How to Do Team Based Learning (TBL) in the Online or Hybrid Classroom

Dr. Meghan Gillette, Associate Professor of Teaching (HDFS) and CELT Faculty Affiliate, will provide a virtual TBL Workshop Series focusing on how to do TBL in the online or hybrid classroom on Fridays, starting April 21 and running through May 12.  This workshop series is for instructors (and those who support them) who already utilize Team Based Learning in their face-to-face classes and are interested in guidance for how to move the face-to-face TBL classroom online or in a hybrid format.

By the end of the workshop, participants will:

  • make conceptual decisions about how the course will be delivered, the flow of activities, etc.
  • make critical decisions about their course (i.e. how to provide feedback, how to deliver mini-lectures, attendance policies, etc.)
  • set up an iRAT, tRAT, and application exercise in Canvas
  • learn best practices to avoid novice mistakes and stay in compliance with online teaching guidelines
  • feel empowered to use technology (including Canvas and other tools within it) to support their pedagogy

*** Participants Are Strongly Encouraged To Attend All Four Workshop Sessions ***

Seminar: Team-Based Learning (TBL) Teaching and Learning Community

Join us for TBL conversation and comradery! For our first meeting this spring we will check in and share where we are in our TBL journey. We will also have some time focused specifically on best practices for peer assessment. Peer assessment is an essential component in TBL that is often discussed in terms of accountability, but it is also an important tool for team building and creating a sense of belonging. Facilitators: Jane Rongerude, Michael Dorneich, Amber Bellville, and Meghan Gillette.

Cookies and coffee will be provided.

Improve teaching online with these three resources, Dr. David Cantor

Improve teaching online with these three resources, Dr. David Cantor

Dr. David Cantor, Professor of Supply Chain Management & Mark & Terri Walker Professorship in Logistics and Supply Chain Management (Ivy College of Business) along with Lauren Eliscu, Teaching Assistant (Supply Chain Management) here at Iowa State. Cantor shares how to improve teaching online with these three resources in this Tip for Teaching video (8 mins).

Discover more about the three quick tips shared in this video on the Team-Based Learning page, CELT about page, and the Quality Matters at ISU page.

Demonstrating the Team-Based Learning (TBL) teaching approach in Math

In 2016, CELT visited with professor of mathematics Elgin Johnston and senior lecturer of mathematics Heather Bolles as they were using the Team-Based Learning (TBL) teaching approach in their MATH 166: Calculus II course. The course is held in an active learning classroom (213 MacKay Hall). Math faculty examine numbers to improve student learning (Inside Iowa State).

Below is an excerpt from a March 23, 2017 Inside Iowa State article by Paula Van Brocklin that describes Johnston’s and Bolle’s successes. The full Inside Iowa State web article is available at Math faculty examine numbers to improve student learning,

On to calculus

Over the past few years, professor of mathematics Elgin Johnston and senior lecturer of mathematics Heather Bolles have transformed their calculus sections for greater student success using team-based learning (TBL).
What is TBL?

TBL is a form of active and small-group learning that can be implemented in a large classroom. It requires students to do assignments before class in order to inspire more engaging classroom discussions. During class, students work on significant team projects, applying calculus concepts. With support from a Howard Hughes Medical Institute grant, Johnston and Bolles, with input from faculty in science and engineering, have spent years developing and refining their TBL materials.

Johnston and Bolles assign their students readings, videos and a quiz prior to class. When class convenes, students work in their assigned groups of five to seven individuals, and take the quiz again.

“They almost always do better after the team quiz,” Johnston said.

Greater student success

Bolles said one of the positive outcomes of TBL is that more students physically come to class.

“We’ve had significantly higher attendance rates,” Bolles said. “We had rates as low as 60 percent before the TBL implementation, and now we’re at 85 to 90 percent.”

Johnston attributes the increased participation to students feeling accountable to their teams.

“Some teams get very close by the end of the semester,” he said.

Like McNicholl, Johnston and Bolles measure students’ calculus knowledge at the beginning and end of the semester. What they’ve found is that the students in TBL sections score higher than students in non-TBL classes. In addition, TBL students earn higher scores, on average, on the departmental midterm and final exams.

“TBL lets students be actively engaged in the classroom, and their learning is better for it,” Johnston said.

Team-Based Learning at Iowa State

Iowa State has an active and vibrant group of faculty and graduate students involved in team-based learning. Each semester, CELT offers a team-based learning workshop to help teachers implement this flipped classroom method. CELT also supports an ongoing faculty learning community. After completing the TBL workshop, participants are invited to join the Team-Based Learning Community for additional support from others who are also using TBL in their courses.

To learn how you can get involved with TBL, visit CELT’s Team-Based Learning website.