Skip to main content

USU's Web Broadcast Delivery Mode Recommendations

A web broadcast course is taught synchronously through a web conferencing platform. This is a summary of the USU recommendations for this delivery mode.

Original Article Publication Date: 07/17/2020

USU's Online Delivery Mode Recommendations

Online courses are taught asynchronously with all content hosted and delivered in Canvas. This is a summary of USU's recommendations for online course delivery.

USU's Hybrid Face-to-Face Delivery Mode Recommendations

Hybrid face-to-face courses meet synchronously at scheduled class times. Some students meet in person in the classroom while others participate remotely via Zoom. This is a summary of USU's recommendations for this teaching mode.

USU's Blended Delivery Mode Recommendations

A blended class is one in which synchronous meetings occur, but less frequently than usual because more content is placed online for asynchronous access. This is a summary of USU's recommendations for this delivery mode.

USU's Traditional Face-to-Face Delivery Mode Recommendations

Traditional face-to-face classes meet together, in person, at the same time, and in the same classroom. Interactive video conference (IVC classrooms) meet together at the same time in classrooms at USU regional campuses, which connect to each other via the statewide IVC system. This is a summary of USU's recommendations for this delivery mode.

Deep Dive Into Case Teaching Online - Harvard Business Publishing

This pre-recorded webinar from Harvard Business Publishing takes a look into what it takes to teach well online, specifically when teaching with cases and with other forms of active learning.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/22/2020

Online Learning Can Still Be Social

This article by Harvard Business Publishing gives us 10 keys to building a supportive digital community of learners. Today, education is not just about the transfer knowledge. Students learn from their teachers and peers through the social process that helps them to develop their social skills, mindsets, and capabilities.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/24/2020

How To Thrive In A Crisis

There are opportunities to make the best of every situation and it’s mostly in the framing. Instead of recession, think reset, reinvest, revaluate and reinvent. Instead of idle self-isolation think productively working from home.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/16/2020

6 Tips From Faculty for Teaching Remotely

This 2.5 minute video was produced by the University of Colorado - Boulder to give guidance on how to teach remotely.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/01/2020

Tips from Students: Advice for Improving Remote Learning

This 1.5-minute video was produced by the University of Colorado - Boulder to give tips on how to improve remote learning.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/01/2020

How to Get People (Students) to Actually Participate in Virtual Meetings (Classes)

Student participation is at risk of being virtually nonexistent as we are forced to shift to a completely-online learning environment. It is up to professors to prepare a participation-focused virtual class for their students.

The Principles of Strengths-Based Education

This article provide insight into what strengths-based education is and lays out the five principles of successful strengths based education. Strengths based education is a practical application of positive psychology.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/01/2009

Virtual Classes Don’t Have to Be a Bore

Andy Molinsky expounds on the challenges that online instructors face in their teaching, as well as how to overcome those challenges to encourage an engaging and developmental learning environment for students.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/19/2020

Teaching Effectively During Times of Disruption

Disruptions require adjustment, change, and vigilant adaptation. This lists some of the ways that instructors can prepare their courses while catering to the needs of the course and the students.

Innovative Teaching: Experiences with Online Teaching

This article is a product of an interview that was conducted by the Strategic Management Teaching Committee. They interviewed Pinar Ozcan who is a Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Oxford’s Said Business School in the UK. She has taught popular MBA strategy courses that were completely online and gives her advice for online teaching during the interview.

147 Tips for Teaching Online

A well-informed online instructor doesn't have to know everything about everything; instead, they need to know the basics of online instructing and be ready to adapt to the needs of students. This article lists some of the opportunities that educators need to be ready to adapt to.

Teaching Entrepreneurship Online: 5 Common Mistakes (and how to Avoid Them)

There are 5 common mistakes that occur when building and facilitating an online class and Justin Wilcox goes into all 5 and the best ways to avoid them or solve them.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/16/2020

Innovative Teaching: Pinar Ozcan

Pinar Ozcan explains her approach to online courses that are engaging and beneficial to students.

Going Online in a Hurry: What to Do and Where to Start

Experienced, online instructors offer their tips and resources to traditional classroom instructors on how to best move their courses online in times that require the move to happen quickly. While helpful tips are offered, it is warned that professors not cut corners or move this quickly if not needed.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/09/2020

How to Be a Better Online Teacher

Only 9% of college teachers prefer to teach in an online learning environment. But online enrollment keeps rising, and there is evidence that online teaching can provide similar learning outcomes to traditional learning environments. These tips can help you to improve your online teaching and lead to student success.

Straight Up Business Institute Online for Free

If your entrepreneurial course is going online due to COVID-19 this is an online course, you may want as a resource. Using a 6-level framework, the Idea Maker course helps students to bring their business ideas to reality.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/25/2020

What Makes Great Teachers Great?

In this article, adapted from the Ken Bain's book What the Best College Teachers Do, outlines five aspects of great teaching and gives tips on how to incorporate these aspects into your teaching. Bain concludes that the most important thing a teacher can do is to "create a natural critical learning environment.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/09/2004

5 Great Teachers On What Makes A Great Teacher

This NPR article contains the important lessons from a round table discussion on what makes great teachers. The participants Ken Bain, Troy Cockrum, Eleanor Duckworth, Renee Moore, and Jose Vilson come from varied backgrounds and all play different roles in the Education System. Together they bring to the table more than 150 years of teaching experience.

Original Article Publication Date: 11/08/2014

Tackling Difficult Conversations in the Classroom

Intentionally or not, difficult or controversial topics sometimes arise in the classroom. Topics like race, culture, gender, and/or sexual orientation can arise in almost any situation and it is important that students understand how to work through and discuss these issues before entering the workplace, where consequences can be much more dramatic.

Effective Teaching Strategies

This short article contains links to multiple strategies that are proven to increase the level of learning in students. Instead of simply lecturing or preparing slides, instructors can implement small group learning, demonstrations in practical classes, flipped classrooms, active learning, problem-based learning, work-based learning, or student-led learning. Each of these benefits the learners by allowing them to apply their learning in different ways.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/01/2019

Student-Centered Learning (21st Century Education)

A teacher-centered classroom is one focused primarily on the instructor and their content while a student-centered classroom is focused on the what the students need to learn, why they need to learn it, and how they are going to do so.

Original Article Publication Date: 02/21/2013

What Are The Best Practices for Designing Group Projects?

Working in groups is a valuable opportunity for students to gain practical teamwork skills that they will use throughout their careers. By carefully designing group projects, instructors can have a positive influence on students and their ability to work as a team.

6 Effective Strategies for Teaching Adults

Though referring primarily to training and teaching non-collegiate adults, this short list of strategies apply to the university classroom as well. Teaching adults in any setting will be supported by keeping the instruction relevant, remembering student backgrounds, integrating emotion into lessons, encouraging exploration, making assignments convenient, and always offering feedback. These strategies can help both new and veteran professors teach their students more effectively.

Original Article Publication Date: 06/16/2016

The Truth About Student Success - Promoting Students' Well-Being

Educators have always wanted students to do well, but only in recent years has the responsibility for student success shifted from being placed solely on the student to being shared equally by academic institutions. This four part analysis of the student success movement examines what makes for successful and long lasting changes to student success. Adapted from the paper "The Truth About Student Success: Myths, Realities, and 30 Practices That Are Working" from The Chronicle of Higher Education. NOTE: Viewing the full original article requires payment.

The Truth About Student Success - Improving the Educational Experience

Educators have always wanted students to do well, but only in recent years has the responsibility for student success shifted from being placed solely on the student to being shared equally by academic institutions. This four part analysis of the student success movement examines what makes for successful and long lasting changes to student success. Adapted from the paper "The Truth About Student Success: Myths, Realities, and 30 Practices That Are Working" from The Chronicle of Higher Education. NOTE: Viewing the full original article requires payment.

The Truth About Student Success - Integrating Academic Support

Educators have always wanted students to do well, but only in recent years has the responsibility for student success shifted from being placed solely on the student to being shared equally by academic institutions. This four part analysis of the student success movement examines what makes for successful and long lasting changes to student success. Adapted from the paper "The Truth About Student Success: Myths, Realities, and 30 Practices That Are Working" from The Chronicle of Higher Education. NOTE: Viewing the full original article requires payment.

The Truth About Student Success - Applying Student Data

Educators have always wanted students to do well, but only in recent years has the responsibility for student success shifted from being placed solely on the student to being shared equally by academic institutions. This four part analysis of the student success movement examines what makes for successful and long lasting changes to student success. Adapted from the paper "The Truth About Student Success: Myths, Realities, and 30 Practices That Are Working" from The Chronicle of Higher Education. NOTE: Viewing the full original article requires payment.


Icebreakers are fun activities designed to help people get to know one another. They can also be designed to allow students to become acquainted with course content and expectations.

Developing Teaching Self-Efficacy in Research Institution: A Study of Award-winning Professor

In a study to assess six male and six female award-winning research professors, interviews revealed that mastery experiences and social persuasions were particularly influential sources of self-efficacy and that these sources tended to be closely related leading to outstanding research results from these professors. These professors identified past instructional successes and students’ evaluative feedback as the most powerful sources of their teaching self-efficacy.

Original Article Publication Date: 07/01/2011

Why Teacher-Student Relationships Matter

This article is a discussion of the importance of establishing positive relationships between teachers and students, and how those relationships affect learning.

Original Article Publication Date: 03/12/2019

Teaching Problem Solving Skills

This website explains the value of teaching, and having students practice, problem solving skills. It includes a basic description of what problem solving is. Problem solving steps are identified and a variety of possible ways to implement these skills into any classroom are provided. A large variety of quotes about problem solving are also included throughout the article.

Storytelling Boosts Learning in the College Classroom

In this article, the author looks into the research that exists about the effectiveness of using storytelling in the classroom. Specifically, it looks at how using storytelling helps students be more engaged. Ultimately, this higher level of engagement leads to increased learning comprehension and retention. Tips on how to effectively incorporate storytelling are also included.

Original Article Publication Date: 05/10/2018

The Power of Storytelling in the College Classroom

Sal S. Buffo, a psychology professor at Yavapai College, talks about the power that stories can have in a college classroom. Specifically, he talks about the benefit of seeing how different aspects relate to one another. This can become a more personal kind of learning. This learning can help students feel more excited about, and confident, in the subject matter.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/09/2015

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Trust Students

Trust between an educator and their students is an essential part of creating an environment where learning can flourish. This article includes tips on how to help students trust you, and how you can show your students increased trust in them.

Original Article Publication Date: 02/04/2019

Working with Undergraduate and Graduate TA's

Professor Kenneth Miller from Brown University describes how his perceptions of the usefulness of GA's and TA's has changed. Where he used to believe that they were unnecessary, he now finds them to be an incredible resource. He shares specific ways that you can make the most out of these student aids.

Teaching Methods for Inspiring Students of the Future

In this Ted Talk, Joe Ruhl explains teaching methods for inspiring students of the future. He focuses on specific methods that he refers to as “The 5 C's” (Choice, Collaboration, Communication, Critical thinking, and Creativity).

Original Article Publication Date: 05/27/2015

Learn. Teach. Lead. It's a Two-way Street.

This address from the 2017 Empowering Teaching Excellence Conference focuses on innovative strategies to motivate and engage students.

Asking Questions to Improve Learning

The Teaching Center at Washington University in St Louis provides some general strategies to keep in mind when asking questions and facilitating discussion.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/25/2019

Extraordinary Math Teaching (video)

In this video, Dan Finkel talks about how to help your students by not simply giving them the answers. He provides 5 principles that will invite thinking from specifically math students in this particular video, but the principles can apply to any number of other subjects.

Original Article Publication Date: 02/17/2016

Active Learning Increases Student Performance in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics

This is a scientific research article on the impact of active learning and discusses the importance of active learning compared to simply lecturing. For this research, the subject matters studied were Science, Engineering, and Math. Specifically, the research shows that students who learned in an active learning environment performed significantly better on exams. This would suggest that information is understood and retained better in an active learning environment.

Original Article Publication Date: 10/10/2018

How One Instructor Stopped Himself From Lecturing Too Much

Lecturing is a teaching tool as old as education itself, but it's value is being questioned more and more. When does lecturing become too much, and how can you stop yourself from crossing that line? Keywords: Intentional learning, Course Design, Student attention, retention

Original Article Publication Date: 01/17/2019

Students Learn From People They Love

This article from The New York Times emphasizes that learning is an emotional process and students only learn from those with whom they have formed an emotional connection. For this reason, taking the time to get to know your students, showing vulnerability, and remembering to evaluate the quality of your relationships can pay off in the long run with increased retetion and engagement.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/17/2019

Matching Learning Outcomes to Assessment

Learning outcomes describe the measurable skills, abilities, knowledge and values that students should be able to demonstrate as a result of a taking a class. Often our courses are designed in ways that make it difficult, if not impossible, to allow students to physically demonstrate mastery of their skills and abilities. Instructors often have to rely on exams to assess knowledge a student has gained and to demonstrate their mastery of a subject. Writing effective learning outcomes and connecting our learning outcomes to specific assessment questions allow instructors to track a student's mastery.

The Six Must-Have Elements of High Quality Project-Based Learning

Project based learning is valuable but can be difficult to implement. While project-based learning has become more popular, many professors don't get the full value from it. This site covers the six most important aspects of successful project learning; intellectual challenge, authenticity, public product, collaboration, project management, and reflection.

Active Learning

Active learning is a method that encourages student participation in the learning process. This website from the University of Minnesota Center for Educational Innovation provides an article and video about active learning strategies. It also includes samples of activities for different sized classrooms.

Back to Basics: Principles of Teaching That Will Never Expire

Professor Mike Christiansen's address at the 2018 Empowering Teaching Excellence conference at USU focuses on four principles that will always improve teaching even in an ever-changing academic environment.

Responding to Disruptions in the Classroom

While energized discussion can be good, disrespectful disruptions can turn into a serious problem in some classrooms. The University of Washington Center for Teaching and Learning website investigates causes of these types of disruptions. In turn it describes simple steps that professors can take to avoid disturbances. Suggestions include utilizing the syllabus, establishing ground rules, and responding in the moment.

How to Beat a Little-known Bias that Plagues Problem-Solvers

The "plunging-in bias" is a little known bias that entails trying to tackle a problem before having a complete understanding of what the problem is or the best way to solve it. This article outlines three frameworks that help to overcome this bias. Keywords: Management, Business Administration

Original Article Publication Date: 11/06/2018

How One University Uses 'Sneaky Learning' to Help Students Develop Good Study Habits

Many students come to university with false ideas about what makes effective studying. The concept of "sneaky learning", as it is being taught to a handful of students at Colorado State University, can help students to develop study habits that will stick.

Original Article Publication Date: 12/06/2018

Universal Design for Learning

Dr Tom Tobin's keynote address from the 2018 Empowering Teaching Excellence Conference focused on Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Dr. Tobin introduced five strategies to reach more students and make your teaching more accessible. He also introduces the idea of +1 thinking. Included is a summary of another presentation by Dr. Tobin from the conference and a summary of a third presentation focused on accessibility and tools available to professors.

Original Article Publication Date: 09/01/2018

Our failing schools. Enough is enough!

Geoffrey Canada asks for a change in the school system, stating, "Why does our education system look so similar to the way it did 50 years ago? Millions of students were failing then, as they are now -- and it's because we're clinging to a business model that clearly doesn't work. Education advocate Geoffrey Canada dares the system to look at the data, think about the customers and make systematic shifts in order to help greater numbers of kids excel."

Original Article Publication Date: 05/07/2013

Blended Learning Environments in Higher Education: A Case Study of How Professors Make it Happen

Blended learning has become another method to deliver course content. Research has found that motivation, communication, and course design are factors that play a role in the success of blended learning.

Student Perceptions of Teachers’ Nonverbal and Verbal Communication: A Comparison of Best and Worst Professors across Six Cultures

This study focuses on students from six countries and what forms of communication they have perceived as efficient and non-efficient when pertaining to professors.

Features of Successful Group Work in Online and Physical Courses

This study examined multiple factors that influence the effectiveness and success of group work and measured those effects in multiple categories. The author outlines the six factors considered and explains how each affects group work in terms of outcome, student satisfaction, and collaboration.

Original Article Publication Date: 12/01/2017

Small Changes in Teaching: The Minutes Before Class

How you spend the few minutes before a class starts can make a big difference. The small decisions we make in our courses have the power to affect learning in big ways. This article gives three suggestions of things you can do in order to use this time effectively: ask "how are you", display the framework, and create wonder.

Original Article Publication Date: 11/15/2015

Expert Blind Spots Video

Experts can sometimes forget everything that went into learning the basics of their preferred fields. They want to teach according to the incredible knowledge they now have, but don’t focus enough on how they got there. This is known as an expert blind spot.

Original Article Publication Date: 05/22/2013


Think-Pair-Share is an instructional method where a teacher asks the students to consider a question or concept (think), turn to a partner in the classroom (pair), and share what they learned or their response with their partner (share). This article (and podcast) provides some strategies on how to maximize the benefits of this teaching method.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/13/2015

How to escape education's death valley

Sir Ken Robinson outlines 3 principles crucial for the human mind to flourish -- and how current education culture works against them. In a funny, stirring talk he tells us how to get out of the educational "death valley" we now face, and how to nurture our youngest generations with a climate of possibility.

Original Article Publication Date: 05/10/2013

Anticipating Misconceptions

What causes misconceptions in students? The value of trying to anticipate how students might incorrectly understand different concepts allows a professor to identify misconceptions before they effect the students academic relationships. As you get to know your students you will be better prepared to help your students correctly understand all the concepts you teach. While the article focuses on teaching math, it can be applied to all content areas.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/23/2015

Bloom's Taxonomy Individual Application

Blooms taxonomy is an important theory in teaching. It includes different levels of a pyramid that build on one another. This video from LSU briefly explains the concept behind Bloom's Taxonomy and describes individual application for how college students can be better learners.

Original Article Publication Date: 09/25/2012

What Good Writing Involves

Good writing is a skill that many college students struggle with. This article suggests several practices that professors can implement in their assignments for improving writing skills including multiple drafts, and diving deeper in a review process.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/01/2016

Rethinking Office Hours

How might you and your students move beyond office hours with passive, question-answering, superficial interaction, and instead use that time together to propel students to the next level in their learning? This short article provides suggestions on how to increase the effectiveness of office hours.

How One Email From You Could Help Students Succeed

Zoe Cohen, an assistant professor at the University of Arizona, saw an increase in student effort and improved grades after sending personalized emails to struggling students. This article highlights the effectiveness of "nudges", actions that encourage but do not mandate a course of action, in education.

Original Article Publication Date: 09/21/2018

Linguistically Responsive Teachers

Many of today's classes have students for whom English is a second language. Academic fluency can take years longer to achieve than conversational fluency, making it difficult for these English learners to keep up. This article outlines three things educators can do to become linguistically responsive teachers.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/25/2018

Designing Effective Discussion Questions

A good question is both answerable and challenging. It will inspire analysis, synthesis, interpretation, and critical thinking. This Stanford University website provides types of questions that are both effective and ineffective.

Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning Domains

Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning explained! Bloom’s Taxonomy is a hierarchy of learning with 6 levels. Each level focuses on gaining additional depth in learning. Suggestions and examples of how to incorporate the principles are provided.

Original Article Publication Date: 01/12/2015

What is Cooperative Learning?

An in-depth look at cooperative learning, its value and implementation to help learning be more effective.

Teaching Methods

A simple, easy to understand, breakdown of two major parameters of teaching; high tech vs low tech and teacher-centered vs student-centered. Great insights on how to focus your classes depending on your teaching style and desired outcomes. Several specific methods are described showing where they fit within each parameter.

Instructional Strategies

The University of Central Florida has a great website with resources for college professors. This specific portion of the site includes a wide range of active teaching/learning methods for all classroom sizes. It includes an overview on several different instructional strategies.

Three Ways to Ask Better Questions

Professor Maryellen Weimer highlights 3 ways to get the most out of your questions in the classroom. She highlights the importance of time spent preparing questions, playing with questions in and out of class, and preserving questions that work well.

Original Article Publication Date: 06/27/2012

World Cafe Discussion Method

The World Café Discussion Method is a flexible format for hosting large group discussions. It includes a rundown of the five basic components in the model.

Lectures - Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation

This resource from Carnegie Mellon University's Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation outlines the what, how and why of using lectures as an effective instructional method.

Asking Effective Questions

Asking questions may seem like a simple task, but it can also be one of the most powerful tools you possess as a teacher. This article from the Chicago Center for Teaching provides helpful tips about how to utilize the questions you ask in your classrooms. In order to be more effective with the questions you use, 4 main steps are suggested.

  1. Perform a question-asking audit
  2. Build a question-asking tool kit
  3. Cultivate your question-asking style
  4. Further refine your technique

Original Article Publication Date: 10/15/2018

Case Studies - Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation

This resource from Carnegie Mellon University's Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation outlines the what, how and why of using case studies as an effective instructional method.

What the Student Does: Teaching for Enhanced Learning

The college classes of today are larger and more diverse than ever before, which can make maintaining academic standards difficult. This problem becomes more tractable if learning outcomes are seen as more of a function of students’ activities than of their fixed characteristics. This article explores this topic and also suggests two methods of organizing the teaching/learning context so that all students are more likely to use higher order learning processes: problem-based learning and the learning portfolio.

Original Article Publication Date: 11/01/1999

Inside the Harvard Business School Case Method

This video is a discussion with Harvard Business School faculty and students about using the case method for learning business principles.

Original Article Publication Date: 04/10/2009

Running Class Discussions on Divisive Topics Is Tricky

The problem that often arises in difficult discussions, when they feel threatened, is that humans go into fight-or-flight mode — in which their ability to think critically is compromised. The challenge for professors, then, is to help students get unstuck from this instinctive response. That’s what Reflective Structured Dialogue, a system developed by marriage and family therapists, is meant to do. The article discusses Reflective Structured Dialogue as a method for dealing with conflict in the classroom.

Original Article Publication Date: 07/19/2018

Understanding by Design

Based on the textbook Understanding by Design by Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe, this article succinctly summarizes the purpose of backward design. Included are the essentials of backward design and a template with which you can design your own course material.