Each fall, just before the semester begins, we gather together for a series of interactive workshops aimed at getting you geared up and ready for the first day of class.
Faculty and other instructors are invited to attend all day, or join us as they are able.
Fall Teaching Kickoff 2018 Schedule
Syllabus Clinic for New Instructors
9:00 - 11:00 a.m. in Clough 102
Research shows that the way your syllabus is constructed can affect your students' ability to learn in your class. In addition, making decisions about specific course policies is often a matter of being clear on university-wide rules, then balancing tradeoffs based on your context and style. We invite you to join us, along with a draft of your syllabus, to receive guidance and feedback as you get it ready for the first day of class.
Little Actions, Big Impact
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. in Clough 102 (lunch provided)
We all bring “content” expertise to the courses we teach—yet providing an environment conducive to learning seems to grow more difficult each year. Join your colleagues for a lively discussion of classroom dynamics and the challenges that occur when you encounter a diverse array of students who are all bright and expect to succeed. You’ll get ideas that will help you respond thoughtfully to student expectations, special requests, and microaggressions when they occur. Best of all, find out how the little actions you take throughout the term can help you enjoy teaching—and have a big impact on your students as they engage with your course content! This workshop will be facilitated by Dr. John Stein, Vice President for Student Life and Brandt-Fritz Dean of Students Chair and Dr. Joyce Weinsheimer, Director, Center for Teaching and Learning
Leveraging Canvas to Create Engaging Learning Experiences
1:30-3:00 p.m. in Clough 102
With the introduction of Canvas as a new learning platform at Georgia Tech, instructors have the opportunity to rethink new ways of leveraging technologies to support effective teaching and student engagement. Canvas has many potential options and knowing how to get the most out of them will help you become more efficient and effective in teaching. Join us in this session to explore feasible strategies that you could implement in using Canvas to create engaging learning experiences beyond the classroom.
Past Teaching Kickoff Sessions
- Inspired Teaching: Integrating Methods from Outside My Discipline (Fall 2017)
- Across the disciplines and over the years, different teaching methods have been adopted and developed -- sometimes because that's what works best for a certain type of content, and sometimes because that's just what we do. Featuring contributions from Dr. Frank Clark and Dr. Annalise Paaby, we will focus on ways to expand our thinking about how we teaching, drawing on methods used in music and fine art instruction, athletics, gaming and competition, and more. Join us to explore new ways to do new things with your teaching!
- Making the Most of your Learning Space (Fall 2017)
- Classrooms impose both opportunities and limitations that instructors can make use of when designing strategies for engaging students in active learning. In this workshop, we will explore ideas for making the most of the classroom features available in order to employ effective teaching practices to help students solve problems, master concepts, analyze data, and more. At the workshop, you will also get the chance to experience Boggs B5, one of the most recently renovated lecture halls on campus, designed to make teamwork and collaboration easier in large classes.
- Developing and Assessing Major Assignments (Fall 2016)
Major assignments are an important part of many courses because they give students the opportunity to synthesize and apply what they have learned over the course of the semester. However, students often struggle with understanding expectations, developing effective processes for completing the work, and collaborating with group members. In this workshop, participants will get the opportunity to develop materials about their major assignments to help set students up for success. Participants should bring in a description of one major assignment they intend to assign students in a course during fall 2016.
- Beyond Think-Pair-Share: Conducting Productive and Engaging Discussions in Every Course (Fall 2016)
Whatever you teach — whether it’s literature, mathematics, heat transfer, organizational behavior, or anything else in the Georgia Tech catalog — getting students to think and talk about what they are learning, as they are learning it, is a great way to increase and deepen their learning, correct errors before they are transferred to long-term memory, and generally heighten student engagement and interest in a course. In this session, we will explore strategies and best practices for incorporating and managing discussions in your classes, regardless of discipline, class size, room setup, and more.
- Small Changes in Teaching: Big Impact, Little Effort (Fall 2016)
There are plenty of small changes we can make in our teaching to powerfully and positively impact our students’ learning. For example, the simple use of an advance organizer to lay out your goals for the day can affect how students manage the content covered during a particular class. Join us as we explore a series of small changes that you can make to impact your students throughout the fall 2016 semester.
- Syllabus Clinic (Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017)
Research shows that the way your syllabus is constructed can affect your students’ ability to learn in your class. Bring a draft of a syllabus and receive guidance and feedback from your colleagues as you get it ready for the first day of class.
- Snow, Flu, and Other Hardships: Managing Courses in the Face of Interruptions (Spring 2016)
Unexpected campus closures due to weather or other incidents cause major disruptions to our carefully planned courses, causing us to get behind in content and scramble to find time to make up class time and exams. This is also flu season where we face the elevated possibility that we and/or our students may have to miss class due to illness. This workshop will explore the options available to faculty in order to minimize interruption of teaching and learning during such situations. What technological tools are at our disposal to help keep the learning happening even when we can’t get to campus? What considerations should we keep in mind about expecting students to access materials remotely? What techniques are effective at helping students get back on track after a disruption?
- Making the Most of the First Day of Class (Fall 2015 and Spring 2016)
What can you accomplish on the first day of class? Come learn about the importance of the first day for setting a productive tone for the course, establishing clear expectations, and building student motivation.
- Tweet This! Creating a Tech Strategy that Really Works (Fall 2015)
The array of technology options available for use in your classes can seem overwhelming at times, and sometimes it is difficult to know how best to leverage those options. Join us for an interactive session focused on helping you leverage technology for positive gains in the classroom.