Podcast #68

Laura Gibbs has been teaching mythology and folklore online since 2002 for the University of Oklahoma. For the past five summers, Doug has taught small private online courses (SPOC’s) for the Yale Summer Session, and Edward has taught several courses in a variety of online formats. In this episode all three share the lessons they’ve learned along the way.

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Show Notes

0:00 Intro

0:47 Teaching online. Three different courses: synchronous vs. asynchronous. Introducing Laura Gibbs. Teaching mythology and folklore, and Indian epics. Doug teaching econometrics.

3:50 Flexibility and making what the student is thinking visible.

5:24 Laura Gibbs: using extra credit assignments as a laboratory and paying attention to student choices.

10:26 Lessons learned and our own personal journeys through online teaching. Why Doug got into online teaching: a SPOC at Yale Summer Program.

14:23 Edward’s first mistakes in teaching online: if students don’t understand the assignment, it’s hard to move forward from there.

17:50 Laura: understanding students by watching them make choices. Sheena Iyengar on The Art of Choosing. Edward’s positive feedback from students making choices.

24:07 Doug on using Zoom for live online teaching.

28:40 How Edward fixed his course issues. Starting easy. Many small projects–then choosing one to expand.

34:42 Laura on structuring online projects: starting blogging on day one. Aggregating blog posts with Inoreader.

39:43 Doug’s student projects: intermediate deliverables. Edward’s iterative approach to a final project.

42:19 Laura on making time for rewriting and revision. Carl Wieman’s exercise: students explaining their own wrong midterm answers. Reflection and learning. Laura on students reflecting and learning across disciplines using creative assignments.

49:45 End-of-semester wishes and regrets: how I’ll teach differently next time. Doug’s 15 hours of video are getting a little long in the tooth.

57:50 Memorable mistakes? The worst mistake of all: not admitting when you make a mistake. Modeling enthusiasm, purpose, and humility.

1:00:24 Laura on humanistic labor and using digital media. An “open,” journey-centered course vs. a closed, instructor-directed course. Laura’s metaphor for online teaching: a hybrid car, not a hybrid course.

1:06:38 Signing off.

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