This Week for Faculty: 4 Tips to Kick Off the Spring Semester

by | Jan 18, 2022

See four tips as well as resources and upcoming workshops below to help you kick off the Spring semester. Want one-on-one help? Join us for drop-in Zoom Office Hours from Monday-Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm.

1. Build community and establish an inclusive classroom environment from Day 1

Find sample icebreaker activities in the on-demand resource: Community Building in the Classroom. Help ease student anxieties through transparency and communication. Share resources to support your students through a semester of transitions (see the CTL’s resource: Teaching in Times of Stress and Challenge). 

Related on-demand resources:

2. Ensure that your students can access you and your course

Create an accessible learning environment for your students by making course materials and learning resources available to your students in CourseWorks and communicating how students can access you. See the CTL’s resources on Virtual Office Hours and Accessibility in Teaching and Learning.

Workshop: Teaching with CourseWorksJanuary 18, 12:00-1:30pm; check the CTL events calendar for additional dates. Related resources: Teaching with CourseWorks and CourseWorks Support.

3. Engage students in their learning and with each other

Leverage Columbia-supported instructional technologies to create opportunities for all students to engage meaningfully in their courses. 

Workshop: Tools to Engage Students: Polls, Discussion, and Peer CollaborationJanuary 19, 12:00-1:15pm 

Explore strategies for student engagement using Zoom, Ed Discussion, the Google Apps and Poll Everywhere, through the following on-demand resources:

4. Plan ahead for the transition to in-person teaching and learning

Prepare for the return to the physical classroom by visiting your assigned classroom(s) and familiarizing yourself with the technologies available to support your teaching and your students’ learning. Help your students through the transition through ongoing community building and by checking in with them.

Workshop: Teaching In-Person: Transitions and ReflectionsJanuary 21, 2:00-3:00pm. 

Related resources: 

Workshop: Teaching in the Morningside eClassroomJanuary 26, 12:00-1:30pm

Related resources: 

Check the CTL events calendar for all upcoming offerings. 

Featured Series: Anti-Racist Pedagogy 

Anti-Racist Pedagogy in Action: First Steps
January 21, 10:30am-12:00pm; January 27, 1:00-2:30pm; March 2, 2:00-3:30pm

Navigating HOT Moments: Before, During, & After Class
February 8, 12:00-1:15pm; March 23, 2:00-3:15pm

Addressing Challenges to Equitable Assessment
February 15, 12:00-1:00pm; April 6, 2:00-3:00pm

On-demand resource: Anti-Racist Pedagogy in Action: First Steps

Call for Posters | 2022 Celebration of Teaching and Learning Symposium

The CTL would like to celebrate your contributions to teaching and learning at Columbia! Faculty, graduate students, postdocs and staff are invited to submit a poster proposal to feature their teaching innovations at the Celebration of Teaching & Learning Symposium on Tuesday, March 29, 2022. Accepted posters will be displayed throughout the event.

Poster submissions can feature innovative student engagement strategies that work in a variety of teaching contexts (hybrid/HyFlex, online, in-person courses), collaborative learning approaches, inquiry-based learning, reimagined assessments of student learning, anti-racist pedagogical approaches, the innovative use of instructional technology, among other topics.

The deadline for electronic submission of poster abstracts is Wednesday, January 26, 2022.

Unable to participate in-person on March 29 but would still like to contribute to the 2022 Celebration of Teaching and Learning?

We welcome text-based, audio, or short video recordings to be featured on the Symposium website as part of an online showcase. 

Please feel free to contact the CTL with any questions you may have prior to your submission.


Office Hours 
Join us for office hours via Zoom (or phone) Monday-Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm to have your questions answered about teaching with instructional technology.

Schedule an in-person or virtual consultation to discuss any teaching and learning need by emailing or email the CTL Learning Designer assigned to your school or department.