2014

Flat space, deep learning, at Auburn University (Auburn, AL), Friday, September 19, 2014:
The teaching of physics to engineering students has remained stagnant for close to a century. In this novel team-based, project-based approach, we break the mold by giving students ownership of their learning. This new course has no standard lectures or exams, yet students’ conceptual gains are significantly greater than those obtained in traditional courses. The course blends six best practices to deliver a learning experience that helps students develop important skills, including communication, estimation, problem solving, and team skills, in addition to a solid conceptual understanding... Read more about Flat space, deep learning
The Principles and Practice of Physics, at Auburn University (Auburn, AL), Friday, September 19, 2014:
The Principles and Practice of Physics is a groundbreaking new calculus-based introductory physics textbook that uses a unique organization and pedagogy to allow students to develop a true conceptual understanding of physics alongside the quantitative skills needed in the course. The book organizes introductory physics around the conservation principles and provides a unified contemporary view of introductory physics. In this talk we will discuss the unique architecture of the book, the conservation-laws-first approach, and results obtained with this book.
Black silicon, at Physics Colloquium, Auburn University (Auburn, AL), Friday, September 19, 2014:
Shining intense, ultrashort laser pulses on the surface of a crystalline silicon wafer drastically changes the optical, material and electronic properties of the wafer. The resulting textured surface is highly absorbing and looks black to the eye. The properties of this 'black silicon' make it useful for a wide range of commercial devices. In particular, we have been able to fabricate highly-sensitive PIN photodetectors using this material. The sensitivity extends to wavelengths of 1600 nm making them particularly useful for applications in communications and remote sensing.
Assessment: The silent killer of learning, at Auburn University (Auburn, AL), Friday, September 19, 2014:
Why is it that stellar students sometimes fail in the workplace while dropouts succeed? One reason is that most, if not all, of our current assessment practices are inauthentic. Just as the lecture focuses on the delivery of information to students, so does assessment often focus on having students regurgitate that same information back to the instructor. Consequently, assessment fails to focus on the skills that are relevant in life in the 21st century. Assessment has been called the "hidden curriculum" as it is an important driver of students' study habits. Unless we rethink our approach to... Read more about Assessment: The silent killer of learning
Memorization or understanding: are we teaching the right thing?, at Special Seminar, Univerzita Karlova (Charles University) (Prague, Czech Republic), Monday, September 15, 2014:
Education is more than just transfer of information, yet that is what is mostly done in large introductory courses -- instructors present material (even though this material might be readily available in printed form) and for students the main purpose of lectures is to take down as many notes as they can. Few students have the ability, motivation, and discipline to synthesize all the information delivered to them. Yet synthesis is perhaps the most important -- and most elusive -- aspect of education. I will show how shifting the focus in lectures from delivering information to synthesizing... Read more about Memorization or understanding: are we teaching the right thing?
Engaging Students One-on-One, All At Once Session 1 , at Peer Instruction Online Course, Hong Kong Polytecnic University (online) (Hong Kong, China), Wednesday, September 10, 2014:
This short-course introduces participants to the ideas of Peer Instruction (PI) and Just- in-Time-Teaching (JiTT), two research-based methods for engaging students, improving conceptual understanding, increasing retention in courses and programs, and enhancing academic performance. Participants will also learn about a new approach to instructional design. Finally, participants will apply the knowledge gained to a specific course module they are (or will be) teaching, by re-designing (or designing) the syllabus for this course module and developing a plan for implementing PI and JiTT. The... Read more about Engaging Students One-on-One, All At Once Session 1 
Engaging Students One-on-One, All At Once Session 1 , at Peer Instruction Online Course, Taibah University (online) (Medina, Saudi Arabia), Wednesday, September 10, 2014:
This short-course introduces participants to the ideas of Peer Instruction (PI) and Just- in-Time-Teaching (JiTT), two research-based methods for engaging students, improving conceptual understanding, increasing retention in courses and programs, and enhancing academic performance. Participants will also learn about a new approach to instructional design. Finally, participants will apply the knowledge gained to a specific course module they are (or will be) teaching, by re-designing (or designing) the syllabus for this course module and developing a plan for implementing PI and JiTT. The... Read more about Engaging Students One-on-One, All At Once Session 1 
Confessions of a converted lecturer, at 9th Teikyo-HSPH Symposium, Harvard School of Public Health (Boston, MA), Thursday, September 4, 2014:
I thought I was a good teacher until I discovered my students were just memorizing information rather than learning to understand the material. Who was to blame? The students? The material? I will explain how I came to the agonizing conclusion that the culprit was neither of these. It was my teaching that caused students to fail! I will show how I have adjusted my approach to teaching and how it has improved my students' performance significantly
Why You Can Pass Tests But Still Fail in the Real World, at Making the Large Classroom Small: The Flipped Classroom, Winona State University (Winona, MN), Thursday, August 21, 2014:
Why is it that stellar students sometimes fail in the workplace while dropouts succeed? One reason is that most, if not all, of our current assessment practices are inauthentic. Just as the lecture focuses on the delivery of information to students, so does assessment often focus on having students regurgitate that same information back to the instructor. Consequently, assessment fails to focus on the skills that are relevant in life in the 21st century. Assessment has been called the "hidden curriculum" as it is an important driver of students' study habits. Unless we rethink our approach to... Read more about Why You Can Pass Tests But Still Fail in the Real World
Confessions of a converted lecturer, at Making the Large Classroom Small: The Flipped Classroom, Winona State University (Winona, MN), Thursday, August 21, 2014:
I thought I was a good teacher until I discovered my students were just memorizing information rather than learning to understand the material. Who was to blame? The students? The material? I will explain how I came to the agonizing conclusion that the culprit was neither of these. It was my teaching that caused students to fail! I will show how I have adjusted my approach to teaching and how it has improved my students' performance significantly

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