Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Using Consoles for Classroom Presentations
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Getting the Most out of Clickers
The Care and Feeding of Graduate Student-Supervisor Relationships: A Toolkit for Planning Successful Graduate Research
An insightful student once described the ideal graduate supervisor as someone who had compassionate rigor. The relationship between supervisor and graduate student is a complex mix of mentoring, friendship, guidance, and professional development. Every successful student-supervisor relationship negotiates a balance between support and development of the postgraduate as an independent researcher. Both graduate students and supervisors benefit from knowing how to effectively define and develop these relationships. A range of tools offer starting points in setting expectations around the roles of student and supervisor, including the Role Perception Rating Scale (RPRS), the Student Evaluation of Postgraduate Supervision (SEPS) and the Student Profile Proforma (SPP). Tools such as these can provide a base from which supervisors and their students can begin to discuss their professional relationship. Once expectations have been set, it is important to plan to achieve the agreed outcomes and to periodically review progress and adjust accordingly.
This interactive workshop was intended for both graduate students and their supervisors. Graduate students and supervisors attending together were likely to reap the most benefit from this workshop, but individuals were very welcome to attend as well. Participants explored the similarities and differences in their expectations, while learning practical strategies for developing a positive and productive working relationship, and planning to maximize the potential for the graduate student experience.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Assessment Matters: Marking and Feedback for GAs and TAs
Graduate students and undergraduate teaching assistants (GAs and TAs) are frequently responsible for a range of assessments in the courses they support, often with little or no training. GAs and TAs are very often the strongest connection and conduit for communication for students in a class, and fair evaluation is important to student satisfaction and progress. It helps minimize conflict and significantly improves the teaching and learning experience for everyone involved.
This practical and interactive session provided GAs and TAs with an opportunity to explore good practices in marking and in the provision of feedback, to become aware of some of the potential pitfalls of marking, and to develop some strategies that will assist them in both fairly and accurately assessing the achievements of their students.
Teaching Conversations: Moving Ahead as Excellent GAs and TAs
Graduate students and teaching assistants (GAs and TAs) often provide much more than tutorial assistance as they become teachers, mentors, and role models for their students. For new GAs and TAs, the first few weeks can be particularly challenging as they settle into their role, confront the challenges of teaching, and begin to understand and develop the boundaries of their relationship with students.
This session provided an informal and practical opportunity for new and experienced GAs and TAs to come together to explore issues they have faced in the first few weeks of the term, and to bring questions, share ideas, resources, and support with their colleagues in open conversations about teaching. Participants were also invited to share major challenges that have arisen in the first few weeks of teaching, in order to explore practical solutions to them.