Skip navigation

Fall 2017 Teaching Effectiveness Institute


Team-Based Learning: A Transformative Strategy for Your Courses

Friday, August 18, 2017 
8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 
Regency Room, Holmes Student Center

by David Matthes, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities


Links to download session resources and handouts are available below


In this workshop you will explore what a team-based learning (TBL) course looks like and how TBL strategies harness the power of highly effective teams of students for broader, deeper, and longer lasting gains. Specifically, you will:

  • learn the elements of an effective team-based learning course
  • make the specific changes in a syllabus that would make your course truly TBL
  • customize organizational templates for use in a TBL version of your course
  • evaluate a TBL outline or activity that you have already developed for use in your team-based learning course
  • understand how team-based learning is an ideal strategy for flipped courses

Dr. Matthes will provide individual feedback on your syllabus revision and activity ideas as well as answers to any questions you may have about team-based learning's application in diverse educational contexts.

David Mathes

David Matthes is a Professor in the Department of Biology Teaching and Learning and the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development at University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. His courses include the award-winning Foundations of Biology course, a senior-level, team-based learning-format Cell Biology course, a project-based Bioinformatic Analysis course in which students characterize human genes of unknown function, and a Personal Genome Analysis course in which students analyze their own genome variations.

David received the 2013/14 award for Most Engaging Professor from the students in the College of Biological Sciences and the Dagley-Kirkwood Undergraduate Education Award for 2014-15. His contributions to the scholarship of teaching and learning focus on the use of SCALE-UP style active learning classrooms and genetics, genomics, bioinformatic analysis, and cell biology. Professor Matthes is dedicated to being an effective, innovative, and transformative instructor at the University of Minnesota.

Tentative Agenda

Time Topic
8:30 a.m. Check-in, Refreshments, and Networking
8:55 a.m. Welcome
9:00 a.m. - Introductions and Outcomes: Participants and Team-Based Learning
- The Readiness Assurance Process
10:15 a.m. Morning Refreshment Break
10:30 a.m. - Effective Dose of Active Learning and Team-Based Learning
- Application Activities
11:45 a.m. Lunch
1:00 p.m. - The Power of Teams
- Stacking the Odds for the Success of Teams
2:15 p.m. Afternoon Refreshment Break
2:30 p.m. - Transformative Course Design
- Gathering Evidence of Engagement, Efficacy, and Transformation
4:00 p.m. - Wrap-Up, Questions and Answers, Conclusion
- Institute Evaluation


Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center


The following resources were shared by the presenter during the institute and are available for download:

Registration Information

This institute is open to NIU faculty, instructors, and SPS and Civil Service staff. Participants will receive institute materials, lunch, and a certificate of participation. Due to the expensive nature of the institute and the advance notice needed for arranging food and materials, please register by the deadline and plan to attend the entire day. Advance registration is required.

Registration Deadline: Friday, August 11, 2017. Online registration is closed. If you wish to register, please call 815-753-0595.

After you register, if you are unable to attend, please cancel your registration by Monday, August 14, 2017 at so that those on the waiting list can be given the opportunity to attend the institute and/or institute costs can be reduced.

Frequently Asked Questions

Questions? View answers to commonly asked questions below.

open all close all

The Teaching Effectiveness Institute is open to all faculty and SPS/ Civil Service teaching staff at NIU.

The fall Teaching Effectiveness Institute is typically offered as a full-day workshop, centering on a teaching-related topic. We invite presenters who are well-known for their expertise and experiences in higher education teaching. The institute will engage faculty and provide material that will be immediately applicable in their teaching. The institute is geared toward those who are new to teaching as well as experienced faculty wanting to learn about new and exciting teaching topics.

Yes, if the presenter makes their handouts and presentation materials available electronically, we will make them available after the event. Contact the center at for further information on receiving institute handouts.

It would be helpful to bring a pen and some paper or a small notebook to take notes. We want you to be relaxed and comfortable, so please dress casually. Bring a sweater or jacket in case of room temperature changes. Feel free to also bring any snacks or lunch if you have special dietary needs as the refreshments and lunch we provide may not meet your dietary needs.

There is no fee for attending the Teaching Effectiveness Institute; the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center offers the institute free of charge. However, it is expensive to provide the food, materials, AV, and presenter needs, not to mention the time our staff devotes to planning and executing the program. The center does not receive student fees or grants to fund the Teaching Effectiveness Institute and other programs. Therefore, we would appreciate that you attend the entire institute. If, after you register, you know that you will be unable to attend, please cancel by the deadline so that those on the waiting list can be given the opportunity to register and/or program expenses can be reduced.

If you have purchased a blue or red parking permit, the parking deck on Normal Road is the most convenient parking location since the Teaching Effectiveness Institute is held in the Holmes Student Center. If you do not have a parking permit, you can park in the visitor pay lot located on Carroll Avenue for a daily fee. Click here to view a map of all parking lots at NIU's DeKalb campus. For more information, visit the Campus Parking Services website.

The institute includes morning and afternoon refreshment breaks and lunch. Refreshments and lunch at our programs are provided as a courtesy and as our budget allows. Therefore, food choices may or may not meet your particular dietary needs -- you are welcome to bring any special snacks or lunch. If you plan to have lunch with us at the institute, we will provide you with a ticket for lunch in Neptune Cafeteria which will have a limited variety of salads and hot foods.

We understand that the week before classes is busy for many faculty. We encourage you to attend as much of the Teaching Effectiveness Institute as possible, but you may leave if you have other commitments.

Last Updated: 8/18/2017