Rolling right along…

Does the semester feel like an out-of-control freight train, or a meandering country-side jaunt? Somewhere in between? Read on for help with staying on the train.

CTL Hour – Monday, Sept. 17th, 3-4pm, A2552

During Fall Development Days, the Center for Teaching and Learning team presented ways to use course learning outcomes to…Make it Clear, Make it Count, Make it Connect

For our first CTL hour of the year, we’re here to help you put what you learned into action in your own classes!

Whether you are the chair of a department that is thinking about revising CCOs, or an individual faculty member wondering how you can make your assignments or assessments more effective, this workshop on course learning outcomes is for you. Your CTL team will briefly provide strategies for reviewing CCOs, linking classroom activities to learning outcomes, and developing effective and relevant assessments.

The bulk of the workshop, however, will be a chance for you to apply these strategies to your own classes, so bring some lesson plans or assignments that don’t feel connected and we’ll help you give them a boost!

Click here to download the Sept. 17th CTL Hour flyer

Friday Coffee Fix

On specific Fridays, Kathleen will highlight a tool in D2L that might be useful for you.

Friday, Sept 14th: Turnitin

10am & 11am in L1735

Turnitin is an integrated software with D2L that serves several purposes:

  • Similarity checking for plagiarism
  • GradeMark for easy and robust markup of student work
  • PeerMark for enabling students to provide feedback to each other (coming soon)
  • NEW THIS FALL: easier workflow for both faculty & students to use and view GradeMark results.

Friday, Sept 28th: Experiments with Camtasia

9am-12pm; 1pm-3pm: Drop in anytime – L1735

  • Try out Camtasia video software, installed on one of the computers in L1735.
  • Experiment with recording, uploading, editing, and publishing videos for various uses in your course.
  • Discuss your options for using or installing Camtasia.

Don’t worry if you can’t make it to campus – once the session has taken place, you can find online resources for each topic in the Center for Teaching & Learning D2L page.

(Materials>Content>D2L Resources & Training>Friday Coffee Fix handouts)

Click here for the full Sept 2018 Friday Coffee Fix flyer

For your reading…

The Chronicle of Higher Education published a great article entitled Will Students Actually Believe They Can Do This Assignment?

“No matter how much students value your course, or how supportive your classroom environment, they won’t be motivated to do the work if they don’t think they can succeed at it. And of course the solution is not about making things easy for them.”

Click here for the full article

Have an excellent week!!




The CTL Mascots, Norma and Dale


Introducing the “Faculty Focus” Interview Series and more!

Whenever I have a chance to talk with my colleagues about their work–what they do in the classroom, what inspires them, what projects they’re working on, what conferences they are going to attend–I find myself fascinated. We are so lucky at Normandale to be surrounded by incredibly gifted faculty members, but we don’t always have the chance to learn about them as much as we’d like.

The Center for Teaching and Learning would like to help change that! Today, we are launching an interview series called “Faculty Focus,” where each month, we will feature a different faculty member. You will have the chance to hear from faculty members in their own words, maybe even learning something that you can bring to your own classroom.

This month, we are starting with Dan Darling, Faculty in English and one of the recent Board of Trustee Award winners from Normandale. Enjoy!

If you have ideas for other faculty members that should be featured, please email Jen Miller. Interviews will also be posted on the CTL D2L page if you want to find them easily in the future.

Kathleen Coate will again be holding “Friday Coffee Fixes” this semester. Here is the schedule for September–we hope you can make it to some of them! Also, Kathleen’s D2L drop-in hours are as follows:

Monday: 9am-10am; 1pm-2pm

Tuesday: 9am-12pm; 2pm-4pm (AND 4-6 by appointment only)

Wednesday: 9am-10am; 1pm-2pm (AND 4-6 by appointment only)

Thursday: 9am-1pm; 2pm-4pm

Most Fridays: “Friday Coffee Fix” – specific topics featured.  10am-12pm; 1pm-3pm.

Also, here are a few additional articles/opportunities worth noticing:

Continue reading

Welcome Back!

Welcome to Chalk & Pixels – the Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) newsletter. Every Monday we give you the latest info on faculty development stuff!

Welcome Back

Welcome back, everyone, and Happy First Day of classes! Here are a few tidbits from your CTL team to help get you off to a great start:

CTL at Development Days

It was wonderful seeing so many of you at Development Days last week, and we hope you were inspired and energized by the presentations and discussions. Here are a few links you may find useful:

“Let’s Talk About Learning”

Let’s talk about learning_Slideshow

In this session, your Center for Teaching and Learning campus leaders highlighted three interconnected practices to help clarify our expectations for our students, make the most of our time in class, and see connections between the work they do and overall class goals.

“Creating Belonging From the Beginning: Learning and Pronouncing Students’ Names”

How To Pronounce Student Names, and Why It Matters

Faculty often hear that calling students by their names is a great way to help them feel like they belong in the class. This workshop presented strategies for learning students’ names quickly and tips for pronouncing them properly.

“Learning About Learning: As*@#m%nt”

Learning About Learning_ Slideshow

This hands-on session presented practical strategies for answering the questions “Are students ‘getting it’?” and “How do we know?”.

Syllabus Resource Page

Normandale has a variety of available campus resources that may be helpful to our students…everything from tutoring in the Academic Support Center to gender-inclusive restrooms to on-campus printing to mental health services. The “Syllabus Resource Page” summarizes these in a single, handy document. We encourage you to include this as part of your own course syllabus! Here is a link:

Course Syllabus Campus Resources (Fall 2018)

D2L Help

Kathleen Coate, our CTL Leader for D2L Training and Online Learning, is available for drop-in help at any of the following times:

Monday, 9am-10am; 1pm-2pm

Tuesday, 9am-12pm; 2pm-4pm (AND 4-6 by appointment only)

Wednesday, 9am-10am; 1pm-2pm (AND 4-6 by appointment only)

Thursday, 9am-4pm

Most Fridays, “Friday Coffee Fix” – specific topics featured.  10am-12pm; 1pm-3pm.

For additional D2L help, contact the help desk at 952-358-8181 or use the AskUs – Employee edition ticket system – select “Click to login” in the upper-right corner of the screen.

Questions? Comments? Ideas?

As always, please don’t hesitate to contact your campus CTL leaders if you have any questions, or if you have ideas about fall workshops or programs:

  • Jen Miller (faculty development),
  • Kathleen Coate (D2L training and online learning),
  • Betsy Longley (assessment),

“Prep on a Stick”


Welcome to Chalk & Pixels – the Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) newsletter. Every Monday we give you the latest info on faculty development stuff!

It’s State Fair Season!

And you know what that means…yep…Development Days are upon us. And of course the last-minute scramble to prep for the first day.

Here’s some tips to help ease your mind and help you plan so you can enjoy your remaining days of summer!

Highlights of the Development Days Schedule:

  1. Bust out your red shirts because we’re taking an ALL COLLEGE PICTURE on Wednesday! Curious about how this will be done? Come find out.
  2. Brush up on the latest D2L Brightspace updates – lots of REALLY cool things you may have already noticed and stuff you may want to learn more about.
  3. Faculty Development Funds workshop – come learn how to apply for dough!
  4. AlphaGo – watch a really cool film with your colleagues and discuss its implications on teaching & learning in the 21st Century.
  5. Lots of really cool breakout sessions and time to connect with faculty, MSCF union leaders, and college leadership.
  6. CLICK HERE for the full schedule, which was also emailed to you on Aug. 15th.

Get a Jump Start – D2L Crash Course

New to D2L? Take this 3-hour crash course to learn how to set up the essentials.
When: Tuesday, August 21st, 9am-12pm
Where: A2556

Tips for you:  “First 4 Weeks”

Back to School is Around the Corner!

back-to-school-1622789Are you ready?

As you start thinking about going back to school, here are some training opportunities to note:

  • D2L Crash Course: Tuesday, Aug. 21st, 9am-12pm, Room A2556.  Learn the basics of D2L – stuff you need to know before classes start!  Coffee and refreshments provided. Please RSVP to
  • Fall Development Days: Wednesday, August 22 and Thursday, August 23, 8 AM – 4:15 PM. Stay tuned for more details about breakout sessions!
  • It’s not too late to take the “Videos for All” Survey! Earn $3 in Lancer Bucks, AND/OR a chance for $25 Lancer Bucks!  The drawing will take place on August 22nd during Development Days. Click here for the survey:  (Login using your Office 365 credentials:  [YourStarID], and your Star ID password.)

Also,  as you are starting to put together your syllabi, remember that you can use the updated syllabus checklist to help you out. This checklist is available on the CTL D2L page under “Content”–>”Course Design”–>”Syllabus Resources.” Also there is a page of campus resources that you can include as part of your syllabus; we will be posting the “Fall 2018” version of this resource page as soon as we can.

Please don’t hesitate to contact your campus CTL leaders if you have any questions, or if you have ideas about fall workshops or programs:

  • Jen Miller (faculty development),
  • Kathleen Coate (D2L training and online learning),
  • Betsy Longley (assessment),