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Hear from our Team about Accessibility, Gameful Course Design, Flipped Classrooms and Teach-Outs during Enriching Scholarship 2018

Jen Vetter, Design Manager

Several members from the Office of Academic Innovation team will present sessions showcasing our work in accessibility, gameful course design, flipped classrooms and Teach-Outs at the 21st annual Enriching Scholarship conference, held at the University of Michigan from May 7-10, 2018. The multi-day event, which hosts sessions across U-M’s campus, focuses on effectively integrating teaching and technology through lightning talks, panels, workshops, and more.

We invite you to join us for these sessions to explore how our office is enriching scholarship through education, collaboration – and innovation!


The Alt Text Writing Jam: Learning Accessible Design by Doing It!

Tuesday, May 8, 10 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

University Library Instructional Center (ULIC) – 4059 – Shapiro Library

Hosted by Rebecca Quintana, Stephanie Rosen, Yuanru Tan

What is the art and science of writing visual descriptions for course content? Instructors who use images within presentation slides do so to make content more engaging and understandable to students. However, students with visual impairments may not fully comprehend these images without a well-written visual description.

In this two-hour, hands-on workshop, you’ll learn effective methods for writing high-quality alternative text descriptions for visual elements such as photographs, tables, and charts. Reference materials and images will be provided by the facilitators. Participants are encouraged to contact Yuanru Tan (yuanru@umich.edu) with any questions.

Register for this session

 

Building Motivation into Course Design: Gameful and GradeCraft

Wednesday, May 9, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Shapiro Instructional Lab – 4041 – Shapiro Library

Hosted by Evan Straub

Have you heard about GradeCraft? GradeCraft is a tool built at the University of Michigan based on the principles that make games motivating. By offering students greater choice in the paths by which they pursue their assessments, creating transparent assessment systems and building up from zero, we have seen greater student engagement and satisfaction with courses here at University of Michigan. In addition, GradeCraft allows students to plan for the grade they want by using the Grade Predictor, which tracks assignments completed as well as assignments a student would like to do.

In this session, we’ll discuss the principles of gameful course design, go through some planning on how to redesign some (or all) of your class, and get started using GradeCraft.

Register for this session

 

Flipping Your Classroom: The Nuts and Bolts

Wednesday, May 9, 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

CRLT Seminar Room – 1013 – Palmer Commons

Hosted by Evan Straub, Nicole Tuttle

The “flipped classroom” has garnered considerable attention in the academy in recent years. This approach to teaching involves the use of podcasting, videos, and other strategies to shift students’ initial exposure to content from the lecture hall to outside of the classroom. In the process, significant portions of class time are freed up for active learning and student engagement.

In this workshop, participants will explore teaching in a flipped classroom and consider how to use this approach in their own teaching. The session will highlight general principles for designing a flipped lesson, including how to hold students accountable for completing pre-class work. The workshop will provide an introduction to relevant instructional technologies and campus resources around them. Finally, participants will explore strategies for designing instruction to engage students during class time.

Register for this session

 

From MOOCs to Teach-Outs: An Emerging Format

Thursday, May 10, 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

University Library Instructional Center (ULIC) – 4059 – Shapiro Library

Hosted by Jeff Bennett, Jen Vetter, Steve Welsh

In the years since their inception, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have matured into a medium with a wide range of variable objectives and design models. Last year, the U-M Office of Academic Innovation piloted a series of nine Teach-Outs using MOOC platforms to engage a global audience around topics of pressing social urgency. Inspired by the Teach-Ins of 1965, the Teach-Out model was conceived as a two-day participatory learning opportunity providing 1-4 hours of content, with a constructivist emphasis on active community discussion. In contrast to a conventional assessment design, Teach-Outs culminate in a call to action intended to effect change at the individual, community, or broader societal level.

In this session, Michigan’s Teach-Out project team will present several case studies of innovative course design, focusing on moving from MOOCs as we have known them to a more agile, event-oriented model with narrower learning objectives and learner-centered outcomes. We will conclude with some generalizable findings with relevance for constructivist online course environments.

Register for this session

 


All Enriching Scholarship sessions are FREE and open to all members of the U-M community, but require registration. Click HERE to view a list of all sessions.

Sponsors include CRLT, U-M Academic Innovation, U-M Library, LSA Instructional Support Services, LSA Language Resource Center, and HITS (Health Information & Technology Services).

Join us May 7-10 for Enriching Scholarship 2018!

Reflections on the Gameful Learning Summer Institute

Rachel Niemer, Director of the Gameful Learning Lab
@rkniemer

Back in June, I wrote about the (then upcoming) Gameful Course Design Summer Institute. Our goals for the event, held on July 24 and 25, were to introduce a new group of instructors, from within and beyond the University of Michigan, to the ideas of gameful course design. Attendees included K-12 teachers, higher ed instructional designers and educational technologists, and professors from a range of institutions. We hoped that giving people dedicated time, away from the requirements of everyday work, would open up space for them to imagine and create new learning environments and experiences. Beyond giving individuals a new toolkit for course design, we hoped to seed a community of adventurers: educators who want to experiment with new approaches to assessing student learning and blaze new trails to engage students.

The event began  with welcoming remarks from James Hilton, Vice Provost of Academic Innovation and Dean of Libraries, and a dynamic keynote from Barry Fishman, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor in the U-M School of Information and School of Education. Fishman’s talk explored ten principles of game design that make games excellent and engaging learning environments, and posed the question, “What might your classes look like if you applied these principles to the design of your courses?”

I followed the keynote with a mini-workshop to guide instructors through a set of exercises to articulate their teaching philosophies, identify gameful design principles that align with those philosophies, and employing practices they can use in their course design and teaching to embody those philosophies and principles.

Evan Straub, Learning Experience Designer in the Gameful Learning Lab, and emcee/creator of the Institute, led participants into the heart of the event: working through a design process for their courses. She provided a set of worksheets to help participants visually sketch out possible assessment structures and to guide them through developing a model for the point structures in their new courses. We capped off Day 1 with a scavenger hunt around central campus and downtown Ann Arbor, followed by an opportunity to socialize at a casual reception.

“Inspiration” was the focus of Day 2. We launched the day with a panel of U-M community members who have had a range of gameful experiences. Panel participants were:

  • Pamela Bogart, Lecturer and Digital Initiatives Coordinator, English Language Institute, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts
  • Monica Chen, BSI ‘17 and User Experience Intern, Digital Innovation Greenhouse
  • Jandi Kelly, Doctoral Student, Center for the Study of Higher and Professional Education, School of Education
  • Mika LaVaque-Manty, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and Director of LSA Honors Program

Much of the rest of the day was collaborative working time so participants could share their designs with one another, get feedback and refine those designs.

Without a doubt one of the highlights of the day was the keynote address from Paul Darvasi, Educator, Writer & Game Designer, Royal St. George’s College/York University. Paul has explored many intersections of games and education, which he writes about at www.ludiclearning.org. During the keynote he talked about his work developing pervasive games for learning. In his classrooms,  students can choose to be immersed in a role-playing game to learn about literature or technology. It was fascinating!

We are already preparing for next year’s event. In addition to the workshops, we hope to add a conference which will include presentations from some of this year’s attendees sharing the success and challenges of their newly designed gameful courses. Save the date: July 23-25 — we hope to see you there!