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Center for Teaching Excellence - Online Resources


This guide is designed to help faculty locate useful journal articles and Internet resources about teaching and learning. It was created in support of Saint Anselm College's Center for Teaching Excellence. For additional resources and support, please contact the Center for Teaching Excellence, which is located in Room 101 of Joseph Hall.



Use these resources to locate research articles about teaching and learning at the college level. Look for full-text links beneath many of the citations; if no full-text link is available, use WebBridge to search for the item in the library's print and online collections, or to place an Interlibrary Loan request.

Education Research Complete
The most comprehensive source for scholarly journal articles in the field of education.  Search "Higher Education" as a Subject, and either add keywords related to your topic or additional Subject Terms such as:

  • Active Learning
  • Assignments
  • Cognitive Development
  • Cognitive Styles
  • Curriculum Planning
  • Discussion
  • Educational Technology
  • Effective Teaching
  • Grading
  • Lesson Planning
  • Motivation
  • Teaching Methods

A government-created index and repository of journal articles and research reports in the field of education. To get articles about teaching and learning at the college level, set the Educational Level limiter (below the search boxes) to "Higher Education".

Check here for articles from the field of psychology on topics like student cognitive development and motivation. Use the Age Group limiter (below the search boxes) to limit your search's focus to articles about "Young Adulthood (18-29 yrs)". Examples of relevant Subject Terms include: Academic Achievement Motivation, Cognitive Development, Cognitive Style, Learning, Memory, and Student Engagement.

Academic Search Premier
This multi-disciplinary database contains articles from both popular and scholarly journals, and includes numerous relevant journals in full-text. Try searching keywords that represent your topic; for example, "college AND (group projects OR group assignments)", or "grading AND motivat* AND college".


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Selected Journals

The following links are to individual journal titles whose scope encompasses all disciplines of higher education in the United States. For assistance in locating a title that focuses solely on teaching in your discipline please contact your liaison librarian.

You can search within all available full-text issues or browse through the tables of contents of recent issues. Access the full text by clicking on the PDF or HTML icon underneath the article citation. If no full text link is available, use WebBridge to search for the item in the library's print and online collections, or to place an Interlibrary Loan request.

Active Learning in Higher Education

Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education

Assessment Update

College Teaching

Conversations on Jesuit Higher Education

Higher Education

Higher Education Quarterly

Innovative Higher Education

International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education

Journal of College Student Development

Journal of College Teaching and Learning

Journal of Higher Education

Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

Liberal Education

New Directions for Teaching and Learning

Research in Higher Education

Speaking of Teaching


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Selected Websites

Below are some of the best Internet resources available on selected topics related to teaching and learning at the college level.

Active Learning

Active Learning for the College Classroom (California State University-Los Angeles)
Provides exercise ideas for different active learning techniques.

Active Learning: Getting Students to Work and Think in the Classroom (Stanford University)
Defines active learning and gives an overview of different active learning styles.

Active Learning Online (The Abilene Christian University)
This website is dedicated to the understanding and promotion of active learning for higher education.

Active Learning Techniques (Brigham Young University)
Gives guidance on how to implement five different active learning methods into class instruction.

Active Learning With PowerPoint (University of Minnesota)
This tutorial shows how to incorporate active learning principles into PowerPoint presentations.

Learning for Life: Using Active Learning in the Classroom (Florida State University)
Gives a detailed explanation of how to apply active learning principles and activities in the classroom.

Problem-Based Learning Clearinghouse (University of Delaware)
Provides access to sample problems and essays on problem-based learning techniques. Note that free registration is required.

What is Active Learning? (University of Minnesota)
This website presents a detailed introduction to, and examples, of active learning techniques.


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Course and Syllabus Design

Constructing a Syllabus (Brown Univ.)
This lengthy handbook provides detailed instruction on constructing courses and preparing syllabi.

Course Preparation (Ohio State Univ.)
Guidelines on developing course goals, structuring the course, and selecting learning activities.

Designing Effective and Innovative Courses
A step-by-step tutorial on setting course goals, developing a plan, and constructing a syllabus.

Preparing or Revising a Course
A series of suggestions excerpted from "Tools for Teaching" by Barbara Gross Davis.

A Self-Directed Guide to Designing Courses for Significant Learning
Using principles of "integrated course design", this guide offers examples and worksheets to facilitate course development.

Syllabus Development (Univ. of Minnesota)
An excellent nine-part overview of how to write each component of a syllabus, including examples.

Writing a Syllabus (Univ. of California Santa Cruz)
A brief overview of the syllabus development process, including a discussion of each element.


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Diversity in the Classroom

Creating Inclusive College Classrooms (University of Michigan)
Presents an outline with planning considerations for creating an inclusive classroom setting.

Diversity Web (Association of American Colleges and Universities)
An exhaustive website on diversity in higher education, Diversity Web contains research reports, articles from Diversity and Democracy, classroom strategies and techniques, and links to other diversity resources.

Instructional Consulting: Teaching & Diversity (Indiana University)
Gives tips and questions to consider for teaching in a diverse classroom.

Teaching in an Increasingly Multi-Cultural Setting: A Guide for Faculty
(Carnegie Mellon)
Focusing on the differences between U.S. and International students, this guide addresses cultural differences that impact learning, studying, and classroom behavior.


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Exam Design

Best Practices for Designing and Grading Exams (Univ. of Michigan)
Advantages and disadvantages of different designs, plus suggestions for creating and scoring questions.

Designing Tests to Maximize Learning
Advice on the "big picture" of exam design.

How to Write Better Tests: A Handbook for Improving Test Construction Skills
(Indiana Univ.)
A lengthy discussion of how to develop questions for different types of exams.

Improving Essay Tests (Kansas State Univ.)
Advice on constructing and scoring essay exam questions.

Improving Multiple Choice Questions (Univ. of North Carolina)
Explains how to structure multiple-choice exams and write effective questions.

Improving Your Test Questions (Univ. of Illinois)
Advice on choosing among types of tests, writing effective questions, and assessing test item quality.

Practical Suggestions for Writing Multiple Choice Questions (Univ. of Oregon)
A nice list of ideas for how to craft exam questions to minimize student confusion.


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Grading and Assessment

Assessing Group Work (Australian Universities Teaching Committee)
Suggestions for how to develop criteria and assign grades for group assignments.

Authentic Assessment Toolbox
Guidelines on how to develop assessments of student work, using rubrics or student portfolios.

Classroom Assessment Techniques (Central Michigan Univ.)
Examples in PDF form of in-class activities to measure student learning.

Grading Papers (Stanford Univ.)
A series of helpful tips on how to grade student papers.

Grading Practices
A series of suggestions excerpted from "Tools for Teaching" by Barbara Gross Davis.


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Leading Discussions

The Guided Discussion (Univ. of North Carolina)
Guidance on how to prepare for discussions and manage classroom dynamics.

Improving Discussions (Kansas State Univ.)
A good overview of many issues related to preparing for and conducting in-class discussions.

Leading Discussions (Indiana Univ.)
Explains how to keep discussions going, motivate participation, and evaluate discussions.

Managing Hot Moments in the Classroom (Harvard Univ.)
Suggestions for how to manage controversial or heated discussions.

Tactics for Effective Questioning
A series of suggestions excerpted from "Tools for Teaching" by Barbara Gross Davis.

The Dreaded Discussion: Ten Ways to Start
A classic article offering creative approaches to initiating an in-class discussion.


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New Faculty

First Time Teaching Resources (Univ. of Oregon)
Suggestions for preparing and teaching your first classes, with links to resources on each stage of the process.

The New Faculty Member
A summary of research findings by Robert Boice on the characteristics of successful and unsuccesful new faculty members.

Things I Wish They Had Told Me
A column by a veteran professor who offers tips for the new teacher.

Tips for Faculty Teaching for the First Time (Washington Univ. in St. Louis)
Advice on planning your courses, and what to do before, during, and after each class.


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Profile of the College Student

Boomers, Gen-Xers, and Millennials: Understanding the New Students
This article discusses the learning preferences of the Millennial generation and what they imply for institutions of higher learning.

Educating the Net Generation (EDUCAUSE)
This e-book explores the learning behavior and needs of the Millennial generation.

Meeting the Needs of Millennial Students (California State University Long Beach)
Provides a brief outline of Millennial characteristics and offers suggestions on how to best meet the needs of this generation.

The Millennial Learner: Challenges and Opportunities (Louisiana State University)
A PowerPoint presentation that discusses ways to teach to the Millennial student.

Mindset List (Beloit College)
A yearly list of "observations that help to identify the experiences that have shaped the lives" of incoming freshmen.

Profile of Today's College Student (NASPA - Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education)
Survey of the demographic, social, academic, and economic profile of incoming freshmen.

Handbook for New Instructors (University of Massachusetts-Amherst)
See pages 34-43 for information on the cognitive development and learning styles of various undergraduate demographic groups.

Student Development Theory (University of Texas at Dallas)
Provides an overview of various theories that help to explain the overall development and maturation of college students.


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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Links to important full-text publications, articles, and presentations on SOTL.

Conferences on SOTL(DePaul Univ.)
An up-to-date list of upcoming conferences on SOTL, with links to conference websites.

International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
An open-access, peer-reviewed journal with articles on the application of SOTL to higher education.

International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
This organization's website includes an archive of its newsletter and an online tutorial about what SOTL is.

Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
An open-access, peer-reviewed journal of articles that promote effective practices in teaching.

Journals about SOTL: General (Western Kentucky Univ.)
Journals about SOTL: Discipline-Specific (Western Kentucky Univ.)
Annotated listings (with submission guidelines) of journals in which faculty can publish articles on SOTL.

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (Vanderbilt Univ.)
An excellent introduction to SOTL, including practitioner's resources, journals, and bibliographies.


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Student Motivation / Participation

Capturing and Directing the Motivation to Learn (Stanford University)
Provides tips on how to structure a classroom that motivates learning.

Encouraging Student Participation in Discussion (University of California-Berkeley)
Examples of methods that you can use to raise student involvement in class discussions.

Increasing Student Participation (Washington University in St. Louis)
Advice on how to create a classroom environment that will foster student participation.

Motivating Students (University of Oregon)
Gives answers to questions regarding difficulties associated with student motivation.

Motivating Students (Vanderbilt University)
Defines motivation types and shows their relation to different learning styles.

Motivating Students Best Work (University of California-Berkeley)
Provides examples of methods to improve student motivation in the classroom.

Strategies for Variety in the Classroom (University of California-Berkeley)
Describes unique pedagogical techniques that can be used to supplement class lectures and discussions.

Student Motivations and Attitudes (Carleton College)
Provides links to resources that aid in the understanding of student motivation.

Teaching Tips: Student Participation (University of the Sciences in Philadelphia)
Gives examples of techniques that you can use to increase class participation.



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