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Center for Teaching Excellence

Mungo Teaching Award Panel

GTA/IA Workshops and Events

The Center for Teaching Excellence is committed to planning and implementing professional development programming for graduate teaching assistants. Graduate student workshops and events are designed to address teaching challenges unique to being a graduate student.

Click on the "+" sign next to each event to see description.


August 2019

In this session we will discuss the academic misconduct trends we are seeing online and in person with our students. Additionally, we will discuss how to identify and address these common violations while maintaining a productive instructor/student relationship.

This workshop is a required session for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments (FPLE).  Register

Large classes often necessitate the need for using exams with multiple-choice questions (MCQs) to assess student learning and streamline the grading process. However, many problems exist with these types of questions, in particular the difficulty in assessing higher level learning or deeper understanding when giving students an answer choice. Further, it can be daunting for instructors to write “good” questions that actually assess the students on what is intended. How do instructors write good MCQs that ask students to do more than simply regurgitate facts and content? In this workshop we will explore the structure of MCQs along with their strengths and inherent weaknesses. Participants will learn how to create effective questions based on quality learning outcomes, with practice constructing both a good question (the stem) and appropriate (and fair) answer choices. We will also address common issues with multiple-choice exams and how instructors can use these exams as immediate feedback to evaluate their own instructional effectiveness.  Register

September 2019 2019

Are you a graduate student instructor? Do you work closely with graduate student instructors? Do you ever wonder about the unique challenges and advantages a GSI has in the classroom? In this open discussion workshop we will examine recently developed protocols for peer observation and self observation to help GSI improve as developing instructors.  Register

Many faculty and instructors in higher education have little training on effective pedagogies. Thus, the purpose of this workshop is to help participants learn about research-based teaching and instructional practices in higher education.  Register

Do you often feel like you are the most passionate about the content you are teaching in your classroom? Does it feel like a lack of student engagement inhibits a true connection with the subject matter in your courses and student success? In this interactive workshop, the facilitator will share a variety of ways to engage students that simultaneously honor course objectives and students' individual interests. Both long and short-term instructional/management strategies will be explored, and participants will be asked to consider how they could adopt such methods into their courses. Participants should bring a syllabus from one of their courses to ponder how specific strategies could be adopted into their teaching.

This workshop is a required session for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments.   Register

Are you living groundhog’s day? This session explores new ways to look at a topic or lecture and incorporate quality activities to ensure student success and bring a new level of energy to your course. Large classroom? Unresponsive students? No worries! Ideas are broken down into technology, group work, and student-driven activities with opportunities to find ways to make it work no matter your teaching situation. Attendees will walk away with tangible tools to quickly implement in their next lecture.   Register

Creating an environment of integrity within the classroom truly takes a village. Faculty, administrators, and students all play a role in maintaining an ethical campus community. This workshop will explore preventative classroom tools to promote academic integrity. 

This workshop is a required session for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments.   Register

Who are the new students on campus this fall? This workshop will provide demographic and profile information on the new incoming students to the Columbia campus.

This workshop is an elective workshop for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments.    Register

October 2019

There’s no life like #gradlife! In this session, attendees will explore ideas for goal setting, time management, and other nifty tricks to ensure grad student success. The session revolves around hilarious GIFs but uses them to spread grace, intention, and fun. #gradlife can be the best life!  Register

In this session we will discuss the academic misconduct trends we are seeing online and in person with our students. Additionally, we will discuss how to identify and address these common violations while maintaining a productive instructor/student relationship.

This workshop is a required session for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments.   Register

All USC faculty, instructors and graduate teaching assistants are invited to participate in the tenth annual Oktoberbest: A Symposium on Teaching on Friday, October 18, 2019 at the Russel House University Union.  Join colleagues from across USC campuses for this free one-day symposium focused on sharing best practices in teaching.

The Oktoberbest schedule has a wide variety of workshops on topics ranging from active learning and online course development to critical thinking and integrative learning. The event will include:

  • Breakfast with our keynote speaker
  • Choice of Concurrent Sessions presented by your colleagues at USC
  • Closing reception featuring door prizes and traditional Oktoberfest fare

Oktoberbest is free to all who teach or support teaching at USC, but is not open to the general public.  Register

November 2019

Do you worry that your students do not seem to understand college level texts? Do you wish you knew how to get them to engage with the ideas presented in assigned readings? Are you frustrated that some students do not complete assigned readings? In this interactive workshop, strategies for getting students to engage with assigned readings will be presented. Participants will learn how to prepare students for reading challenging texts and provide them with strategies that they can use to read more effectively. The session will conclude with an informal question-and-answer session focused on specific reading issues that group members have encountered in their teaching.  Register

With a few simple adjustments, your Microsoft Word and PowerPoint course materials can better fit the universal design concept. These best practices can help you and, most importantly, your students access, navigate, and understand your class content. Start here to lead towards habits of developing inclusive material for all of your students. Handouts and valuable links to additional resources will be provided. Bring your devices for a hands-on training experience!

This workshop is a required workshop for the Teaching Towards Inclusive Excellence (TTIE) certificate of completion.    Register

Engaging in conflict is challenging whether you are an experienced instructor or new to your role. A likely strategy is to ignore the behavior due to our own discomfort, concern over retaliation or fear that our intervention may cause more harm or disruption.

Through case study examples this workshop will explore Gerald Amada’s research from Coping with Misconduct in the College Classroom and provide participants with tangible strategies to disruptive behavior in a confident and fair manner.

This workshop is a required session for a certificate of completion in Fostering Proactive Learning Environments.   Register

December 2019

Are you an instructor who never actually “learned” how to write or develop a quality course syllabus? Or do you feel your course is just not leading to the learning you expected in your students? How can these issues be resolved? For a quality course that engenders deep and meaningful learning, instructors need to write the syllabus from the perspective of what the student will achieve, and design realistic, meaningful outcomes and associated curriculum to do so.

In this workshop, we will outline the framework for developing a syllabus for a course of your choosing, using the conceptual framework of “Backward Design” (Wiggins and McTighe, 2005). We’ll discuss the importance of (and practice crafting) thoughtfully designed learning outcomes, and then work backward to develop appropriate assessments, meaningful class learning activities, and finally, determine the most effective method for teaching that activity. Other tips and advice for syllabus development, along with examples of good and bad syllabus construction, will be discussed with other participants in a small group setting.  Register


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