Active Learning Classrooms

Join us next Tuesday, November 10th from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM, for a special SIG Series webinar: Tales from the National Forum on Active Learning Classrooms

The WSU Learning Spaces Team attended the National Forum on Active Learning Classrooms at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities this summer and learned a lot. With topics ranging from picking whiteboards to better integrating classroom design into your campus strategic planning efforts, the conference was a treasure trove of good practices, pictures of cool new classrooms, links to useful information, and pro tips. Join us as we share what we learned at this amazing gathering. If you didn’t get a chance to go, this session will be a great opportunity to zoom in on the highlights. If you went, we would love to compare notes!

Ken Graetz, Tom Hill, Stephanie Stango, Dave Burman, and Eric Wright are all part of the Winona State University Learning Spaces Team and members of the Teaching, Learning, and Technology Services unit of Information Technology Services. They attended the National Forum as a team this summer and were able to cover almost all of the sessions. Each brings a unique perspective to the discussion, from under-the-hood classroom systems design and configuration to instructional design and pedagogical strategies.

Register for the webinar at Please forward this on to anyone on your campus who might be interested.

Link to the Virtual Room:

Or join by phone:

+1 646 568 7788 (US Toll) or +1 415 762 9988 (US Toll)

Meeting ID: 672 493 176


CCUMC Leadership in Media and Academic Technology.

EduCause learning space rating system.

McGill Principles for Designing of Teaching and Learning Spaces has rubric

most useful technology in an ALC appears to be the whiteboard.

Whiteboards are also very glitchy. Projecting my tablet or laptop is just as effective–with less glitches

evidence that students are reluctant to engage in active learning.

the U has done work, but the “Canadians have the process”

the support faculty gets from technicians: two week in the beginning of the semester in a new classroom.

what is the most important goal of your college education and therefore of this course: a. inquiring information b. learning how to sue information and knowledge in  anew situation c. developing skills to continue learning after college

  1. creativity
  2. computer skills
  3. GPA cutoff above 3.0
  4. problem solving skills
  5. teamwork skills
  6. verbal communication
  7. written communication skills  instructor will have students use in classes to identify problems engaging in a virtual field trip. student engagement

design thinking

wikispaces as GOogle docs, MS Word 16, work collaboratively

not group, but team. team work very important

take what we learned in ALCs to traditional large lecture halls

blending the formal with the informal (including outdoors)

connecting ALCs together across distance

thinking about gear (raised floors, smart kapp boards)

The Myth Of Student Engagement

The Myth Of Student Engagement

Teaching and Learning: The Chicken and the Egg

the heart of the student engagement myth: that adding or changing classroom elements, doing a new project, or exposing a student to a new technology or method of instruction will magically transform apathy into a white-hot fire of curiosity.

True engagement comes when a teacher knows a student’s strengths and interests beyond the classroom and uses that knowledge to deepen relationships. If we go into our rooms each day to teach but not connect, we can’t expect students to care beyond a test score, if that.

Can you answer these questions about your students? If you can, how do you apply that knowledge to connect with them?

*What home issues are affecting their work?

*Do they have a non-academic passion?

*What are their favorite shows, games, songs, or books?

*Do they have a preferred learning style?

*What is their hidden talent?

*What goals do they have for themselves in the future?

My note: easily said then done; if the instructor is overloaded with 4 classes 100 students per class, the suggestion above is rendered useless.