January 26, 2010 — The University of Virginia's Teaching Resource Center has several workshops coming up within the next month to aid faculty in developing innovative courses and techniques to make classes more meaningful.
• Creating Excitement and Overcoming Apathy in the Classroom
Todd Zakrajsek, executive director of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill's Center for Faculty Excellence
Jan. 29, 2-4 p.m. (1:45 p.m. check-in), Monroe Hall room 124
Description: How can we facilitate learning when we encounter students who seem uninterested and even apathetic toward course content and assignments? Part of the responsibility for learning belongs to students, but, as faculty, we can find new ways to motivate, inspire, and maybe even cajole students to learn. This workshop will demonstrate and explain how we can make classroom learning, perhaps one of the most artificial learning settings, a more meaningful experience for students. Zakrajsek bases his strategies for increasing student engagement on theories of learning and motivation, and participants will be able to try out and experience firsthand effective techniques.
Sponsored by the Teaching Resource Center and ACC Teaching Scholars Program.
• Designing Academic Community Engagement Courses
Dorothe Bach, assistant director of the Teaching Resource Center and associate professor of German; and Megan Raymond, director of University and Community Partnerships Feb. 2, 9-10:30 a.m. (check-in at 8:45 a.m.), Newcomb Hall Commonwealth Room
Description: Academic Community Engagement Courses are part of the University's efforts to encourage faculty and students to put academic pursuits into practice through community service. Bach and Raymond will lead an information session about creating courses with well-aligned goals and assignments that offer students effective preparation for community engagement and research-driven service team projects. They will suggest how to develop meaningful activities to foster deep learning through application, inquiry and public presentation. The session will also provide information about applying for Academic Community Engagement grants. Faculty awards range from $5,000 to $9,000.
• Study Abroad Course Design Institute: Designing Significant Study Abroad Experiences
Dorothe Bach, assistant director of the Teaching Resource Center and associate professor of German, and Marva Barnett, director of the Teaching Resource Center and professor of French
Feb. 5 & 12, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Rouss & Robertson Hall, Room 403
Description: In this two-day workshop, sponsored by the International Studies Office and the Teaching Resource Center, faculty participants will design or substantially redesign a study-abroad course so that it promotes significant, long-term learning. Individually and in small learning teams, faculty will define meaningful, integrated course goals; explore novel ways to know to what extent students are meeting these goals; develop learning activities aligned with the goals; and map out the structure of the course.
To apply and for information, click here.