Another Semester Slipping Past Us

Yes, that faint whooshing you hear is the sound of another semester slipping past us. There’s a certain inevitability to this point in the semester, for us and our students.  After this (long!) week and the Thanksgiving break, those last two weeks of the semester will move at breakneck speed and we’ll find ourselves in the world of exams and is-there-any-extra-credit-in-this-class and who’s hosting the holiday party, anyway?

Seize this moment! Before the grading, the reckoning with piles of unattended laundry, and the renewed commitment to work-life balance, do a 10-minute diagnostic on each of your classes. You will never be better attuned than you are right now to what worked, what flopped, and what needs to be tweaked.  Try creating a “Notes for Next Time” file, or simply mark up a copy of the syllabus indicating what topics needed an extra session, what readings should be updated, or due dates shifted to protect your sanity.  Beyond logistics, are there new pedagogical moves you might try? Consider making a commitment to adding one new tool to your kit—a Blackboard feature, a classroom activity, a creative new assignment. There are innumerable resources to help you with these—check out upcoming TLP and CELT workshops, or let me know about a topic you’d like us to add to the roster.  CELT can also offer department-specific “we come to you” workshops on topics of interest to particular units.

*Authored by Dr. Katherine McCarthy.

 

Advertisements

Invest in yourself

Today’s tip is simple:  Invest in yourself.  It’s so easy to keep putting off the things that will really improve our professional lives simply because too many things are on fire right in front of us.  But a few strategic investments of time and resources can make a huge difference in updating and reinvigorating a course, getting research done, even developing a long term plan for our careers.  So here’s the deal:  CELT/Faculty Affairs will offer some resources if you’ll put in some time.

Here are four opportunities for you to invest in yourself:

  1. Publish an Article in 12 Weeks.  Join a Faculty Learning Community this spring devoted to turning research projects into published articles.  We will pay you to do this. Really. (Not a lot, but still.) See attached description and application. Applications due December 5.
  2. Come to the HERS Roundtable. Where do your see yourself in 5 years? 10? Learn about the leading national academic women’s leadership program from four campus alumnae who will share their experiences and help us strategize for women’s leadership development at Chico State.  Next Wednesday, November 12, 3-4, SSC 150. See attached flier for more information. We’ll bring the snacks.
  3. Get credit for teaching innovation. CELT’s Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grants will pay up to $1000 for you to travel to conferences where you present work on (or just learn about!) new approaches to teaching and learning.  Full details and application are available here; the deadline for this round is December 1.
  4. Reinvigorate a course with newer, less expensive materials. The Textbook Alternatives Project (TAP) offers $1000 stipends to faculty who will invest some time exploring alternatives to expensive textbooks with the support of TLP and subject librarians.  Details and application are available here. The deadline is November 7, but the application won’t take you long.

*Authored by Dr. Katherine McCarthy.