Focus on Teaching and Learning: Spark Up Your Syllabus Series

This series is a collaborative effort with Institutional Effectiveness and aims to build your skills and knowledge while engaging in conversation and discussion with colleagues. Connect your work with the workshop topic and leave with concrete ideas for incorporating it into your classroom experience.

While attending all three sessions is encouraged, each session can be attended as a stand alone as well.

Sessions will be held via Zoom from 12:00-1:30 p.m.

Session 1 – Telling the Story of Your Course:
How and Why to Communicate the Design of a Course to Students

Have you ever wondered if students read your syllabus? Do you field questions from them that suggest maybe they don’t absorb it as fully as you would like? At this first lunch and learn session of the Spark Up Your Syllabus series, explore options for authoring syllabi as dynamic documents to convey your course design, consider how different groups of students experience syllabi, and come away with activities you can use to engage students in diving deep into the story of your course.

Session 2 – Setting the Stage:
Making the Story Better with Course Learning Objectives

Clear and transparent learning objectives help students make connections between course expectations and learning experiences. Faculty will leverage the Learning Outcomes & Objectives Framework – A Crossroad between Bloom’s and Fink’s Taxonomies to create holistic learning objectives. This session will also teach faculty how to utilize a learning outcome generator to write statements using three key aspects – performance, condition, and criteria.

Session 3 – The Plot Thickens:
Spark Student Engagement in Course Activities and Assignments

With the stage set, it is time for the story of your course to unfold. In this session, we will explore the value of and strategies for aligning the course learning objectives you authored with your teaching and learning activities. Fill out the story line of the syllabus by clearly communicating to students the “what, how and why” of ways they are expected to demonstrate their learning throughout the course. Pique their interest by connecting assignments not only to the course and curriculum, but to the world they live in. Faculty panelists will share specific examples of strategies they have used.

Katie Cadwell

Photo of Katie Cadwell
Associate Teaching Professor and Chemical Engineering Undergraduate Program Director

Megan Oakleaf

Photo of Megan Oakleaf
Professor and Library and Information Science MS Program Director

Amy Schmidt

Photo of Amy Schmidt
Citizenship and Civic Engagement Program Coordinator

Prior sessions material linked here.