Teaching Students to Value Hands-on Signal Processing Skills

by Frank Ong, Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences Teaching Effectiveness Award Essay, 2017 The undergraduate digital signal processing class, EE123, was a class that introduced mathematical theory about data processing together with a series of hands-on programming assignments. These programming assignments were based on real-life applications and demonstrated the principles Continue Reading >>

Learning from the Periphery: Collaboration and the Uses of History

by Jesse Cordes Selbin, English Recipient of the Teagle Foundation Award for Excellence in Enhancing Student Learning, 2014 Related Teaching Effectiveness Award essay: Empowered Learning: History, Collaboratively When I designed a collaborative project for my Reading and Composition course last year, my primary goal was to increase participation. Having observed Continue Reading >>

Before You Grade

Grading can often be made more efficient and fair by articulating shared expectations and grading criteria before an assignment starts. Grading Policies Assignment Design Taxonomy of Learning Objectives: Explain what You Want your Students to Do (pdf) Statement of Grading Criteria

Creating Writing Assignments

Many instructors struggle with crafting writing assignments that are accessible yet challenging for students. We suggest you consider the scale of the assignment — in terms of time, length, and scope — and the learning objectives of the assignment — what do you want your students to learn or show Continue Reading >>

Pre-lab Assignments

Ways to help your students think through labs ahead of time. Pre-lab assignments can improve their work and increase their learning during the labs.

Assignment Design and Sequencing

Consider the length and complexity of the assignments you give, and sequence them so that students can build from lower-stakes to higher-stakes papers.

The Semester-Long Research Project Reimagined

by Tammy Stark, Linguistics
As a solution to the related problems of limited time and a lack of incentive to carry out scholarly research on final papers, I decided to make the final project a Wikipedia assignment, in which students worked in groups to significantly improve Wikipedia pages related to sociolinguistic topics relevant to their independent research interests…

Bridging Mathematical Models and Managerial Decisions

by Auyon Siddiq, Industrial Engineering and Operations Research
While the content in a typical operations research course is usually technical, the field itself is actually quite practical… I viewed it as part of my job to help convey the idea that the seemingly abstract methods taught in class could in fact have a significant positive impact on how decisions are made in a wide variety of domains.

Starting with Art for the First Time

Elaine Yau, History of Art
I have often noted that students who have never had an art history course can be overwhelmed by a commonplace assumption that artistic “masterpieces” are self-evidently great. This point of departure usually results in hackneyed discussions about beauty, perfection, or “pinnacles of civilization.” I wanted my first writing assignment to provide a structured, accessible process for formal analysis that would equip students with a vocabulary from which to build their own interpretations confidently — to treat paintings as primary sources from a moment in history.