Upcoming Events: Join us on November 4 for a workshop on formulating learning goals. See below for details.

Faculty Spotlight: Allan Espiritu (Associate Professor, Fine Arts) discusses problem-based approaches to teaching art and design, and how he encourages students to take inspiration from a broad spectrum of sources.

Featured Presentation:  Teaching Matters is pleased to announce “From Potential to Promise: Developing Scholars, One Eureka Moment at a Time,” a talk by Dr. Rajiv Gandhi (Associate Professor, Computer Science) on the transformative power of undergraduate research. Dr. Gandhi will share insights on an extraordinary record of mentoring undergraduates (and high school students) and secrets to successfully guiding students to top-tier graduate programs in Computer Science.

Date and Location: Wednesday, November 6, 2013, 12:15 p.m. – 1:10 p.m., Bus. & Sci. Bldg – Room 132

Two-Sentence Teaching Tips: We invite you to submit a brief teaching tip—keep it to two sentences—to be featured in TMAC Weekly and on our website. When we have collected ten tips, we will publish the list and announce a randomly-chosen recipient of this week’s selection “From the Bookshelf.” Be pithy. Be profound. Email teaching.matters@camden.rutgers.edu.

From the Bookshelf: How Learning Works: Seven Research-Based Principles for Smart Teaching is this week’s featured book. Carnegie Mellon’s Ambrose et. al. give practical advice on topics such as knowledge transfer between courses and student motivation.

Conversation starters: NPR interviews Professor Anne Ruggles Gere, director of University of Michigan’s Sweetland Writing Program, about the shortcomings of the essay portion of the SAT.

On a related note, Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert brings wit to the debate surrounding the common core standards and the “robo-teachers” grading the new spate of tests.

From the Assessment Desk: In anticipation of next week’s workshop on articulating learning goals for your course or program, we offer a brief guide to learning goals/outcomes/objectives from the University of Oregon.

Featured Peer Teaching Center: The Eberly Center at Carnegie-Mellon offers a host of resources for both established faculty and those new to teaching such as graduate students. Particularly useful is a section of links related to course planning and design.

If you missed last week’s discussion about Classroom Management, we’ve placed the materials discussed on our site and are always happy to discuss specific issues with professors.

Upcoming TMAC Events:

“Articulating Learning Goals for Your Course or Program” (Monday, November 4, 12:15 – 1:15 p.m., ATG-Faculty Lounge; pizza will be served)

    Specific learning goals help students and teachers understand the purpose of a course in relation to broader departmental or program objectives. As we inch closer to meeting a University-wide expectation that all courses identify learning goals on syllabi, we will workshop how to formulate learning goals that foster student success.

“Assessing Your Assessment Plan: A Workshop for Departments and Programs” (Friday, November 15, noon – 2 p.m., ATG-Faculty Lounge; lunch will be served)

    Many departments and programs have developed an assessment plan that has yet to be implemented through a full assessment cycle. But perhaps the plan itself merits revisiting in light of changed expectations and needs? This hands-on workshop allows chairs, program directors and others to take a fresh look at their present assessment plan (or refine a plan in progress).

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If you’re interested in writing or being interviewed for the Faculty Spotlight or have a link or topic you’d like to share, please email us at teaching.matters@camden.rutgers.edu.