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Teach the “Why” Behind Math with the Socratic Method

To help business students struggling to grasp mathematical concepts, Dr. Doug Bujakowski encourages seeking answers—by asking more questions.

5 Ways to Turn Online Courses into Two-Way Conversations

By taking advantage of modern technologies, Dr. Marie Mallory offers distance learners more face-time than they would get in some on-campus classes.

Stem Student Attrition by Building Empowerment into the Curriculum

How do you solve for a low graduation rate? For Dr. Norma Jimenez Hernandez, it means helping students understand (and fight for) their rights.

Build Lifelong “Soft Skills” with a 3-Minute Video

When Dr. Peter Corridon noticed that his dental students lacked soft skills, he introduced a project that uses their digital savvy to their advantage.

Solve for “Chalk and Talk” Teaching with a Dose of Technology

This professor’s solution to his troublesome hearing issue offered an unexpected benefit: It helped him better connect with his students during class.

A Writing Pro’s Tips on Building an Online Writer’s Workshop—for Any Major

Professional writing consultant Theresa Stevens helps students of all majors turn a headful of ideas into a clearheaded research paper.

Prep History Students for the Future with a Writing Workshop

Dr. Christopher E. Manning’s in-class workshops help students learn history and improve their writing chops by editing themselves and each other.

Wake up Student Brains with a Logic Puzzle Warm-up

When Kristen Jaskie, MS, saw students struggling with critical thinking in her discrete mathematics class, she solved the problem—with puzzles.

Spark Product Innovation with Name Brands—and Lego Bricks

To push students’ boundaries on product innovation and development, Dr. Dan Li has them pick a card (any card!) and a handful of building bricks.

The Gaia Hypothesis: How to Teach Climate Change Without Heated Debates

This professor’s systems approach—using computer models and a made-up world—can be adapted to suit any complex or controversial subject.

Build Empathy in Tech-Focused Students with a Podcast Project

Dr. Jessica Calarco uses podcasts to teach empathy and social justice to sociology students.

Bring Logic to Life with a Strategic Card Game

This professor found a winning trick for easing students into mathematical models of modal logic. And it starts with an ordinary deck of cards.

Plot Twist: Use Movie Scenes to Make Material Stick

The emotional tension of real-life stories and Hollywood movies help this law professor make complex concepts more relatable—and memorable.

Piece Together Amazing Discussions with the Jigsaw Method

Dr. Mark Schoenfield drives discussion around difficult topics by breaking the class roster and course content into pieces for pondering.

Make Math Manageable with a Mastery-Based Method

Math did not come easily to this professor. By providing a path from Novice to Journeyman to Mastery, she helps students work through their struggles.

Engage All Learning Styles with an Integrated Lesson Plan

Alternative medicine instructor Adrian Isaza, DC, has blended VARK’s model and Bloom’s Taxonomy to make coursework more engaging for all students.

How to Teach Climate Geography by Analyzing a Real Air Disaster

This professor has students analyze the details of JFK Jr.’s plane crash to better understand how weather and geography can impact air travel.

This Multicultural Activity Menu Sparks a Love of Diversity

Students cannot embrace diversity when they’re trapped in a cultural bubble. So Dr. Jacquelyn Mosley helps them break out with a clever exercise.

Make Science Relatable by Editing Case Studies into Modern Stories

Can complicated science be made more interesting through storytelling? Upon analysis, this instructor has come to a solid conclusion: Yes.

Jump-Start Students’ Writing by Reverse Engineering the Thesis Statement

To circumvent writer’s block, students engage in a variety of creative approaches to reading, annotation, and analysis—then start on their thesis.

View a Topic Through an Interdisciplinary Lens with a Team-Taught Course

By showing students how evolution can inform and be informed by all areas of academia, this professor models the power of interdisciplinary instruction.

Build Content Mastery Through Creativity with an Illustrative Review

This professor helps nursing students absorb the complexities of prescription medications by tapping into their artistic potential. 

How to Use Real Headlines and Fake News to Make Science Relatable

When students asked, “Who cares? So what?” about her course material, this professor shared some fascinating, newsworthy stories.

Encourage Customer-Centric Thinking, Starting with a Moment of Struggle

This professor leverages the tools of applied psychology to help his students understand the unconscious and often irrational behavior that drives business decisions.

Advance Diversity Awareness with a Personal Survey on Identity and Inclusion

To prepare business students to be thoughtful leaders, this professor asks some pointed questions to uncover hidden biases and advantages.

Get Chem Students Curious with the Case of the Sleepless Student

Reinforce the utility of scientific investigation through realistic scenarios that require students to team up and think like experts.

How to Teach Heart Physiology with Smart Watches and Apps

This fitness-minded professor uses technology to help Millennials wrap their heads around how the heart functions—and what it means for their health.

Empower Nurses to Inspire Change with Motivational Interviewing

To foster healthy lifestyle changes in their future patients, nursing students must first give their own communication skills a checkup.

Mimic Unpredictable Scenarios with an Evolving Case Study

To help future fitness pros flex their mental muscle, this instructor devised four-round case studies of clients whose needs are always changing.

Bring Complex Math Down to Earth with Real-World Examples

Using visual modeling and some helpful computer programs and platforms, this professor brings differential equations into clear focus.

Create Team-Driven Chefs with Community-Focused Instruction

This professor of the culinary arts prepares future chefs for the real world by emphasizing teamwork—and the in-class community—over individual egos.

Improve Class Discussion with a Quick Writing Exercise

By including writing warm-ups as a regular—and required—part of her course, this professor has found a way to keep students talking.

Help Students Bridge Cultural Gaps Starting with Identity Pie Charts

This professor pushes her students to proclaim their true selves—and step into unfamiliar worlds—to overcome cultural misunderstandings.

Check Students’ Understanding (Fast!) with a One-Minute Paper

When this professor wants a quick read on students’ grasp of concepts, she hands out index cards and sets a timer for 60 seconds.

Teach Social Entrepreneurship to Engineers with a High-Stakes Overseas Project

By having them help a community in need, this professor teaches would-be entrepreneurs what it takes to succeed in the business world.

Keep Lab Time Focused on Lab Work with Pre-Lab Instructional Videos

When pre-class readings left students ill-prepared for lab work, this physicist found a better way to show them what they need to know.

Introverted Educators: Play to Your Strengths with a 1:1 Approach

Breaking down concepts and class groups—from big to medium to small—helps extroverts and introverts alike.

Build Business Acumen with a Board of Directors Presentation

To help students understand the dynamics of presenting a business plan, this instructor reached out to his LinkedIn network—with remarkable results.

Beat Impostor Syndrome in Online Learners with a Big Group Project

A two-part assignment provides students with the knowledge and confidence they will need to present findings to a board of directors.

Teach Investment Theory with Real-Time Stock Trading

Using an online stock-trading simulation helps students put theory into practice—with a safety net. The payoff for top performers? A grade boost.

Show the Importance of Questioning “the Facts” with a Simple Survey

A quiz with seemingly basic questions—how many chairs are in this room?—shows students that critical thinking is critically important.

Help Students Find Their Creative Voice with a Modeling Approach

Students learn to power through writer’s block by doing a deep dive into the works of three types of composers—and not just the famous ones.

Dispel Public-Speaking Fears with an Awards Presentation Assignment

This communication professor’s lesson empowers students to overcome their fears—and consider their lack of meaningful connections.­

Could This Cognitive Psychologist Change the Way You Teach?

When Dr. Michelle Miller saw there was a dearth of evidence on learning theory, she wrote the book on it—to the benefit of educators and students alike.

Foster a Sense of Family on Campus with Lessons from Military Family Research

After years of researching close-knit families on military installations, this professor realized their lessons could help students build campus connections, too.

Spark Reflection on Learning Outcomes by Knowing What to Ask

The study of Islam involves subject matter that can be sensitive or difficult to digest. Reflective essays reveal areas where clarity or context is needed.

Build Student Lab Skills by Taking a Toxic Field Trip

 Set up lab students for real-world success with field work that addresses a real-world question: How do bacteria fight antibiotics?

Teach Practical Skills with a Mysterious Group Project

Students in this marketing course wear many hats—entrepreneur, marketer, and client. Changing roles and other surprises keep them on their toes.

Try Universal Design for Learning to Help Nontrad Students Succeed

This professor's approach combines her knowledge of special education and business in a way that meets a broad range of student needs.

Improve Math Skills by Thinking Like a Camp Counselor

To overcome a deeply held belief among students that math skills were out of reach, this instructor first got a little goofy.

Help Students Decode Journal Articles with Academic Reading Tips

Journal articles can intimidate first-year college and university students used to reading textbooks in classes. These strategies help them crack the code.

Shift Historical Perspective with Primary Sources and a Hot-Button Topic

For students to see their role in the wider world—and the future—they first must realize that their view of the past is skewed.

Build Community by Sharing Language Stories

Students build Spanish and English speaking skills—and intercultural awareness—when they trade life stories in the community.

Teach Holistic Thinking with a Five-Senses Lab

Reading medicine labels is a good start, but this professor shows students that there is more to being a pharmacist than meets the eye.

Use Real-World Work to Improve Student Expertise

A collegiate competition is giving this Washington College professor the chance to immerse his marketing students in real-world agency life.

Boost Decision-Making Skills with Just-in-Time Teaching

By encouraging role-playing and collaboration, this professor teaches occupational therapy students how to deploy research for personalized treatment.

Build Historical Perspective with a Pop Culture Catalog

A passion for journalistic research enables this history professor to help students deeply understand the past through the lens of the present.

Use Feedback Videos to Improve Retention and Growth in Online Writing Courses

Typed comments on papers can feel accusatory. This writing professor (and prolific writer) uses psychology and technology to set a positive tone.

Teach Anatomy with 3-D Art

Questions around the effectiveness of using cat cadavers led this instructor to try a series of experiments. This is how she got from Point A to 3-D.

Encourage Collaboration with a Discussion Facilitation Assignment

This professor’s group interaction project helps independent-minded honors students become more capable as leaders and as teammates.

Teach Teachers to Teach with Intuition-Busting Clinical Interviews

By focusing on how problems are solved instead of simply solving problems, this instructor helps future teachers build intuitive skills in the classroom.

Build Better Writers with a Refrigerator-Magnet Game

To help write better—not just correctly—students dissect the sentences of famous authors, then use word games to augment sentences of their own.

Help Students Receive Feedback by Teaching Them How to Deliver It

By evaluating themselves and others—on paper and in person—students learn to be more objective about their progress and identify opportunities for growth.

Change Student Perspectives with Professional Partnerships

This professor brings a touch of the real world to his marketing course by having students try their sales pitches on sales professionals.

Increase Creativity with Progressive Relaxation Exercises

This architecture professor has adopted a practice that helps students from multiple disciplines tap into their creative minds and generate new ideas.

Help Students Learn to Self-Edit with Multimodal Composition

With a little coaching in sound engineering, weaker writers learn a trick to help them catch their own errors—and pump up their final draft with wicked audio.

Show Students that Their (Informed) Opinions Matter

No five-paragraph essay here! This class reads up on tough topics, feels all the feels, then uses context and research to write insightful response essays.

Overcome Public-Speaking Fears with Scratch-Off Lottery Cards

The Socratic method singles out law students—and sends stress soaring. This professor found a calm, collaborative way to build argumentation skills.

Foster Perseverance and Proficiency with a Game of Simon Says

To show students it is OK to be vulnerable and make mistakes while learning, this professor lowers the stakes and raises the fun factor.

How to Make Web Development Relevant to Journalism Majors

Journalists write in words, but their platform is often digital. One media professor’s mission is to ensure that students can read and write code, too.

Give Students an Edge: Bring Business Tech to the Classroom

With a strong background in business and technology, this professor sees benefits in taking his students beyond the use of classroom-only tools.

Improve Media Literacy with a 48-Hour Media Blackout

How to raise students’ awareness of their usage in today’s 24-hour-cycle, media-saturated world? Through experiential learning and critical essays.

Keep Adult Learners Motivated with the Right Message at the Right Moment

This instructor helps online students succeed by offering supportive input at key moments in each student's journey.

Provide a Framework for Business Ethics with Six Schools of Thought

Great minds do not always think alike: That’s why this professor introduces students to as many philosophies as possible.

Offset Stressful Field Work with Added Support Measures

For social work students, spending a month in a poor community overseas can be distressing. These educator interventions helped them through.

Demonstrate Bias—Then Growth—with a Word Cloud

Using tools for self-reflection, this border-studies expert helps Arizona students examine their beliefs about the southern border of the U.S.

Guarantee Weekly Engagement with Required Online Posts

To humanize distance learning, this professor teaches netiquette, forms de facto study groups, and takes part in student discussions.

Make Statistics Relatable with an Athletic Approach

In this high-energy class, getting students out of their seats and on their feet helps boost their odds of understanding how to read and apply statistics.

Engage Students of Required Courses with a Youth Service Learning Project

This professor sparked excitement in non-major students by offering them a heartwarming task: to teach basic science to local kids who need it most.

Cultivate Civic Engagement by Studying Local Food Insecurity

A community food assessment elevates experiential learning to a new level, taking students outside the classroom to view the real impact of inequities.

Conquer Math Phobia by Helping Students Analyze a “Burning Question”

Help even the most fearful of students understand and apply abstract concepts of mathematics with confidence. Here is one professor's approach.

Turn Students into Travel Agents to Make Languages “Stick”

In real life, we talk, we don’t conjugate verbs. Sharing fun details in a new language helps students internalize—not just memorize—vocabulary.

Make Practice Testing Fun with a “King of the Hill” Game

When his practice quizzes were a flop, this psychologist created a midterm challenge game that can earn students an A—and bragging rights.

Inspire Future Teachers to Be Agents of Equality

By examining historic primary documents and modern-day pedagogy, aspiring educators learn how to promote educational excellence for all.

Improve Students’ Collaborative Skills with the TREO Model

Most students know how it feels to be on a terrible team. After this class, they will understand why—and what they can do about it. 

Create a Sense of Urgency in the Classroom with Real-World Scenarios

This professor focuses labs on familiar health challenges in his students’ own community, making key scientific concepts more relatable and memorable.

Tackle Real-World Business Decisions in the Classroom

Analyzing data, metrics, and consumer habits gets real—and really easy to understand—when students serve as actual business consultants.

Course-Correct Daily with a Modified Daily Quiz

In accounting courses, if students fall behind, it is tough to catch up. Checking comprehension daily—with a reward of early dismissal—can help.

Close the Confusion Gap with Invention Activities

To help complex concepts sink in and nurture students' natural curiosity, this professor offers activities before the lesson—and no time to forget.

Draw Out Students’ Best Work with a “Contract for B”

For students writing and revising a semester-long research paper, the promise of a minimum grade of B can shift their focus from grades to effort.

Find Fun in Applied Science with a Messy Egg Drop Contest

This former softball coach combines two loves—science and competition—in a classroom experiment that helps freshmen get creative with science.

Overcome Anti-Math Bias with a Moment of Joy

Math, unlike life, has correct answers. This professor supports students every step of the way, so they can see the beauty in finding the solution.

Reveal Media Bias with a Shocking “Who Said It?” Exercise

Even the most socially conscious students are shocked to find how difficult it is to differentiate between quotes from rapists and those of men’s magazines.

Dismantle Classroom Inequities with Micro-Moments of Social Justice

To help marginalized students reach their tremendous potential, this professor weighs every action to ensure he is part of the solution, not the problem.

Ease Physics Phobia by Tackling the Math First

When this professor realized that a math deficit was blocking his students’ grasp of physics, he restructured his course to close the skills gap.

Solve the Mystery of History Bias with an Investigative Approach

Students use compelling primary documents to assume the role of historian, channel life as a historical figure, then teach history to each other.

Teach Active Reading by Taking Away Students’ Desks

To give students agency in analyzing Brazilian literature, this professor makes them write in their books, then get up on their feet to show what they know.

Tackle Complex Subjects with the Think-Pair-Share Model

When this professor saw students struggling with complex concepts, he adapted a tried-and-true teaching model to help them work through problems together.

Help Math Students Find Their Own Shortcuts

With this guided discovery activity, students dissect complex equations like advanced mathematicians do, deepening their own understanding of core concepts.

Teach Empathy with Eye-Opening Service Projects

When it comes to social justice, location matters. This social geography course explains how space affects equality—and how students can balance the scales.

Help Tomorrow’s Teachers Engage the YouTube Generation

Today's K–12 students are tech experts. Here is how education majors are learning to use tech to promote deep learning in future classrooms.

Unlock Student Potential with “T-Teaching”

This botanist has a growth mindset when it comes to adapting his approach to suit each student's needs. Here is how he digs deep to find out what they need.

Improve Problem-Solving Skills with a Culture of Care

The greatest lesson students can learn from their study of mathematics may be how to solve complicated problems with the help of others.

Wake up MBA Students with an Absurd Honor Code Contract

In this professor's course, MBA students get a shocking glimpse into the differences between online and face-to-face negotiations.

Bust Media Misconceptions with a Data Chart from the CIA

By researching key statistics from a range of countries—and sharing their own international experiences—students form a more realistic worldview.

Keep Students on Track with a Range of Grading Strategies

By midterms, it can be too late to course-correct. This professor uses high- and low-stakes grading—and other approaches—to identify problems early.

Empower Self-Reliant Learners with a Paradigm Shift on Grading

By diverging from language-teacher stereotypes, this professor has created assessments that empower students to be self-reliant, eager learners.

Identify Unique Strengths with a Multiple Intelligences Test

This former public school teacher shows future educators how to adapt quickly to meet the needs of each student’s unique learning style.

Inspire Reluctant Writers with a Storytelling Adventure

By trading required readings for creative writing, student artists discover how to develop their own stories and, ultimately, market themselves and their work.

Awaken Cultural Awareness with a Quirky Card Game

When international business students played a game with new rules and no speaking, they realized why cultural and language barriers impact workplace deals.

Ease Student Fears of Subjective Grading in the Arts

When student performers voiced concerns that this instructor’s musical preferences could unfairly impact their grades, the educator created a new approach to evaluations.

Bring Reality to the Lab to Make Scientists Marketable

In this molecular genetics course, labs closely mimic the imperfect nature of the real world to make students more flexible, resilient, and valuable.

Make College More Affordable with Open Educational Resources

Moved by stories of students who could not afford to pay for both textbooks and rent, this professor customized her course using materials that are free.

Make Big Classes Feel Small with Group Problem-Solving

When his class doubled in size, this professor created a small-lecture feel—by finding ways to engage all 75 students at once.

Build Student Debate Skills with a Team Playoff Exercise

This professor’s strategy encourages students to understand and then question the U.S. Constitution by suggesting amendments, then arguing their validity.

Promote Active Learning with Drama in the Classroom

This professor received critical acclaim from students when he replaced lectures and labs with student-led performances on how genes switch on and off.

Teach Argumentation and Citation with a Shakespeare Mash-up Exam

This professor eases students' fears of Shakespeare and bolsters their critical thinking skills by making them write new dialogue for classic characters.

Spark Student Interest with LARP Videos

This professor's LARP videos bring art history into the 21st century—and help students see the relevance of past works to their future careers.

Improve Group Project Accountability with a Guidebook

Working together is essential in science labs (and life). This biology professor's guide defines group project roles—and encourages everyone to join in.

Build Confident Graduate Teaching Assistants with a Structured, Flexible Curriculum

This professor sets new GTAs up for success in the classroom by empowering them to follow course requirements—and their own creative instincts.

Help Students Get Career Ready with a Social Media Makeover

A communications and journalism professor helps students know how to upgrade their online personas and show their best professional self (not selfie).

Teach Universal Design Principles with Empathy Exercises

This professor is an expert on human-centered design, but her hidden talent lies in teaching her students radical empathy for each other and their end users.

Address College Stress with Student Self-Care Journals

When a professor is a licensed therapist, students sometimes seek help in more than academics. Here, a tool to preserve boundaries and help students adapt.

Facilitate Teacher-Student Communication with Google Classroom

A tech-savvy professor shares how to use this digital tool to increase student engagement, collaboration, and communication—and save a few trees, too.

Ditch the Scantrons to Boost Intellectual Creativity

By promoting imagination (not memorization) to put managerial accounting principles to use, this professor boosts students’ future marketability.

Strengthen English Composition Skills with a Lesson in Tattoos

This professor helps English composition students form and support strong opinions by considering how body art reflects the human experience.

Teach Critical Thinking with Breakout EDU Games

This professor puts edtech students in charge of decision making and revisions as they create digital breakout games fueled by their ideas and passions.

Empower Educators to Explore Technology in the Classroom

How one education professor encourages edtech experimentation and creativity in a professional development program for other educators.

Address Diversity Issues with a Social Location Essay

To help would-be therapists understand the diverse backgrounds and needs of their future clients, this professor has students take a closer look inward.

Build Emotional IQ About Sensitive Topics with a Case Study

A history professor helps students grapple with the complexities of slavery with a controversial approach: She asks them to look at all sides of the issue.

Expand Big-Picture Thinking with an Interactive Timeline

How one professor uses historic milestones to help students understand the complex U.S. healthcare delivery system—and maybe drive future improvements.

Spark an In-Class Aha! Moment with an Assumption-Shattering Exercise

How one lecturer's own career epiphany inspired his innovative marketing lesson: dissecting brand messaging to see what (and if) it delivers.

Help College Students Build Resilience with Diva Role Models

First-year theatre students learn what it means to be stronger than your struggle—by connecting with an icon who was (and is) a rainbow for others.

Turn Bystanders into Upstanders with Social Justice Teamwork

How a semester of civic engagement helps passive students discover social justice and their power to effect positive change in our world.

Write Riddles to Help Vocab Terms Sink In

How one professor uses a poetic approach to help students in her Human Anatomy course memorize and retain the names and functions of numerous body parts.

Teach Real-World Skills with an Industry Simulation

When one web engineering professor saw that students lacked business savvy, he structured his class around teamwork and deliverables.

Inspire Sustainable Living with a Student Logbook

By having her students track their own consumer behaviors, this professor drives home the global message of sustainability in a very personal way.

Build Cultural Competence with a Quiz that Students Are Expected to Fail

This U of Michigan professor helps students of international marketing learn the nuances of culture by first helping them see how little they really know.

Help Computer Students Communicate in Human-Speak

Her students can write code—but can they express themselves clearly and confidently? How one IT professor's assignment turns programmers into communicators.

Enhance Performance Artistry with a YouTube Dance Exercise

How one professor helps students of modern dance make the leap from basic technique to true artistry.

Inspire High-Level Thinking with a Game Show Approach

Inspired by Jeopardy!, a Georgetown University professor uses a game to inspire grad students to ask (and answer) some compelling global questions.

Bring Economic Concepts to Life with Sitcoms

Facing an audience of nearly 300 freshmen, this Penn State professor offers microeconomics students a look at complex theory by using popular TV shows.

Engage Distant Learners with Slides that Sizzle

How one economics professor bridges geographical distance and generates real enthusiasm by designing materials especially for online students.

Ignite Curiosity with a “Movie Trailer” on Day One

At the semester’s start, a business professor models his lesson after a movie trailer, building excitement for an often dry subject: tax accounting.

Unite Thousands of Online Learners with a Selfie Game

A Virginia Tech professor’s photo treasure hunt takes geography students outside to learn about their university, each other, and the outside world.

Help Study Groups Bond with Music Videos

This UCLA professor breaks down barriers of competitiveness in his 350-seat organic chemistry class, using a musical extra-credit project.

Engage Nonmajors with an ePortfolio

Find out how this University of Virginia lecturer helps beginning Spanish students build vocabulary and confidence—even if they're not majors.

Analyze Hip-Hop to Demystify the Writing Process

When her History of Hip-Hop students struggled with pre-writing, Cain created a guided ideation lesson to help them craft an album review in record time.

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