Introduction

Welcome to the Future Leaders in Pedagogy Development (FLIP'D) Blog! In our Developing Teaching Excellence (University Studies 390X) course, participants explore primary research and best pedagogical practices. Part of the course includes a capstone project, where each participant generates teaching resources. After choosing a teaching-related topic, they write a short blog post. Each post synthesizes current relevant research, as well as anecdotal experience from the authors. We also have DTEI Travel Grant awardees attending conferences who write articles about their experiences and what they learned. To explore the articles by topic, click on the topic links below or scroll further for a snapshot into articles for each topic.

If you were enrolled in 390X and would like to contribute more articles, please e-mail Matthew Mahavongtrakul at mmahavon@uci.edu for instructions.

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Here are our latest posts:

Learning with Commercial Games

March 11, 2020

Reginald T. Gardner, Department of Informatics How Videogames Teach Videogames often use reward and punishment systems, grading systems, soft resets, and other techniques to push players towards learning specific skills in order to proceed in their games. The most known example is Super Mario Bros’ level 1-1. In the first […]

Read More

Should Music be Used in the Classroom to Help Students Learn?

March 7, 2020

Michelle E. Zuñiga, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy To engage students, instructors have adopted a multitude of innovative learning activities. These activities include group work, flipped classroom, think, pair, share, and many more. Rarely, however, is music proposed as an aspect of learning in the classroom. I seek […]

Read More

Promoting Student Agency and Learning Through Specifications Grading

March 7, 2020

Chris Woods, Department of Chemistry The current grading paradigm has been seldom challenged for a long time, and for many, leaves much to be desired. The assignment of grades can be a cause of trepidation for many educators. Many students feel that they do not earn a grade as much […]

Read More

Preparing the Environmental Professionals of the Future: Backwards Design in Environmental Studies

March 7, 2020

Paroma Wagle, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy Learning about sustainability, climate change, and environmental justice, the ‘wicked problems’ of the environment, is absolutely crucial for students, as they will not only go on maybe select careers in environment and policy fields, but also are going to be decision-makers […]

Read More

Taking Modern Pedogogy into the Large Classroom

March 7, 2020

Marc Sprague-Piercy, Department of Molecular Biology & Biochemistry The current thinking in pedagogy is moving away from the traditional classroom model. In the traditional classroom for large classes of undergraduates there is a clear plan. The students are given a series of readings that are to be done before or […]

Read More

Adding the EPIC to Education

March 7, 2020

Emily M. Slonecker, M.A, Department of Psychological Science What is your first thought when you hear the word “icebreaker”? If your first thought is the sound of 200 students groaning in unison, you just might be an educator. There is growing body of evidence to suggest that active learning techniques, like […]

Read More

How to Evaluate Individual Work Within a Group Project; Group-Individual Projects May Help!

March 6, 2020

Negin Sattari, Department of Cognitive Sciences Group Versus Individual Project Often students’ faces announce dissatisfaction when a group project is proposed during the first session of the class as a part of the final examination. The complaints are mainly coming from hard-working students who doubt that other group members work […]

Read More

Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education

March 6, 2020

Juan R. Sandoval, Department of Social Ecology The Current State of “Diversity” and “Inclusion” According to a report by the U.S. Department of Education (2019), whites make up approximately eighty percent of the full-time professoriate in the United States. Furthermore, white graduate students make up a little over sixty percent […]

Read More

Making Group Work Work: Designing Positive Group Work Experiences for Students

March 6, 2020

Deanna Myers, Department of Chemistry Group work. Just hearing the phrase brings up feelings of dread in many students. I remember feeling this way when I entered an upper-division chemistry course at my undergraduate institution. When the professors told us we would be assigned lab groups, with whom we would […]

Read More

Rethinking the Physics Classroom: 4 Tools to Consider

March 6, 2020

Francisco J. Mercado, Department of Physics & Astronomy When we think about a physics classroom, more often than not, the picture that comes to mind is an ‘all-knowing’ professor standing at the front of a classroom writing on a blackboard while some of the students behind them are vigorously taking notes […]

Read More

Effective Response to Student Writing

March 6, 2020

Undarmaa Maamuujav, School of Education Responding to students’ papers that have serious rhetorical weaknesses and multitude of linguistic errors is a challenging task for instructors, but what is more trying is finding a systematic and effective method of response to actively engage students in their writing and editing processes. On […]

Read More

Improving Critical Thinking Skills in College Students

March 6, 2020

Erica M. Leung, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering “People grow best where they continuously experience an ingenious blend of support and challenge.” -Robert Kegan1 Cognitive Development of College Students Most students enter college with the notion that there are right and wrong answers and the road to knowledge is […]

Read More

Preparing for Difficult Conversations in Criminal Justice Classrooms

March 6, 2020

Bryant Jackson-Green, Department of Social Ecology Criminal justice coursework inevitably involves discussions about difficult topics. Learning about violent crime, sexual assault, and similarly traumatic experiences is a central part of the curriculum and key to grasping the stakes criminal justice systems engage with daily. But if not handled sensitively, discussions […]

Read More

Implementing Flipped Classrooms into Law School Pedagogy

March 5, 2020

Conor Gómez, School of Law Welcome to Law School. All your hard work wooing professors to write encouraging letters of recommendation and studying for a standardized test that supposedly predicts performance in the first year of law school is finally over. Now the really hard work begins. For those of […]

Read More

Increasing Student Autonomy and Engagement in Biology Education at the Undergraduate and Graduate Level

March 5, 2020

 Lianna Fung, Developmental and Cell Biology A typical traditional biology course at the undergraduate level is primarily lecture and a few exams. Lecture time is often only broken up periodically by a few iClicker questions or a few brave students who dare to ask questions. Further down the educational line, […]

Read More

Not sure where to start? Here are some randomly selected articles for you:

Commentary: What Instructors Can Do to Improve Retention of Racial Minorities in Higher Education

March 14, 2019

Mustafa I. Hussain, MS, Department of Informatics Science has had a problem for a long time. The problem resurfaced recently, when news broke that Nobel Prize-winning biologist James Watson believes that race determines intelligence (Yancy-Bragg, 2019). Many of us instructors may find silence on such issues comfortable—but our silence is […]

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Improving Students’ Writing Abilities Through Peer Review

December 3, 2019

Alma P. Olaguez, M.S., Department of Psychological Science What Makes a Good Paper? Most students can differentiate a good writing sample from a bad writing sample. However, most students have difficulty producing concrete reasons why a paper is bad beyond “It just doesn’t flow.” Most importantly, the students who cannot produce […]

Read More

Promoting Equity and Humanizing Online Courses

March 5, 2020

Maricela Bañuelos, School of Education Historically, online learning was intended to increase underserved students’ access to educational opportunities. These students include students who are financially disadvantaged, English language learners, or disabled, or who come from rural areas (Campbell & Storo, 1996). While online courses may have expanded educational access to historically […]

Read More

Should Music be Used in the Classroom to Help Students Learn?

March 7, 2020

Michelle E. Zuñiga, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy To engage students, instructors have adopted a multitude of innovative learning activities. These activities include group work, flipped classroom, think, pair, share, and many more. Rarely, however, is music proposed as an aspect of learning in the classroom. I seek […]

Read More

The Benefits of Multirole In-Class Critiques for Students

December 3, 2019

Ivy Guild, MFA, Department of Art Typically used in design or art-oriented courses, a critique is a collaborative feedback technique for providing students with oral formative and summative assessments from their instructor and peers. In most educational settings, written formative and summative assessments provide the majority of the feedback that […]

Read More

Overcoming Anxieties of Learning Quantitative Methodology and Gaining the Confidence to Teach it

December 3, 2019

Martín Jacinto, Department of Sociology In a farewell piece as editor of Teaching Sociology, Stephen Sweet writes that teaching sociologically, “requires understanding teaching as a social act that is conducive to study, vigilante empathy to understand the lifeworlds of students, and building our own character as we attempt to build […]

Read More

High Impact Teaching Strategies for Large Undergraduate Classes in Public Health

December 2, 2019

Sara Goodman, Department of Population Health and Disease Prevention What are high impact course activities? Having ten-week quarters challenges faculty members and teaching assistants to get the most out of their students in a short amount of time. High impact learning activities include “frequent, timely, and constructive feedback, periodic, structured opportunities […]

Read More

Active Learning in Computer Science

June 6, 2019

Caio Batista de Melo, Department of Computer Science Active Learning is an already popular concept, and a lot of instructors are familiar with it. However, there were very few times I have taken a Computer Science (CS) class that was not based only on lectures. Why is that? Back in […]

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Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) 2020 Conference

February 6, 2020

Matthew Mahavongtrakul, PhD, Division of Teaching Excellence and Innovation I attended the AAC&U 2020 conference this January in Washington, DC, which focused on three topics: Inclusive education using equitable, innovative, and cost-effective models. Public trust in higher education given rising tuition costs Pathways to student success across disciplines at 2- […]

Read More

Taking Modern Pedogogy into the Large Classroom

March 7, 2020

Marc Sprague-Piercy, Department of Molecular Biology & Biochemistry The current thinking in pedagogy is moving away from the traditional classroom model. In the traditional classroom for large classes of undergraduates there is a clear plan. The students are given a series of readings that are to be done before or […]

Read More

How to Evaluate Individual Work Within a Group Project; Group-Individual Projects May Help!

March 6, 2020

Negin Sattari, Department of Cognitive Sciences Group Versus Individual Project Often students’ faces announce dissatisfaction when a group project is proposed during the first session of the class as a part of the final examination. The complaints are mainly coming from hard-working students who doubt that other group members work […]

Read More

How to Increase Student Reading in the English Classroom

June 13, 2019

Nathan Dean Allison, Department of English In one of her numerous Faculty Focus articles, Maryellen Weimer notes, “On any given day only 20 to 30 percent of the students arrive at class having done the reading.” This data would be somewhat unsettling in classrooms that employ the ‘sage on a […]

Read More

Case-based Learning in Chemistry

March 14, 2019

Bronte Charette, Department of Chemistry What is case-based learning? Case-based learning (CBL) is an instructional design model that stimulates active participation by relating course content to real-world examples. Indeed, business, law, and medical schools typically use this model. Cases are stories where students analyze and consider the solutions in relation […]

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An Assignment to Promote the Achievements of Diverse Scholars

November 25, 2019

Amanda R. Brown Tortorici, MS, RD, CSCS, PhD Candidate in Public Health Diversity in the 1980’s I remember being in elementary school in the late 80’s in suburban Pennsylvania, and I had a project to create a poster of female leaders of my choice. We were in the month of […]

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Using Science to Inform Evidence-Based Practices – The Role of Flipped Classrooms

December 3, 2019

Emily Kan, Department of Psychological Science At universities across the world, student researchers work for hours to uncover new scientific discoveries. After months and years of hard work, they finally see the fruits of their labor – successfully publishing an article in a top-tier journal. Yet, publishing in a scientific […]

Read More

Increasing Student Autonomy and Engagement in Biology Education at the Undergraduate and Graduate Level

March 5, 2020

 Lianna Fung, Developmental and Cell Biology A typical traditional biology course at the undergraduate level is primarily lecture and a few exams. Lecture time is often only broken up periodically by a few iClicker questions or a few brave students who dare to ask questions. Further down the educational line, […]

Read More

Learning and Teaching as Complementary Practices: Examples from Freshmen Experience Courses

June 4, 2019

Jessica Guerrero, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy Some instructors are naturals when it comes to teaching, but like everything, teaching has evolved over the years. Pedagogy practices also highlight ways of how studying learning has changed. Research studies demonstrate that the traditional thoughts of “the instructor performing certain […]

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Improving Student Engagement

December 5, 2019

Jonathan Ware, Department of Sociology In my Social Psychology class, we had just finished an in-class activity where my students were applying theories of power and how group structures play a role in interpersonal power relations. My students were segmented into groups of three and four and spent roughly 15 […]

Read More

Do Scantron Tests on College Campuses Increase Summative Assessment Measurement Error?

June 4, 2019

Samantha Garcia, MPH, CHES, Program in Public Health Summative assessments are assessments that provide evidence of students’ cumulative knowledge learned throughout a course.1 While it is essential for students to master course content and build a foundation in that topic area, summative assessments given in the form of a Scantron-based […]

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Why the Student-Centered Classroom Might be Key to Conducting More Effective Peer Review Sessions

June 7, 2019

Franziska Tsufim, M.A., Department of English Over the years, students in my composition classes have repeatedly complained that peer review was a “waste of time”. My students’ experience is not unique. Although most writing teachers use peer review in their classrooms, many report that their students are not big fans […]

Read More

Improving Critical Thinking Skills in College Students

March 6, 2020

Erica M. Leung, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering “People grow best where they continuously experience an ingenious blend of support and challenge.” -Robert Kegan1 Cognitive Development of College Students Most students enter college with the notion that there are right and wrong answers and the road to knowledge is […]

Read More

Phone-a-Friend: Tips for Designing Meaningful Collaborative Exams

March 5, 2020

Jaclyn Beck, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior Wait a minute. You want to test how much your students learned! Why would you want to give them a group exam? Perhaps a shift in perspective can answer that: Aside from scoring a student’s performance, exams themselves can be used as additional […]

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Three Tips for Promoting Student Motivation

December 3, 2019

Yangyang Liu, School of Education Students play an active role in their own learning. However, as an instructor, you may have noticed that some students are more motivated than others in your classroom. According to educational research, optimal learning happens when individuals are intrinsically motivated (Black & Deci, 2000). You […]

Read More

Making Group Work Work: Designing Positive Group Work Experiences for Students

March 6, 2020

Deanna Myers, Department of Chemistry Group work. Just hearing the phrase brings up feelings of dread in many students. I remember feeling this way when I entered an upper-division chemistry course at my undergraduate institution. When the professors told us we would be assigned lab groups, with whom we would […]

Read More

Rethinking the Physics Classroom: 4 Tools to Consider

March 6, 2020

Francisco J. Mercado, Department of Physics & Astronomy When we think about a physics classroom, more often than not, the picture that comes to mind is an ‘all-knowing’ professor standing at the front of a classroom writing on a blackboard while some of the students behind them are vigorously taking notes […]

Read More

Accommodating the Type 1 Diabetic Student

March 5, 2020

Morgan Coburn, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior *Please consult with your school’s unique medical support protocol for information on your institution guidelines for treating Type 1 Diabetes. What is Type 1 Diabetes? Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is an incurable autoimmune disease where the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas are attacked. […]

Read More

Service-learning: Teaching Criminology Beyond the Classroom

March 14, 2019

Gabriela Gonzalez, Department of Criminology, Law, & Society Making a Murderer, The Keepers, Mindhunter, Criminal Minds, How to Get Away with Murder. One need only flip open their laptop to get a glimpse of society’s obsession with true crime and crime drama. This obsession can also find its way into […]

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Student-Centered Course Design Improves Learning Outcomes in Biology

June 6, 2019

Andra Ionescu Tucker, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior Biology courses, particularly for first year college students, are taught in a traditional lecture format at most research universities. As a teaching assistant for such a class, I have observed how easy it is for students to disengage and how challenging it […]

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Active Learning Methods in Classrooms Old and New

March 14, 2019

Nima L Yolmo, Department of Anthropology The growing effectiveness of active learning pedagogical methods since the 1980s has concurrently drawn attention to classroom ambiance. Design aspects such as lighting and mobility influence student learning. Over the past decade, there has been a growing awareness among institutions to transition to Active […]

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Making Lab Spaces More Accessible to the Variety of Students We Serve

March 11, 2019

Amy Christiansen, Department of Chemistry Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a way to make instruction accessible to students with disabilities (SwD) and different learning preferences. UDL strives to make instruction inclusive by providing diverse curriculum delivery formats and building accommodations into curriculum design. UDL is a well-established technique for making […]

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Acknowledging Intersectional Identities within STEM Higher Education Classrooms

March 14, 2019

Hayley Glicker, Department of Chemistry Without recognizing students’ varying intersectional identities, students will not feel supported by their educator and feel alienated from their community. A memory of this occurred in my senior seminar/thesis course in my undergraduate institution. This course brought together different majors, so there were a few […]

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Two Misconceptions about Group Work/Collaborative Learning

December 2, 2019

Matthew Cheung, Department of Mathematics There are two misconceptions about group work and collaborative learning that need to be addressed. Group Work and Collaborative Learning May Not Always be Ideal As a teaching assistant at UC Irvine, I question other teaching assistants why they implement group work or collaborative learning. […]

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The Case for Meta-Integration Collaborative Activities (MICAs)

November 25, 2019

Mayan K. Castro, M.A., Department of Psychological Science What is a MICA? This is a call for a new type of assignment: a Meta-Integration Collaborative Activity (MICA). The goal of a MICA is to present an explicit opportunity for students to connect the dots among the disparate ideas introduced across […]

Read More

Promoting Student Agency and Learning Through Specifications Grading

March 7, 2020

Chris Woods, Department of Chemistry The current grading paradigm has been seldom challenged for a long time, and for many, leaves much to be desired. The assignment of grades can be a cause of trepidation for many educators. Many students feel that they do not earn a grade as much […]

Read More

In with the Good and Out with the Bad: Promoting Healthy Stress in Class

March 11, 2019

Alicia Hoffman, Department of Chemistry Stress is correlated with both improved and diminished academic achievement. Students are successful when there is a drive to attain high standards, but too much stress negatively impacts learning and memory and increases underachievement, dropout rates, and depression.1,2 Therefore, maintaining a balance between too stressful and […]

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5 Tips for Providing Feedback in Large Online Courses

March 14, 2019

Daniel Relihan, MA, Department of Psychological Science Online college and university courses have become increasingly common over the past decade. One reason for this increase is because online courses are cost effective for universities. For instance, they allow universities to charge tuition without the cost of brick-and-mortar space. Consequently, there […]

Read More

Effective Response to Student Writing

March 6, 2020

Undarmaa Maamuujav, School of Education Responding to students’ papers that have serious rhetorical weaknesses and multitude of linguistic errors is a challenging task for instructors, but what is more trying is finding a systematic and effective method of response to actively engage students in their writing and editing processes. On […]

Read More

Learning Outside the Classroom Adds Value to College Courses

June 10, 2019

Hew Yeng (Betty) Lai, Department of Biological Chemistry Learning Outside the Classroom (LOtC) is fairly common in elementary and secondary education. For example, most of us can remember going on a field trip or to a museum and say, “That was fun” and learned a lot from it. However, at […]

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Teaching the Language of Science

March 14, 2019

Lorrayne A. Serra, Department of Developmental and Cell Biology Reading and the Language of Science Learning science is directly related to understanding the language of science. At first, learning a language is challenging, but if the appropriate tools are provided, students can excel. To understand science, student must therefore master […]

Read More

Implementing Flipped Classrooms into Law School Pedagogy

March 5, 2020

Conor Gómez, School of Law Welcome to Law School. All your hard work wooing professors to write encouraging letters of recommendation and studying for a standardized test that supposedly predicts performance in the first year of law school is finally over. Now the really hard work begins. For those of […]

Read More

Pair-Programming: Is It Effective for Learning?

June 7, 2019

Saehanseul Yi, Department of Computer Science Pair-Programming in Classrooms Pair-programming is a programming paradigm where two or more programmers share a single computer. Lindvall et al. show that pair-programming is effective in professional fields because programmers are able to share knowledge with each other [1]. Therefore, pair-programming [2] is being […]

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There’s More to Diversity Than a Diversity Statement: Diversity, Inclusion and You

December 2, 2019

Emory James Edwards, Department of Informatics Diversity is the buzzword of the hour in American higher education. More and more academic positions are requiring diversity statements. Diversity and Inclusion initiatives are sweeping college campuses. The pool of undergraduate and graduate students, TAs, and professors, is (one would hope) more diverse […]

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Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education

March 6, 2020

Juan R. Sandoval, Department of Social Ecology The Current State of “Diversity” and “Inclusion” According to a report by the U.S. Department of Education (2019), whites make up approximately eighty percent of the full-time professoriate in the United States. Furthermore, white graduate students make up a little over sixty percent […]

Read More

Using Exams as a Learning Experience

May 30, 2019

Christian Glaser, PhD, Department of Physics and Astronomy Traditionally, exams test students’ knowledge at a certain point in time. They are not intended for the students to learn anything but to show what they know. But what if exams can be turned into a valuable learning experience? New research show […]

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Food for Thought: Food and Community Building in the Classroom

October 9, 2019

Clare Gordon Bettencourt (@dearclare), Department of History “I didn’t realize how much I missed this food line!” Charlette Gregorian, Pedagogical Fellow 2019 Following two days of facilitating the Teaching Assistant Professional Development Program (TAPDP), a required training for incoming TAs at UC Irvine, this year’s cohort of Pedagogical Fellows streamed into […]

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Helping All Learners Realize Their Full Potential with Universal Design Learning

March 5, 2020

Devontae C. Baxter, Department of Physics and Astronomy Debunking “School isn’t for me” I think that it would be fair to say that our modern educational system is designed to primarily serve students that are capable of passively absorbing and retaining information shared by the instructor. This method never proved […]

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Online Courses: Some Common Mistakes and Recommended Practices

June 7, 2019

Ángeles Torres Méndez, Department of Spanish and Portuguese The impact of the Internet on education over the last twenty years cannot be underestimated. The availability and accessibility of the Internet continues to transform teaching and new forms of student learning. The growing body of research in diverse disciplines and fields […]

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Flipped Classrooms and Second Language Acquisition

June 13, 2019

Alejandra Castellanos, Department of Spanish and Portuguese Tell me and I will forget; teach me and I will remember; involve me and I will learn Chinese proverb At the end of a first week in intermediate Spanish, a student emailed me complaining that she wasn’t learning. My teaching style, using […]

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Instructing Mathematics to Students With Wide Ranges in Prior Knowledge

December 2, 2019

David Clausen, Department of Mathematics When teaching introductory college math courses, one finds a wide variety of students. In a calculus class, you might have people majoring in mathematics who need a conceptual understanding of “why” as well as facility with computations. They might be sitting next to students in […]

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Learning through Writing Assignments

December 3, 2019

Jinna Kim, Department of Sociology Instructors often use writing assignments to assess students’ learning. There are many ways that writing assignments can be a form of active learning, especially when considering it as a writing process. Below are suggestions for implementing effective writing assignments that will enhance student learning. Writing […]

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Incorporation of Collaborative Learning in Classroom Teaching

December 2, 2019

Jawad Fayaz, Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering For centuries, classroom teaching has been mainly based on the conventional approach of lecturing by faculty members and learning being evaluated by traditional examinations. This approach does not lead to the development of highly required skills such as critical thinking, communication, and leadership. […]

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Flipped Classrooms and Active Learning for Students Success in Language Acquisition

June 10, 2019

Gilberto Nuñez, Department of Spanish and Portuguese Nowadays the way of teaching has changed due to new technology. Whereas in the past decades accessing information required more time, now everything is immediate, which has made the work of the educator different. For this reason (and others), educators should think of […]

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Can You Explain That 3 More Times? Advice for Universal Instruction

June 7, 2019

Daniel J. Ruiz, Department of Earth System Science After asking someone to repeat themselves multiple times and still not hear what they’ve said on the 3rd iteration, I’m the type to give up, smile and nod, and be overcome with embarrassment of the whole exchange. Too often do our students […]

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Redefining the Purpose of Education in the Information Age

June 10, 2019

Prince Paa-Kwesi Heto, Department of Political Science How is the technological revolution changing the world of education and the art of teaching? The easy access to information due to the Internet and changing hiring practices are transforming education in fundamental ways, which makes student-centered pedagogies a must, not a choice. […]

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Why Group Work and Active Learning Help to Complement Professions in the “Real World”

November 25, 2019

Ian Baran, Department of Urban and Environmental Planning and Policy Whether the reality of all classes or not, we have our image of the prototypical classroom. Large or small, we visualize it similarly: students sitting, some visually engaged, others taking notes, some nodding off intermittently, jerking awake and hoping they […]

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The Changing Role of University STEM Teaching in the Internet Era

June 8, 2019

Chris Persichilli, PhD, Department of Physics & Astronomy The Problem These are unstable times. The insurgence of the Internet into all facets of modern life has had a transformative impact on every industry, whether they like it or not. Education is no exception, of course; and with the continued reduction in […]

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Teaching and Mentoring URMs in STEM

March 5, 2020

Angeline Dukes, B.A., Department of Neurobiology & Behavior While navigating higher education can be challenging for everyone, it is especially daunting for those who do not see themselves represented in the textbooks and classrooms. Underrepresented minorities (URM) make up 33% of the United States population. However, they only obtain 22% […]

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Thriving in Academia:  A Leadership Task More Difficult Than It Sounds

March 14, 2019

Denise C. Phelps, Department of Public Policy “I want to be a leader,” are words you may hear echoed when a teacher asks their students what they want to be when they grow up. Being a leader and obtaining leadership skills details a lot of responsibility and hard work, especially […]

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Making a Large Class Small

March 12, 2019

Alessandra C. Martini, Ph.D, UCI Institute for Memory Impairments and Neurological Disorders There’s a unique set of challenges that can reduce student learning and exhaust faculty members teaching large-enrollment courses. Among so many people, it is easy for students to feel anonymous, disengage, and obtain a less favorable grade. Within […]

Read More

Adding the EPIC to Education

March 7, 2020

Emily M. Slonecker, M.A, Department of Psychological Science What is your first thought when you hear the word “icebreaker”? If your first thought is the sound of 200 students groaning in unison, you just might be an educator. There is growing body of evidence to suggest that active learning techniques, like […]

Read More

Preparing for Difficult Conversations in Criminal Justice Classrooms

March 6, 2020

Bryant Jackson-Green, Department of Social Ecology Criminal justice coursework inevitably involves discussions about difficult topics. Learning about violent crime, sexual assault, and similarly traumatic experiences is a central part of the curriculum and key to grasping the stakes criminal justice systems engage with daily. But if not handled sensitively, discussions […]

Read More

Preparing the Environmental Professionals of the Future: Backwards Design in Environmental Studies

March 7, 2020

Paroma Wagle, Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy Learning about sustainability, climate change, and environmental justice, the ‘wicked problems’ of the environment, is absolutely crucial for students, as they will not only go on maybe select careers in environment and policy fields, but also are going to be decision-makers […]

Read More

Applying Best Practices to Online Classrooms

March 14, 2019

Colin McLaughlin-Alcock, Department of Anthropology Educators are increasingly recognizing the value of active learning and other best practice strategies which allow students to take ownership of their own education. One domain which remains resistant to active learning, however, is the online classroom (Germain). In this article, I present suggestions for […]

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Learning with Commercial Games

March 11, 2020

Reginald T. Gardner, Department of Informatics How Videogames Teach Videogames often use reward and punishment systems, grading systems, soft resets, and other techniques to push players towards learning specific skills in order to proceed in their games. The most known example is Super Mario Bros’ level 1-1. In the first […]

Read More