For practitioners and scholars of teaching and learning at The University of Iowa
olume 1 | Issue 1
February 2015

The Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology (OTLT) debuted on July 1, 2014 when three campus support groups were merged to streamline and improve teaching support for UI faculty and TAs. The new Office now seamlessly provides teaching support from a wide range of services and systems. 


In a brief time, this group has exceeded my expectations, and I anticipate the creation and development of even more exciting strategies and initiatives in the coming year. The OTLT was created to support you; I hope that many of you will reach out to me with your feedback and ideas in the coming months. 


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Maggie Jesse

Senior Director

ITS Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology

Exploring inquiry-guided problems in a TILE classroom. Photo by Bill Adams/The University of Iowa.

In recent years, student-centered, inquiry-guided learning has captured the imaginations of university students, instructors, and administrators in lecture halls, classrooms, and administrative offices. Across the country, courses have been reworked and classrooms redesigned for active learning.


Since the completion of the first TILE classroom in the UI Main Library in the fall of 2010, the University of Iowa, including
the Office of Teaching, Learning & Technology (OTLT), has become a national leader in the creation and support of active learning teaching practices and facilities.


Funded by the Office of the Provost, a Student Success Grant helped faculty members launch independent and innovative student-centered teaching projects, including two multi-disciplinary, team-taught Big Ideas courses. 


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Sponsored by the Academic Technologies Advisory Council (ATAC), the Innovations in Teaching with Technology Awards (ITTA) fund significant and innovative projects that have the potential to improve teaching and learning throughout The University of Iowa. Since its inception in 2001, ITTA has received 231 proposals, and 73 have been awarded a total of $1,236,631.


This year four University of Iowa instructors were awarded a total of $86,060 in support of their innovative approaches to teaching with technology. 


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Heather Draxl, PhD candidate in Language, Literacy & Culture and an OTLT Student Instructional Technology Assistant (SITA), was selected to participate in the ninth-annual Obermann Graduate Institute on Engagement and the Academy. During the Institute, Heather expanded a qualitative study about service-learning in Rhetoric.

To learn more visit the Obermann website (

Faculty participants in our annual 4CAST event identify the educational potential of new technologies and examine how learning technologies can help engage students. Videos and photos of 4CAST'15 ("Who is in Control? Students as Creators, Collaborators, and Consumers of their Education") are now available online. In his keynote address, Georgetown University Vice Provost of Education Randall Bass spoke about re-envisioning the university for 2030. Six breakout sessions showcased innovative teaching technologies.


To learn more visit the 4CAST website (

February 5, 12:30 - 2:00 pm
2523 UCC Training Room
February 19, 12:00 - 2:00 pm
2520 D UCC

February 18, 12:00 - 1:00 pm
214 Blank Honors Center

UI Library Learning Commons

February 26, 5:00 - 7:00 pm
212 Phillips Hall

February 24, 12:00 - 1:30 pm
2390 UCC Boardroom