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Designed to help faculty with planning and thinking creatively about teaching, CTE workshops are not lectures, so come prepared to work on issues in your own teaching, reflect on your teaching goals and get some practical takeaways that you can apply in your courses.

Current Workshops

No advance registration is required to attend a CTE teaching workshop and everyone is welcome! A schedule of upcoming workshops is always available on our Brightspace site. Descriptions of current workshops can be found below.

To enroll in the CTE Brightspace site, log in to brightspace.plattsburgh.edu with your Plattsburgh credentials. Click on the “Discover” link on the red menu bar on the home page. You will find the CTE site listed under “All.” Click on the CTE tile and follow the directions to self-enroll.

5 Ways to Increase Inclusivity & Student Learning

Inclusive pedagogical practices can be defined as course design and classroom practices which build welcoming and equitable learning environments by maximizing opportunities for every student to succeed; reducing systemic barriers to academic achievement; and encouraging a sense of belonging. This interactive workshop will identify connections between inclusive teaching and student learning and then examine five specific ways to increase inclusion in course design and classroom activities. Participants will also have time to brainstorm ways to increase inclusion in their own classes.

Active Learning in Large Classes

This mini-workshop will offer a 15-minute overview of active learning techniques that can be utilized in large lecture-based classes. Participants will then have 15 minutes for discussion and brainstorming. Active learning is a proven technique for increase student success, engagement, and inclusivity.

Alternatives to Timed Exams

Looking for a teaching strategy that will maximize accessibility in your classes while simultaneously hugely reducing stress for you and for your students? Consider using, whenever possible, assessment alternatives to high-stakes timed exams and quizzes! In this workshop, we'll review some of the drawbacks to utilizing timed exams for assessing student learning and explore a variety of other options for encouraging and measuring authentic student learning.

Attendance as Community

How can we best motivate students to attend class regularly? Rigid, punitive attendance policies can backfire when it comes to creating positive and productive classroom climates that help students tap into their intrinsic motivations to overcome setbacks and to succeed. Such policies can also create barriers to learning for students with disabilities. In this mini-workshop, we’ll review some of the ways to reframe attendance as contributions to building a classroom community that maximizes every students’ ability to learn and succeed, and increases trust between you and your students.

Classroom Phone / Device Policies

It’s a vexing issue for every instructor: The almost irresistible distractions of phones and devices that can interfere with student engagement and learning. While there is no easy solution or one-size-fits-all strategy, some classroom policies are more effective than others, particularly when we want to promote an inclusive, welcoming classroom learning environment.

Crafting an Inclusion & Equity Statement for Your Syllabus

Every instructor knows that their syllabus communicates vital information to students. But more than just a list of assignments and schedule of class meetings, a syllabus conveys numerous messages to students about class climate, instructor approachability, and — crucially — inclusivity and equity. In this interactive workshop, participants will first briefly review the reasons for including a diversity, equity, and inclusivity statement on their syllabi, and examine some of examples of different statements that illustrate some best practices. Then they will workshop drafts of statements for their syllabus or revise ones they already have. Of course we all want to go beyond merely making statements and work to ensure our classrooms are in fact welcoming and inclusive for all! But, a syllabus statement is good place to start and a way to set goals for increasing accessibility and maximizing student success.

Getting Useful Student Feedback on Your Teaching

This workshop will help instructors at any stage of their career identify a variety of strategies for eliciting formative, actionable, and useful feedback about teaching from their students. We will address some of the challenges and limitations of administering and reviewing end-of-the-semester course opinion surveys, and explore additional, easy-to-implement ways that instructors can create a positive culture of feedback in their classes throughout the whole semester.

Increasing Student Engagement & Participation 

Student engagement is one of the top concerns of college educators today but what do we actually mean when we say students are “disengaged?” What kinds of changes and adjustments can we make in our individual classes that help student cultivate attention and actively engage in learning? This workshop explores how to implement five specific strategies to increase the energy and participation of students during class: make attendance meaningful; use a variety of active learning in class; offer a variety of ways for students to participate; encourage connections; disincentive passivity. 

Scaffolding Big Assignments

This mini-workshop will offer a 15-minute presentation and then 15 minutes for brainstorming and discussion of how to scaffold big assignments by breaking them into smaller lower-stakes assignments that build upon each other. Scaffolding is a proven way to increase student success and it is an effective way to provide structure for inclusivity in the classroom.

Strategies for Avoiding Teaching Burnout

Burnout is more than just being tired: it is a real condition that has serious implications for an instructor's health and teaching efficacy. This highly interactive workshop will give a brief overview of recognizing the symptoms of burnout and some strategies for mitigating burnout whether teaching fully online, in person, or a hybrid.

Three Basic Building Blocks for Assessing Student Learning

In this Center for Teaching Excellence and Technology Enhanced Learning co-facilitated workshop, John Locke and Jessamyn Neuhaus introduce participant to three essential components of assessing authentic online student learning: 1.) creating effective student learning outcomes 2.) using the tools available in Moodle to assess student learning 3.) addressing academic honesty in an online setting.

Three Basic Building Blocks for Increasing Student Attendance & Participations 

In this Center for Teaching Excellence and Technology Enhanced Learning co-facilitated workshop, workshop, John Locke and Jessamyn Neuhaus introduce participants to three proven, evidence-based strategies for encouraging student attendance and participation. Building on a reflective approach to what “counts” as attendance and engagement in class, we will explore how to 1.) Expand modalities/approaches to class discussions and other activities 2.) Building trust, community, and connections in class meetings and 3.) Creating inclusive and accessible classroom activities.

Using Un-Essays to Increase Student Engagement & Inclusion

Advocates of “un-essays” (student-generated research projects that can take almost any form, except a traditional written essay) argue that it enables students to demonstrate knowledge in unique, individualized ways, encouraging more active engagement with content. The un-essay also expands academic inclusion by offering students an unlimited number of ways to successfully complete scholarly research. This workshop gives an overview of un-essay assignments contextualized in the scholarship on teaching and learning on student engagement. I include visual examples of completed undergraduate un-essays and will facilitate brainstorming sessions for how you can incorporate an un-essay assignment into your course planning.

Using Un-Grading to Empower Authentic Student Learning

What is “un-grading?” It's a big umbrella term that applies to a range of ways that we as educators might think outside the box when it comes to assessing student learning. This workshop will first offer a short overview of recent research that suggests a negative impact of traditional grading practices on learning. We'll then explore some practical strategies for implementing “un-grading” in our classes.

A Welcoming Syllabus

First impressions matter! What impression does your syllabus give to students? In this workshop, we'll identify key messages a syllabus can convey to students and explore ways to make our syllabus a welcoming invitation to our course activities and content.

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