Curriculum and Programs

Effective Strategies for Managing and Leading Online Courses

If you, like many readers of the Cengage Learning Blog, have taught an online course, you can name some of the factors that lead to a satisfying learning experience for your students. You might list such things as: clearly stated goals and expectations; frequent and timely communication; use of dynamic and interactive learning tools; or, well-written instructions for navigating the learning management system. As you designed your course for this term, you likely built many of these strategies into your teaching plan. It can also help to consider what makes for an ineffective course. Inefficiency, inconsistency, lack of cohesiveness… anything that Read More…


Ideas for Developing an Engaging Online Course

In order to teach your online course with maximum effectiveness, it helps to build a specific set of skills. Not only must you master the content you intend to cover, you need to know how to present that content in a manner that engages students and best facilitates their mastery of that material. Teaching online also requires skill in working with your school’s learning management system and other online learning tools. In addition, students benefit from your knowledge of how to successfully create activities and lead discussions in the online setting. With more than fifteen years working Read More…


Teaching Students to Use Technology to Learn

If you’re hoping to incorporate the use of social media into your classroom, you may want to consider the points Cengage Learning author Ken Baldauf makes in this brief video. Here, he talks about the importance of teaching students to use various technologies to learn, and he offers suggestions for how you can evaluate technology tools and apply them to use in your courses. [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iyIQJt4-yXk?wmode=Opaque] For additional insights on online learning and teaching with technology from Ken Baldauf, watch his presentation “Teaching Tech Online” from the 2013 Course Technology Conference.  Do you use social media in your courses? What activities have you Read More…


Crafting an Effective Syllabus

Before a new term begins, you likely spend a good deal of time focusing on the course syllabus. Whether you’re reviewing and revising an existing syllabus or crafting a brand-new one, the time and attention you pay to this important document can help ensure that it adequately reflects the goals and expectations you’ve designed for the class. In her presentation “Creating a Powerful Syllabus: Doing What Works!,” Dr. Christine Harrington, author of Student Success in College: Doing What Works!, discusses research that examines the purpose and effectiveness of the syllabus, and she demonstrates how you can apply that knowledge as Read More…


What Every Educator Must Do Before Walking Into the Classroom This Fall: Take Stock, Gear Up, Then Rock It Out!

Guest Contributor: Bridgett McGowen-Hawkins, Senior Professional Educator, Cengage Learning Peer-to-Peer Faculty Development and Consulting. Summer break usually signals a time for educators to step away from the classroom and recharge the mind and body, but hold on to your swimsuit! A population of learners who wants more and an industry demand for college graduates who can think more, do more, and create more dictate that sun, sand, and surf be accompanied by “So how did the last term go?” Before packing away the sunscreen and returning for the fall term, take stock of what you did in the past, and Read More…


Big Data: What It Is, and How You Can Use It

As you think about your courses for next term, you may be considering how you can incorporate relevant current content from social media, government resources, photo and video websites, wikis, and other sources into your lectures, presentations, and assignments. Such content keeps your course up to date and helps students make a connection between the concepts you cover in class and the experiences they have outside those classroom walls. However, the sheer breadth and depth of that content can be overwhelming. How and where do you begin capturing this deluge of information, and then implement its use in a Read More…


Cloud-Based Tech Resources for the Classroom

More and more instructors are taking their students to the cloud. Are you? For those new to the cloud, we’ll first offer a quick definition. Per Kenneth Baldauf and Ralph M. Stair’s Succeeding with TechnologyFourth Edition, “Cloud computing utilizes Internet-based service providers to deliver information and computing services, including software, business systems, and data storage, for business and personal use” (p. 307). Cloud-based technology resources also offer the benefit of simple, Web-based access from a variety of devices, which means that students can participate in the interactive activities and assignments you’ve created for class, with less worry about hardware compatibility, increased technology Read More…


Prepping Your Resources for the Start of the Next Term

Who likes to be caught unprepared? (We’re guessing no one.) To avoid that dilemma, it’s a good idea to take some time to get all your course resources in order, well in advance of your next term. In McKeachie’s Teaching Tips: Strategies, Research, and Theory for College and University Teachers, Marilla Svinicki and Wilbert McKeachie provide a list of resources you should prepare, plan for, and perhaps revisit as you get set for the new school year:

    Your syllabus. Read back over your syllabus to verify that you’ve clearly listed all the materials you will require students to
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Resource Consumption Accounting

There is a pandemic in the accounting profession in businesses across the United States. This problem has been festering for years and is in dire need of fixing. Somehow American companies, large and small, have lost their way. But this has nothing to do with Enron. The accounting industry has lost sight of their most important clients: management. According to a July 2003 study done by the Institute of Management Accountants and Ernst and Young, 98% of managers believe their cost data is distorted while almost 40% believe their cost data is significantly distorted. Management is not getting accurate information to make decisions, and if 98% of managers recognize this fact, we need a new solution that supports decision making.

Resource Consumption Accounting (RCA) is an emerging management accounting method. RCA is easier to understand, provides better decision-support, produces more accurate results, and may be the first accounting system praised by non-accountants and managers.
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An Alternative Approach for Teaching the Interest Method Amortization of Bond Premiums and Discounts

Discounts and premiums occur when the issuance price of a bond is more (premium) or less (discount) than its principal or face value. This result is due to a difference between the market or effective rate of interest and the coupon or face interest rate of the bond on the issuance date. If the market rate exceeds the coupon rate, the bond is issued at a discount, and if the market rate is less than the coupon rate, the bond is issued at a premium.

This paper presents an alternative approach for teaching the interest method amortization of bond premiums and discounts.

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