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Teaching in Physically-Distanced Learning Spaces

Teaching in a physically-distanced learning space

As part of the Smart Restart plan, academic instruction on campus will take place with a mix of both in-person and remote courses this fall. To minimize the risk to faculty, staff, and students, the university will rely on physical distancing in campus classrooms. For students taking in-person classes, learning spaces will be redesigned to ensure safe distancing between students. These changes present a challenge to traditional active learning approaches used on campus. These resources present guidance on ways of adjusting the facilitation of activities given the changes in space and student interaction guidelines. These resources are organized around four types of learning activities that support:

Critical ThinkingDiscussionsPrior KnowledgeProblem Solving
Analytic MemoBuzz GroupBackground Knowledge ProbeAnalytic Team
Categorizing GridRound RobinEmpty OutlinesCase Studies
Content, Form, & FunctionTalking ChipsFocused ListingGroup Investigations
Defining FeaturesThink/Pair/ShareMemory MatrixSend-A-Problem
Pro and Con GridThree-Step InterviewMinute Paper | Muddiest PointStructured Problem-Solving
Student-Defined QuestionsFishbowl Discussion
Think-Aloud Pair Problem-Solving

Small-Group Discussions


These activities are taken from the books Classroom Assessment Techniques: A Handbook For College Teachers by Thomas Angelo and K. Patricia Cross, and Collaborative Learning Techniques: A Handbook For College Faculty by Elizabeth F. Barkley, Claire Howell Major, and K. Patricia Cross — presents activities you can use to address specific learning outcomes. Each approach includes a basic description and overview of its outcomes, along with steps to guide its use in your course. Each technique in this resource was selected based on three criteria: ease of design, ease of implementation, and time needed to respond to activity.

  • Angelo, Thomas A., and K. Patricia Cross. Classroom Assessment Techniques: a Handbook for College Teachers. Jossey-Bass, 1993. pp. 159-180.
  • Barkley, Elizabeth F. et al. Collaborative Learning Techniques A Handbook For College Faculty. Wiley, 2014. pp. 152.

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Keywords:physical distance, teaching, active learning   Doc ID:104118
Owner:Timmo D.Group:Remote Instruction
Created:2020-07-17 14:01 CSTUpdated:2020-11-02 08:05 CST
Sites:Remote Instruction
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