Update from the Program in General Education
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Dear Gen Ed & Humanities TFs,

Happy 2017! I hope you have been enjoying winter break.

We hope to see many of you at the January 17th Head TF Orientation. Please be sure to RSVP online if you haven't already done so.
This email addresses the following topics: 

  • Upcoming Events
    • Head TF Orientation (Tues., Jan. 17)
    • "Teaching in Gen Ed" Session for TFs (Fri., Jan. 20)
    • Bok Center Winter Teaching Week (Tues.-Fri., Jan. 17-20)
  • To Do List
    • Reserve Section Rooms
    • Request Classroom Media
    • Start Learning about the Sectioning Tool
    • Finalize Course Website
    • Create a "Shopping Week" Syllabus for Start of Term
  • Reminder
    • Instructional Lunch Fund

Please note that all Head TF emails throughout the term can be found on the Gen Ed website.

More information on the above topics can be found in Teaching in Gen Ed. If you have any questions as you prepare for the start of term, please don't hesitate to contact your course coordinator.

Laura E. Hess, Ph.D.  ▪  Associate Director
Program in General Education  ▪  Harvard College
Smith Campus Center 4th floor ▪  (617) 495-3002

Upcoming Events
Head TF Orientation
Tuesday, January 17th, 1-3pm
Smith Campus Center, 4th Floor
Find out what you need to know as you prepare for the spring term and learn what resources are available to support you. Whether you are serving as Head TF for the first time or are an experienced Head TF, we strongly encourage you to attend. Head TFs who attend the orientation report that they are better prepared for the many challenges that arise during the term. If you are a TF in a course without a Head TF, you are also welcome to attend. While we will cover some logistics that are more pertinent to classes with a large enrollment, much of what we will address is applicable to classes of any size. 
RSVP online if you plan to attend.

"Teaching in Gen Ed" Session for TFs
Friday, January 20th, 12-1:30pm (location TBA)
~ Lunch will be provided ~
Please note that any TFs new to teaching in Gen Ed are expected to attend this session. We will be contacting all Gen Ed TFs directly with information about this session, and would be grateful if you would also encourage members of your teaching staff to attend.
RSVP online if you plan to attend the session, so we can be sure to order enough food.

Bok Center Winter Teaching Week
The Bok Center's Winter Teaching Week, which runs from January 17th - 20th, features sessions for both first-time and experienced TFs. We strongly encourage you and your teaching staff to attend as many sessions as possible, regardless of your teaching experience.
  • Anyone teaching for the first time is also expected to attend the session on “Fundamentals of Teaching” (in the humanities and social sciences or in STEM courses) on Thursday, January 19th.
  • Anyone who has not attended a Title IX training session for TFs in the past year is expected to attend the session that is being held on Friday, January 20th. We will be contacting you soon about registering.
We will send you the registration information once it's available.
Please encourage the members of your teaching staff to attend. 
To Do List
Reserve Section Rooms
You can begin requesting space for your sections by filling out the online room request form that should be available on the FAS Registrar’s website starting on Monday, January 9th. Please note that all sections must begin on the hour. Also, the FAS Registrar’s Classrooms Office controls only about 30% of the classroom space on campus, so you may also want to look for rooms in your department or in the Houses. You can also use the Buildings & Rooms List to identify spaces and the appropriate scheduler. Contact your course coordinator if you need assistance with identifying alternate spaces. See Teaching in Gen Ed to learn more about section-room assignments.

Request Classroom Media
If you have media needs for your class, contact Media & Technology Services at or 617-495-9460, or use their online request form. You may also inquire about setting up a meeting before the first class to familiarize yourself with the media in the classroom. See Teaching in Gen Ed to learn more about multimedia and technology in the classroom.

Start Learning about the Sectioning Tool
Be sure to learn how to use the Sectioning Tool before the Course Registration Deadline (Friday, January 27th), since there will no longer be any Sectioning Tool training sessions or weekend/after-hours support. We encourage you to utilize the training resources in the my.harvard Knowledge Center, which has full documentation, demo videos and a downloadable guide. The Registrar’s Office will be holding walk-in labs at the following times:
  • Thursday, January 26th, 11am-1pm
  • Monday, January 30th, 9-11am
  • Tuesday, January 31st, 3-5pm
All sessions will be held in the large conference room on the fourth floor of the Smith Campus Center. Please note that these labs are designed to troubleshoot issues or answer specific questions; they are not training sessions. Participants will be expected to have already reviewed the Knowledge Center materials. Please contact the Registrar’s Office at 617-496-5212 or with any questions or concerns about the Sectioning Tool.

Finalize Course Website
Each course has been assigned a Canvas course website. Check with your faculty instructor to make sure the course website has been launched and is up-to-date with information like the course syllabus and the reserve reading list. Make sure you have been added to the site as an administrator. Learn more about Canvas

Harvard’s Academic Technology Group (ATG) provides faculty and staff with technology support and services such as course website help and assistance developing new assignments with media or technology elements (e.g., clickers, video and image editing, Google maps). Learn about training workshops, see examples of how FAS faculty are using technology in their teaching or subscribe to ATG’s monthly newsletter.

Create a "Shopping Week" Syllabus for Start of Term
We encourage you to start working with your faculty member now to create a “Shopping Week” Syllabus. To promote “green classrooms” and reduce paper waste and excessive copying costs, Gen Ed encourages courses to create an abbreviated syllabus to distribute to students during “Shopping Week”. We ask that you limit the abbreviated syllabus to no more than a single page, which could be double-sided, and refer students to the full syllabus, posted on the Canvas website. See Creating a Shopping Week Syllabus to learn more or see examples of abbreviated syllabi. We regretfully are no longer able to support making copies of full syllabi.
Instructional Lunch Fund & Other Reimbursement Requests
Funds to contribute toward meal or snack costs are available to facilitate regular meetings between Gen Ed course heads and their section leaders to discuss course-related matters. To be eligible for these funds, faculty and section leaders must meet for a minimum of six meetings each term (attendees at these meetings must include the faculty instructor). Ask your course head if you should be coordinating regular meetings that would be eligible for the ILF. Learn about Instructional Lunch Fund guidelines and procedures. Please note that we are not able to pay for food in any other contexts (including sections). Please contact your course coordinator with any questions about the ILF.
Copyright © 2016 All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Campus Center
1350 Massachusetts Avenue 
Cambridge, MA 02138

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