09 Jul 2021
Happy first birthday to us!
Where has the time gone?
This week marks the CDL’s first year of existence. In this time, we sought to develop our mission statement, as well as create our leadership organizational structure and collaborative partnerships with other highly regarded and effective departments on campus such as CIT, TLC, CDL, Milne Library, and DAPA. We also aimed to establish an online presence through our website and other forms of communication, develop a strategic plan for the future of digital learning at Geneseo, and launch workshops to help faculty, staff, and students increase their knowledge of and facility with digital tools for teaching, scholarship, creative practice, and productivity.
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14 May 2021
Note: This post was co-authored by Abby Henry and CDL Student Affiliate Emma Raupp
Photo by Chris Montgomery on Unsplash
As digital classrooms became the “new normal” in lieu of physical classrooms during the pandemic, many social aspects of learning took a hit. Without in-person meetings, many students came to feel isolated from their peers and instructors. Feeling disconnected from a shared learning environment lowers our motivation to participate and keeping up with coursework quickly becomes a struggle. There are many factors in this widespread sense of burn-out — a decline in mental health, political stressors, and family crises are just a few that come to mind — but one factor with a feasible solution is the lack of genuine human connection in digital learning environments. We don’t want students to feel alone if they’re struggling, but the unfortunate reality is that they often do. One solution to this problem is fostering a stronger human connection between instructors and students, in the hope of creating a more supportive digital learning community.
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12 May 2021
At the media preview of the portraits hung in the galleries of the National Portrait Gallery of the Obamas. The portrait of Michelle Obama is by Amy Sherald. Photo by Victoria Pickering (vpickering) on Flickr, CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0.
Editor’s note: This post is one in a series by Geneseo faculty who in Intersession 2021 taught courses that either focused centrally on issues of racial justice or incorporated those issues via dedicated modules and interwoven content. To find all posts in this series, part of Geneseo’s project of becoming an antiracist college, look for the tag “intersession 2021”.
In July 2018, I received a grant from Geneseo’s Teaching and Learning Center to create a series of modules for the course Visual Culture Today. My student assistant, Thomas Mossey (a sophomore at the time), joined me in front of a computer screen as we tried to figure out how to create a module on representations of African Americans in mainstream media. Tommy prepared several examples for me to look at, but all of them were difficult to use as a tool of empowerment. We found stereotypical representations easily: Aunt Jemima, Mammy, and countless other caring Black women of indeterminate age. That summer, we centered the module on such stereotypical representations and asked students to watch racist cartoons showing white people in “black face.” We asked students to reflect on whether and by whom (if anyone) these cartoons should still be seen.
In fall 2018, I taught this module in a face-to-face classroom. We talked about the idea of “re-presentation” and that often media distorts rather than reflects reality. As part of the learning materials, students were directed to a video, Blackface: A cultural history of a racist art form, that discussed this racist practice.
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07 May 2021
Photo by Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash
The Center for Digital Learning and the Teaching and Learning Center at SUNY Geneseo are excited to invite faculty and staff to a conversation reflecting on the past year of pandemic online teaching: how it’s felt, what it’s taught us about ourselves and our students, and what it’s shown us about teaching and learning both online and in general.
The Zoom event will be held Tuesday, May 11, 2:30 - 3:30 p.m. Please register to join the conversation.
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05 May 2021
Photo by Volodymyr Hryshchenko on Unsplash
For our final micro-workshop of this semester, the CDL hosted “Dear Professor: crafting the perfect email to your professor” presented by Paul Schacht. Finals are almost upon us, and students may find themselves even more overwhelmed than they have been all semester during the pandemic. Dr. Schacht shares encouraging and helpful tips, from a professor’s perspective, for how students can respectfully and effectively reach out to their professors for extensions on assignments or to request to take an exam on a later date. And, while the professor’s perspective is a great thing to have when considering how to email them, the CDL was thrilled to include the perspective of one of our Student Affiliates, Emma Raupp, on this topic as well. Emma shares her own experience with reaching out to professors and reassures students facing common worries.
From crafting the perfect subject line that will catch your professor’s attention to appreciating the humanity that exists between the two of you when communicating your needs, this session will definitely make you feel more confident about advocating for yourself as a student. Check out the recording below!
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