Spring Workshops Inspire Writing and Publishing on Campus

posted in: workshops | 0

brad peters work with faculty during a workshopEngaged learning was evident in two workshops conducted by Dr. Brad Peters, professor in the NIU Department of English and Coordinator of Writing Across the Curriculum, Rhetoric and Composition. On May 23, 2017, faculty learned techniques for Designing a Writing-Infused Course in the Major or General Education. Faculty from 11 different departments shared experiences and collaborated while exploring topics including helping students become better readers, giving feedback that improves content and grammatical correctness, as well as effective use of rubrics and writing technologies.

Comments from participants indicated that valuable information related to scaffolding the writing process, providing effective feedback to students, using informal writing activities, and thinking visually as well as textually were gained throughout the day long workshop. Participants appreciated the practical approach and strategies shared by Dr. Peters that could be immediately applied in the classroom.

A few quotations from participants summed up the workshops:

“Fantastic workshop!”

“Thank you for such an engaging Faculty Development workshop.”

“It is a joy to learn from Dr. Brad Peters!”

The Write Well, Publish More! workshop held on May 25, 2017, also received excellent reviews. Faculty from 10 different departments attended the workshop that focused on improving the writing process, budgeting time, power planning and drafting, forming writing circles, systematizing revising, and letting go. Dr. Peters encouraged participants to expand their perspectives of the writing process to incorporate new techniques and tools discussed during the workshop. Participants thanked Dr. Peters for sharing strategies for overcoming obstacles and writer’s block, explaining steps in the publishing process, and sharing checklists for structuring the review process.

Participants shared their thanks by commenting:

“Brad makes every training valuable and engaging.”

“His insights are SO helpful.”

“I enjoyed working with new colleagues on writing. Learning excellent, practical ways to improve writing.”

The Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center hosts a Writing Circle each semester to support faculty who are working on scholarly publications. For more information on joining the Writing Circle, contact Yvonne Johnson, yjohnson@niu.edu or Janet Giesen, giesen@niu.edu or contact the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center at 815-753-0595.

Tips to Engage Critical Thinkers & Writers – Transform Your Course Now!

posted in: News, workshops | 0


The Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center is pleased to share a series of workshops designed to provide faculty, teaching assistants, and instructional staff tips to effectively engage students in critical thinking and writing assignments in their courses. The workshops include hands-on activities and strategies you can immediately apply in your course. Tips focus on providing effective feedback to students, managing the workload, avoiding plagiarism and more. Participants will learn and practice ways to engage students in the learning process. You may select individual workshops that meet your needs or attend all 5 in the series.

The workshops were first offered during the fall 2016 semester. Feedback from participants overwhelmingly indicated that the sessions will benefit both instructors and students.

Comments include:

I learned –

  • the value of using papers to motivate students
  • prioritizing feedback is key for both instructors and students
  • strategies for managing instructor workload by identifying trends in writing and commenting on trends rather than in-line editing
  • ways to add components to the classroom environment to require direct engagement
  • possible responses to plagiarism

Dr. Brad Peters from the Department of English will lead each workshop.

The Engage Students workshop series is sponsored by Writing Across the Curriculum and the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center. Register Here

To share ideas for new workshop topics or if you would be interested in presenting at one of our Institutes, please contact Yvonne Johnson, Multimodal Teaching Coordinator at yjohnson@niu.edu, 815-753-2690 or Janet Giesen, Instructional Design Coordinator at giesen@niu.edu, 815-753-1085. We look forward to hearing from you!