Priscilla Craven

French & Italian

 

Simply put, the FTEP workshop is amazing and this is the second time I have had the opportunity to attend it (the first time was 2002.) Mary Ann Shea is an incredible leader.  Her passion for teaching and education is infectious and she engenders thoughtful and intellectual conversation.  The technical experts, Mike Lightner and Cory Pavicich have never ending knowledge, are clear and articulate presenters, and can help with anything.  The guest presenters are skilled in a variety of subjects and challenge you to think in many different ways.  Finally, it is a unique opportunity to spend an intensive week with faculty from all across campus whom you may never encounter otherwise.

The morning pedagogy sessions led by Mary Ann are a perfect way to start the day.  We brainstormed on everything from learning goals, to climate in the classroom, to motivating students.  It was fascinating to hear techniques employed by other colleagues who teach everything from Astrophysics to History to Legal Writing.  These sessions were a combination of roundtable discussion to pair work.  The roundtables were inspiring as you could hear ideas from all 15 of your colleagues.  The pair work gave you an opportunity to work one on one with a faculty member from a different discipline.

Throughout the day we learned a variety of different technology tools from Google Sites to Google Drives to Jing.  The experts presented the programs very clearly and then had us practice together.  Furthermore, we talked about useful ways we could employ these in the classroom.

Suggestions included doing voice recordings for corrections on long papers, to adding chat rooms in literature courses for less participatory students.  We also learned how to put tests onto D2L and to create our own websites.

The presentations and guest lectures we fascinating.  Kathy Perkins and Stephanie Chasteen taught us the semiotics of learning goals and introduced us to Bloom’s Taxonomy.  They helped us immensely in how to better articulate learning goals and set out course expectations.  Viktoriya Oliynyk taught us many of the underused tools in D2L.  Diane Sieber showed us how she uses a variety of technology in her Honors Engineering courses.  We also learned how to navigate the university library from Alison Hicks and heard an amazing presentation on technology and design by Dave Underwood.

Perhaps the highlight of the FTEP workshop is the opportunity to meet and collaborate with colleagues from all over the campus.  By the end of the week I had new friends from Anthropology, Communications, Business and Linguistics.  We had all worked together, brainstormed together, been overwhelmed together, and had come out with an abundance of new knowledge.  I got new ideas for my courses in every single conversation that I had, whether it was during a workshop or just during our lunch break.  We were always focused on the task at hand and every conversation was fascinating and inspiring.  The week culminated in presentations from all 15 teachers, showing us how they would implement this new technology and these new ideas into the classroom.  Everyone came up with something different which was inspiring and creative.  I just can’t say enough about this amazing program that CU offers to its faculty.  Thank you FTEP.

 

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