Trends and Issues in Higher Ed

Innovators Story Archive


September 25, 2018

Using evidence to improve teaching and learning

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The Evidence-Based Teaching (EBT) program supports faculty to try new, research-based teaching strategies in classrooms across disciplines.   Across the UW, faculty are committed to using the best possible teaching strategies to enhance student learning — whether that learning takes place in large lecture classes or small seminars, in Philosophy or in Oceanography. What are…


September 17, 2018

Linking classroom to community with technology

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A geography workshop paired its students with nonprofit organizations to help solve critical community issues, offering a model of how to bring service learning into the classroom. Two fundamental questions help shape Professor Sarah Elwood’s approach to teaching a capstone course in the Department of Geography. “What do I want my students to learn? And…


May 10, 2018

The power of online learning

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When Associate Professor Scott Fritzen was asked to help craft and teach a long-distance program for mid-career African health professionals at the Evans School of Public Policy & Governance, he jumped at the opportunity to improve public health in Africa through executive education. A well-crafted program — with the bulk of the work conducted via…


April 20, 2017

Keeping history alive with a digital library collection

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More than two decades of research by students in Professor Michael K. Honey’s oral history courses was kept in a library storage room — a rich collection of untold stories of working-class Tacoma sadly out of sight and out of mind. Honey knew the materials gathered by students supported first-person stories that deserved to be…


April 7, 2017

Instant feedback via earbuds

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Kathleen Artman Meeker’s six-year-old student had three words inhis vocabulary: “No,” “eat” and an expletive that he used to maximum effect in the classroom. The outbursts disrupted the class and puzzled Meeker, who was desperately trying to help him. And she finally did, thanks to valuable feedback from a behavior consultant who observed Meeker’s interactions…


February 22, 2017

Building lifelong learning, with the help of technology

UW Bothel Lecutrer Erin Hill teaches a class

How can technology in the classroom help students learn how to learn? For Erin Hill, STEM lecturer and director of the Quantitative Skills Center at UW Bothell, it is important that students get more out of her courses than just subject-specific skills. Hill also wants to develop students’ ability to learn better—in any field. And…


January 25, 2017

The power of personal narratives in the classroom

During a recent Sociology of Education class at UW Bothell, a reticent student pointedly told Jane Van Galen she never talked about her family or her childhood—and certainly didn’t want to share her story in a video. But Van Galen gently persuaded her and her fellow students that their personal experiences provided rich and relevant…


November 15, 2016

Can video games solve world problems?

It began, as so many things do, with the realization that a gap exists. Josh Lawler, professor in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences, saw there were very few games about climate change that are scientifically accurate—and actually fun to play. Knowing that research shows that games are an effective tool for learning, in…


May 2, 2016

Finding meaning behind the music

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Last fall, UW Tacoma Lecturer Kim Davenport turned to FOLD, a new web-based open publishing platform, to help her students construct multimedia presentations that allow them to discover their creative voice. FOLD, as Davenport quickly discovered, boosted the learning of the students in her humanities classes, encouraging them to express their ideas about music in…


March 29, 2016

Showing rather than telling at UW’s School of Dentistry

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Four years ago, UW School of Dentistry associate professor Donald Chi traveled to a remote Alaska Native community in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta region to find out what was rotting young keggutet, the Yup’ik word for teeth. What Chi learned in the field perfectly illustrates why he has replaced traditional paper case studies with videos in…



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