Professional Training and Development

Collaboration Tools that Really Work

Given a choice, many people prefer in-person group and team meetings. After all, when you’re meeting in person, you can observe others’ facial expressions and gestures, hear the tone of their voices, and see just how much attention each person is paying to the topic at hand. However, it’s not always possible to get all the members of a team in one room together. For example, many college classes meet entirely online; if group work assignments are part of the coursework, then it stands to reason that face-to-face meetings would be difficult, if not impossible, to coordinate. Thankfully, online students Read More…


What a Team Must Do to Work Together Effectively

Most of us acknowledge that, in order for a group or team to function successfully, each individual member must bring his or her best efforts to the table. But even with that acknowledgement, we may occasionally need a reminder about the specific attitudes, actions, and behaviors that define and facilitate effective collaboration. In The Leadership Experience, Sixth Edition, Richard L. Daft describes five key behaviors that group members must adopt in order for their team to reach peak performance. These principles can be applied to collaboration in the workplace; they also have relevance to students who are Read More…


Writing a Personal Mission Statement

Do you have a vision for how you’d like to make an impact on your school, community, or—on a grander scale—your country or the world? Have you ever said something along the lines of “My mission in life is to teach others” or “I’ve made it my mission to help students understand, and perhaps even come to love, the topic I teach”? Just as you may have a personal mission in life, as well as a vision for how you’d like to make an impact on the world around you, many organizations also outline their vision and mission in a manner Read More…


Helping Students Find Valuable Volunteer Opportunities

It may sound cliche, but when students decide to volunteer their time and efforts to an organization or cause, they may feel as though they’ve gained at least as much as they’ve given. First and foremost, they’ll likely experience the confidence and contentment that comes with the knowledge that they’ve contributed to a worthwhile effort. Students can also glean some specific skills that relate to a future career, as well as some soft skills that can benefit them in any number of roles they’ll take on in the future. And, depending on the capacity in which they’ve served Read More…


Encouraging Your Students to Serve Their Communities

During their college years, many students decide to step outside of their comfort zones and seek out new experiences. As they do, they come to know more about themselves and develop a more understanding and sympathetic view of other people. Along the way, they may develop a more community-minded attitude and find great fulfillment and joy in contributing to an effort that is much bigger than themselves. Depending on your role on campus, your relationship with your students, or the courses you teach, you may play a role in supporting their efforts or guiding them towards particular avenues of service. Though Read More…


CengageBrain’s Alternative Spring Break Contest Encourages Student Service

Over the past year at the Engaging Minds blog, we’ve seen a great deal of interest in our posts that address the topic of student leadership. With good reason: the sooner college students develop their leadership skills, the better prepared they are to apply them in their classes, communities, and future careers. If you want to provide the college students you know with the opportunity to put those leadership skills into action, encourage them to enter CengageBrain.com’s Alternative Spring Break Contest. A college student, or group of up to five students, can win up Read More…


Are There Hidden Secrets to Creating a Successful Classroom?

Have you ever taught a course so many times that you bore yourself in the classroom?  Or perhaps you have found yourself faced with teaching a course for the first time, and you are just not sure what to do with the material and information so that it connects with the students. Either of these situations, as well as many others, can cause frustration and anxiety to a conscientious instructor who is trying to create an effective and satisfying academic experience for her students. Then, to increase your unease and frustration, you look across the hall and see a Read More…


Get the Low-Down on High-Tech: Five BIG Reasons to Add Technology to Your Teaching

Guest Contributors: Bridgett McGowen-Hawkins, Senior Professional Educator, and Damon Givehand, Professional Educator, Cengage Learning Peer-to-Peer Faculty Development and Consulting.   Research tells us to add technology to our teaching, citing empirical evidence of how doing so makes undeniable differences in student knowledge construction, achievement, and overall success. We accept the studies and readily admit they have real validity and noteworthy implications, but at the same time, as we think of adding technology to our teaching, we’re tuned into and listening to that radio station in the backs of our minds, HWI-AM, how will it aid me?  Here are five big reasons Read More…


Get Gale Support, Right When You Need It

Need to train your staff,  your patrons… or even yourself… on the Gale resources in use at your institution? Want to maximize your marketing efforts? At the Gale Support website, you’ll find a wealth of resources designed to maximize exposure and drive usage of your Gale resources.

    Boost usage with attention-grabbing resources such as widgets, mobile apps, and other promotional materials that can drive awareness of your Gale resources.
    Grow your skills with on-demand training, recorded webinars, and additional training resources. (A list of upcoming webinars is available on Gale’s training webinar calendar.)
    Use the Gale Admin tool to pull usage
Read More…


Have You Met the “Gale Geek”?

Join Gale for a weekly half-hour webinar featuring topics, subjects, and scandals associated with libraries across all markets. Tune in to hear the Gale Geek interview this week’s Gale Expert and learn how you can do more with your library’s resources! Topics include everything from best practices for reaching students and faculty, to digitization, to driving usage of resources such as the Gale Virtual Reference Library. View the list of upcoming Gale Geek webinars, or catch up on what you’ve missed in the Gale Geek webinar archive. And don’t forget to join the conversation on social media by following and Read More…