Tag Archives: teaching


From the Archives: Getting Ready for the New Semester


Sooner or later, the fall semester will start — and of course for some of us it already has. Here are some tips from the ProfHacker archives to help you navigate the transition.

Getting Ready to Teach


From the Archives: Mid-Semester


Because academic calendars vary so widely, some readers are coming back from spring break now, while others are enjoying a few days away from regular schedules. Some readers are wrapping up winter quarters or have started spring terms; others are somewhere in the middle of a spring semester.

The middle of an academic term can be a tricky time: the first flush of student and instructor enthusiasm for a particular topic or course may have waned a little. Students are feeling the burden of multipl…


What Ideas About Teaching Have Stuck with You?

A list of things kindergartners want to learn.I love the list in this photo. The kindergarten teacher who asked her class what they wanted to learn about got a list of fantastic answers. I’m sure being asked that question so early in their formal educational process is something that will stick with them.

There are things that stick with me, too, as I think about my own education — both as a student and as a teacher. Like many of us, I could give a list of teachers who inspired me. What’s come to mind more recently, though (probably because…


Integrating Wikipedia in Your Courses: Tips and Tricks

screenshot of adeline koh's feminist theory wikipedia course page

Wikipedia is the seventh most-popular website on the Internet and is the web’s most popular and largest reference resource. Many instructors decry student reliance on this online encyclopedia open to anyone to edit, but I am part of a growing movement of teachers who integrates student editing of Wikipedia pages into our pedagogy. There are many pedagogical reasons for this; integrating Wikipedia editing into your courses

  • teaches students to navigate the rules and social norms of an online co…


Creating Color-Blind Accessible Figures

Colored pencils, 2 views: full color spectrum + limited color spectrum simulating color-blind view

Today marks the start of the #1ineveryclassroom public awareness campaign by the UK-based Colour Blind Awareness organization to point out the prevalence of colorblindness and the need for greater awareness on the part of educators.

There is tremendous variation in how individuals perceive and distinguish colors. These differences can be due to color vision deficiency or color blindness, as well as other medical conditions affecting the eyes or brain. Other factors such as device display settin…


Are those files really final?


A recent post by Charlie Harvey, titled The word final should never appear in filenames points out that when you’re sharing files with colleagues,creating a clear system for filenames reduces a lot of potential frustration:

There is a file you need to read. Maybe it has some important stuff in it. A contract that went through a bunch of revisions. That sort of thing. Only, when you go to the directory on your company samba share there are 30 files that it could be.

Inevitably at least 3 of thes…


From the Archives: Wrap Up the Semester


Sooner or later, all semesters end. And each is soon followed by another academic term close upon its heels.

Here are some tips from the ProfHacker archives for ending your term so as to be in good shape when you return to your office in a week or two.

Look Backwards

Think about what worked and what didn’t work so well this semester. Write down some ideas for what habits or practices you want to continue and what you want to change next semester.

Update your cv and your annual review/promotion …


Report from the UNF Academic Technology Innovation Symposium

Last week I joined a group of faculty, instructional designers, administrators, librarians and academic technology specialists at the University of North Florida Academic Technology Innovation Symposium. The symposium represents the type of localized exchange of best practices and pedagogical experiments that is vital to university communities, with ideas on display ranging from Google Glass to 3D printing (like the chocolate-holding keychain pictured above.) I was there to talk about extending…


From the Archives: the First Week of the Academic Term

Classroom The ProfHacker archives are full of useful ideas, tools, and advice relevant to the first week of a new academic semester or quarter. In addition to the posts highlighted below, you may want to check out some previous From the Archives posts on New Semester, New Year, Creating Syllabi, and Grading.

Teaching: the first week

  • Brian’s So Now You’re A Teacher is aimed at new instructors, but contains useful reminders for anyone heading back into the classroom.

  • The ProfHacker team assembled a li…


Weekend Reading: Memorial Day Weekend Edition


Happy Memorial Day Weekend, ProfHackers! Before we launch into the Weekend Reading, we wanted to take a moment a remember those who have served our country both at home and abroad. Thank you for your service and your sacrifice.

Laura Miller, writer for Salon.com has broken up with Amazon. Citing the online everything seller’s increasingly monopolistic tactics, she points to the recent scuffle with Hachette books, reported by the New York Times, where Amazon has delayed shipment of certain Hache…