Irregardless of the Pandemic

While the New York Times reports on faculty who are reluctant to go back to the classroom for health reasons and Inside Higher Ed adds the decision-making process to the mix, the more interesting objections come from a pedagogical perspective.  Kevin Gannon writes about our prejudice for face-to-face instruction. “Students do not learn simply because they are physically present in the same space as […]

Models Good and Bad

With regard to planning for the fall, researchers at Georgia Tech concluded that to maintain proper distancing, most classrooms cannot be 40-50 percent full, but more like 15-30 percent full, which questions the plans for many institutions looking to simply have a blended mix of online and on-ground class meetings.  More optimistically, professors at Swarthmore College and […]

Black is the New Black

CoronavirusClemson University, which is in the first phase of a reopening, announced on Friday 25 new cases of coronavirus, for a total of 28, mostly student-athletes and some staff. It’s the largest outbreak since the country has moved to reopen. This came on the same day that South Carolina reached its highest one-day total for new cases. […]

Reimagining the Syllabus

Faculty can be very particular (even precious) about a course syllabus, but sometimes in all the wrong ways. Many view the syllabus as a firm contract and a laundry list of every particular variation and question that might ever occur to a student during the course of a semester. This was the rationale behind the […]

Prensky on Pedagogy

The talk of assessment of student learning outcomes has well established the important connection between student learning outcomes and coursework. It is essential that coursework prepare students for and ultimately give them an opportunity to demonstrate and master. What has been overlooked has been the connection to outcomes and objectives—that is, how we teach what […]

What is Critical Thinking?

Most college courses include “critical thinking” as a desired learning outcome. But what do we mean by the term? And why is it so important—for coursework and for life? “Critical” is derived from the Greek word krisis, which means “to separate.” When we think critically, we are pulling things apart to evaluate them, but we […]