Adaptive Teaching at Vanderbilt: August workshops, new course development website available from Center for Teaching

For faculty and other instructors looking for teaching ideas for the fall, the Center for Teaching is offering a variety of online workshops in August. Some workshops are focused on teaching with Brightspace, Vanderbilt’s course management system, while others focus on other aspects of adaptive teaching during the coming academic year. All of the workshops will be offered multiple times during August.

Register for the August workshops here. >>

  • An Introduction to Online and Hybrid Teaching – This workshop provides an introduction to promoting both asynchronous and synchronous interactions in your fall courses. The workshop includes a self-paced portion on Brightspace (about 2-3 hours of time) along with a 90-minute Zoom session that includes modeling of and practice with synchronous online teaching strategies.
  • An Introduction to Brightspace – In this hands-on workshop for people with little to no experience teaching online with Brightspace, participants will be oriented to Vanderbilt’s course management system and learn how to accomplish common teaching tasks. This 90-minute Zoom session includes time for questions.
  • Leading Synchronous Online Discussions – This 60-minute Zoom workshop will provide a variety of techniques that can be used to facilitate discussion via Zoom and will model some of the techniques during the session.
  • Grades, Rubrics and Feedback in Brightspace – Participants in this 90-minute Zoom workshop will learn about the range of tools available in Brightspace to make assignments, grading and feedback more efficient and effective.
  • Inclusive Teaching – Using case vignettes, this 90-minute Zoom workshop will give participants the opportunity to explore practices of inclusive teaching that can improve their courses by engaging a wider range of voices and viewpoints, creating greater accessibility in activities and assessments, supporting classroom civility and productive conflict, and fostering a classroom culture that encourages deep learning and critical thought.

Other August workshop topics include finding and creating images and graphics for course materials, using the “Discussions” tool in Brightspace, and learning how to use the Center for Teaching’s new Brightspace template for online courses.

“This fall semester will require a certain kind of adaptive teaching given the unusual and changing circumstances on campus,” said Derek Bruff, director of the Center for Teaching and principal senior lecturer in mathematics. “I’m glad the Center for Teaching can provide these timely workshops to help faculty and other instructors prepare for the coming year.”

For faculty who can’t fit these events into their schedule, or want to get started designing their fall courses right away, the Center for Teaching is excited to announce the Online Course Development Resources website. The site is designed to help faculty and other instructors design, teach and revise their online courses, drawing on research, best practices and existing resources from the Center for Teaching and around the web. There are two ways to engage with the resources on the new site: as a Self-paced Course, in which the site walks you through the course development process and provides you with information on a range of tools commonly used to teach online; or as an On-demand Resource for questions on specific topics.

The Online Course Development Resources site is edited and written by Stacey Johnson, CFT assistant director for educational technology, with contributions from the CFT’s 2019–20 learning community on online teaching, and with web design by Rhett McDaniel, CFT assistant director for digital media.

More information and registration for the Center for Teaching’s August workshops can be found on the Center for Teaching website. Most workshops are open to faculty, staff, graduate students and postdocs.