Engagement and Motivation

9 Management Myths, Debunked!

As an instructor, you want your students to gain the skills needed to think and act like successful managers. Unfortunately, it’s easy for new managers to fall for the many myths about what good managers do. Check out these nine management myths, plus discover ways to help your students navigate the management world. MANAGEMENT MYTH #1: There’s only one right way to lead or manage. THE TRUTH: Leadership can be customized for different employees. Hersey and Blanchard argue employees have different levels of readiness for handling different jobs, responsibilities and work assignments. Accordingly, Hersey and Blanchard’s situational theory states that leaders need Read More…


Icebreakers and Topic Starters

By: Shawn Orr, Director of the Center for Innovation and Teaching Excellence, Faculty in Communication Studies at Ashland University – Ohio Icebreakers often come with a dreaded connotation that implies frivolous activities done on the first day of class with limited benefits to student learning. Consider that one icebreaker—”introduce yourself and tell us one interesting thing about yourself”—that is used over and over while yielding little enthusiasm or class engagement. Yet, semester after semester, we pull that icebreaker out and use it again. Why? Because we want to start the semester off by fostering student connection and community. This Read More…


Three Steps to Becoming a Culturally Responsive Teacher: Rated KR (Keeping It Real)

 By: Essie Childers, Education Professor at Blinn College – Texas   Let’s take a moment to step away from facts around student retention, building facilities, growing partnerships and enrollment numbers. Albeit, those topics are truly important and can be found on any college or university’s agenda. What about adding to the agenda expected classroom experiences to promote student learning. The secret is out—instructors are at the “front door” to facilitate student learning; they also help promote retention and build enrollment. How? This is possible when instructors become culturally responsive teachers.

What IS Culturally Responsive Teaching?

“Culturally responsive teaching occurs when there is Read More…


ConnectYard: My Favorite Feature in MindTap English

by Ginny Dow, Liberty University English Professor and Cengage Faculty Partner Students love connecting with friends and family on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter. In fact, they are often more engaged on social media than they are in face-to-face encounters. How do we transfer that desire to engage into the classroom? I want my English students to be excited to learn literature. Far-fetched idea? Maybe, but my goal is that they find some literary work that they love, even if that is only one poem, short story or play throughout the whole semester. My #JustOneThing which enhances student Read More…


Four Ways Going Digital Makes Humanities Courses More Enjoyable

You just heard another student say, “I’m only taking this course because I needed another Gen Ed credit to graduate.” After everything you’ve put into your course, they’re only taking it because they have to? Unfortunately, students are often unpleasantly surprised to learn that humanities courses are in their future. At most institutions, students will take at least one required humanities or social sciences course. While students may not know the intention behind such a requirement, it’s our responsibility to make sure they reap the benefits from our courses. We strive to make the content relevant while sharpening students’ critical Read More…


Learn How to Break Down Digital Barriers in Art History Instruction

Teaching art history from slide carousels might be a thing of a past, but the transition into digital doesn’t have to be difficult for faculty or students. Modern-age students now expect learning to be easily accessible, interactive and align clearly with the reading materials. Introducing MindTap—where those expectations are met through an approachable learning experience in a clearly organized digital format. Art History faculty at Genesee Community College have found that MindTap helps develop a unified teaching approach between multiple faculty teaching different course sections—especially when bridging traditional and online courses. GCC has integrated MindTap into most of our Read More…


Part Five: Major in Humanities—Build on Creativity Skills

For National Arts and Humanities month, I’ve discussed some of the benefits of a major in the humanities and how to actualize these benefits in our classrooms. Writing, reading, critical thinking and digital literacy are just a few of the myriad of skills a humanities major can offer to students to prepare them for future careers and be to engaged citizens. According to Erik Brynjolfsson, director of MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy, in-demand skills in a world of increasing automation may actually be skills best achieved with a humanities education. In an interview with NPR he Read More…


Part Four: Bring Digital Humanities to Your Classroom

Digital humanities—a phrase that’s been floating around academic blogs, conferences and publications for at least the last decade, if not longer. But incorporating digital into our classrooms to benefit our students can be tricky. Technology at times fails to work during key moments of a class—or the new digital platform that promises better learning outcomes just leads to frustration and confusion for instructors and students. However, as many of our study fields date back to before the advent of the printing press, we’re uniquely positioned to show our students the value of technologies while likewise modeling when a Read More…


Part Three: Teach Your Humanities Students to Communicate through Reading and Writing

Among the skills many college graduates are seen to lack when they enter the workforce after graduation, writing proficiency tops the list. As a First-Year writing instructor, teaching critical reading and writing is, of course, my main objective. Yet this instruction shouldn’t end for students after they’ve completed their foundational writing courses. Instructors at all levels, and in all disciplines, should reinforce and build upon this—particularly in the humanities as developing strong writers and thoughtful readers are where we can shine. Here are some quick activities you can incorporate into your courses now to help your students: Build Read More…


Part Two: Can We Teach our Students How to Teach Themselves Critical Thinking?

Before the start of term this fall, I sat through two days of professional development with colleagues from a variety of disciplines. When the facilitator asked us what we wanted our students to be able to do after leaving our classes, one phrase that came up again and again was critical thinking—we want our students to leave our classes with stronger critical thinking skills than they came in with. The facilitator pushed back, asking us what we meant by that and what it looked like in our classrooms. There was a collective pause in the room. Lots of Read More…