Teaching and Learning

April 2019
The need for qualified educators continues to grow locally, statewide, and across the country. Nationally, nearly 100,000 teaching positions were filled by individuals not fully qualified to teach as school districts headed into the 2017-2018 academic year, according to the Learning Policy Institute (2017). Polk County Public Schools started classes in August 2018 with nearly 100 teacher vacancies. As Polk County’s only public postsecondary institution offering state-approved teacher education preparation programs, Polk State College partnered with Polk County Public Schools to create the...
April 2019
As the world of education continues to evolve, the lines between course modalities have blurred. Traditional face-to-face courses make extensive use of online learning tools, while hybrid courses can range from almost entirely online to almost totally on-campus. At Seattle Central College (SCC), we are taking this further and have introduced what we call FLEX Mode. FLEX Mode provides students the ability to “flex” between online and face-to-face sections of the same course to maximize access to instructional materials, assessments, and interaction in order to achieve a higher rate of success...
March 2019
In 2016, the Instructor Residency Program (IRP) launched at the Community College of Denver (CCD) as an innovative option to onboard and support new science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) instructors, including adjuncts. The program integrates learning theory and effective practice for engaging and serving the diverse student population on the downtown community college campus. The IRP at CCD, a Hispanic Serving Institute, is designed as a hybrid program to help instructors increase their effectiveness when working with underserved students in STEM. It was originally adapted...
March 2019
The Aims Community College Agricultural Sciences and Technology program received the Outstanding Postsecondary Agriculture Program Award at the National Association of Agriculture Educators (NAAE) Convention in San Antonio, Texas. Aims was one of six programs nationwide to receive the award. The Aims program was nominated for the award by a local high school, then went on to the national level to compete against other two- and four-year programs as well as adult education programs (e.g., Young Farmers) in the region. The Agricultural Sciences and Technology program’s exemplary faculty and...
February 2019
Last year, Midland College (MC) began a successful partnership with the Midland Independent School District (MISD) to prepare high school students for college and careers. As a result of this collaboration, three transformative academies—Petroleum Academy; Health Sciences Academy; and Business, Management, and Information Technology Academy—are now offered to high school students. The College & Career Academies provide high school students with opportunities to learn valuable technological and academic skills. These academies are specifically designed to meet the current and future needs...
January 2019
To prepare students for meaningful work, California Community Colleges (CCC) have invested $17M over three years in the CCC Maker initiative to facilitate a network of 24 college makerspace communities. What’s at stake is the untapped potential of the 2.1 million students in the largest and most diverse system of higher education in the country, according to Carol Pepper-Kittredge, CCC Maker Statewide Project Director and Associate Dean of Workforce Innovation at Sierra College. “I believe that makerspaces are transforming education,” said Pepper-Kittredge. In an educational makerspace,...
December 2018
Every student who graduated from Jackson State Community College’s nursing program in 2017 passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) on his or her first attempt, an achievement that earned praise from the Tennessee Board of Nursing. The NCLEX is a nationwide exam for nursing school graduates to obtain a license, which allows them to practice. It is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. Sherry Richardson, nurse consultant with the Tennessee Board of Nursing, wrote a letter to Jackson State after students achieved the 100 percent pass rate, saying, “...
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November 2018
Arapahoe Community College (ACC) and Centura Health, the region’s health care leader, launched Colorado’s first registered Medical Assistant Apprenticeship Program designed to meet local workforce needs in July 2018. A dozen students are enrolled in the initial cohort of this innovative work-based learning program, which is made possible by funding from the Colorado Workforce Development Council, Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, Centura Health, Colorado First, and Existing Industry Grants (CFEI) jointly administered by Colorado Community College System and Colorado Office of...
November 2018
Two years ago, student and Valencia Technology Club member Richard Haynes asked if club members could take Valencia College’s obsolete computers and refurbish them for students who need a computer and can’t afford to purchase one. At the time, the project did not move forward. A year later, however, representatives from the Information Technology (IT), Legal, and Finance departments; the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation (LSAMP); and the Valencia Technology Club met, and, collaboratively, developed the club’s computer donation and repair programs. Now, selected LSAMP students...
October 2018
Recognized as a state model in noncredit instruction, San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE) continues its reputation of leadership and innovation by implementing open educational resources (OER) that increase accessibility and textbook affordability to adult students in San Diego. “It’s about access,” said Matthew Rivaldi, a member of SDCE’s business faculty. “The goal is to offer SDCE students free textbooks or high-quality educational materials using OER.” OER has been a buzz-term in the California legislature since 2012, when Governor Brown signed two bills that recognized that the cost of...
September 2018
Through rapid growth, acquisition of costly medical simulation equipment, and the expansion of technology-centered simulation facilities, Wake Technical Community College (Wake Tech) has become one of the largest and most advanced providers of healthcare simulation programs in North Carolina. New state-of-the-art simulation labs in nursing, radiology, emergency medical sciences, dental assisting, dental hygiene, medical assisting, natural sciences, nurse aid, and medical lab technology have also made Wake Tech a focal point in the simulation community. But with these advancements come new...
June 2018
Congratulations to the 2018 Innovation of the Year Award winners! Forty-six institutions submitted innovations for a 2018 Innovation of the Year Award. Some of the innovations are described below. Click here for a full list of winners. Wake Technical Community College: Launching North Carolina's First Associate Degree Program in Healthcare Simulation Technology Wake Tech has become a leader in healthcare simulation in North Carolina by developing state-of-the-art simulation labs in its Nursing, Radiology, EMS, Dental Assisting and Hygiene, and other allied health programs. Working in this...
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May 2018
Mesa Community College (MCC) was the first college, among six in the nation, selected by Apple to launch the iOS app development project and the first to offer associated courses for academic credit. The college views the Everyone Can Code project as more than a collection of courses. This is a foundation for a successful future for a diverse body of students. MCC faculty embrace the concept that the key to innovation is to provide something that is unusual, to test the norms, to do it in a timely and meaningful manner, and to embrace teaching excellence through diversity and differentiated...
April 2018
In 2014, Sierra College, located in Rocklin, CA, was one of the first community colleges in the nation to establish a public/private partnership with Hacker Lab, a Sacramento community-based makerspace, to enhance students’ education through maker experiences. Through a competitive process, Sierra College was awarded a $350,000 CCC Maker Grant in July 2017, renewable for a second year, from the California Community College Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO), Workforce and Economic Development Division, under the Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and the Economy framework. Sierra College is one of 24 CCC...
March 2018
How can the Gateway Community and Technical College best support early childhood education (ECE) students who are balancing work, college, and parenthood? This was the question that the ECE program coordinator was attempting to answer when redesigning the program to boost enrollment, retention, and completion in fall 2015. Sarah Smith, ECE Program Coordinator and faculty member utilized the design thinking process that had been recently introduced to the college during its strategic planning development. The process incorporates an empathetic outlook that focuses on the end-users’ needs to...
March 2018
Congratulations to the 2017 recipients of the League's Innovation of the Year Award! The League initiated the award over thirty years ago to recognize local community college projects and initiatives that reflect extraordinary achievement and the spirit of innovation and experimentation on which the League was founded. The competition provides an opportunity for League Board and Alliance member colleges to showcase their innovative programs, practices, policies, partnerships, and resources; to celebrate the dedicated educators who are responsible for such exceptional work; and to promote a...
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December 2017
Assessment is an integral component to refining teaching, support services, and operations. It informs the choices we make and helps us make continuous improvements to our programs and processes. At Bergen Community College (Bergen), the Assessment Fellows Program provides a systematic approach for college faculty and professional staff to assume leadership in collegewide assessment as well as a unique opportunity to ensure quality of assessment plans for the institution. After our accreditor noted that Bergen did not have a clear assessment process in place, the college began placing greater...
November 2017
SUNY Erie Community College’s (ECC) Information Technology Program was recently honored as the Best Tech Team in Non-Profit/Education by InfoTech WNY as part of the organization’s annual Buffalo Emerging Technology Awards Showcase (BETAS) at Buffalo RiverWorks in May 2017. “This award is exciting news for a program that’s been thriving for years,” said ECC President Jack Quinn. “Its faculty and staff have done a tremendous job in preparing our students for technology careers across Western New York, so this acknowledgement is deserved, and much appreciated.”   Competing in a category that...
November 2017
Communicating to students in a way that leads to student satisfaction and success in online courses requires teaching presence. The main instrument of learning is communication and the success of students’ learning depends on the faculty member’s preparedness to engage them in the learning process (Serdyukov & Serdyukova, 2015). Online instructors must, therefore, work to find strategies to improve students’ satisfaction of teaching presence through approaches that address these concerns. According to Florescu and Pop-Pacurar (2016), one of the most important factors influencing the...
October 2017
The League for Innovation prides itself on recognizing innovation and excellence in the community college. Colleges and institutions across the U.S. and abroad demonstrate their dedication to students and communities, and the following awards attest to the League’s support for the daily efforts of faculty, staff, administrators, and students. League Awards 2018 Riegelman Awards for Excellence in Public Health & Health Navigation Education in Community Colleges: Open through October 31, 2017 2017 John & Suanne Roueche Excellence Awards: Open through December 15, 2017 2017 Terry O’...
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