Podcasts and Teaching/Learning

This tip pulls together several recommendations connected by a common theme: podcasting. I love the format of podcasts because it allows me to learn something while I am doing chores or walking the dog. 

First, Dr. Jamie Gunderson from the School of Education has started the fifth season of our own Rise, Teach, Learn podcast. I was happy to join Jamie along with two of my favorite campus colleagues, Assistant Vice President Mary Wallmark and Dean Tracy Butts to discuss Caffeinated Cats – the first Faculty Development housed podcast at Chico State. I hope you enjoy listening to this episode and exploring the wonderful library of work Jamie has created. 

Second, think about exploring podcasting as a tool for teaching and learning. Faculty Development has a whole workshop series on the topic in our archive. This can be an alternative format for student work and for distribution of your own course content. When I teach I often assign podcasts. Students have traditionally responded well to the change of pace. 

Third, I continue to think the Teaching in Higher Ed podcast with Bonni Stachowiak is an industry leader in exploring key topics related to our work in the classroom. She interviews an excellent guest every week and covers nearly every topic related to teaching and learning. Recent episodes on Equity and Social Justice in STEM Education and Assignment Makeovers in the AI Age have been especially good. 

Finally, I want to remind you that we have purchased an institutional membership to the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity. Last week we sent out the simple steps needed to activate your individual membership (look for them below). In each Tuesday Tip I will be trying to highlight a resource or upcoming event through NCFDD. On Thursday of this week they are hosting an interesting webinar on How to Engage in Healthy Conflict hosted by Dr. Ndidiamaka Amutah-Onukagha. It is an area of potential growth for many of us. 

1) Go to http://www.FacultyDiversity.org/Join
2) Choose your institution from the drop-down menu. 
3) Select “Activate my Membership” 
4) Complete the registration form using your institutional email address (i.e. @InstitutionalEmail.edu) 
5) Go to your institution email to find a confirmation email. Click “Activate Account” in the confirmation email.

Zach Justus
Interim Director of Faculty Development
Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences
Google Voice/Text: 530-487-4150

We all have something to share

In Faculty Development we are making mentoring a priority. We formally and informally connect new faculty with experienced peers in their colleges. This program is critical to new faculty members as it allows them to ask tough questions and it values the experience of our wonderful full and part-time faculty members. In the new and exciting “U-Courses” the leadership of instructors is put into motion by advanced peers who help students move through complicated course content. We also value the mentoring relationships faculty build with students in undergraduate research efforts which have been recognized by AAC&U as a high-impact practice.

Increasingly, we know mentoring is important for our students and our faculty, but questions persist:

What is mentoring?

How do I know if I am engaging in good mentoring?

I enjoy pointing out other people’s failings in public settings to embarrass them, does that count as mentoring?

While mentoring is as old as human experience, we are still figuring out how to value it in the academy. At Purdue it is increasingly valued in tenure and promotion. On our campus, it is the focus of an exciting and diverse exploration in the upcoming mentoring conference. See the message below for a chance to learn about something we almost all do, but we could all benefit from knowing more about.

 When: Friday, October 16, 2015

Where: Colusa Hall 100A&B

Time: 9:30-4:30pm

[Register for one or multiple sessions, see conference schedule for details]

*No registration fees*

Reasons why you should attend:

  • Mentoring helps people establish caring relationships
  • Provides resources to help people learn and succeed
  • Build mentoring skills that you could use in workplace, community, and education settings
  • Opportunity to connect with clubs and organizations that are interested in mentoring, leadership, and civic engagement
  • Learn how programs at Chico State implement mentoring into their organization

 Interested? Register now. 

 For more information, contact Gina Tigri at the First-Year Experience Office at 530.898.3705 or visit our Experiential Mentoring Website at http://www.csuchico.edu/fye/mentoringconference.

Invest in yourself

As professors we spend a lot of time and energy trying to improve the lives of our students. We spend extra time grading, hold that one additional office hour, and answer emails at all times. Sometimes we lose track of the fact that we are valuable resources because we have spent so much time and energy on our own development. You are an expert in your field because you maintain an active research agenda. You know what it is like to be a student because you have multiple degrees. You have sage advice for students because you have experience in multiple job markets.

Take some time to invest in your own professional development as a service to yourself and your students. One great resource for this is a tool the University has invested in on your behalf! Take advantage of the “20 Minute Mentor” subscription through Magna Commons.

As a member of our campus community this online resource from Magna Publications is available at no cost to you. 20 Minute Mentor Commons offers on-demand versions of their popular 20 Minute Mentor programs, covering a broad range of faculty development topics including “How can I create a sense of urgency for change?” and “How do I get students to come to class prepared”. Sign up today and help energize your higher education career.

 STEP 1: Activate your 20 Minute Mentor Commons subscription

  1. Go to www.magnapubs.com/sitelicense/registration.html?v=magna61715
  2. Enter information in each of the required fields.  In the Authorization Code box, enter our group Authorization Code CSUCHICO587and click Submit

Please note: entering the Authorization Code is done only once.

STEP 2: Access the 20 Minute Mentor Commons library

  1. Go to www.magnapubs.com/profile
  2. Enter your email address & password & click Submit. If you do not know or remember your account password, use “Forget your password?” to reset it.
  3. On the left side of the screen, under My Account, My Online Access, select Subscriptions. The online content you have access to will be listed to the right. Click the appropriate link to view the content.

Access to 20 Minute Mentor Commons is also available to registered members at www.mentorcommons.com.

Please do not share the Authorization Code with anyone outside our campus community.

 Need help?

  • Call 800-433-0499 ext. 2 (outside the U.S. & Canada call 608-246-3590 ext. 2.). Our office hours are 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Central Time, Monday through Friday.

 

Spring Cleaning

spring cleaning checklistIt was spring cleaning time at my house last weekend, complete with an elaborate 30-point color-coded checklist taped to the refrigerator that was pleasing to no one in the family but me.  By the end of the day, though, we all noticed how much the quality of light in the living room had been improved just by washing windows that hadn’t been cleaned in years for a while. Here’s a modest checklist for spring cleaning your courses:

  • Review and update Student Learning Outcomes. Of course, some of these are determined by departmental and/or General Education requirements, but where you have options, consider what you really want students to remember from the course when you run into them five years from now. Is the course set up to focus on and achieve those most meaningful ends?
  • Replace outdated materials. Readings and films that were cutting-edge in the 1990s can be hard to give up, especially with limited budgets for replacing them.  But a couple of hours spent seeking out fresher content pays off well in student engagement and our own sense of currency. (And eliminates those cringe-worthy moments in class watching videos with Clinton-era soundtracks.)
  • Improve accessibility.  Whether it’s reformatting an article PDF, or adding a statement about accommodating students with disabilities to a syllabus, making our courses more universally accessible is the right thing to do, and it’s not very difficult. Help is available from both TLP’s accessibility guide and the Accessibility Resource Center’s faculty support services.
  • Plan ahead for funding next year’s projects. There are good campus sources of faculty funding for course innovation, conference travel, and research, but you have to be ready when the calls come.  Don’t get caught by unexpected deadlines. We’ve put together a handy one-page Faculty Funding Sources at a Glance; post it prominently and get the jump on next year’s proposals.

*  Authored by Dr. Katherine McCarthy.