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Academy News - September 30, 2020
Tools to Foster Connections in a Remote Learning Environment

This workshop will demonstrate technology tools that can be used to promote student-to-student and student-to-instructor connections in a remote learning environment. The session will cover the “why” of using a tool and follow with a demonstration of its use in Blackboard from both the instructor and student perspective. At the conclusion of the session, faculty will be provided with a resource guide to help them choose and implement the tools that will help foster connections in their online course.

Understanding and Rethinking Anti-Racism and Resistance

This 3-credit GEC course, facilitated by Dr. Joseph Flynn (Associate Director, Center for Black Studies at NIU), is based on the book White Fatigue: Rethinking Resistance for Social Justice. The book explores the challenges of learning to understand systemic and institutional racism. White Fatigue refers to the idea of White folks who believe racism is wrong but seem to get frustrated with learning about racism because of its complexity. The book explores ideas ranging from what is racism and its forms, resistance, privilege, racial identity development, race and politics, the success and failure of multicultural education, theoretical perspectives on the challenges of learning about racism, racial literacy, and how we can institutionally confront fatigue. Ultimately the text encourages us to rethink the ways we talk about racism as a matter of social justice.

Learn More & Register (registration deadline: October 20)
tom tobin
Adjunct Faculty Teaching & Learning Conference

The 7th Annual Adjunct Faculty Teaching & Learning Conference featured speaker, Dr. Thomas J. Tobin (Program Area Director for Distance Teaching & Learning on the Learning, Design, Development, & Innovation team at the University of Wisconsin-Madison). Tom facilitated an engaging keynote presentation and workshop focusing on ways to better reach our students through more intentional design of our teaching and learning experiences. The conference also included an adjunct faculty panel discussion and closed with an interactive BINGO game (10 lucky winners won a copy of Tom Tobin’s book, Reach Everyone, Teach Everyone: Universal Design for Learning in Higher Education). We were also pleased to welcome some adjunct faculty colleagues from College of Lake County, Elgin Community College, Kishwaukee College, McHenry County College, and Waubonsee Community College.

Become an Ally Advocate: Improve the Accessibility of Course Materials with Ally for Blackboard

We’re excited to announce a new tool available in your Blackboard course called Ally. Ally provides you guidance on how to correct accessibility issues with your digital course content, which means your learning materials will work better on mobile phones and tablets as well as with assistive technologies. Ally provides visual indicators (that only you can see) next to your course files for detailed feedback about how to correct the accessibility issues with your files. Your students will also be able to download “alternative formats” of your files by clicking the drop-down icon next to the file name, and choosing a version of the file most appropriate for their device and need. During this workshop we will demonstrate the features of Ally and guide you through the workflow for identifying and correcting accessibility issues.

Online Instruction Support & Resources

The Academy is here to support all full-time and adjunct faculty. Please review the resources below and let us know how we can continue to support you!

Please continue to submit support requests using the Online Instruction Support form. An Academy team member will follow up with you within one business day.
Students are experiencing increased stress as a result of the pandemic and the social and political unrest in response to recent events; this series is designed to provide faculty with strategies to help students conserve bandwidth so that they can successfully engage in learning under these tense and trying circumstances. Each session will provide attendees with a greater awareness of the underlying causes of bandwidth depletion and concrete, multi-disciplinary strategies to increase students’ cognitive and emotional bandwidth. Learn more and register using the link above.
Next Session 10/22: Anti-Racist Pedagogy: Conserving Bandwidth for Our Students of Color

The Academy is partnering with Harper faculty to showcase a few of the 20-Minute Mentor videos offered by Magna Publications in our second season of the Lunch & Learn series. Each session will provide an opportunity for attendees to watch one of the videos as a group. Faculty leaders will then engage the group in discussion and brainstorming on how to apply what they saw in the video to their classrooms. Learn more and register using the link above.
Next Session 10/27: What 5 Play-Based Activities Can I Use to Create an Active, Learning-Centered Class?

This second Promotions Session will help you understand the new submission process for this year, what to expect in the interview process, and more. Use the link above to see details and information to join the session.

Watch recordings of the sessions on the Week of Engagement Stream channel (videos are being uploaded as they become available and captioned).

If you are interested in joining a goal team, please complete the FY 2021-2024 Strategic Plan goal team interest form (use link above). All interested faculty/staff members are encouraged to complete the interest form; space on goal teams is limited.

To open a Service Desk ticket, go to the Service Desk on HIP or type help.harpercollege.edu in any browser, fill out a few fields and your ticket is created. Shortly, someone from Information Technology will contact you to resolve your issue.

Want to add copyrighted videos to your online courses? Are you wondering how you can adapt your research assignments to the online format? Do you know about curbside services and course reserves for fall? Did you know synchronous chat is available 24/7? Learn more about the many new resources and services provided by the Library using the link above.

Summer may be fading away into a memory…but the "HEAT" and other resources remain. While many of us continue to work remotely this fall semester, the Harper Early Alert Team, or HEAT, and the Student Conduct team continue to meet and work to assist Harper students, employees, and the greater Harper College community with guidance and responses to incidents of concern and possible violations of the Harper's Student Code of Conduct. Learn more using the link above.

Any student or employee who suspects they may have COVID-19 or have tested positive must notify the college. Students are to inform their faculty; employees are to notify their dean/supervisor. Learn more.
  • When a student discloses to you that they may have COVID-19 or have tested positive, please complete the COVID-19 REPORTING FORM (available on the Student Development site on HIP). A copy of the information will be sent to Vicki Atkinson, dean of student development, and the division dean, as applicable.
  • Employees who may have COVID-19 or have tested positive are to inform their dean/supervisor who will contact Angela Bowling, manager of benefits and compensation.
Reporting suspected or confirmed cases as quickly as possible will initiate contact tracing and cleaning/safety procedures and help us provide a safe campus.

If you know a student who needs technology, please encourage them to submit a library technology loan request. The college purchased an additional 1,000 Chromebooks for students. Help us get them in the hands of students. Learn more using the link above.
Faculty Experience
Harper Teach-In and Social Justice Days of Action

Submitted by Stephanie Horton, English and John Garcia, Philosophy

On August 28, Inside Higher Ed featured an article that recounted how one professor, Anthea Butler (Associate Professor of Religious Studies and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania) initiated a racial justice solidarity movement on Twitter. In the tweet, she stated that she would be willing to follow the lead of NBA players and strike to protest police violence. Within hours, more than 600 scholars from around the country had committed to participate in a #ScholarStrike work stoppage and virtual teach-in on September 8 and 9. Instead of “business as usual” on these days, professors would provide opportunities for students to engage in discussion, reflection, assignments and/or review resources focused on social justice, white supremacy, racism, etc. Scholars joining this rallied behind the #ScholarStrike official statement that “We can no longer sit quietly amidst state violence against communities of color… [It is of] crucial importance for those of us in higher education to take a stand in solidarity with our students and the communities we serve.”

Dave Braunschweig
AACC Faculty Innovation Award Recipient at Harper

Dave Braunschweig, professor of computer information systems, has won the Faculty Innovation Award for the American Association of Community Colleges’ 2020 Awards of Excellence for his work helping to save students more than $1 million in textbook costs using OER (Open Educational Resources). Learn more.

Braunschweig calls the recognition a “we award, not a me award” because of the work by so many across campus to build the OER program. “The award is based on innovation scalability, and we, collectively have embraced OER and demonstrated that it can be implemented effectively across the institution,” said Braunschweig.

OER initiatives are ongoing and now is the time to get involved. There is $75,000 available for grants and technology to support OER again this year. Details and information about how to apply will be available in an upcoming issue of the Academy News. 
Online Learning
5 Reasons to Lean into Teaching Online for Now

“I look forward to meeting with my students in person again in the not-too-distant future… But in the meantime, I’ll gladly put my heart into teaching online, even though this would have been anathema to me a year ago.”  - Christopher Schaberg, Distinguished Professor of English, Loyola University New Orleans.

If you are feeling like teaching online is not the most satisfying teaching format for you, then read five reasons why this professor is leaning into teaching online for now. His article, "Why I’m Teaching Online", was recently published in Inside Higher Ed.
Upcoming Professional Development Credit Opportunities
What's Happening @ Harper?
Academy for Teaching Excellence | 847.925.6174 | Building F, Room F317
Monday - Thursday, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
The mission of the Academy for Teaching Excellence is to create a vibrant teaching and learning culture for full-time and adjunct faculty that cultivates professional development in support of student success.
Accessibility: Individuals with disabilities who would like to request an accommodation or who have questions about physical access may contact the event host or Access and Disability Services at ads@harpercollege.edu, 847.925.6266, at least two weeks in advance of the event date.
Harper College enriches its diverse communities by providing quality, affordable, and accessible education. Harper College, in collaboration with its partners, inspires the transformation of individual lives, the workforce, and society.