Category Archives: CTL info and services

How to Connect with the Modern Learner

“If you want to change a relationship, change the way you act in it.”

When Dr. Christy Price, psychology professor from Dalton State College, began her keynote speech at Macomb Community College’s Faculty Development Day, her intent was to inspire continued action toward the increasing students’ successful behaviors. Price’s research on modern learners provided insight as to who our students are as a population and how instructors can reach them.

picture of President Jim Jacobs at Faculty Development Day

President Jim Jacobs reviewing the College Highlights at Faculty Development Day

She organized her findings into the five following categories for engaging Millennials.

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Five Tips on Retaining Student Engagement

Daydreaming

Summer is just around the corner and our minds are beginning to wander. It can be tempting to daydream, especially after the past four frosty months, but we need to stay focused. Now is the time to reinforce the lessons taught throughout the term and confirm that your students are capable of applying them. We’ve spoken with some instructors at Macomb Community College and they have provided a few tips on how they manage to keep engagement and retention high through the end of the semester.

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Eight Tips for Writing Good Multiple-Choice Questions

multiplechoiceDo a quick Google search on “worst multiple choice questions” and you’ll come up with something like this:

Macbeth was probably written to honor:

(a) Macbeth; (b) Shakespeare; (c) James I; (d) God whose ancestors came from Scotland

With the half-way point of the semester behind us, and final exams around the corner, we thought we’d provide some tips for writing good multiple-choice questions. The eight tips below, drawn from the Teaching Professor’s Faculty Focus Blog, are based on Maryellen Weimer’s years of experience as a faculty member and from Kansas State University’s IDEA Paper No. 16: Improving Multiple-Choice Tests.

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Changes to Mediated Classroom Carts

Macomb Community College is in the process of updating its Mediated Classroom Carts. The new carts feature faster computers, Blue Ray DVD players, and updated document cameras. In keeping up with the rapid advance of technology, however, some older technology is being retired. The Blue Ray (high definition) DVD players no longer can play VHS tapes. Manufacturers of these players consider VHS tape an obsolete technology and, as they have done in the past with the players for 8 track tapes, audio cassettes, and video disks, they have simply stopped making them. Faculty with VHS tapes need to make other arrangements if they want to use the content on these tapes in their classes.

Possible alternatives include contacting the publisher of the tape to ask if a replacement in Blue Ray (high definition DVD) or streaming media format were available. Copyright law prohibits the conversion of media from one format to another without permission, but if that permission is granted (and the Library can help you with this) the CTL can often convert VHS tapes to DVD or streaming media. Conversions of this type, however, may take up to a week and copyright clearance can take much longer. Nor is copyright clearance usually free. The library may purchase materials in DVD or streaming formats. Any such purchases become part of the library’s collection. The librarians are always happy to assist other faculty in finding new materials in appropriate formats.

Questions about media conversion should be directed to the Center for Teaching and Learning, ctlsupport@macomb.edu, 586.226.4774, and questions about copyright clearance should be directed to Bruce Bett at the Library, bettb@macomb.edu, 586.445.7880.

Another issue recently encountered with the new equipment is the inability of the Blue Ray players to correctly navigate the menu of older non-Blue Ray DVDs. Faculty experiencing issues of this sort should try to use the DVD players installed in the computers that are installed in the carts. Software to run DVDs from the computer is on the desktop of these computers and should give faculty complete control of the DVD menus. Questions about this issue should be directed to the Service Desk, servicedesk@macomb.edu, 586.445.7156.

Welcome to the CTL blog!

We’ve been talking about it for a while, and now it’s finally here. Welcome to the new Center for Teaching and Learning blog! The added bit of inspiration that we needed came to us during the 2009 CIT Conference, which took place at Cobo Hall a few weeks ago. We had a great time at the conference, and picked up a number of new ideas, which we are eager to share with you in the weeks that follow. Through the pages of this blog, CTL staff will provide a wealth of information, ideas and tips about teaching and using technology in the classroom at Macomb Community College.

But before we get started, let’s make sure we all know what a “blog” is!

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