Teaching News

October 20, 2021


As you respond to students who need to miss class because they are isolating or quarantining due to COVID-19, remember that there are multiple ways to meet Academic Council's “equitable access” requirement (for example, by recording class, streaming it, or sharing class notes). This new TEP, UO Online resource includes a template for crowd-sourced notetaking that you are welcome to use, along with good practice ideas for streaming.

As we enter midterm time, we remind you that Counseling Services and the Tutoring and Academic Engagement Center, with its new peer academic coaching program and Academic Succes Hub, are here for your students. Instructors who use Scantron exams should be aware of changes to Information Services’ scanning services

All instructors are encouraged to let students know you care about their feedback on the Midway Student Experience Survey, which is open this week. Results are only available to instructors and give you a great chance to check in with the class about the class, re-calibrate expectations, make small changes, and help students plan for success in the term’s second half. 

Finally, we congratulate Bailey Hilgren (Environmental Studies) and Mahindra Mohan Kumar (Sociology), recent recipients of the Kimble First-Year Teaching Award. These annual prizes typically are awarded to one first-time sole instructor and one first-time lab or discussion section leader. 

Through cultivating class community and assigning self-directed research projects, Bailey challenges students to explore art as a “form of radical imagining of worlds and, thus, a politically potent form of social inquiry and critique.” In discussion sections, Mahindra centers students’ lived experiences and, by attending to the social and emotional climate of the class, helps students use the tools of sociology to “process through a challenging academic journey.”

Contact Tracing

Your good work to build class community by having students introduce themselves to their neighbors is valuable to Corona Corps' contact tracing efforts. Corona Corps uses all-class notifications with care, typically if there are positive cases in classes with lots of movement and interaction or when a student's window of transmissibility is unknown. You can reassure students that official notice of any potentially concerning exposure comes through Corona Corps, not from instructors directly. 

Instructors should submit a Case and Contact Form if a student informs them that they have tested positive for COVID-19, have been identified as a close contact, or if a student is symptomatic.   

New Teaching Resources    

Designing an Online Course 
Teaching online can be a rewarding experience for instructors: the challenge of teaching online invites us to experiment with new ways of engaging students and to expand our creative toolkit as educators, all while making education more accessible to diverse learners. Nevertheless, developing an online course may seem daunting. To help you translate your expertise in the classroom to expertise teaching online, UO Online has authored a new training site: Designing an Online Course: Tips and Tools for Success.   For more details, including how to make the most of this training, see the article on the Teaching Support and Innovation website


TEP and UO Online are here to support you in your teaching. Request an individual consultation. UO Online’s walk-in support for Canvas has MOVED to PLC 68. An extensive library of Canvas how-to's also is available.   

Defamiliarizing Discussion
Thursday, October 21, Noon-1:00 p.m
Knight Library DREAM Lab, 122A
Register here 

This workshop will consider how masks prompt us to rethink the dynamics and logistics of class discussion. We'll strategize the use of alternative social cues, virtual tools, and new techniques that defamiliarize discussion yet can enhance student contributions and collective inquiry, allowing us to facilitate lively discussions in our current context and beyond. 

Thursday, October 21, 2-3:30 p.m.
PLC 72 
Register here 

Rubrics help us communicate our expectations with students and allow us to assess their work efficiently. In this session, we will explore the different approaches to designing a rubric, help you identify what approach might best suite your course, and teach you how to build one in Canvas. You also will learn how using a rubric can help students succeed in your course by promoting transparency, equity, and agency. Please bring a rubric or an assignment that you would like to workshop with your peers. 

New Mixed Modalities Teaching Series: The Teaching Lab 

Join TEP, UO Online, and Information Services for a new, experimental Teaching Lab series—a hands-on opportunity to experiment with technology tools that may enhance student engagement in the face-to-face classroom. Together we'll explore the promise—and challenge—of particular technologies in the classroom as we practice with tools, platforms, and strategies together. Each session has 30 spaces available.  

I. Making the Most of ‘HyFlex’
Friday, October 22, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Tykeson Hall 204
Find out more and register here.

II. Zooming In and Out in the Face-to-Face Classroom
Friday, October 29, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Tykeson Hall 204
Find out more and register here.

III. Digital & Analog Tools for Collaborative Learning
Friday, November 12, 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Tykeson Hall 204
Find out more and register here.

Science Teaching Journal Club: Teaching Science Literacy Skills

Thursdays at 9:00 a.m., LISB 217

Science literacy is more important than ever as we face COVID, climate change, and other challenges. A scientifically literate person must possess knowledge and skills in a variety of areas, such as information and visual literacies, numeracy, and more. Join us this term in the Science Teaching Journal Club as we explore these and other aspects of science literacy and examine strategies for teaching them to our students, non-science majors and science majors alike.  See Journal Club’s full fall lineup.  

University Resource 

UO Caregiver Networks 
The UO Caregiver Networks are available to UO community members looking for babysitters, nannies, tutors, or elder care. If you are interested in viewing the UO Caregiver Networks you must sign-in to your UO Office 365 account to access them. The Care Provder Network List includes community members who are interested in providing care, tutoring, and elder care. The Shared Care Network List includes UO Community members with children looking for shared care opportunities, which can include providing care, creating learning pods and scheduling play dates.