The University Record, May 21, 2001

Series focuses on teaching, technology

By Wanda Monroe
University Library

McKeachie
Wilbert J. McKeachie, internationally known professor emeritus of psychology at the U-M, addressed the question, “What is good teaching?” during the opening session of the fourth annual Enriching Scholarship series. McKeachie, who is renowned for his perspective on teaching and learning, shared with approximately 175 faculty, graduate students and academic support staff his experiences in testing and assessing teaching that produces effective learning.

“It’s probably best if professors do less lecturing and instead help students to learn skills and strategies that will help them to continue learning after they leave our courses—strategies that help them become effective, responsible learners themselves,” McKeachie said. “Building relationships, asking questions, summarizing, explaining and learning how to collaborate with other students are skills they will need as they continue to learn after they leave the University. Technology is one of the tools that can be used to assist in the learning process.”

The use of technology for teaching and learning was the focus of the Enriching Scholarship series, which included workshops, seminars and sessions ranging from topics such as “Managing Citations with EndNote 4” to “Foreign Language Digital Audio” to “Online Quizzes.” More than 20 methods of using technology for teaching also were profiled by professors and technologists in a Faculty Showcase during the weeklong series.

With the intent of allowing exploration into the possibilities for collaborative learning, digital media and graphics, information management, library resources, online teaching, and Web technologies, the program this year provided more than 72 sessions. It offered opportunities for attendees to become familiar with technology that may be integrated into the classroom experience.

The event was organized and sponsored by the Teaching and Technology Collaborative (TTC), which includes representatives from the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, Faculty Exploratory, IT Education Services, Knowledge Navigation Center, Language Resource Center, Learning Resource Center, Media Union, Science Learning Center, and the University Library.

“The Teaching and Technology Collaborative is an excellent example of collaboration on campus that addresses the changing environment in which we live,” said James Hilton, professor of psychology and associate provost for academic, information and instructional technology affairs. “Information technology so permeates the academic mission of the University,” Hilton added, “we as educators need to better understand the tools that are available to us to help us enhance the teaching and learning experience. The phenomenal growth of the program is evidence that the TTC is providing a much needed service to the campus.”

More than 1,200 registrations were received by the TTC. Of those, 66 percent represented faculty, 22 percent represented academic support staff, and 10 percent were graduate students. There were 18 schools and colleges from the Ann Arbor, Flint and Dearborn campuses represented, and representatives from more than 200 departments, libraries, groups, programs, projects and institutes.

For more information on the Teaching and Technology Collaborative, visit the Web at www.umich.edu/~teachtec.