Academic First Year Experiences

  • CSUN students smile as they await the start of Freshman Convocation 2016

    Academic First Year Experiences

Academic First Year Experiences

Recommended Reading


Using Your Students' Evaluations. About course evaluations: "If you're reading this, chances are good that you've already heard that student course evaluations have some inherent problems. At best, evaluations are scientifically meaningless. At worst, they're an outlet for insidious biases that don't belong in any sort of professional evaluation." Author Patrick Bigsby recommends "accepting the limitations of a flawed system while also finding meaning in it." (11 Jan. 2019)

New Transfer Students: Issues, Resources, and Pedagogical Approaches for CSUN Faculty.  This one-page document (.pdf) offers information faculty can use to support new transfer students at CSUN. It was developed as part of the Upper Division GE New Transfer Students Project, a joint venture of AFYE and Undergraduate Studies. (August 2019)

How One Email from You Could Help Students Succeed. In "Teaching: the Chronicle of Higher Education Newsletter." This brief piece explains the "classroom-based 'nudge, or intervention that encourages, but does not mandate, a certain behavior. Nudges have caught on as a way to help students through the many complex processes of higher education." 9 Aug 2018.

Demystifying Office Hours for your Students. Teach your students how to go to office hours. Once they know what to expect from an office hour visit, they're far more likely to take you up on the invitation to come by--and far less likely to believe they will be eaten alive in the process.

Group Work: The Importance of a Great Team by Erin Kasprzak. IDDblog, 30 July 2018. Best practices for your classroom; recommended further readings; quick read.

Writing and Teaching: You and Your Students. Advice and encouragement for the start of the new semester from Cheryl Spector. 22 Jan. 2018.

As You're Preparing the Syllabus by Maryellen Weimer. Faculty Focus, 10 Jan. 2018. Excerpts: "Tone matters as much as content." "Downsize policies." "Think more like a map and less like a contract."

Thinking outside the Office (Hours). Fiona Rawle-Close. National Teaching and Learning Forum, Volume 26, Number 4, May 2017. Excerpted by Rick Reis for the Tomorrow's Professor blog at "I decided to hold walking office hours...."  Rawle-Close lives and works (and walks during office hours) in Toronto; here in LA, you could make this strategy work even better.

You Never Get a Second Chance to Make a First Impression: First Year Retention Report from Institutional Research at CSUN in collaboration with the Office of Student Success Innovations and Undergraduate Studies. 5/24/17.

Helping Students Learn from TextsTomorrow's Professor, 1551. Sample: "One of the biggest surprises that new faculty experience is that most students rarely read before coming to class – or after attending class for that matter. This observation is true across disciplines, but it may be even more of a problem in science classes." 3/16/17.

9 Tools for the Accidental Writing Teacher by Daveena Tauber. 6/30/16.