Monthly Archives: August 2021

Second Chances at First Impressions

[Author’s note: I had nearly finished this post in January 2020, but during the ensuing pandemic chaos, I pushed it aside until now. This is essentially a pre-COVID time capsule, though I’ve added a post-COVID epilogue.]

A few years ago, I underwent peer evaluation of my teaching as part of a reappointment review. While being observed by a colleague, I was quite thrown off my game as he frequently stood up in the back of an auditorium full of seated students. I was baffled about what he was doing. Later, he explained that he was standing to see how many students were using their phones. Most of them, apparently. How did my course arrive at this point?

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I’ve Been Studying All Wrong! – Video

If you’ve read my previous posts, you’ll know I’m a big fan of applying cognitive psychology in my teaching. I’m a strong proponent of teaching students to use effective learning strategies, especially retrieval practice and distributed practice. I give a talk on the topic, often as a guest lecture. About a year ago, I recorded a video version of this talk, aimed at students. Please enjoy and share as you see fit.