Faculty Institutes

A practical way to learn about teaching and learning resources all year long

Faculty Institute 2017 * Summer Opportunities for Faculty

Formerly known as Summer Institute. In the past, Instructional Development conducted an annual Summer Institute, an intensive training session focusing on the development and application of specialized instructional methods designed to help faculty become more effective teachers. Faculty worked closely with instructional design specialists to enhance or adapt their courses and incorporate best practices for classroom or electronically delivered instruction. Topics have included cross-curricular instruction, educational video, social media in education, digital storytelling, and more.

ACC Online (July 2016)

ACC ONLINE: A hands-on lab experience to develop an exemplary online course

Faculty explored exemplary Blackboard courses and were exposed to tools and best practices to enhance the online teaching and learning experience.

Throughout the week, faculty received hands-on experience using ACC’s Blackboard Learning Management System (LMS) and other technologies to incorporate interaction, collaboration, evaluation, and learner support in their online courses. Faculty participants collaborated with Instructional Designers and each other to develop their own Blackboard course that meets Exemplary Course Rubric standards.

Participants in the Faculty Institute:

  • Reflected on their course design through a self-evaluation and gained new perspective and insights.
  • Received detailed feedback on their own course development including best practices and areas for improvement.
  • Used the Blackboard Exemplary Course Rubric to create or adapt a course they are or will be teaching.
Open Educational Resources (OER) (June 2016)

Using Open Educational Resources (OER) to Increase Student Access and Persistence

OERS logoOpen Educational Resources (OER) are low-cost or free resources used for teaching, learning and research. They include a variety of content and formats under Creative Commons or open use licensing, from textbooks to simulations to assessment tools. Typically, OERs can be combined or adapted by the faculty member to suit their teaching needs and methods. In addition to the pedagogical advantages allowing faculty to assemble the resources they choose to create diverse learning environments for students, OER can also help lower the cost of education for students, thereby increasing access.

Faculty learned about OER, and how they are used in colleges and universities to improve student outcomes.

ACC Online 2 (December 2015)

ACC ONLINE 2: A hands-on lab experience to develop an exemplary, fully online course

This was an opportunity for ACC faculty to participate in the first, ever "Winter Faculty Institute" ACC Online II, modeled after our Summer Faculty Institute on the same topic. Faculty explored exemplary Blackboard courses and were exposed to tools and best practices to enhance their online teaching and learning experience. Throughout the week, faculty received hands-on practice using Blackboard and other technologies to incorporate interaction, collaboration, evaluation, and learner support into their online courses. Faculty participants collaborated with Instructional Design Specialists and each other to develop their own Blackboard course that meets Exemplary Course Rubric standards.

Participants in the Faculty Institute:

  • Reflected on their own course design through a self-evaluation of their course and gain new perspective and insights on their course.
  • Received detailed feedback on their own course development including best practices and areas for improvement.
  • Created a Blackboard Course using the Exemplary Course Rubric.
ACC Online (July 2015)

ACC ONLINE: A hands-on lab experience to develop an exemplary, fully online course

10 faculty members teaching at least one Distance Learning class were selected to participate.

Faculty explored exemplary Blackboard courses and will be exposed to tools and best practices to enhance the online teaching and learning experience. Throughout the week, faculty will receive hands-on experience in utilizing Blackboard and other technologies to incorporate interaction, collaboration, evaluation, and learner support into their online courses. Faculty participants collaborated with Instructional Design Specialists and each other to develop their own Blackboard course that meets Exemplary Course Rubric standards.

Participants in the Faculty Institute:

  • Reflected on your own course design through a self-evaluation of your course and gain new perspective and insights on your course.
  • Received detailed feedback on your own course development including best practices and areas for improvement.
  • Created a Blackboard Course using the Exemplary Course Rubric.

To Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) website.

Culturally Responsive Teaching II (July 2015)

Socioeconomics in Higher Education: How can educators combat the impact of income inequality on college student achievement?

30 faculty members were selected to participate.

The gap between the college graduation rates of high and low income students in the United States is widening. In 2013, students from the highest income families were 8 times more likely than individuals from low-income families to obtain a bachelor’s degree by age 24 (77 percent vs. 9 percent). (“Indicators of Higher Education Equity in the United States, 45 Year Trend Report, 2015” by the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education). In this Faculty Institute, faculty had the opportunity to learn about and discuss the impact of socioeconomics on student success and educational achievement. Faculty were asked to reflect on their current teaching practices and identify ways to apply cultural competence and growth mindset in their classes.

Participants in this Faculty Institute:

  • Examined the impact of socioeconomics on student success/educational achievement.
  • Incorporated principles of cultural competence to create an inclusive learning environment for students from diverse backgrounds.
  • Explored strategies to promote a growth mindset which fosters hard work, grit, a desire for continual improvement, and persistence in the face of failure.
  • Articulated ways in which these ideas can be incorporated into current teaching practices.

To Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) website.

Culturally Responsive Teaching I (July 2014)
"... a very different pedagogical paradigm is needed to improve the performance of underachieving students from various ethnic groups - one that teaches to and through their personal and cultural strengths, their intellectual capabilities, and their prior accomplishments. Culturally responsive teaching is that kind of paradigm.”
- Dr. Geneva Gay, Culturally Responsive Teaching: Theory, Research, and Practice

FI 2014 logoOn July 28-29, 2014, Instructional Development hosted a Faculty Institute on the subject of culturally responsive teaching Open PDF (PDF), which included live presentations by national experts in this field, practical tips and strategies, and resulted in outcomes directly related to enhancing the classroom environment and student success. The Institute challenged ACC faculty to explore:

  • the impact of cultural considerations in the higher education classroom/environment and curriculum on student performance and retention;
  • ways in which faculty can connect with students of diverse cultures and backgrounds to help them succeed;
  • simple changes faculty can implement to make a difference, and how to get started.

To Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) website.

Cross Curricular Instruction (2012)

FI 2013 logoDa Vinci was not only a painter but also a mathematician, an architect and an engineer. Steve Jobs used what he learned in a calligraphy class to guide his design of the first Macintosh computer. Alton Brown of the Food Channel received a degree in drama from the University of Georgia followed by enrollment in the New England Culinary Institute. Though a weak science student in high school and college, Brown became interested in science when he realized it would address most of his cooking challenges. (A. Marasco, 2008)

Throughout history we have seen the merger of math, science and creativity by some of the greatest thinkers of our time. Beyond coincidence, the link between math, science and the arts is significant, and nurturing this link can potentially transform the learning environment for students who struggle with or are unmotivated by a lack of meaning in their studies.

This Summer Institute challenged faculty to create a new kind of learning experience by applying the principles of cross-curricular instruction. Teams of faculty in fields of study not typically associated with each other (e.g. Math and Art History, Physics and Dance, Geology and Jewelry Making) developed lessons that could be taught in paired courses, following the model defined in the 1999 publication Learning Community Models by the Washington Center for Improving Undergraduate Education, which describes paired courses are two courses for which students must co-register and that are team-taught as an integrated program with faculty participating as learners as well as teachers.

Faculty learned to incorporate learning activities that will help students build communication, creativity, collaboration and critical thinking skills by applying new knowledge to meaningful, and perhaps unexpected, real world situations.

In a self-assessment following this Summer Institute, over 90% of participants reported it had helped them master the intended objectives related to cross-curricular instruction.

Making Learning Come Alive with Educational Video (2011)

SI 2009 logoVideo is a media which can optimize information for learning and application when used appropriately. An educator may choose to use video for many reasons. It is an interesting way to present complex subjects. It can display human interactions, sometimes with great precision, such as a conversation, a gesture, the intense stare, or the contemplative gaze. It provides a way for large numbers of viewers to get common information, view material that is intently detailed, or visit places that physical constraints often limit to students. Video supports an analysis of an “event.” It supports the telling of stories by showing and explaining. Video gets the researcher and the learner out of controlled laboratory or classroom setting and into the field.

Research also shows that the use of technologies, including video, improves student motivation, performance and achievement. "A 2009 report titled “Focus on Technology Integration in America's Schools,” examined programs in all 50 states in which technology was being effectively integrated into the curriculum, focusing on content, curricula, professional development, and assessments, with a particular emphasis on programs benefitting from Title II, Part D ("Enhancing Education Through Technology" or "EETT") funds.

Among the findings, the report showed that in high-need schools, there was a 31% increase in the "innovative use of technology by teachers in core subject areas." What's more, in these schools, the report found significant increases in reading and math achievement (17% to 33% in reading and 18% to 36% in math). The report also saw a 14-point increase in graduation rates, from 66 percent to 80 percent." —Setda.org

The 2011 Summer Institute explored tools to create video, sources for existing online videos, and related resources that educators could use to help motivate and excite students about their courses to help them succeed.

Educational Networking for Today's Interactive Classroom (2010)

SI 2009 logoIn 2004 Tim O’Reilly coined the term “Web 2.0,” a term associated with web applications that facilitate, among other things, interactive collaboration and user-centered design. On the new Web everyone is a content creator. The old Web, now referred to as “Web 1.0,” was dedicated to the three R’s: Reading, Receiving, and Researching. In Web 2.0 the “Three R's” have been supplanted by the “Three C's”: Contributing, Collaborating, and Creating, through tools such as blogs, wikis, and tweets. The technologies that created Web 2.0 are changing education today. “Web 2.0” is changing how students and educators approach learning and how educators interact with and learn from each other. (Steve Hargadon)

The three National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) for students are creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, and research and information literacy. If today’s students are to change the world they must learn how to be creative, talented, and unique. Social media is the tool to leverage these characteristics and help our students become life-long learners. (Tim Olinda). Social networking provides new ways for students to connect and share information and create networks of interest that can be used to create a rich learning environment. In the 2009 Community College Survey of Student Engagement, researchers found that 64% of traditional-age students and 41% of nontraditional-age students use social networking multiple times per day.

This year’s Summer Institute examined several tools and platforms that be used to create educational networks. Some of these tools are Facebook, Twitter, Ning, Flickr, and Delicious. Participants learned how to set up and administer accounts at social networking sites and strategies for using them effectively in their classes.

How to Design Virtual Learning Environments for Student Success (2009)
"Second Life is a new medium that is unlike anything else you have experienced."
— Jon Lester (AKA Pathfinder Linden) in Successful Strategies in Second Life®: The Official Guide 2007

SI 2009 logoToday a growing number of educational institutions are discovering that 3-D collaborative virtual learning environments help students learn. In these environments, students are able to share some experiences usually not available from the traditional classroom setting.

In 2003, Linden Labs created Second Life® (SL) — a simulated world where residents create a personal representation of themselves (known as an 'avatar'), own land and build and create objects like houses and clothing. Avatars then navigate through simulated landscapes or educational settings and share experiences much like in real life. SL is now being used to foster communication, interactions and collaborations among educators and students. From applications in healthcare and teacher training to library services access, educational institutions are exploring future uses and researching questions on how best to use SL for education and training.

The University of Texas, Texas State University and now even ACC has a presence in Second Life®. ACC's Know How Island project for information literacy was made possible through an Innovation Grant awarded in 2007 to Library Services.

This year's Summer Institute will explore ways virtual worlds are being used in education; discover which organizations are leading this research; and foster discussion on how instructors might use a virtual learning environment. Join us in an extraordinary journey that will lead us to think outside the box.

Pecha Kucha and the Art of Presentation (2008)

SI 2008 logoAre you searching for better ways to present information to your students? Are your students experiencing “Death By PowerPoint?” If so, join us for the IDS Summer Institute 2008 to explore a variety of presentation styles and learn ways to kick the quality of your PowerPoint presentations up a notch! Inspired by a recent Pecha Kucha (Pronounced peh-cha-KOO-cha) event in Austin and an article in Wired Magazine entitled "Pecha Kucha: Get to the PowerPoint in 20 Slides Then Sit the Hell Down". (8/21/07), IDS staff are exploring unique and inspiring presentation styles currently used in the business and the design industries to find ways to incorporate them into our academic setting.

This year's Summer Institute 2008 will focus on three presentation styles:

  • Pecha Kucha (derived from the Japanese word for "chit chat") - a presentation format originally devised by Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham of Klein-Dytham Architecture (KDa) in Tokyo in 2003 as a way for young designers to meet, network, and show their work in public. Since then the format has spread all over the world with Pecha Kucha nights being held in more than 100 US and International cities. The idea behind Pecha Kucha is to keep presentations succinct and maintain a high interest level.
  • The Lessig Method - named after Lawrence Lessig, a law professor at Stanford Law School and founder of the Creative Commons, is known for its rapid presentation style incorporating short phrases or pictures.
  • Kawasaki’s 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint – this "top 10 list" approach is used by Guy Kawasaki, a venture capitalist in Silicon Valley and former Apple Computer "evangelist."

This Institute will explore the content organization, graphic design elements, and pacing of each of these methods and discuss the appropriate uses for each in an education context. Join us to find out how YOU can become a better presenter and speaker.

Stories Can Transform the Listener and the Teller - Digital Storytelling (2007)

SI 2009 logoLeft brain meets right brain in this year's Summer Institute for faculty. Whereas the use of technology skills may be very left -brained, the objective is to use the right brain to present information to learners in artful, creative and imaginative ways and encourage them to synthesize information and think critically. This Summer Institute will prepare participants to create stories and apply new media in face-to-face and online courses that improve teaching and learning at Austin Community College.

Designed to help faculty develop multimedia skills, this two-week training session will use the framework of Digital Storytelling to create stories to connect with and engage the learner. Hands-on activities will take participants through the process of desktop media production. Participants will gain skills and knowledge to tell their stories with simple multimedia, and motivate and inspire students and connect as a community of learners.

"Lively narrative format is being used increasingly in higher education, and it appears to be helping students think critically and understand factual content in a personalized fashion." excerpted from Storytelling as a Pedagogical tool in Higher Education by Abrahamson (1998)

Challenge your Students to Play and Win! – Gaming, Teaching and Learning (2006)

This year's Summer Institute goal is to introduce faculty to the emerging role that computer-based games are "playing" in higher-education settings. Specifically we will learn about the characteristics of video gaming that have proven successful in community-building and problem-solving and that can be applied to learning environments.

  • A range of entertaining activities you can use in your classrooms will be demonstrated.
  • We will examine seminal video games and look at a taxonomy of gaming as it parallels a taxonomy of learning.
  • Hands-on activities will allow participants to create course materials and explore a variety of topics each day.
  • Topics include why video gaming is compelling to our current student population.

Engaging and Motivating Students - Interactive Presentation Design and Development (2005)

Engaging and Motivating Students - Interactive Presentation Design and Development

SI 2005 logoSummer Institute 2005 was designed to help faculty develop learning modules and learning objects with interactive components to help students become more engaged and motivated and subsequently improve student performance. Participants were exposed to a variety of tools for various skill levels including Power Point, Flash, Dreamweaver and others. We have designed this summer institute to support the recommendations of the SACS strategic focus report "Infusing 21st Century Innovation into Learning: A student-centered examination of new technologies, faculty roles, and institutional structures." Faculty worked closely with instructional development staff to appropriately analyze, design and evaluate learner-centered interactive presentations.

The institute will focus on the research-based recommendations to:

  • Transform (ACC) from an "instruction" paradigm to a "learning" paradigm
  • Promote the integration of appropriate technologies into teaching and learning
  • Employ appropriate technology for student assessment
  • Use a variety of tools, teaching styles and formats to maintain and improve student success
  • Move ACC towards a distributed learning model

Faculty were able to develop three to five interactive presentations with a learner-centered focus to improve student motivation and student performance.

Planning and Evaluating Student-Centered Activities Through Learning Objects Design (2004)

The 2004 Summer Institute was designed to support the recommendations of the SACS strategic focus report "Infusing 21st Century Innovation into Learning: A student-centered examination of new technologies, faculty roles, and institutional structures." Faculty worked closely with instructional development staff to appropriately analyze, design and evaluate learner-centered instructional materials in the form of learning objects. "The main idea of 'learning objects' is to break educational content down into small chunks that can be reused in various learning environments, in the spirit of object-oriented programming" (David A. Wiley, Utah State University. Digital Learning Environments Research Group. The Edumetrics Institute)

Faculty were able to develop plans for the appropriate design of student-centered learning activities that use technology to enhance learning and improve student performance.

Making Connections: Supporting Learning with Technology Tools (2003)

As educational research continues to focus on learning and ways to improve learning, the ACC 2003 Summer Institute brings together best teaching practices and technology tools to help faculty develop instructional materials and resources that support student learning. The Institute will model both the strategies in delivering the content and the concept of blended * and hybrid ** learning for faculty teaching on-campus or distance learning courses. The appropriate applications of technology can aid faculty in the implementation of teaching strategies and help improve student achievement.

* A blended course uses one or more technology-mediated learning activities in an on-campus or distance learning course.

** A hybrid course is one in which a portion of the learning activities have been moved online, and time traditionally spent in the classroom is reduced but not eliminated.

Streaming Media Applications: Selecting media to support instructional strategies (2002)

Faculty learned about the various types of streaming media applications and instructional design techniques to select applications that are most appropriate for a given learning outcome. This session will enabled faculty to develop media-supported educational activities that address specific instructional challenges.

Learning Strategies (2001)

1. Online Learning Strategies: Developing Instructional Resources for Online Courses

This session will guide selected faculty in the development of instructional activities for the delivery of online courses. Selected faculty teaching high-demand, entry-level online courses will work with the ITFD Instructional Design team to establish a "Resource Web Page" that lists a variety of activities for the given subject and develop a common core Blackboard course site.

2. Active Learning Strategies: Incorporating Active Learning Into Your Syllabus

Educational Research points to the importance of actively involving students in the learning process so that they are engaged not only in the course material but also with other students in the class. Such engagement assures that students learn more effectively, and both students and the faculty enjoy the learning experience more than they do in a non-active learning environment. This session will advance faculty awareness of the concept of active learning, demonstrate how best to incorporate these methodologies into a syllabus, and how active learning may be applied to diverse courses.

Using the Blackboard Course Delivery System (2000)

This Summer Institute provided faculty with three weeks of training on using the online course management system, Blackboard™. Topics included: the major fucntions of Blackboard including: presenting content, creating and using discussion boards, creating assessments, creating and using the gradebook. We additionally covered the pedagogy of adding interactivity to assignments and practiced using the synchronous functions of Blackboard including the White Board and Chat. We covered adding graphics and streaming video to Blackboard course sites.

Participants were required to produce a prototype of their Blackboard site by the end of the summer. This track was also intended for faculty who were interested in teaching an Open Campus web-based course using special web instructional software such as Web Course in a Box. The Summer Institute met four hours per day (12:20-4:30 PM) for the three week period of July 24- Aug 11.

Creating Educational Web Sites (1999)

This Summer Institute provided faculty with three weeks of training and support on instructional uses of the Web and how to create or convert instructional materials for web-based delivery. Topics included: web page creation using straight HTML code and editing programs; graphics for web pages; tips and techniques of web design; Internet software tools; instructional use of email and listserv; placing information on ACC's web server; etc.

Participants were required to produce a complete web-based product by the end of the summer for use during the fall semester. This track was also intended for faculty who were interested in teaching an Open Campus web-based course using special web instructional software such as Web Course in a Box. The Summer Institute will met for four hours per day (1-5 PM) for the three week period of July 5 - July 23.