The COVID-19 pandemic shut down in-person classes at our campus. Over 4,000 courses were transitioned online in 4 days. Faculty and students struggled to learn this new modality. A working group convened to assess innovations and collect faculty and student stories. This working group met weekly and surveyed all the different schools (medicine, law, liberal arts, business, etc..) for teaching practices that worked. As the working group heard stories from faculty, they realized providing these stories to others would be valuable. These short stories were collected and aggregated onto a website hosted by our Center for Teaching Excellent. This website is the Small Changes, Big Impact site at http://cte.virginia.edu/small-changes-big-impact. Most of these stories highlight easy to implement practices that our faculty are continuing to use once we return to in-person classes. This presentation will walk through ten specific ideas that were small changes that had a big impact on teaching. One faculty member dedicated the first 5 minutes of every class for students to randomly be connecting to another student in the class where they were not allowed to talk about class, but just connect socially, getting to know one another. Another faculty member talks to the value of virtual office hours to promote more students working with her through difficult concepts. Effective practices that are evidence-based and align with the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework will be shared during this presentation.
Kristin Palmer, University of Virginia, United States