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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

To see a list of all upcoming workshops and to register, please visit Professional Development Workshops.

An Introduction to Facilitating Student Engagement and Success Online

Facilitated by Jessamyn Neuhaus, this workshop addresses some of the key issues for faculty who want to create effective online learning experiences for their students. Aimed at faculty who are new to online teaching and learning, this workshop will explore how to foster an online learning community, provide instructor presence, and “humanize online learning.” Zoom meeting link and password will be available on the CTE Moodle site.

Crafting an Inclusion and 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 CTE 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.

Guidelines for Teaching Effectively with Zoom

Co-facilitated by John Locke and Jessamyn Neuhaus, this 60-minute workshop will briefly cover some Zoom basics such as using meetings passwords and enabling waiting rooms. It will also address the pedagogical potential of using Zoom in your face-to-face, hybrid, or fully online course. For example, how can breakout rooms facilitate student discussions? What should we know about academic equity and trauma-informed teaching before we require students to “turn on their camera?” For links and readings on this topic, visit the CTE Moodle site, the section titled “Using Zoom for Teaching and Learning.” 

Practicing Gratitude While Teaching in Troubled Times

We are living through major, multiple local, national, and global political and health crises and no pedagogical strategy will magically remove the mental, physical, and emotional toll this is exacting on us and on our students. But cultivating a gratitude practice based on mindfulness stress reduction practices and the “gift paradigm of education” offers a practical, concrete way for educators to fight the massive teaching fatigue we’re grappling with during and post-pandemic and to mitigate the near-inevitable burnout we’re facing. You do not need to be a naïve optimist in order to usefully cultivate gratitude as part of your pedagogy. In fact, mindfulness is predicated first and foremost on simply observing what is actually happening — in your own mind and in the present moment. In advocating for utilizing gratitude practices in your teaching, I’m not suggesting that you can wish away or ignore the real complexities, problems, and challenges of teaching today. Nor does cultivating gratitude require you to achieve and maintain constant happiness and satisfaction. Rather, mindfulness and gratitude exercises give teachers a tool you can start using right now for observing your own thought processes and emotional reactions and to practice being fully present in all teaching situations. This better enables us to identify the positive aspects of our teaching — even in the worst of times.

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.

Teaching Takeaways from the Pandemic Era

After almost two years of “Blender Semesters” — teaching in a mixture of modalities including online, hybrid, in-person, and Zoom  we've gained new insights and built new skills to help students at SUNY Plattsburgh learn and achieve academic success, even under the most challenging of circumstances. This workshop will help you identify your top teaching takeaways from the pandemic era, while also giving you some specific pedagogical strategies and educational technology tools that have proved to be especially effective with our student population.

Three Basic Building Blocks for Assessing Student Learning

In this 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.

Using Un-Essays to Increase Student Engagement and 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.

What We Know About Teaching in a Pandemic

Drawing on the feedback J2 (Jessamyn Neuhaus, CTE director and John Locke, coordinator of Technology Enhanced Learning) got from faculty last semester, we’ve created a new, totally unique workshop-type event. We’ll bring together our multidisciplinary Plattsburgh pedagogical community of practice for a brainstorming, energy-boosting and strategy-swapping session to share faculty’s hard-won teaching wisdom gained after a challenging Fall 2020 semester. John Locke will share his favorite quick Moodle/online teaching technology hacks and I’ll describe some simple high-impact strategies for keeping students on-track for success in online, hybrid, or Zoom-based classes. We’ll spend the remainder of the session in small groups sharing our most important teaching takeaways from Fall 2020 and brainstorming our best ideas for a successful spring semester. Come benefit from our teaching brain trust and get inspired for a new semester.

Your Online Pedagogical Presence

One big myth about online classes or the online portions of a hybrid/blended class is that they’re like a crockpot for the instructor: set it and forget. But in fact, creating and sustaining your engagement and pedagogical presence in an online learning environment throughout the course is an essential part of facilitating your students’ learning and success. Co-facilitated by John Locke and Jessamyn Neuhaus, this 75-minute workshop offers simple strategies and specific tips for how to create your pedagogical presence. You don’t need to use a bunch of fancy social media/educational technology tools and you don’t need to spend every waking minute composing and sending individual emails to students. But you must “show up” for your online students and we’ll show you how.

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