Using Online Resources to Improve Student Learning, Inside and Outside of the Classroom
Andrew Mamo, College of Law
Instructors understand every hour spent in front of the class requires hours of preparation. Instructors are also aware that every hour that our students spend in class requires hours of preparation. The time that our students spend reading and preparing for class may or may not be spent effectively and efficiently. A well-designed LMS course can go far in guiding our students through their class preparation: organizing readings, videos, and other instructional materials; providing guiding questions for student study; offering regular opportunities for assessment; and more. Improved student preparation outside of the classroom contributes to improved participation inside the classroom.
Science on a Sphere
Vittorio A. Gensini, Department of Geographic and Atmospheric Sciences| Department of Geology and Environmental Geosciences
Science on a Sphere, a global display system that projects planetary data onto a six-foot diameter sphere, was created by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to help people of all ages learn about Earth System science. It provides an invaluable means for visualizing complex weather and climate model data. Victor Gensini, associate professor in NIU's Department of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment, demonstrates the capabilities of this unique tool utilizing open datasets from NOAA.
Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization: Understanding the Consequences of Overturning Roe v. Wade
Robert L. Jones, K. A. Cady, Anita Maddali, Karla Padron, and Beth Ingram, College of Law| Department of Communication
The Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization will have long-term effects on reproductive health care and economic opportunities, especially for women. The decision has also led to concern about other long-standing rights like sexual liberty, access to contraception and same-sex marriage. Faculty experts from NIU discuss the legal and practical implications of the Dobbs decision, the potential precedent for other Supreme Court cases, and the differential impact this decision will have on diverse populations.
"Oh, Is That What You Want?": Clarifying Student Expectations For Our Assignments and Studying
Mary Anne Britt, Department of Psychology
Many of us assume that the instructions for tasks we give students are clear and will help them begin the development of the thinking and reading skills expected within our discipline. My research in the lab and classroom, however, shows that this is not always the case. What I have found is that students need more direction about instructors’ specific goals, which are rarely conveyed directly to students. In this talk I share a model of reading for a purpose that I have developed with my colleagues, including evidence that helping students more clearly understand the disciplinary goals for reading can help students learn. I also discuss how you might use this model to help students learn more autonomously.
Birds, Beasts, Bugs, and Little Fishes
For the past ten or more years, Michael Day's daily ritual has been to walk along the Kishwaukee River through the NIU campus and Prairie Park, watching and listening, trying to capture what he sees—in light, color, and form. Through his work, he shares the many faces of nature, the wildness of spirit, and the interplay of light and shadow woven into the tapestry of the natural world. In this talk, he discusses his artistic philosophy and process, including influences on his work, his meanderings through the landscape, and his photographic techniques.
Gems of Inestimable Value
E. Taylor Atkins, Department of History
Contrary to "populist" opinion, we still need expertise; but experts must recognize their own limits with humility and be open to the "gems" students bring to the classroom, which can enhance our own understanding and the ways we communicate our knowledge to others. On the best days in the classroom, the learners teach, and the teacher learns.
In this seminar, E. Taylor Atkins shares two quotations that form the core principles of my teaching philosophy and practice. As much as he enjoys the performative aspects of teaching, he is guided by the belief that all students possess "gems of inestimable value" within themselves, many of which they do not realize are there. He works to identify those and help pull them out. He shares some of the assignments and activities he has created (or in some cases, borrowed and adapted) to mine those gems.
This collection contains recordings of scholarly lectures and seminars delivered by NIU faculty.
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