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Message from the Director

As summer draws to a close, the Center for Teaching and Learning is buzzing with activity working on new and existing initiatives designed to promote and support teaching at Queens College.

Last academic year, we were fortunate to welcome to our team two instructional technologists, Jean Kelly and Fei-Wen Pirovolikos.  This year we will soon have an additional technologist joining us.  Stay tuned for more information about the range of support services our growing Learning Design and Technology team.  Their focus is a range of projects, including the following:

  • Teaching online initiative, coordinated by Michelle Fraboni (faculty in Elementary and Early Childhood Education), whose focus is to train faculty and help institutionalize recommendations about teaching online.  This year we are looking to continue our successful hybrid bootcamps, with another bootcamp planned for winter 2012.  We will also continue to collect and disseminate information about student perception and use of technology, and about faculty online teaching readiness.
  • Our ePortfolios initiative has received a boost from our participation in a Title V collaborative grant, Making Transfer Connections, led by LaGuardia Community College and including three other CUNY campuses (Queensborough Community College, Bronx Community College, and Lehman College).  Through this project we have been able to offer a series of workshops on Epsilen, one of the ePortfolio platforms currently in use at Queens.  We will be offering more such training opportunities.  We are also working on electronic documentation for ePortfolios, and are developing a cohort of student mentors who are helping faculty and students use ePortfolios to track long-term curricular activity.
  • Last year we launched a Tech Talks series which we will continue this year.  We will announce the talks via email, as they are scheduled.
  • We have been experimenting with lecture capturing technologies and with technologies that permit webcasting of live events.  Check our calendar for upcoming events you can participate in without leaving your desk.

We are also involved in projects that support reflective teaching and learning:

  • One of these projects is designed to improve one important feedback mechanism for faculty: teaching evaluations.  We have collaborated with OCT and other groups on campus to increase the response rate to teaching evaluations, and to improve the way that the data about evaluations are disseminated.
  • Last academic year we set up an Adjunct Task Force, whose charge was to write a report on the state of teaching for adjuncts.  We will work with the Task Force to disseminate the report, and we will work with the College administration to implement some of the report's suggestions.

Finally, we collaborate regularly with other units on campus, whose goals map onto our mission of nourishing all aspects of teaching and learning.  These collaborations include work on:

  • undergraduate research,
  • service learning,
  • general education.

Be sure to stay abreast of developments at the Center for Teaching and Learning by subscribing to "Socrates", our email list, and by keeping an eye on our events calendar.  If you have any questions or comments, or suggestions for activities, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

Happy Fall!

Eva Fernández
Director, Center for Teaching & Learning

August 2011




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