Trends and Issues in Higher Ed

Innovators Among Us: Using Technology to Teach Beyond the Classroom

Teaching with Technology | June 2017

There’s a powerful thread that binds the educators from all three UW campuses featured in this year’s edition of Innovators Among Us: Teaching with Technology. They care deeply about bringing out the very best from their students — and they’re willing to tread unfamiliar territory to make it happen.

In this issue, you’ll find stories of instructors who “think outside the building”, connecting with peers and across disciplines, collaborating with community members and creating nontraditional learning opportunities for students. They use technology to engage, motivate and celebrate student work, and to help students become better learners — in ways that extend well beyond the classroom.

The five features in this report showcase just some of the great innovators among us. This issue is part of a series produced in partnership with UW Information Technology and supported by the Center for Teaching and Learning and UW Libraries. Over the past five years, the series has featured over 120 instructors on all three UW campuses using new tools and methods to engage students and improve learning outcomes. Together these features contain a wealth of exciting ideas as well as practical tips that can be applied and adapted across classrooms, disciplines and teaching contexts.

This issue highlights a deep commitment across the UW to put learning first and encourage innovation in teaching. Efforts such as the Technology Teaching Fellows and the Evidence-Based Teaching program support and connect instructors who share this commitment. We hope this report, and the individuals featured, inspires educators across our three campuses to share new ideas, experiment with new tools, build new partnerships and pursue measurable outcomes around teaching and learning at the UW.

June 2017 Feature stories


The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL)

The CTL offers workshops, consultations and resources on a wide range of topics, including teaching with technology, active learning, inclusive teaching, large lecture instruction and flipping the classroom.

UW Libraries

Teaching & Learning at the UW Libraries provide teaching toolkits and services, including Odegaard Undergraduate Library’s active learning classrooms.

Evidence-Based Teaching

The Evidence-Based Teaching program offers participating faculty support from the CTL and UW-IT, mentorship from experienced faculty, leadership opportunities and a community of peers invested in improving teaching.

Teaching Technology Fellows

Teaching Technology Fellows attend a week-long institute for faculty members who want to design an online or hybrid course, or redesign a traditional course into a hybrid or online format.

UW Information Technology (UW-IT)

Academic Services works with UW faculty and departments to use technology to improve learning outcomes, and provides workshops for tools including Canvas and Panopto. UW-IT Learning Technologies also offers one-on-one consultations for faculty and instructors looking to use technology for teaching.

UW Bothell

The Teaching and Learning Center offers faculty support and resources on topics including online tools for collaboration, digital literacy and online publishing for student work. UW Bothell’s Learning Technologies provides instructional resources and support for the integration of technology in teaching and learning.

UW Tacoma

The Faculty Resource Center offers training and support on new pedagogy and technology. The Teaching Forum meets monthly to discuss effective practice. Academic Innovation is supported by the Teaching, Learning & Technology group for on-ground, hybrid and online teaching.

Continuing the conversation

The goal of the Provost’s Trends and Issues in Higher Education report series is to broaden and connect conversations on the UW’s three campuses, share best practices and provide common reference points to inform our plans for the future. We welcome your participation, feedback and suggestions at


Many thanks to the UW faculty, students, and staff who contributed their stories, and to the UW subject matter experts who lent their advice to this report series or served as members of the Innovators Among Us Editorial Board, including Phil Reid of Academic and Student Affairs; Andreas Brockhaus, Todd Conaway and Erin Hill of UW Bothell; John Burkhardt and Colleen Carmean of UW Tacoma; Calla Chancellor, Karen Freisam and Christine Sugatan of the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL); Amanda Hornby of UW Libraries; Bridgette Kern, Elise Perachio and colleagues of University Marketing and Communications; Heidi Barta, Nate McKee and Jason Smith of UW-IT, and UW-IT communications colleagues who co-wrote and edited this report.

Series editors
Gerald J. Baldasty, provost and executive vice president
Marisa Nickle, senior director, strategy & academic initiatives, Office of the Provost

Editorial advisor
Cindy Brown, director of communications, UW-IT

Research, writing, design, and photography
Liz Janssen, graduate student assistant, Office of the Provost
Katie Kirkland, project manager, strategy & academic initiatives, Office of the Provost
Ignacio Lobos, communications content manager, UW-IT
Jade McDaniels, content designer, UW-IT
Nicole McGovern, undergraduate student assistant, Office of the Provost
Filiz Efe McKinney, multimedia producer, Office of the Provost
Elizabeth Sharpe, assistant director, UW-IT Communications
Brooke Summerlin, graduate student assistant, Office of the Provost
Jill Reddish, communications strategist, Office of the Provost