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Grades as a necessary evil? How they affect student motivation and what we can do about it.

Dec. 19, 2019—By Heather Fedesco, CFT Assistant Director   During the December meeting of the CFT’s student motivation journal club, we tackled the perplexing question of whether grades help or hinder student motivation. Chamberlin and colleagues’ paper titled, “The impact of grades on student motivation” gave us a great launching point to embark on this discussion. The authors...

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New CFT Guide on Assessing Student Learning Now Available

Dec. 18, 2019—Student assessment is, arguably, the centerpiece of the teaching and learning process and therefore the subject of much discussion in the scholarship of teaching and learning. Without some method of obtaining and analyzing evidence of student learning, we can never know whether our teaching is making a difference. That is, teaching requires some process through...

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Come Work at the Center for Teaching!

Dec. 16, 2019—Each year the Center for Teaching (CFT) hires a number of graduate students as part of its efforts to mentor and train graduate students, including those serving as teaching assistants or instructors of record here at Vanderbilt as well as those interested in developing teaching skills for future faculty careers. The CFT has several types...

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Teaching Writing Workshop Series: Scaffolding Writing Across the Semester

Dec. 4, 2019—Over the course of the academic year, the Writing Studio leads a series of faculty workshops focused on different aspects of teaching writing. Workshops provide participants with current research, strategies for best practices, and a forum for discussing how these approaches might be adapted to teaching writing in their disciplines. The Teaching Writing Workshop Series...

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Teaching Innovations at Vanderbilt: McKanders and Refugee Policy Podcasts

Dec. 2, 2019—By Faith Rovenolt, CFT undergraduate intern In the spring of last year, three students from Professor Karla McKanders’s LAW 7620: Refugee Law and Policy course contributed podcasts to the Life of the Law Blog New Voices series. This amazing opportunity for students came about from a final project for the course. The course focuses on the...

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Biological Sciences Seminar: Improving student learning through understanding reasoning and problem-solving practices

Nov. 26, 2019—Join the Biological Sciences Department on Monday, December 2, 3:30-5:15, to consider different teaching practices as part of their ongoing seminar series. Undergraduate Learning Assistants will present posters on questions such as, “Which clicker questions promote the most discussion?” during tea time from 3:30-4:10, followed by Professor Jenny Knight’s seminar. Professor Knight writes, “Classroom practices...

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New Book from CFT Director, Derek Bruff

Nov. 19, 2019—Intentional Tech: Principles to Guide the Use of Educational Technology in College  Arguing that teaching and learning goals should drive instructors’ technology use, not the other way around, CFT director Derek Bruff’s new book explores seven research-based principles for matching technology to pedagogy. Through stories of creative and effective use of educational technology by faculty...

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Science Teaching Lunch on more inclusive active learning classrooms: How groups of students are differentially impacted by active learning

Nov. 18, 2019—Join Professor Sara Brownell at a Science Teaching Lunch as she discusses her lab’s work investigating some “off-target” effects of active learning. Professor Brownell writes, “To what extent do students experience college science classrooms differently because of their social identities? How has transitioning traditional lecture courses to active learning spaces impacted students? What can instructors...

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Proposals for University Courses Due November 22nd

Nov. 14, 2019—by Derek Bruff, CFT Director I am excited to announce that the Center for Teaching is the new home for Vanderbilt’s University Courses program. This program was launched by the Provost’s office in 2016 to encourage and support “cross college” teaching, one of the cornerstones of the Vanderbilt Academic Strategic Plan. Over the last three...

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Come Work at the Center for Teaching!

Nov. 13, 2019—Each year the Center for Teaching (CFT) hires a number of graduate students as part of its efforts to mentor and train graduate students, including those serving as teaching assistants or instructors of record here at Vanderbilt as well as those interested in developing teaching skills for future faculty careers. The CFT has several types...

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