• Indigenization, Decolonization, Reconciliation

    Wisdom Keeper

    Jamie Sams, author of, The Original 13 Clan Mothers, offers a template for personal and professional consideration. Through the wisdom passed down to her from the medicine lodges, Sams’s knowledge can be a tool for bridging meaningful relationships in educational systems that were historically were not inviting spaces for Indigenous people. Last month, we invited some thought into the first moon teaching, Talks with Relations. In this teaching, Sams shares the appreciation of the unspoken language to communicate with, not just one another, but to be mindful of what the animals, plants, and sky can teach us.  This understanding creates a space of understanding diversity that allows insight into the…

  • General,  Inclusivity

    Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the Classroom

    Educators today are at the forefront of fostering Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) in the classroom.  Promoting EDI in the classroom is a journey of continual learning and adaptation. The Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching and Learning (GMCTL) has created a resource designed to enrich educator’s understanding and application of EDI principles and provide strategies for incorporating EDI principles into instruction and assessment. The inner petals of the EDI Flower represent the GMCTL Certificate in University Teaching and Learning (CUTL) competencies. Surrounding them are the outer petals, embodying the foundational EDI principles and emphasizing respect for the diverse identities in classrooms. The leaves symbolize five broad knowledge areas essential for…

  • Indigenization, Decolonization, Reconciliation

    Talks With Relations

    Jamie Sams, author of, The 13 Original Clan Mothers, leaves with us a wealth of knowledge that was passed down to her by her grandmothers, Cisi Laughing Crow, and Berta Broken Arrow. Sams was of mixed descent, her heritage included French, Cherokee, Seneca, Choctaw, and Mohawk (Brussat & Brussat, 2006). While the teachings are centered around women, the lessons and values are both universal and versatile. Sams explains that the clan mothers’ teachings, passed down through medicine lodges, are acknowledged with gratitude to grandmothers, Cisi Laughing Crow, and Berta Broken Arrow. However, she continues to remind us that these teaching also belong to, “all of the Children of Earth” (Sams,…

  • Open

    2024 Funding to Address Priorities Using Open Educational Practices

    In a recent survey of approximately 2,500 University of Saskatchewan (USask) students,  respondents indicated that an investment in open educational resources (OER) rated in the top five either “important” or “very important” areas USask should invest in. Similar results came from the 2022 survey. Over the past eight years, USask educators have increased the integration of open educational practices (OEP) at USask, including OER and open pedagogy, thus saving students more than $1.7 million during the 2023-2024 academic year. In addition to these savings, students have created or contributed to Open Educational Resources (OER) in the form of open textbooks and learning materials for various community and campus organizations, generating…

  • Academic Integrity,  Assessment and Evaluation,  Generative AI

    Determining Levels of Acceptable GenAI Use

    Many instructors are contemplating what level of GenAI (e.g., ChatGPT) use is acceptable for students when completing their assessments.  Instructors who have tried the tools have seen how well they can generate text in response to a prompt or request. It concerns them that they will not be able to tell when a student has completed an assessment with or without this kind of assistance and the validity of assessment will become uncertain. If you’re new to GenAI, read these posts: Need to learn more about ChatGPT New! USask Enterprise GenAI New module added to academic integrity tutorial   Students are gaining more experience with these tools and looking for…

  • Experiential Learning,  Instructional Strategies

    Gamifying Learning Experiences

    In this blog post, we’ll explore helpful tips on how to incorporate gamification into your own university courses. Dr. Martin Gaal, a Political Studies faculty member, has successfully incorporated gamification into two of his courses, POLS 261 Global Politics and POLS 201 Global Citizenship Cultures and Coexistance. While POLS 261 and POLS 201 are not prerequisites for each other, Dr. Gaal does see value in students taking POLS 261 before 201. This sequential progression aligns with the staircase model of applied undergraduate learning. In 261, students experience a classroom-supported simulation of the world. In 201, students engage with a self-directed, and self-created, simulation of the world. Graphic adapted from Beaudoin,…

  • Experiential Learning,  Sustainability

    Instructional Strategies for Climate Justice

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Environmental Solutions Initiative has developed the Climate Justice Instructional Toolkit to enhance climate justice education. Aimed primarily at educators in introductory undergraduate courses, the toolkit provides resources and programming to integrate climate justice content and instructional approaches across various disciplines. The toolkit is openly licensed and includes adaptable teaching modules (with downloadable pptx files), instructional guides, and student resources. The toolkit focuses on climate justice—addressing the unequal impacts of climate change on vulnerable groups and identifying solutions. The proposed instructional strategies align with the University of Saskatchewan’s teaching practices for sustainability competencies and types of experiential learning. The initiative also encourages feedback and collaboration for…

  • Generative AI

    New! USask’s Enterprise GenAI

    USask’s very own Generative AI solution for faculty and administrative staff goes live this week! The Microsoft AI tool — currently named “Bing Chat” but being rebranded as “Copilot” — utilises GPT4 and Dall-E 3, the most up-to-date version of the text and image generating models developed by OpenAI. Some significant features to note of our enterprise license, especially in comparison to ChatGPT: Users are each permitted 200 independent chats per day, with 30 exchanges per chat. In addition to text conversations, you can prompt the chat directly to generate images and even drop images into the chat field with queries! For the best experience, use either Microsoft Edge or…

  • Experiential Learning,  Undergraduate Research

    Embedding Research, Artistic, and Scholarly Skills: A Step-by-Step Guide for Classroom Success

    Whether you’re a seasoned educator or just beginning, this blogpost aims to empower you to align your course outcomes with research, artistic, and scholarly work (RSAW). Let’s explore a self-guided journey of instructional alignment using the 7-level research skills framework and the experiential learning cycle. To undertake this self-guided exploration, you may wish to have the following material handy: Sticky notes in two colours Paper Markers Pens A large piece of paper Step 1: A Day in the Life… Grab a sheet of paper and markers, and draw a ‘day in the life’ for you as a researcher, scholar, or artist. What tasks do you take on? How well can…

  • Academic Integrity,  Assessment and Evaluation,  Generative AI

    Identifying Plagiarism

    Preventing academic misconduct is always better than policing it. But, sometimes you notice a problem and wonder if the work you are marking was really created by or fully authored by the student who submitted it. It is your responsibility, according to the academic misconduct regulations to follow up judiciously with your concerns. Educator judgment It is important to keep an educator’s mindset. As the instructor, you are the most likely to be able to identify academic misconduct. This is because you are most closely connected to: the student and the course, the purpose of the assessment, and the instructions given to students about acceptable and unacceptable processes. It is…