Faculty Seminars on Teaching with Technology

How can technology facilitate in-class activities in a flipped classroom? What kind of strategies can instructors use to increase opportunities to learn? Last month, Educational Technology Services (ETS) launched a series of Faculty Seminars on Teaching with Technology that addressed these questions.

Seminar in session (Alonso Nichols/Tufts University)
Seminar in session (Alonso Nichols/Tufts University)

In sessions on the Boston, Grafton and Medford campuses, participants were greeted by Paul Bergen, Director of Educational Technology, who gave an introductory talk highlighting conversations around large lecture courses and active learning. Each participant then attended one of two breakout sessions: Engaging all Learners (Universal Design for Learning) or Using Class Time for Deeper Student Learning (Flipped Learning).

Based on a Universal Design, a broad concept that values accessibility for all users, Universal Design for Learning (UDL) brings the same thinking to the development of content, tools, and activities for teaching and learning. The breakout session provided a brief overview of UDL, presenting it as a framework for using technology to better support learners to “understand, navigate, and engage with the learning environment” (UDL on Campus)

Through activities and group exercises, participants considered ways to use the UDL framework to examine their current teaching and build a more inclusive learning experience.

Flipped learning is defined as a model in which the typical lecture and homework elements of a course are reversed. At the seminars, this breakout session focused on the use of class time and showed tools that can facilitate quick response activities in large classes. Instructors talked about challenges they have faced in attempting to flip the classroom and discussed ways to ensure that students are fully prepared for class time.

At the end of each seminar, participants were invited to sign up for a structured engagement offering an honorarium and 1:1 support for designing, implementing, and assessing the impact of a new teaching with technology practice. ETS is reviewing applications now and looking forward to tackling a variety of exciting projects with the seminar participants this spring.

The next Faculty Seminar on Teaching with Technology will be held early in the spring semester. Dates and details will be announced on teaching.tufts.edu.