Instructional Innovation 2014: Workshop Spotlight

Innovation definedIf you are still trying to decide which workshops to attend next week at Delaware Tech’s Instructional Innovation Conference, here are six more to choose from.

Note that each workshop is classified as either a practice session or a conversation session.

Practice sessions focus on sharing, modeling, and discussing pedagogy in higher education, while allowing for interaction among session participants. These sessions go beyond simply “why to” to include “how to”. Participants should come expecting to do something, not just to receive information.

Conversation sessions provide a time and space for participants to discuss pedagogy in higher education. Each session will consist of a brief (10 minutes or less) presentation to contextualize the topic, followed by active participant discussion.

Blackboard Minimum Requirements
Tracy Miles and Chris Terranova
Practice Session

The goal of this workshop is to provide faculty members with minimum Blackboard requirements as well as recommendations for the best use of the learning management system – Blackboard. We will also discuss asynchronous and synchronous tools and what is required or recommended for face-to-face courses, hybrid courses, and online courses. This workshop will also cover posting course materials, course size quota, as well as features and usage guidelines and descriptions.


Choosing an Instructional Delivery Method: Synchronous or Asynchronous?
Radhika Prout
Conversation Session

As online learning continues to grow in popularity, more and more instructors are being faced with the challenges that come with it. Online courses, like traditional courses, must be instructionally sound and lead students to the desired learning outcomes. However, that’s not all. To be successful, online learning must also match student individualities and the nature of what it seeks to teach. It must fit the learners’ schedule, immediacy, and their need to access a live instructor. How can an online instructor satisfy all of these requirements? In this session, we will discuss the two basic types of instructional delivery that can satisfy all of these requirements, which one you should choose to use and when, as well as the pros and cons of each. No technology is required from participants during this session.


We Can’t Teach them Height but We Can Teach them to Jump!
Elizabeth Kelleher
Conversation Session

Attendees at this session will be introduced to and engaged in open discussion/brainstorming sessions on the concept of “grit” or self-efficacy. “grit” has surfaced in numerous academic arenas and has created some debate as to its function in higher education. Come find out what this may mean for you, your students, and higher education in general. Engage in discussion on whether or not there is a place in higher education for “grit” and its impact on student achievement.


Beyond the Research Paper: Partnering with Librarians to Enhance Student Fluency in Information Literacy through Creative and Engaging Assignments
Mary Anne Farrell and Paul Page
Practice Session

Tired of the same old research paper? APA gotcha down?

If so, this session is for you. Come join us in a discussion of how librarians can help you create alternative research assignments and assessment tools. This session will begin with a brief overview of current information literacy approaches and move to a discussion of innovative practices that meet the requirements of CCC#5. Come prepared to share how you currently incorporate and assess this competency in your classroom—leave with potentially new and engaging assignment ideas.


Digital Textbook Design: Introduction, Applications, and Publication
Brad Thompson
Practice Session

Today’s students have grown up completely immersed in technology; the iPad, iPhone, tablet, computer — these are the ways they interact with their world. Multi-touch digital textbooks offer a visual, full-screen experience full of interactive diagrams, photos, and videos made for the way they learn. No longer limited to static pictures to illustrate the text, now students can dive into an image with interactive captions, watch embedded video, rotate a 3D object, or have the answer spring to life in a chapter review. In this session, we will discuss how higher education institutions around the country are incorporating this new educational technology, what relevant and realistic applications could be implemented here at Delaware Technical Community College, and how to design, create, and publish your own iBook using Apple’s free iBooks Author software. No technology is required from participants during the session.


Seeking: Individuals Who Want to Play
Jennifer Blackwell
Practice Session

Productive and serious – two words not typically utilized to describe playtime. Throughout our society, play can often be overlooked and undervalued. This session is for individuals who would like to refocus and rethink the role of play in learning. Using everyday items, we’ll play – showcasing how direct experience, reflection and social interaction can take on new meaning as a consistent form of assessment in our courses. If you’re feeling a need to get your creative juices flowing, we’ve got a seat open for you!


We’ve got plenty more to offer, so check back often for another sneak peek at what to expect at the Instructional Innovation Conference 2014.

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