June 13, 2018
Here is a brief report of our latest event and a preview of our next event.
“Interactive Teaching” Academy: Part 2 “Designing a 90-min Class”
Date/Time: Session 1: April 22nd (Sun), 2018, 09:00–16:00; Session 2: June 2nd (Sat), 2018, 14:00–17:00
Venue: 93B, Faculty of Engineering Building 2, Hongo Campus, The University of Tokyo
Participants: 20 people (Capacity: 20 people)
Fee: 10,000 JPY (Free of charge for graduate students and postdocs)
Instructors: Kayoko Kurita (Center for Research and Development of Higher Education, The University of Tokyo)
Nagafumi Nakamura (Center for Research and Development of Higher Education, The University of Tokyo)
1. Topic and Goal
This time, the topic was “Designing a 90-min Class.” Based on the goal, “Be able to design a class that helps students deepen their learning,” we set specific learning objectives as follows:
① Be able to explain the significance of class design. (Preparation)
② Be able to improve a class by using a class design sheet (a format for class design introduced in “Interactive Teaching”). (Exercise in the morning of Session 1)
③ Be able to design one’s class by using a class design sheet. (Exercise in the afternoon of Session 1)
④ Use the class design sheet in one’s workplace and improve it for better use. (Session 2)
This program was structured as follows: 1) Participants learn together about “Designing a 90-min Class” in Session 1; 2) They respectively conduct the classes they designed at their schools/institutions; 3) They gather again a month later to report their practices and examine with other participants what they should do to improve the design. This design was intended to let the participants utilize what they learn in the program.
Also, this program was conducted in a flipped-classroom manner, and participants worked on pre-class assignments beforehand. During the session, they first reviewed what they had learned in the preparation and then worked on exercises of improving a sample class design sheet and creating their own class design sheets.
All participants were asked to watch the videos for WEEK 4 of “Interactive Teaching” and read Chapter 4 of the book “Interactive Teaching” (Kawai Publishing, 2017). Also, some participants voluntarily created and submitted their class design sheets.
(2) Session 1 (April 22nd)
 Introduction (09:00–09:15)
Participants listened to the explanation of the goals, structure, and rules of the program before introducing themselves to others.
 Review of What the Participants Learned in the Preparation (09:15–09:45)
Participants reviewed and organized what they had learned in the preparation through group activities. They examined the significance of class design and points they should be careful of.
 Exercise of Improving a Class Design Sheet (09:45–11:45)
Participants examined a sample class design sheet and had a group discussion on what was good about it and what points needed improvement. This exercise was intended to help the participants apply what they had learned in the preparation and during the reviewing session.
Participants learning from each other (Group presentation)
 Exercise of Creating a Class Design Sheet (13:00–15:30)
Participants created class design sheets to use in their own classes, based on what they had learned in the improvement exercise in the morning. They examined whether the class design was aligned with the goals and objectives of their classes through individual work and group discussions.
Participants exchanging their ideas in pairs
 Wrap-up (15:30–16:00)
Participants organized what they learned, what kind of questions they had, and what they wanted to bring back to their own work through group activities and Q&A sessions.
(3) Session 2 (June 2nd)
 Introduction (14:00–14:10)
Participants reviewed the goals and rules of the entire program once again, including the goals and structure of Session 2.
 Report of Participants’ Practices and Improvement of Class Design Sheets in Groups (14:10–16:30)
First of all, each participant reported what they could or could not practice over the last month, why they could not practice, and what problems they had. Then, they examined how to improve their class design sheets through group activities.
Group activity on improving their class design sheets
 Wrap-up (16:30–16:55)
Lastly, participants organized what they learned through the two sessions, what kind of questions they had, and what they wanted to bring back to their own work through group activities and Q&A sessions.
3. Participants’ Reactions
The affiliation of 20 participants was as follows: 10 faculty or staff members of the university or technical college, four graduate students or postdocs, two teachers or staff members of junior/senior high school, one teacher or staff member of elementary school, and three teachers or staff members of vocational school. According to the five-point scale question asking the degree of satisfaction (Extremely satisfied; Very satisfied; Satisfied; Not so satisfied; Dissatisfied), 57 percent of the respondents were “extremely satisfied,” and 43 percent were “very satisfied.”
Another five-point scale question asked whether it was effective to have an opportunity to design and practice class design, and report it to others during the program held in two days with a month in between (Yes (very much); Yes; Unsure; No (not so much); No (not at all)). 64 percent of the respondents answered “Yes (very much),” and 36 percent answered “Yes.” According to another five-point scale question asking whether participation in the two-day workshop would affect your future practice (Yes (very much); Yes; No (not so much); No (not at all); Unsure), 50 percent of the respondents answered “Yes (very much)” and 50 percent answered “Yes.”
We held a two-day event for the first time but are relieved to know that it was appreciated to a certain extent. We are eager to provide the participants with the opportunities to share their practices and improve our events to satisfy future participants by examining the points we need to improve as indicated in the feedback.
4. Preview of the Next Program
We are planning to hold a two-day workshop on evaluation (rubrics) on Sunday, June 3rd (as DAY 1) and Friday, August 3rd (as DAY 2). Also, we are planning to hold two one-day seminars: “Active Learning Strategies” on Saturday, August 4th, and “Microteaching” on Sunday, August 5th. Details are to be announced. We look forward to your participation.
UTokyo FD website
Book “Interactive Teaching” (Kawai Publishing, 2017)
https://www.kawai-publishing.jp/book/?isbn=978-4-7772-1794-6 (Kawai Publishing website)
Nagafumi Nakamura (Project Researcher in charge of “Interactive Teaching” / Main Moderator of this event)