Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center

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**ONLINE** Best Practices for Delivering an Online Course
Friday, January 20, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM | Location: Online
Teaching an online course is not so different from teaching a face-to-face course. You still need to communicate with your students, grade student work, and support their learning. There are some differences, though, and research has shown that following some best practices can increase student success. In this online workshop, find out how to best support your students in the online environment. In this online workshop will discover practical strategies you can implement in your own online courses. Advance registration is required.
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Designing Effective Assessments
Monday, January 23, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Quality assessment is more than assigning a grade to your students. Truly effective assessments determine how much knowledge the student has and how well he or she can utilize that knowledge. Also, in addition to providing an evaluation of student progress, assessment can be used throughout the semester to guide instructional decisions. In this workshop, we will discuss multiple ways that assessment can be used within a course, a variety of assessment options, and some guidelines for designing effective assessments. Advance registration is required.
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Managing Student Grades with the Blackboard Grade Center
Tuesday, January 24, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
The Blackboard Grade Center is a useful tool for tracking student grades, but it also can be thought of as a communication tool to provide feedback to students about their performance and learning. In this hands-on workshop participants will learn how to use the Grade Center to grade assignments, record and calculate grades, provide comments, and customize the Grade Center for easier use. Prerequisites: basic computer skills and attendance at the Blackboard I: Introduction to Blackboard workshop or previous experience using Blackboard. Advance registration is required.
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**NEW** Creative Uses of Video in your Blackboard Course
Wednesday, January 25, 2017 from 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM
Video content is an increasingly common way to enhance your course content. In this hands-on workshop, you will explore how video can be used in your courses, such as faculty-generated video to supplement content or student-created videos for course assignments. Using MEDIAL (formerly Helix Media Library), you will also learn how you and your students can easily create videos directly from a webcam and share them with each other on NIU’s secure video-streaming server. Prerequisites: Blackboard I or previous experience using Blackboard.
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**ONLINE** Quality Online Course Series: Course Activities & Student Engagement
Tuesday, January 31, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM | Location: Online
How do you encourage students to be fully engaged in an online course? By designing engaging and active courses, which foster interaction with you, the other students, and the content. In this online workshop, you will be introduced to some strategies to build learning activities which connect to your course objectives, as well as engage students in their own learning. Advance registration is required.
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Rubrics for Meaningful Assessment and Evaluation
Wednesday, February 1, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Because grading may be considered one of the most time consuming, frustrating, and sometimes dreaded aspects of teaching, learning how to develop and use rubrics can help you grade more objectively, save grading time, and assist students in preparing assignments. Workshop participants will create their own rubric that can be adapted for any assignment or task. Advance registration is required.
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Blackboard I: Introduction to Blackboard
Thursday, February 2, 2017 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Learn the basics of creating and developing a course in Blackboard, NIU's Web Course Management System. Participants will get an overview of course layout and navigation, have an opportunity to place materials in a sample course, and also get assistance with requesting their own Blackboard courses. Participants who wish to request their courses during the workshop must have an active NIU Account ID. [For information about NIU Account IDs used in Blackboard, contact the IT Service Desk: servicedesk@niu.edu or 815-753-8100.] Prerequisites: Basic computer skills; basic Web navigation skills. Advance registration is required.
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Blackboard II: Building Your Blackboard Course
Tuesday, February 7, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
This hands-on workshop is a follow-up to the Blackboard I: Introduction to Blackboard workshop. We will cover the specifics of developing a course in Blackboard, including personalizing course navigation, setting up a materials-delivery structure and creating discussion areas. Participants will work in their own Blackboard courses and should bring to the session any course materials they want to upload or work with during the workshop. Files need to be on a flash drive (readable in a USB port) or available online. Advance registration is required.
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Electronic Portfolios: Using the Blackboard Portfolio Tool
Wednesday, February 8, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Electronic portfolios enable students and faculty to assemble, present, and share information online for documenting academic growth, career evaluation, and course preparation. The Blackboard Portfolio tool allows users to collect and organize files and other digital content representative of their learning. In this hands-on workshop, participants will learn the features and uses of the redesigned Blackboard Portfolio tool. Advance registration is required.
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**ONLINE** Emerging Technologies for Online Teaching
Thursday, February 9, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM | Location: Online
Enhance your online teaching skill set by learning about the latest emerging educational technologies being used in higher education today. Blackboard has many useful features, but there are so many more technologies you can use in your online courses. This online workshop will provide you with tips and tools for using technology in your teaching, from creating content to enhancing communication and collaboration. Please note, that while this workshop is not hands-on, you will have opportunities to explore some of these tools at future workshops. Advance registration is required.
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Improve Students' Reading Skills Through Writing
Friday, February 10, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
This workshop is part of the series: Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers - Transform Your Course Now!, presented by Brad Peters, Department of English.

How do we help students grapple with complex texts? Discover techniques that make students better readers—and writers. Advance registration is required.
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Getting Started with Adobe Presenter
Tuesday, February 14, 2017 from 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM
One of the major challenges in teaching online is finding creative ways to engage students in the learning process. In this hands-on workshop, participants will learn how to use Adobe Presenter to give new and existing PowerPoint presentations and lectures a first-class upgrade and ready for online delivery. Topics will include incorporating voice narrations and video into presentations, and creating self-running presentations and lectures that can be hosted on Blackboard. Participants are encouraged to bring existing PowerPoint files to work with during the workshop. Advance registration is required.
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Applying the Quality Matters Rubric
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM | Location: University Suite, Holmes Student Center
The Quality Matters (QM) Rubric identifies the characteristics of high-quality online courses that promote engagement and support student learning, based on an extensive body of research on online learning. In this day-long workshop, you will learn about the QM Rubric and its use in reviewing the design of online and blended courses by discussing the standards and conducting a partial course review. It is intended for a broad audience, including but not limited to faculty, instructors, instructional designers, and administrators who wish to understand more about the QM process and perhaps become QM Peer Reviewers. Learn more at facdev.niu.edu/feb15appqmr. Advance registration is required. 
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Collecting and Grading Assignments Electronically using Blackboard
Thursday, February 16, 2017 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Collecting and grading assignments in Blackboard is faster and more convenient than grading paper. Plus it is greener and cheaper for students because it reduces the amount students have to print. In this hands-on session, you will learn how to create Assignments, grade student submissions, and provide feedback all within your browser. Prerequisites: basic computer skills and attendance at the Blackboard I: Introduction to Blackboard workshop or previous experience using Blackboard. Advance registration is required.
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Interactive Rubrics: Providing Consistent and Quality Feedback in Blackboard Courses
Friday, February 17, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
The Interactive Rubric tool in Blackboard makes it possible for rubrics with click-and-score simplicity to be built into the grading workflow, increasing efficiency while also supporting consistent and high quality feedback. During this workshop we'll explore the Interactive Rubrics tool in Blackboard and sample interactive rubrics applied to various types of Blackboard assessments. We'll highlight the steps for creating an Interactive Rubric and applying it to an assignment for grading. We will also cover how to reuse a rubric within a Blackboard course or share with other faculty. Advance registration is required.
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Using Advance Organizers to Help Students Construct Meaning
Monday, February 20, 2017 from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Advance organizers are instructional tools that illustrate relationships between concepts, terms or ideas connected to a learning task. Although advance organizers may be referred to as concept maps, story maps, or graphic organizers, they all follow a similar practice in which introductory material, presented as text, graphics, or hypermedia, act as frameworks for further content. Advance organizers can help students organize ideas, understand new content, solve problems as well as plan research and increase recall. Workshop participants will practice using a range of advance organizers that are applicable across all learning disciplines. Advance registration is required.
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**ONLINE** Universal Design for Learning: Part I - Multiple Means of Engagement
Tuesday, February 21, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM | Location: Online
Contemporary classrooms include a more diverse mix of students than ever before - 21st century students bring a wide variety of interests, skills and expectations to the classroom. Are you looking for new ways to connect with students and engage them in your classes? Have you wondered about techniques for motivating students in your classes? During the first session of the 3-part online series we will introduce the concepts of Universal Design for Learning, which focus on designing instruction that is usable by all students. Strategies for engaging and motivating students will also be discussed.
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Screencasting to Facilitate Learning Opportunities
Wednesday, February 22, 2017 from 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM
Screencasting is becoming an increasingly common tool for online instruction. The workshop introduction will focus on the process of conceptualizing educational tutorials, asking important pedagogical questions, storyboarding ideas, and deciding on the most appropriate method for distribution of content. Participants will use Camtasia Studio, a screencasting program offering features and options that enhance instruction by capturing lectures, recording and highlighting interaction with website tours or software applications, and using closed captioning to expand accessibility. Participants will create a brief instructional screencast demonstrating various features. Advance registration is required.
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Reference Resource Management
Thursday, February 23, 2017 from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM
How did you first learn to keep track of references and citations? Did you make index cards, keep a notebook, lists, or a spreadsheet? Today, there are much richer (and free!) tools for you and your students to save citation information while searching and browsing the Web. With a single click, save citations and create customized bibliographies in standard citation styles, including MLA, Chicago and APA. Create groups to share references with students, or for students to share with each other. In this workshop, you will learn the key functions of Zotero, a free program for reference management. We will cover adding citations to your reference library, organizing and managing those citations, creating a bibliography, and using the Microsoft Word plug-in to easily insert citations from Zotero into your documents. We will discuss implications for both professional and classroom use. Advance registration is required.
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Design Short Writing Assignments that Work
Friday, February 24, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
This workshop is part of the series: Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers - Transform Your Course Now!, presented by Brad Peters, Department of English.

What are alternatives to the dreaded term paper? Improve students' written skills and mastery of course content with short assignments you'll enjoy grading. Advance registration is required.
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**NEW - ONLINE** Evidence-based Practices for Blended Course Design
Friday, February 24, 2017 from 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM | Location: Online
Based on principles from The Blended Course Design Workbook: A Practical Guide, participants in this webinar explore best practices for transitioning a course from a traditional, face-to-face environment to one that is blended. Topics include writing course goals and objectives, developing assessments, designing learning activities, and effectively leveraging technology for student success. Advance registration is required.
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**ONLINE** Quality Online Course Series: Promoting Learning with Technology
Tuesday, February 28, 2017 from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM | Location: Online
In an online course, technology is necessary for connecting with students, engaging them in learning, and assessing their knowledge. It's important to choose the right tools that support the learning objectives but are also obtainable and suitable for student use. In this online workshop, you will learn how to ensure technology in an online course supports learning and discover some tools you can incorporate into an online course. Advance registration is required.
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Lighten the Paper Load
Friday, March 10, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
This workshop is part of the series: Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers - Transform Your Course Now!, presented by Brad Peters, Department of English.

What are smart ways to assign, manage, and grade papers? Make your life easier while motivating students through rubrics and "minimal marking." Advance registration is required.
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Help Students Avoid Plagiarism
Friday, March 24, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
This workshop is part of the series: Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers - Transform Your Course Now!, presented by Brad Peters, Department of English.

How can we guide students away from academic misconduct? Advice from the National Council of Writing Program Administrators show you. Advance registration is required.
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Respond Effectively to Student Writing
Friday, April 7, 2017 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
This workshop is part of the series: Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers - Transform Your Course Now!, presented by Brad Peters, Department of English.

Why do students need revision-oriented feedback? See how effective, time-saving response encourages students to do their best work and learn more. Advance registration is required.
Register here!