Wednesday, February 17, 2016

DU- The unconference summary

I recently attended one day of the Teaching and Learning Week- "The Unconference" at DU. There were several roundtables and presentations to attend throughout the day.
Here are some notes and take-aways that I gathered.

Case Scenarios
Case Scenarios was a topic discussed with a couple people. Case Scenarios are a great way to engage students and also prompt some critical thinking. There’s a tool from University of Wisconsin-Madison that is free to all that can be considered. (Click on “get tool” and as a non-UW person you can request a beta version and you would not get support.)
Another tool I think worth investigating that I learned about is called Twine
It is an open source tool for telling interactive, nonlinear stories. It is free and you can either download or use the web-based version. There are tutorials and support forums as well.
Excellent resources for Teaching with cases
And a 3 book set that the roundtable facilitator recommended:

Engaging students in online discussions
Two instructors hosted this roundtable and had a great handout. I’ll scan it in and share it (they gave me permission to do so). The handout lists characteristics of engaged and disengaged students; the difference between engaging via course design vs delivery. And there’s mention of the Community of Inquiry Model as well. I highly recommend a look. Just let me know and I will send it to you.

Just in Time Teaching
I have a nice summary handout of Just in Time Teaching that Jeanette McQueen, an instructor from DU shared with me (and gave me permission to share here). Again, I’ll scan it in and you can let me know if you want to see it.

Infographics (Kim Hosler from DU)
I love the power of infographics and the creative ways they can be incorporated into your courses (no matter what you teach). There are plenty of infographics that already exist and there are great easy tools you can use to make your own. You can also have students create them. It is such a powerful way to visualize data and tell a story with the data. Here’s a quick list of ideas to consider on how you might incorporate infographics into your course.
  • Have students deconstruct an infographic: examine bias, validity, credit, etc
  • Compare and contrast 2 infographics on same topic- what is the story it is telling.
  • Ethics and infographics: Find and deconstruct an infographic that is either lying with statistics or misrepresenting the facts.
  • Annotate an infographic to interpret the story being told.
  • Instructors can consider creating a visual bio of themselves with an infographic.
  • Create your own infographic to teach a bit of content (tell a story, show a process, make a comparison)  “a 5 minute guide to X”….
A couple tools to try: