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Welcome to Dr. Becca Ciancanelli, Director of Inclusive Teaching Practices

The OTL is excited to welcome Dr. Becca Ciancanelli to our team as the new Director of Inclusive Teaching Practices!

Becca received a BS in Chemistry from Harvey Mudd College, a Master of Arts in Teaching Secondary Science from Colorado College and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from CU Boulder. At CU Boulder, she built a STEM program and taught chemistry for a multicultural program called the Student Academic Success Center (SASC) and then transitioned two years ago to help build the brand-new Center for Teaching & Learning as the Inclusive Pedagogy Lead. Her research background involves the investigation of metacognitive strategies in large and small STEM classrooms, through coding and analyzing student writing in reflective classroom assignments and study challenges. Her current research project explores how community-based performance in equity-focused dialogues can empower educators to share and reflect openly upon their experiences and whether this embodied practice impacts participants’ perception of their ability to recognize and interrupt microaggressions.

OTL Seeks Department Action Teams

Last week the Chancellor announced that the OTL is seeking departmental applications for a 10-month pilot project to re-evaluate teaching evaluation practices. This project supports the work of the Teaching Excellence Task Force and guides departments through a change process known as “Department Action Teams” (DATs). Participating departments/programs will determine ways to apply the Teaching Quality Framework and ensure three voices (self, student, peer) are reflected in teaching evaluation for annual and consequential review.

These DATs will be facilitated by Dr. Virginia Pitts, OTL's Director of University Teaching, Dr. Kayoung Kim, Director of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and Faculty Learning Communities, Dr. Jared Del Rosso, Associate Professor and OTL Faculty Fellow of Teaching and Learning, and Dr. Barbekka Hurtt, Teaching Associate Professor and OTL Faculty Fellow of Teaching and Learning.

Participating teams will begin their work in March 2022. The application deadline is February 4. To learn more and apply, visit the DAT Call for Proposals web page.

Seeking Participants for Spring 2022 Student-Faculty Partnership Program!

Do you wish to better-understand your students and how they experience your class, particularly in this current context? In the Student-Faculty Partnership Program, students and faculty members learn and work together as partners in addressing the question of how we can create more engaging and inclusive learning environments. Now in it's sixth year at DU and backed by 20 years of research, this program is premised on the idea that students and faculty members can learn much from each other regarding the experience of teaching and learning, and that it is through dialogue and sharing of different perspectives that this learning can occur.   


Participating faculty members will be paired with a student partner for the Spring 2022 quarter. Every week throughout the quarter, students observe their faculty partner's class, and they and their faculty partners meet - either virtually or in person - to discuss their respective observations, insights, and wonderings.


We are currently seeking faculty participants who teach undergraduate classes in any format.  The application deadline is Tuesday, February 15, 2022. To learn more about this program and to apply, please visit our Student-Faculty Partnership Program web page. We are also seeking student participants for this program, particularly students from groups that are under-represented in shaping higher education, so if you know of any undergraduate students whom you would like to recommend, please contact Virginia Pitts.

Student Accommodation Support for Testing

Do you have students planning to take their quizzes, tests, or mid-term exams in the DSP Testing Center this term? Students can now submit their Test Requests through the Student Accommodate Portal for upcoming assessments. As a faculty member, you will be notified via email if a student has requested to test in the DSP Testing Center. Faculty members will need to provide DSP with parameters for the assessment via the Faculty Accommodate Portal. You also have the ability to log-in and provide testing parameter information prior to the student requests. Visit the Providing DSP Testing Information Knowledge Base article for more information!

If you need support in ensuring your exams are set up appropriately for students with DSP accommodations (such as adding extra time), please reach out to Ellen Hogan, OTL’s Accessibility Technologist for Learning and Instruction at [email protected].

Canvas Coaching Sessions

Canvas Coaching is designed to provide faculty with small group consultation, training, and support with Canvas. The sessions may include demonstrations, activities, and Q&A time. This year, we are intentionally focusing on accessibility in Canvas, whether that be through understanding functionality, universal design, or student accommodations. These sessions will be online, and please register for the sessions you are interested in attending using the links below! 


Canvas Coaching: Tech Tool Spotlight - Kurzweil 3000 

Monday, January 31, 1:30 - 2:00 p.m.

Canvas Coaching: Mid-Quarter Feedback

Tuesday, February 8, 11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Check the OTL Events Calendar for more information and to discover other upcoming events!

Don't forget that you can also schedule a 1:1 with an OTL Instructional Designer for individual training, or reach out to [email protected] with questions.

Respondus LockDown Browser Update

An update to the LockDown Browser client for Windows has been released: version This update fixes an issue related to a recent Microsoft Windows update.

Existing installs of LockDown Browser will NOT be auto-updated at this time. To obtain the latest version ( use the "Check for Update" feature or run the full installation program.

For more information, visit our Respondus LockDown Browser Knowledge Base article. Respondus is hosting several training webinars throughout the next month.

Teaching Online Short Course Starts in February!

Are you thinking about how to keep your students engaged and considering your strategies for providing feedback as we approach mid-term? Join us for the Teaching Online Short Course to learn about best practices around engagement and feedback in courses with online elements!

The course is primarily self-paced with the opportunity to connect with other faculty participants. Participants who turn in the final assignment will receive a course review facilitated by an Instructional Designer.

Upon completion of the course review, participants will receive a stipend. The course will run from Monday, February 7 to Monday, February 28.

Register for the Teaching Online Short Course today!

Teaching Resources

Teaching Tool Kit

This tool kit provides practical steps for readying your courses, no matter the modality. From Canvas basics to hyflex considerations, and complete with worksheets to guide you, this toolkit is a great starting point for course planning.

Creating Instructional Videos

This Knowledge Base article provides helpful tips and tricks you can use as you create pre-recorded videos, lectures, and demonstrations to enhance the asynchronous components of your course. You can also learn more about the various tools you can use to create your videos, such as Zoom and Kaltura.