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Northwest Missouri State University

Welcome back!

Check out our fall 2010 faculty focus on teaching highlights on our web site featuring Rosalie Weathermon, Paco Martinez, and Sue Myllykangas at


Teaching & Learning: Perfecting the Essential

Beginning this fall, CITE will be broadening its support of the instructional technology needs of Northwest faculty to include the scholarship of teaching and learning.  CITE will be providing assistance for Northwest faculty in the development and sharing of pedagogical and content-specific knowledge, supporting faculty in their teaching and professional activities, and providing faculty with access to professional development support and resources.  Specific services areas the CITE office will provides includes teaching, research and the scholarship of teaching, student support and personal enrichment.  Watch our web page for Upcoming Events related to teaching and learning.

Teaching Image

New schedule of CITE workshops and events for 2010-2011

CITE will be offering a slate of workshops, training sessions, and sharing events for the 2010-2011 trimesters. These will include some workshops related specifically to teaching and learning.  You can access a current listing on our web site under the Upcoming Events section at 

Our first series of professional development workshops is scheduled for Tuesday, August 24 in Owens Library 250.  You will need to bring your Tablet PC computers for these sessions.  Please register at our Workshop Registration site:

Fall 2010 CITE Workshops

10:00-10:45 Elluminate Live Recordings
You will need to bring your Northwest Tablet PC computer.  This session will take you through how to use ClassLive/Elluminate.  This web conferencing tool provides faculty with the ability to produce recordings of short lecture sessions and screen recordings (5-10 minutes or less) to be linked within a course site for asynchronous delivery.  PowerPoint slide shows, whiteboard descriptions, application sharing, and videos can all be incorporated into these sessions.
1:00-2:00     eCompanion Updates in .NExT
This session will be an overview of the features of eCompanion/eCourse in the .NExT version.  Questions about specific features and uses are encouraged.
2:15-3:00     Prezi
You will need to bring your Northwest Tablet PC computer.  This session will cover a free presentation software called Prezi which you can sign up for online.  Prezi can be used to create non-linear storylines for use in presenting a variety of topics.  Check out some presentations at

Good Teaching: The Top 10 Requirements

August 11, 2010

Good Teaching: The Top 10 Requirements

By: Richard W. Leblanc, PhD in Philosophy of Teaching

One. Good teaching is as much about passion as it is about reason. It's about motivating students not only to learn, but teaching them how to learn, and doing so in a manner that is relevant, meaningful and memorable. It's about caring for your craft, having a passion for it and conveying that passion to everyone, but mostly importantly to your students.

Two. Good teaching is about substance and treating students as consumers of knowledge. It's about doing your best to keep on top of your field, reading sources, inside and outside of your areas of expertise, and being at the leading edge as often as possible. But knowledge is not confined to scholarly journals. Good teaching is also about bridging the gap between theory and practice. It's about leaving the ivory tower and immersing oneself in the field in talking to, consulting with, and assisting practitioners and liaising with their communities.

Three. Good teaching is about listening, questioning, being responsive and remembering that each student and class is different. It's about eliciting responses and developing the oral communication skills of the quiet students. It's about pushing students to excel and at the same time it's about being human, respecting others and being professional at all times.

Four. Good teaching is about not always having a fixed agenda and being rigid, but being flexible, fluid, experimenting, and having the confidence to react and adjust to changing circumstances. It's about getting only 10 percent of what you wanted to do in a class done and still feeling good. It's about deviating from the course syllabus or lecture schedule easily when there is more and better learning elsewhere. Good teaching is about the creative balance between being an authoritarian dictator on the one hand and a push-over on the other. Good teachers migrate between these poles at all times depending on the circumstances. They know where they need to be and when.

For more content like this, be sure to download the FREE REPORT: Philosophy of Teaching Statements: Examples and Tips on How to Write a Teaching Philosophy Statement

Five. Good teaching is also about style. Should good teaching be entertaining? You bet! Does this mean that it lacks in substance? Not a chance! Effective teaching is not about being locked with both hands glued to a podium or having your eyes fixated on a slide projector while you drone on. Good teachers work the room and every student in it. They realize that they are the conductors and that the class is their orchestra. All students play different instruments and at varying proficiencies. A teacher's job is to develop skills and make these instruments come to life as a coherent whole to make music.

Six. And this is very important, good teaching is about humor. It's about being self-deprecating and not taking yourself too seriously. It's often about making innocuous jokes, mostly at your own expense, so that the ice breaks and students learn in a more relaxed atmosphere where you, like them, are human with your own share of faults and shortcomings.

Seven. Good teaching is about caring, nurturing and developing minds and talents. It's about devoting time, often invisible, to every student. It's also about the thankless hours of grading, designing or redesigning courses and preparing materials to still further enhance instruction.

Eight. Good teaching is supported by strong and visionary leadership, and very tangible institutional support-resources, personnel, and funds. Good teaching is continually reinforced by an overarching vision that transcends the entire organization-from full professors to part-time instructors-and is reflected in what is said, but more importantly by what is done.

Nine. Good teaching is about mentoring between senior and junior faculty, teamwork, and being recognized and promoted by one's peers. Effective teaching should also be rewarded and poor teaching needs to be remedied through training and development programs.

Ten. At the end of the day, good teaching is about having fun, experiencing pleasure and intrinsic rewards ... like locking eyes with a student in the back row and seeing the synapses and neurons connecting, thoughts being formed, the person becoming better, and a smile cracking across a face as learning all of a sudden happens. It's about the former student who says your course changed her life. It's about another telling you that your course was the best one he's ever taken. Good teachers practice their craft not for the money or because they have to, but because they truly enjoy it and because they want to. Good teachers couldn't imagine doing anything else.

Dr. Richard W. Leblanc is an associate professor at York University in Toronto. Contact him at

Reprinted from The Teaching Professor, Vol. 12, no. 6.


Complete your course requests for fall 2010 now

Course requests for the fall trimester can be submitted by accessing the Create-a-Course Request Form link on the login page on Northwest Online. These request forms are e-mailed directly to the CITE Office for processing and provide an effective way to efficiently process faculty requests in a timely and accurate manner. As always, faculty can request new course sites or duplications using the Create-a-Course Request Form link.

Announcement Enhancement in .NExT version of eCompanion

Online instructors, especially those who are new to teaching online, can have a strong concern that they will fail to make a connection with their online students.

Using announcements in your online course can be an effective contribution in your efforts to be "present" in your course and assist with creating a continuous instructor-student connection.

A recent enhancement to the Announcement tool in Pearson eCollege allows faculty to adjust the default look of an announcement subject line to draw students' attention to the announcement area or to a particular entry more effectively.

When adding or editing an announcement, you will now notice a small-version of the visual editor next to the subject-line entry field. You can use the options in this visual editor to apply formatting enhancements to your announcement subject line such as Bold, Italics, Color, or a combination of these. You can also apply additional enhancements by utilizing HTML tags in your announcement subject line.

Try using one of the following HTML tag examples (with your announcement title inserted between the tags) to enhance the default look of your announcement subject line.

Example #1:

Use this code to have your announcement subject scroll across the line area:

<marquee>Announcement Subject Line</marquee> 

Example #2:

Use this code to create a scrolling subject line with bolded, larger text:

<marquee><strong><font size="3">Announcement Subject Line</font></strong></marquee>

Example #3:

Use this code to create a yellow background for a fixed announcement subject line:

<span style="background-color: yellow;"><strong>Announcement Subject Line</strong></span>

Announcement Subject Line

If you like to use the announcement tool in Pearson LearningStudio to post an Instructor welcome to the course, key policies and procedures, assignments and due dates or other important course information, take advantage of this recent enhancement to help you capture your online students' attention more effectively.

Note: As a further enhancement, the announcement character limitation has been doubled to 500 characters in order to accommodate the use of HTML tag characters. Please keep in mind that script tags and java script will not run in the announcement subject-line field.

Rachel Cubas , M.Sc.
International Academic Trainer & Consultant
Pearson eCollege

Develop creative new presentations with Prezi

Try something new in your classroom this fall.  Check out Prezi presentation software.  It's free and easy to learn.  You can sign up for Prezi at  Complete the quick tutorial at the beginning and you should be off and running in designing a new presentation to use in the classroom.  You can also have students sign up for accounts and design presentations for projects.  Some examples of Prezi presentations can be found at: 

Prezi is a web-based presentation tool.  It uses a single canvas to present content instead of traditional slides. Text, images, videos and other objects can be placed on the canvas.  Non-linear presentations can be created using the canvas, where they can zoom in and out of a visual map of the presentation.  A path is created through different content.  The presentation can be developed via the Internet, and then downloaded to your desktop so that an Internet connection is not needed when showing the presentation.

CITE will be hosting a short workshop on getting started with Prezi on Tuesday, August 24.  Please register at our Workshop Registration site:

New toll free number for eCollege helpdesk

eCollege now has a toll free number available for Educational Partners to use in contacting their 24/7/365 helpdesk.  That number is 877.740.2213.  Please make sure to update your syllabi and course sites with this new number.  The e-mail contact address  remains the same at 

Student and faculty can also chat with the helpdesk.  Chat can be accessed from the course site under the Helpdesk tab which is included in the Tools menu across the top of the course page for each course site.

Using the dropbox and online grading to save paper and money

To save a few trees and maybe even some money, there are a couple of ways faculty and students can contribute.  The dropbox feature provides a way for students to upload assignments to an online location where faculty can download the assignment to their computer and then electronically grade them.  Once graded, faculty can re-upload the assignments to the dropbox and record the grade.  Additionally, place your syllabus online and any handouts in the Document Sharing area of eCompanion.  This can all be completed without printing saving paper, ink, and ... money.

Turnitin plagiarism prevention software available

If you are interested in using Turnitin plagiarism prevention software for your classes, please be sure and sign up to access an account.  Turnitin provides faculty and students with an effective way to quickly check written work for plagiarism. You can learn more about this software at

Contact Darla Runyon at x-1532 or at to set up your account for this fall.