March 16, 2015
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McGill University - Focus on Teaching

Brown Bag Lunch Series: Evaluation and Feedback in Large Classes

March 17, 12:00-1:15 PM (Tomorrow)
Peer Review with Undergrads: Promoting an Understanding of Academic Writing
A peer review assignment with 450+ students? Where a portion of the grade is determined by peers? Professor Lawrence Chen will share his thoughts on the pedagogy and logistics related to his experience implementing a peer review writing assignment, as well as his students’ reflections.

Writing Effective Reference Letters for Student Fellowships

March 27, 10:00-12:00 PM
Professors are often asked to write letters of reference by students applying for awards and employment. While time-consuming and sometimes difficult, a strong reference letter can change the outcome of an application. This workshop will help you write effective letters for all situations, and even handle unreasonable requests.
Sign in to Minerva, click on the ‘Registration for GPS Graduate Workshop’ link and register for GPS 325

Rights of Students with Disabilities

McGill strives to provide an inclusive and supportive learning environment for all students. Various support services and accommodations are available and coordinated by the Office for Students with Disabilities.  


Digital Scholarship workshops: Data Visualization for Humanities Research

March 17, 2:30 - 4:30 PM
This workshop will introduce Humanities Researchers to the ways Data Visualization is reshaping their domains, how visualization can be employed both as an alternative and in complement to their traditional forms of research dissemination and publication. It will explore different types of visualizations – from spatial tools to analytical suites like to visualization libraries like D3.JS.

Faculty Symposium on the Future of Academic Research Libraries

March 18, 8:30am–12:30pm
Faculty members are invited to attend a half-day symposium featuring thought leaders with extensive experience in the scholarly publishing and research library world who will address the changing environment for academic research libraries and the evolving role of digital and print collections.             Live streamed here

RSVP required: or call 514-398-5711. 

Safer Spaces: Race & Cultural Identity

March 19, 2:00-4:30 PM
This workshop addresses the challenges of fostering diversity-receptive cultural attitudes, reducing structural barriers in University life, and building and maintaining respectful spaces. Through case studies, you will have the chance to practice identifying and responding to the types of discrimination most commonly encountered in campus life.


Supporting Students in Distress

April 1, 9:30am–12:00pm
Academic performance can bring up many emotions for students. How can you, as a faculty member, identify and respond appropriately to students who withdraw or behave in a distressed, disruptive, or dangerous manner? This workshop will present a model of appropriate and simple actions that you can take.
Please note that space is limited.

Introduction to Course Design and Teaching Workshop

May 7, 9:00am-5:00pm and May 12, 9:00am-1:00pm (1.5 days)
Would you like to redesign or design one of your courses and enhance your teaching skills? Join a group of fellow faculty members led by facilitators from Teaching and Learning Services to discuss strategies for course design and teaching that focus on enhancing student learning.

Course Evaluations start next week! 

Course Evaluations for the Winter 2015 semester will be available to students as of next week:
  • Default period: March 23 – May 1
  • Condensed period: March 23 – April 15 (view units)
Strategies that you can use to encourage student participation include:
  • Speaking to students about the value you place on their feedback.
  • Highlighting changes made to the course in response to previous feedback.
  • Setting a goal for the class response rate and providing an incentive (such as an additional review session) if the goal is met.
More strategies are available here. Questions? Contact

Help Us Do IT Better in 2015

McGill IT Services is conducting our 2nd annual survey on usage and satisfaction with technology services we provide, such as myCourses, email, software, and more. Last year your feedback helped validate decisions to provide Office 365 software and cloud storage solutions. Let us know how we can continue to improve your IT experience.

Tip of the Week: Making the Most of Online Discussions in myCourses

Did you know that you can enable up-voting and down-voting on discussion posts in myCourses? You can also embed videos directly in the Content tool. We’ve created a new series on our Teaching for Learning @ McGill blog to help you maximize the resources available to you and your students in myCourses.  
Click here to request a consultation or workshop. 

Summer 2015 courses available for instructors

You can start preparing your course site now for Summer 2015 in myCourses. Here are some useful resource links: If you would like your Summer 2015 sections to be crosslisted (merged) in myCourses, please contact


Content and Collaboration Solutions (CCS) | IT Customer Services (ICS) | McGill Library | Social, Equity and Diversity Education Office (SEDE) | Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD)

If you have comments about this e-bulletin, or require additional information about the above, please contact us at or 514-398-6648.