Tag: course design

All You Need is an Oven and a Knife

A few holiday seasons ago, I received a great gift – the Pizzazz Rotating Pizza Oven! I came back to work after the holiday singing its praises and immediately began convincing all of my coworkers to purchase one.  My spirits were quickly dampened when one of my coworkers asked, “Does it do the same thing as my oven?” I stared blankly at him as he continued, “all of these different kitchen gadgets…they all do the same thing as an oven or a knife. All you need is an oven and a knife. Everything else just takes up too much room


Focus on Teaching and Learning Highlights Active Learning

Several members of the Distance Learning Team at Northwestern’s School of Professional Studies attended Loyola’s Focus on Teaching and Learning (FOTL), a one day conference on January 10, 2018 at Schreiber Hall in Chicago. The Keynote address, delivered by Dr. Therese Hutton of Seattle University, was entitled, “If I Could Only Fit in More Learning:” Making the Most of Your Classroom Time. According to Dr. Hutton, teaching is akin to storytelling in many ways, and the traditional lecture, whether online or on-ground, is often more storytelling than lecture. In fact, according to Hutton, lectures have been making something of a


Instructor Bio Tips & Tricks

The instructor bio is such a simple, basic part of the course that it can be easy to overlook its importance. When so much time is taken up with assignment rubrics, video scripts, and discussion prompts, thinking of how to describe yourself to students can seem pretty minor. But it is worth thinking about. The instructor bio is often the first introduction that students will have to you–as an educator, as a subject matter expert, and as a person. So it’s key to make a good first impression with an instructor bio that students will want to read. Quality Matters


Distance Learning: The Next Best Thing to Being There?

On October 10, I had the privilege of presenting at a symposium held by the National Resource Center for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes. Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes, or OLLIs, provide university-level, non-credit educational opportunities for their membership, adults aged 50 and older. The symposium brought together a select group of OLLI directors from around the U.S. to consider a number of issues of interest to OLLIs, among the use of the distance learning technology. My presentation, “Distance Learning: The Next Best Thing to Being There?”, considered the the acceptance of distance learning technology by the OLLI membership, who typically


Using Game Concepts to Create a Gamified Online Course Template

We hear the word gamification a lot, however it still remains quite a mystery to many educators. As I have mentioned in past posts, Gamification is not simply adding games to courses, but is instead the utilization of gaming concepts in courses. So where exactly do you get started when creating a gamified online course template? My last post suggested that you think of your students as heroes and use their journey to come up with materials for your course. But you can also take things one step further and use game components (instructions, story, levels) to make your gamified