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Monday, June 8, 2009

TIPping into summer

The emails about final grades have almost stopped, I got the revisions done on an R&R that needed finishing before my co-author disappears for the summer, and I just got back from the AEA's Teaching Innovations Program (TIP) workshop in Santa Fe so I'm re-energized and looking forward to really starting my summer. For those who aren't familiar with it, TIP began five years ago and "seeks to improve undergraduate education in economics by offering instructors an opportunity to expand their teaching skills and participate in the scholarship of teaching and learning." Phase 1 is the workshop where there are sessions on interactive learning techniques. Participants can also go on to Phase 2, which involves actually implementing some of those techniques into classes, with mentoring and assistance from the TIP staff. And Phase 3 gives participants an opportunity to engage in the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Unfortunately, this is the last year of the original grant for TIP; however, the PIs are applying for additional grants to continue and extend their work. I certainly hope they are successful because I thought the whole workshop was excellent. I imagine it was even more useful for faculty who are not as familiar with the literature on pedagogy, in economics or otherwise, but even for someone like me, who already incorporates a lot of interactive techniques into my classes, it was great to learn more and to hear about what other people are doing. It was incredibly energizing simply to talk with other people who are as interested in teaching economics as I am and over the next few weeks, I'll be writing about some of the cool stuff we discussed.

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