Leadership Activities in the Classroom

Leadership Activities in the Classroom

Saint Marys’ mission states that we prepare students for lives of ethical service and leadership, and in the Leadership PLC the last few semesters, Dr. Scott Sorvaag has been guiding us in thinking about how we use and interpret leadership in higher education. (One of his continual reminders is that leadership is a form of energy — hence the picture for this post.) As part of our PLC, we reviewed some offerings by the International Leadership Association, including this list of Leadership Activities one can include in virtually any class.

The kinds of questions that make a great midterm evaluation

The kinds of questions that make a great midterm evaluation

Whenever I advise someone on assessment, I always start with the question, “What do you want to know?” The same question makes a lot of sense when thinking about course evaluations and midterm evaluations. While most instructors don’t have control over final course evaluations (I suppose the idea is that the questions asked are what administrators want to know), we by and large do have control over the questions we ask on midterm evaluations. Richard Talbert, chair of mathematics at Grand Valley State University in Michigan, has an elaborate system for tracking student perceptions over a whole course, but the questions he uses would be great for any kind of mid-course check-up. The statements he asks students to reflect on are…

Towards a Pedagogy of Kindness

Towards a Pedagogy of Kindness

One of my friends recently linked to this article in Hybrid Pedagogy (an open-access teaching and learning journal) about Distinguished Professor of American History Dr. Cate Denial’s journey to what she calls a “pedagogy of kindness”. I highly recommend the article if you think prioritizing kindness might help your teaching break through to your students and get beyond a transactional model of education.

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