HILT awarded six Spark Grants of $5-$15K intended to “spark” promising teaching and learning projects this year. Awardees will:

  • Catalyze the scholarly development of the “videographic essay.” Pierre Bélanger (GSD) will model a simple and innovative way to use videographics in the advancement of the essay and in the representation of research in three GSD courses.
  • Crowdsource a video repository of key concepts. Jacob Whitehill (CADM-HarvardX) and Margo Seltzer (SEAS) will collect 60 tutorial videos that explain important concepts in three disciplines, and measure the effect on test performance, learning gain, and student ratings.
  • Design a new method of teaching writing. Stuart Shieber (SEAS) will explore the potential impact of a writing instruction method that emphasizes the editorial and revision process.
  • Explore the relationship between instructor performance and advice quality. David Levari and Dan Gilbert (FAS) will gain insight into the relationship between advice and student performance by comparing the performance of instructors on a series of web-based modules with the performance of “students” who complete the modules with instructor advice.
  • Prepare students to evaluate evidence. Stephanie Sasse (FAS), L. Todd Rose (HGSE), and Leah H. Somerville (FAS) will refine six skill-building exercises intended to help students more effectively interpret evidence, and disseminate them to the Harvard teaching community.
  • Prompt learners to generate their own questions. Jonathan Hausmann (HMS), Phil McGachey (CADM-HUIT), Sarah Schachman (College), Elliott Yates (CADM-HUIT), and Ziv Paz (HMS) will develop “AskUp,” an online application that uses evidenced-based techniques to facilitate and enhance learning through learner-generated questions.

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