2007-2008 Essays

Collaboration or Plagiarism? Explaining Collaborative-Based Assignments Clearly
Tuesday L. Cooper, Empire State College
When assigned collaborative learning projects, students often have difficulty determining appropriate contribution by each group member. By providing clear instructions, faculty can shape students’ appreciation of collaborative learning opportunities.

Developing the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Using Faculty Learning Communities 
Milton D. Cox, Miami University
Faculty learning communities have proven successful in developing SoTL, including teaching projects, assessment of student learning, presentations, and publication.

Beyond Writing: Integrative Learning and Teaching in First-Year Seminars
David H. Krause, Dominican University
Balancing theory and practice, this essay helps instructors become more reflective, intentional, and confident about designing assignments that effectively cultivate authentic integrative learning for first-year students.

Reflections on a Departmentally Based Graduate Course on Teaching
Craig Nelson, Indiana University
Full credit graduate courses offered on teaching can be an opportunity for powerful professional development. This essay reflects on the pedagogical and content choices for these courses.

Role-Play: An Underused but Often Misused Active Learning Strategy
Stephanie Nickerson, Independent Consultant
This essay describes different role-playing strategies based on the learning objectives instructors have. Also outlined are ways to make role-playing successful.

Teaching, Learning and Spirituality in the College Classroom
Allison Pingree, Vanderbilt University
Using data from a recent report on spirituality among college students, this essay explores the implications of these findings for pedagogical choices regarding classroom practices.

The Useful, Sensible, No-Frills Departmental Assessment Plan
Barbara E. Walvoord, University of Notre Dame
This essay suggests a simple, sustainable, and useful departmental assessment plan that capitalizes on what departments are already doing or know they should do to improve student learning and meet the needs of accreditors.

Building Assignments that Teach
Mary Ann Winkelmes, University of Chicago
Assignments are a necessary part of undergraduate education that we have come to take for granted.  The best assignments are intellectually stimulating exercises that help students build and practice essential, complex skills.

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