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Stories about life, work and learning

Dr. Jane E. Neapolitan BACKGROUND I spent 20 years of my career as a faculty member and administrator at a teaching institution. It was only in the last 5 or so years, however, that the question “What makes good teaching?” was raised openly. As we’ve seen from an increase in centers for teaching and learning, outstanding teaching awards, and national and international conferences to support teaching innovation, we are now experiencing a renaissance that compels us ...

Goal Defined: Expedite Program Redesign Towson University’s College of Education (COE) created the Instructional Technology Masters program using classroom delivery. In 2019, the COE’s Department of Educational Technology & Literacy decided to make their Masters program 100% online. The Department had an ambitious plan to convert the classroom delivered program AND reduce course length from 15 to 7 weeks. The Department leaders knew that program changes would align with their target learners’ needs, whether they are ...

Dr. Jane E. Neapolitan BACKGROUND When I was assigned to lead a faculty innovation center at a public university in 2012, higher education was abuzz with exploring innovations such as course redesign, flexible learning spaces, and MOOCs. These learning innovation initiatives rest on a foundation of new technologies or new technology-enabled programs and are excellent at generating noise. What technology-based campus initiatives are less good at is enabling sustainable and resilient campus change. 1 This is especially ...

Multiple programs at Towson University using ClearAlignment’s to design and improve their blended and online course offerings Towson, Maryland – June 7, 2019 -- Multiple departments at Towson University are using ClearAlignment for their online courses. These courses will serve students throughout Towson, beginning next semester. Professors will have access to ClearAlignment’s software and training immediately as they explore course creation and accreditation for new and existing class offerings. “Our team is very excited to be able to ...

For faculty the anticipation and stress of the academic year reaches a high point right before the start of a new semester. This tension arises because veteran instructors know the importance of establishing an ideal learning atmosphere at the start of a course; They know the first few sessions are like a comedian’s opening moments on stage; while the comedian must win over the audience quickly, a professor must communicate an instructional presence that is ...

We all know that simplicity is the art of decreasing the number of tasks that we must do. But we also know that such sweet simplicity is hard to find, especially when we are challenged with creating online versions of our courses.  How do you inject personality and interactivity into a course syllabus for future students whom you will never meet?  How can you guarantee that students will be engaged and challenged?  More importantly, how ...

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