Friday, September 03, 2010

Resources for New Adjuncts

computer teacher for adultsImage via WikipediaA new instructor came into my office yesterday. She has been asked to teach online with no teaching experience. This is not unusual. It happens in grad school all the time. It is a bit more harrowing at the community colleges because a new adjunct may or may not have any support. When I first started teaching, I had the benefit of a couple of years as a lab teaching assistant in writing centers, developmental English classes, and ESL labs. I also met Laura Perkins, a great adjunct English teacher who believes in the principles of collegiality and openness. That meant that she shared her syllabi and assignments with her peers. She believed that her value as a teacher was in what she did, not in the documents and assignments.

I asked on twitter today "What would you like to have known before you began teaching?" and got some great responses from Jason B. Jones of the Chronicle's blog ProfHacker, which he says is essential reading for adjuncts especially the posts on applying for jobs and the six ways to make adjuncting more effective and fulfilling.

Stephanie Cheney responded generously with a link to her delicious book marks tag for an education class she is teaching. So I of course, immediately clicked on "Add to network" and will be following her work in delicious bookmarks.

Some websites & resources that I have found invaluable for online teachers include:
I found that searching for the assigned textbook title in quotes and then adding the word "syllabus" gave me a good idea about how teachers were using a particular textbook.

Lady of the Lake added: Geoff, you might like to know about a 6-week Online Instructor Certification course offered by Educational Teleconsortium of Michigan. S

Do you have articles or resources that you would give to new teachers? Post them in the comments below. Thanks!

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  1. Geoff, you might like to know about a 6-week Online Instructor Certification course offered by Educational Teleconsortium of Michigan. See the course description at .

    This course is offered in a couple of different CMS's, but it is about good course design, NOT the course management system -- although participants do learn enough in any of the systems to post a demonstration module and course management pieces.

    Participants consistently provide very positive feedback -- and it's all online, so can be done from anywhere (there have been folks from Australia, Japan, and British Columbia, for instance).

  2. Shoot -- I hit the 'publish' button too fast! My manners were lacking -- I should have first thanked you for the many tips and great ideas I've borrowed from your Tweets and blog!

    I've learned quite a bit from you, and appreciate your sharing very much.

    Lauren K