Tag Archives: teaching

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Taking Over a Class Mid-Semester

Rhino on the River

This week, because a colleague is leaving*, I’ll be taking on her role in two classes. In both instances I’ll become the instructor of record, although one of the classes is team-taught, so I won’t be fully “taking over.” I’ve done this before, as once in graduate school I taught the final two months or so of a seminar.

It’s a thing that happens more often than one might think, due to the vicissitudes of life, and so I thought I’d gather a few thoughts on how to make the transition work smoothl…

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From the Archives: Starting a New Semester

seminar table

Whether you’ve already been in the classroom for a week or two, or will be heading back in September, the ProfHacker archives are full of helpful tips to start the new semester off right. Here I mention several of our back to school roundup posts, highlighting just a few of the many links each contains.

The posts linked in From the Archives: Creating Syllabi (2014) focus on the basics of syllabus creation, including technology policies, accessibility, syllabus design, and our ever-popular 11 Fa…

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Open Thread: What’s Your (Digital) Activism?

Child in front of a machine

“My silences had not protected me, your silence will not protect you” —Audre Lorde

“There’s a difference between a sort of silence of complicity and a silence of listening. I think it’s important that we differentiate and disentangle the two.” —Clint Smith on Teaching in Higher Ed podcast

“the internet gives us new ways of being political actors and activists, and they are brilliant, so long as they don’t become ends in themselves.” —Helen Beetham

I started writing this post but got influen…

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New Keywords on Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities

Manifesto for Teaching Online

I’ve made note before (in December 2015 and last June) about the open review process for the Modern Language Association’s project, Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models, and Experiments, “a curated collection of reusable and remixable pedagogical artifacts for humanities scholars.”

There’s a new batch of keywords open for review, and they’re pretty great:

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From the Archives: Preparing for the New Semester

classroom

It’s that time again . . .  here are some tips from the ProfHacker archives.

Designing/Revising Your Syllabi

If you’ve only got a few minutes, check out 11 Fast Syllabus Hacks for useful updates to your course documents.

Konrad’s Citing Syllabi suggests some best practices for citing the work of other instructors whose syllabi you’ve consulted and for ensuring your own syllabus can be shared and remixed if that’s your intent.

Jason’s Creative Approaches to the Syllabus provides links to a numbe…

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Estimating Student Workload for Your Courses

books

As the start of the fall term approaches, many ProfHacker readers are designing or revising course syllabi. Among the challenging decisions that instructors face in creating syllabi is the question of how much reading, writing, and other work to assign each week.

The federal definition of course credit hours assumes a minimum of “two hours of out-of-class student work per week for a semester hour.” According to this metric, a student should assume at least six hours of out-of-class work per wee…

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The Importance of Reflection When Learning Technical Skills

chairs reflecting in the sun

It’s not hard to find books, websites, or videos that will help you learn just about any technical skill you’d like, from making animated GIFs to X. But even with the most hands-on approach, it can be hard to get that knowledge to stick, or to figure out why you’d want to keep with it.

Steven Ovadia, a professor and web services librarian at LaGuardia Community College (CUNY), found himself confronting this problem while drafting his forthcoming book, Learn Linux in a Month of Lunches. Faced wi…

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5 Ways to Make End-of-Semester Grading More Enjoyable

I know I know. Enjoyment isn’t usually something we think we should be seeking about grading… Right? I had originally titled this post “how to make grading fun” but thought no one would take me seriously.

Let’s backtrack a minute. Don’t most of us do research about our field and sub-specialty because we value and enjoy it? Hopefully yes. Don’t most of us teach a particular subject because we care about it? Hopefully yes. The next logical step for me is that we should be able to enjoy assessing …

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Text Analysis With Voyant 2.0

Voyant Logo

A few weeks ago, coincidentally during Day of DH 2016, it was brought to my attention that Voyant, a web-based text analysis tool, had upgraded to Version 2.0.

Voyant 2.0

This has been a popular tool with ProfHackers (I’ve written about using it as has Brian), and the new version is a great improvement. The list of changes includes:

  • a cleaner, crisper appearance

  • better cross-platform and mobile device support (all tools in HTML5, no Flash or Java Applets)

  • advanced search capabilities, including wil…

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It’s Not Too Late: Making Mid-Course Adjustments

sailboat

On many campuses right now, it’s midterm season. Students and faculty are feeling the strain of heavier workloads, colds and viruses are making the rounds, and the enthusiasm that marked the first few weeks of school seems like a distant memory, at least on certain days.

But if things aren’t going as well as you’d like in one of your courses, it’s good to remember that there’s still almost half a semester left, at least five or six weeks, maybe more depending on your institution’s calendar. Tha…