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Spring 2014 Teaching Effectiveness Institute

Creating Excitement in the Classroom: Teaching for More Engaged Learning

Thursday, January 9, 2014 
12:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Regency Room, Holmes Student Center

by Todd Zakrajsek, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill


Student raising hand

What can instructors do to facilitate learning when they encounter students who seem uninterested and even apathetic toward course content and assignments? Part of the responsibility for learning belongs to students, but as faculty, we can find new ways to motivate, inspire, and maybe even cajole students to learn. In this workshop we will explore how instructors can make classroom learning, perhaps one of the most artificial learning settings, a more meaningful experience for students. Dr. Zakrajsek will use theories of learning and motivation as a basis for creating strategies to increase student engagement in course content and class sessions.

Dr. Todd Zakrajsek is an Associate Professor in the School of Medicine and the Department of Family Medicine at UNC-Chapel Hill. Todd is the immediate past Executive Director of the Center for Faculty Excellence at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to his work at UNC, he was the Inaugural Director of the Faculty Center for Innovative Teaching at Central Michigan University and the founding Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Southern Oregon University, where he also taught in the psychology department. Todd currently directs two Lilly Conferences on College and University Teaching and Learning. Todd also sits on two educationally related boards: ERI for Lenovo Computer and TEI for Microsoft. Dr. Zakrajsek received his Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Ohio University. He has published and presented widely on the topic of student learning, including workshops and conference keynote addresses in 42 states and 6 countries.

Tentative Agenda

12:30 pm
12:55 pm
Welcome and introductions
1:00 pm
- Evidence for Collaborative Learning
- The importance of Culture in the Classroom
- Building a Foundation for Engagement
2:15 pm
Refreshment break
2:30 pm
- Reasons for Students to NOT Engage in the Classroom
- Brainstorming Activities that ALWAYS work
- Colleagues as a Resource For Engaging Your Students
4:00 pm
Conclusion and workshop evaluation

Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center

Registration Information

This workshop is for NIU faculty, instructors, and SPS & Civil Service teaching staff only. Registered participants will receive workshop materials and a certificate of participation. Please register by the deadline and plan to attend the entire afternoon.

Registration Deadline: Friday, December 13, 2013. Registration is now closed.

After you register, if you are unable to attend, please inform the Center at by Friday, January 3, 2014 so that those on the waiting list can be given the opportunity to attend the workshop and workshop costs can be reduced.

Last Updated: 07/16/2014