Teaching Resources

Jason Thompson: CTE Liaison for Science

The Faculty of Science offers several teaching and learning resources to faculty and students through the Centre for Teaching Excellence Science Faculty Liaison, Jason Thompson.

Provide YOUR feedback on LEARN | LMS Review focus group invitation

Instructors/Faculty/Staff of the University of Waterloo community are invited to participate in upcoming focus group sessions for the Learning Management System (LMS) Review (LEARN) project. The focus group will require approximately one (1) hour of your time.

Questions, informed by the LMS Review survey results, will be asked to gather additional details on the LEARN platform and how it may or may not meet ongoing teaching and learning needs. Those interested in attending may register for a session can do so by following the respective links below.

Instructors/Faculty/Staff focus groups | Led by LMS Review project team, via Teams

Please register for one of the sessions, below. Capacity for all sessions will be limited.

 Now is your chance to have your say and let ITMS (LEARNhelp) know what's working, what's not working and what would be needed/nice to have in a learning management system.


From Remote Teaching to a Blended approach

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the University's academic support units, including the Centre for Teaching Excellence (CTE) have helped instructors adapt their course offerings for remote teaching and learning. 

With the transition back to face-to-face and hybrid offerings, there is an opportunity for us to take what we learned in the remote context and apply/use the "good" from the experiences to fostering an effective blended approach to teaching and learning.

Blended learning is the purposeful integration and alignment of online and in-person components. Online and in-person activities and course materials are selected to complement each other, to engage students and to achieve specified learning outcomes. Sometimes blended courses have reduced face-to-face time.

For online materials, resources and assistance with fostering a blended approach:

As always my "door is open" - but now it's virtual via MS Teams or jason.thompson@uwaterloo.ca

Some topics  we could discuss include:

  • course design / redesign, 
  • blended learning & teaching considerations
  • effective use of technology within your teaching,
  • getting set-up on LEARN,
  • peer review & group assessment,
  • individual and group training sessions,
  • or just for a virtual coffee chat. 

Supporting your Students by Exploring Metacognition

Metacognition, the process of thinking about one's own thinking (and learning), has been recognized as an effective element to share with your students which in turn helps them prepare for and learn subject matter and concepts.  By encouraging your students to become aware of how they think, you are setting them up for success and helping them focus their study habits and techniques.  

To start the process with your students, why not share these Six Strategies for Effective Learning (link will download an infographic [PDF]) that they may find useful as they engage in your course. This resource was created by uWaterloo Coop Students for the Faculty of Science during the pandemic (Summer 2020) and are modelled after the materials created by The Learning Scientists, a group of Cognitive Scientists that have determined several methods of facilitating metacognition. 

At the very least, you could add the pdf infographic to your LEARN content and point it out to your students.  Some instructors are taking further steps by devoting some class-time to discussing Metacognition and these study strategies (the Learning Scientists have some PowerPoint slides to help facilitate this).  Other instructors are even incorporating things such as exam wrappers to further foster student metacognition. 

For more insights, have a read of the CTE Teaching Tip: Teaching Metacognitive Skills.

LEARN Start/End of Term Tasks

Check out the LEARN: Start/End of Term Tasks page for some helpful reminders as you prepare your LEARN course.