Designing a More Inclusive Class for Students with Disabilities

Professors Zahra Fakraai, Chemistry and Heather Love, English
Nov 17 2021 : 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm
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Zoom (Register for Link)
online only

Given that a portion of the students in our classes will have disabilities, considering those students when designing courses can help increase the likelihood that all of our students can thrive in our courses. In this session Zahra Fakhraai of Chemistry and Heather Love of English will discuss multiple modes for presenting information, encouraging student engagement, and assessing what students learn. The conversation will include Aaron Spector, Director of Disability Services, to share student experiences and highlight aspects of the accommodations process.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Technology Tools for Online Communication, Collaboration and Peer Support: Introduction to Ed Discussion

CTL Staff
Jan 06 2022 : 2:00 pm to 3:15 pm
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Online (register for Zoom link)

Ed Discussion is a tool for online Q&A and threaded discussion among students or between students, instructors and TAs. It is being piloted at Penn during the 2021-2022 academic year as a potential replacement for Piazza to promote communication, collaboration and problem-solving and to help students better understand course materials. In this session, CTL staff will introduce the tool’s features and discuss how the tool can be set up and managed to meet instructors’ needs and goals for the spring semester. 
 
This session will run for one hour, with an additional 15 minutes reserved for any remaining questions and answers.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Technology Tools for Online Communication, Collaboration and Peer Support: Introduction to Ed Discussion

CTL Staff
Dec 14 2021 : 10:00 am to 11:15 am
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Online (register for Zoom link)

Ed Discussion is a tool for online Q&A and threaded discussion among students or between students, instructors and TAs. It is being piloted at Penn during the 2021-2022 academic year as a potential replacement for Piazza to promote communication, collaboration and problem-solving and to help students better understand course materials. In this session, CTL staff will introduce the tool’s features and discuss how the tool can be set up and managed to meet instructors’ needs and goals for the spring semester. 
 
This session will run for one hour, with an additional 15 minutes reserved for any remaining questions and answers.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Teaching in Person in the Present Circumstances: Strategies for Supporting Students through the Fall of 2021

Professors James Aguirre, Physics & Melissa Wilde, Sociology
Oct 27 2021 : 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm
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Van Pelt 134 (CTL/OLI Seminar Room)

For many of us, this fall has been a chance to return to the classroom and interact with students in ways that are closer to what we missed during the online semesters. At the same time, though, this fall has been anything but normal, with masks, possible missed classes and anxiety around the ongoing pandemic. In this session James Aguirre of Physics and Astronomy and Melissa Wilde of Sociology will facilitate a discussion of how we have navigated teaching this fall as we all figure out how to teach and help our students learn in these uncertain times.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Teaching Introductory Classes

Professors Cam Grey, Classics & Andrew Rappe, Chemistry
Oct 12 2021 : 10:00 am to 11:30 am
Van Pelt 134 (CTL/OLI Seminar Room)

In this conversation, Cam Grey of Classical Studies and Andrew Rappe of Chemistry will consider the aims we as instructors have for introductory classes and open up discussion about how those goals connect with the wide range of expectations students bring to such courses. Participants will explore ways to address the complicated jobs introductory classes need to do as well as ways to make those courses opportunities for students to better understand the field and see why it is exciting.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Using Canvas’s New Quizzes: Faculty Perspectives on Canvas’s New Quizzing Tool

Professors, Santiago Gallino, Operations, Information and Decisions & Linda Robinson, Biology
Oct 07 2021 : 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Zoom (register for link)
Online Only

Starting this semester, all instructors at Penn have access to a new quizzing tool in Canvas called New Quizzes. New Quizzes provides better support for scientific notation and new question types. It features efficient set up options and some ways to make the process of grading easier, including partial credit and rubrics. In this conversation, Santiago Gallino from OID and Linda Robinson from Biology will talk about their experiences using New Quizzes and share what features have worked for them. The session will conclude with practical guidance on how to build quizzes and move existing quizzes into the new format.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Helping Students Who Need to Miss Class

CTL Staff
Sep 21 2021 : 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm
Zoom (Register for Link)
Online Only

Students have always needed to miss class occasionally, but in the pandemic more students than usual may be out of class, and those students may need to miss a week or more. This workshop will discuss ways to make sure students can stay up to date with content for lecture-based classes, and will also explore ways to help students stay engaged in discussions or other in-class activities that they may have had to miss.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Convincing Your Students That You Believe in Them

Professors Phil Gressman, Math & Heather Sharkey, NELC
Sep 23 2021 : 2:00 pm to 3:15 pm
Zoom (register for link)
online only

Students who think faculty believe they can do amazing things often do amazing things.  However, showing students that you have faith in their ability to succeed in your classes can be challenging. How can you convey that belief in a way that rings true for your students? Particularly when the course is challenging for them or they feel insecure about their abilities? This session will give faculty the opportunity to discuss a variety of ways to convince students that you believe they can meet your challenging goals.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Bringing the Climate Emergency into Your Classroom: Using Essays from the Penn Climate Week Book All We Can Save in Any Course

Professors Katie Barott (Biology), Anne Berg (History), Michael X. Delli Carpini (Annenberg), Jane Dmochowski (Earth and Environmental Science), Alain Plante (Earth and Environmental Science) and Benjamin Pierce (Computer Science)
Sep 13 2021 : 10:00 am to 11:15 am
Zoom (register for link)
Online only

Faculty at Penn often wonder how to bring their mounting sense of urgency about the climate crisis into the classroom across a wide variety of fields. This year CTL will contribute to Climate Week at Penn by facilitating an interdisciplinary conversation on how to address low rates of climate literacy across campus and how to help students sort out their anxieties and think productively about career paths and personal choices in relation to the big picture.  This conversation will focus on how faculty from across the university are using selected essays in the collection All We Can Save: Truth, Courage and Solutions for the Climate Crisis. Participants will be invited to consider ways they might include these essays and use their own classes to encourage students to see the ways that the climate emergency impacts every field of human knowledge.

To learn more about the book (which many students will be reading in connection with the Second Year Reading Experience) start at this link and for more about Climate Week at Penn start with this link.  

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

Technology Tools: Using New Quizzes for Exams and Tests

CTL Staff
Sep 09 2021 : 2:00 pm to 3:15 pm
Zoom (register for link)
Online Only

Note that this event has been rescheduled from 9/2/2021 due to the weather-related suspension of University operations.

Instructors at Penn now have access to a new quizzing and testing tool in Canvas called New Quizzes. New Quizzes will be the default quizzing tool starting in January 2023 but instructors should begin to consider using New Quizzes now as it features new question types and grading functionality, as well as better support for scientific, mathematical and technical content. In this tools-focused session, CTL staff will show how New Quizzes works for different testing situations as well as how they support different question types, feedback aims and grading needs.

Contact: ctl-help@lists.upenn.edu for more information.

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