These link to the green sheets described in Dr. Hiro’s IGNITE Video on teaching writing in any discipline
Tips for Untethered Lecture Capture Rookies
At a recent TLC brownbag session, 4 faculty members from 4 disciplines shared tips for getting started with “Untethered Lecture Capture,” a tool for using an iPad or tablet to show slides and annotate them in real time during class, while moving around the room. They offered these tips to anyone considering adopting ULC, which also allows a teacher to upload a lecture for students to review after absences or simply for multiple exposures to critical content.
- Don’t overdo it as you get started. It’s not the best tool for a whole course or for some sessions of a given course .
- Fancy graphics on slides aren’t necessary. You’ll be adding to your slides as you teach the session, and often simpler text and graphic combos are more fertile grounds for that.
- ULC is great to capture group work, possibly replacing posters and markers. Small groups of students can work on a regular piece of paper (eg in a notebook), and you can take a photo of that and upload it in real time to the room’s projector for reporting out and debriefing.
- An untethered teacher keeps students off balance in a good way. There’s no more back row that has little contact with the professor if you are able to move around the room, so fewer digressions into social media.
- ULC technology is not perfect, and making mistakes together with the tool, or being thwarted by the occasional bad connection helps build community, trust and empathy.
- ULC can help professors keep the class moving when they are away from campus for professional travel; it’s also a way for athletes or other travelling students to have access to the professor’s content and the discussions that occur in class in their absence.
- There are 52 professors on campus using ULC (so far). Chances are that peer wisdom lurks in your own hallway!
- ULC is effective in helping students create and observe visual models of complex or unseen processes. A picture really can be better than a thousand eloquent words.
- Student tutors can use the tool to capture explanations in a tutoring session and share on the Moodle page of the relevant class. Sometimes students grasp the vocabulary of another student when the more polished words of a professor still feel a bit foggy.
- ULC is one tool, not THE tool, for being an effective teacher.
What do you do–what CAN you do–when a student stops showing up to class? the Teaching and Learning Collaborative hosted a brownbag conversation about that question and got concrete, specific insights from the Shepard Academic Resource Center, the Care Team and once another. Big takeaways: follow through on attendance policies in your syllabus (changing them out of sympathy does NO ONE any favors); let students know, in word or email, that you noticed they were gone and that you’d like to help them get back on track; don’t shy away from alerting the Care Team (via Early Alert) after a student misses a week of class without explanation. There were several other strategies and insights that are compiled in this 2-page document.
With some extended breaks coming up in the next two months, you may have more time to do some professional reading than the usual academic schedule allows. There’s a boatload of scholarship on effective teaching strategies for college teachers of every discipline, with more on the way all the time. One of UP’s Rock Star librarians, Heidi Senior, compiled this very helpful list of extended resources, helpfully clustered by type of medium: website, news service, book, table of content subscription service. Click here for a list that manages to be both succinct and comprehensive. Then pour yourself a cup of coffee and do some exploring.
We all want to be effective teachers, but how do we gauge whether our teaching has been effective? One simple way to gather informal, low-stakes feedback from students is through exit cards. In the last several minutes of class, the instructor can pose a question to the class, have students write their answer on a card, and collect the cards. Exit cards can be anonymous or graded; low-tech or electronic; and about pedagogy or about content. After reviewing the cards, the instructor can address student concerns either individually or with the whole class. Rather than relying on end-of-semester evaluations to evaluate how a class is going, exit cards can give on-going feedback to help instructors make decisions about instructional techniques, pacing, or classroom management. Exit cards provide an equitable way for all students to share their voice, and they can open up opportunities for further dialogue with students who may be hesitant to share concerns face-to-face.
Exit cards can be used to gauge specific, disciplinary content. For example, a Calculus II instructor might ask students: “What is the difference between the comparison test and the limit comparison test for series convergence.” Used as a formative assessment tool, exit cards can indicate whether more time is needed for particular content or if common misconceptions exist in the class. Exit cards can also be used to gauge pedagogical components of the course, such as course content and structure; participation, collaboration, and inclusion; use of technology; or groupwork. Consider this list of possible exit cards:
Course Content and Structure
- How is the pace of this class? (Too slow, About right, Too fast)
- Is there a topic from class this week that was particularly challenging? What is your strategy for learning this topic?
- What is one misconception you or another student had about the lesson today? How would you address that misconception?
- Do you feel this class challenges you in a productive way on most days? Please give examples of how.
- How challenging have you found the material in this class to be compared to other classes you have taken? Circle one: Low, Medium, High
- What were the main learning objectives from today’s lesson? Rank how well you currently understand them (0 = not so much, 5 = totally get it)
- Do you feel this class is organized around specific learning objectives that focus on building your knowledge? Please give one example of how.
- Do you believe that exam and test materials in this class are clearly defined based on specific learning objectives? Please give one example:
- Do you feel the material in this class is meaningful or has interesting applications?
Participation, Collaboration, and Inclusion
- How comfortable are you participating in this class? Give examples of types of participation that are comfortable for you and those that are less comfortable for you.
- In class today, did you get to hear different ideas from your classmates? What was one idea/question/solution from a classmate that helped you understand something?
- Did you have the chance to share your ideas during class today? Give an example of one idea you had and how you shared it.
- What is one thing you can do to help a classmate feel more comfortable sharing incomplete or incorrect ideas? What could the instructor do to make you feel more comfortable sharing ideas?
- Do you feel comfortable sharing incomplete or incorrect ideas with your small group? What could be done differently to help you feel more comfortable sharing ideas in your small group?
- How safe do you feel in this classroom? Please explain. How comfortable do you feel in this classroom? Please explain.
- Estimate how many different people you have worked with in this class this term.
- Estimate how many different people you feel you have gotten to know better in this class this term.
- Do you feel comfortable sharing your identity with them?
- How would you characterize the inclusivity of this classroom? (Low, Medium, High) What can you do to help make the class more inclusive?
Use of Technology
- Do you feel technology is used effectively in this class? Please give examples of how.
- Estimate how many different types of technology used in this class you found helpful this week? (examples include course website, discussion board, videos developed, etc)
- How would you characterize the use of technology in this class compared to other classes you have taken? Circle one: Needs Improvement, Good, Excellent. Explain your choice.
- Did you value the group activity today? Do you think the activity or task would have been better done alone?
- Did you find your group members to participate equally?
- Do you value the product of the group activity or task today?
- Do you feel your group members listened to your contributions in the group activity today?
- How did you make your group members feel welcome sharing ideas today?
For more information on the benefits and use of exit cards, consider