will the student submit his or her paper? Focus on the what and the why. Grab your list of learning objectives and analyze course learning experiences and assessments to determine if they support students progressing toward course outcomes.