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Academic Technology Services blog

How can technology help address common teaching challenges?

A few ideas bubbled up at the block 5 block break workshop we did on that topic. We started off with a presentation from Thomas Riedel of Regis University in Denver, who told us about a project undertaken there to help students better understand academic integrity issues. We then split up into groups to talk about teaching challenges we face, and ideas for ways we could address them. A couple of themes emerged. One was related to helping students do peer review and finding ways to make that take less class time. Another was that sometimes people, students and faculty alike, feel self-conscious about asking for with things that they think they should know, but don’t. A third theme was finding ways to deal more effectively with students of different backgrounds. Many classes have no prerequisites, and as a consequence, they combine novices in the subject with students who have much more knowledge of that area.

For peer review, a couple of ideas were floated for how online discussion forums and making peer review sessions “homework” rather than in-class time, might help. For addressing the issue of people being reluctant to ask for help, we discussed how providing resources in an anonymous, online format could be a good way to get learners access to the resources they need.

There were a couple of ideas that may develop into full-fledged projects, and if they do, you’ll hear about them eventually on this blog!

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