Teacher Preparation MOOCs

Lipscomb University and the College of Education’s Ayers Institute for Teacher Learning and Innovation is developing the university’s first free MOOCs (massive open online courses).  The 10 online courses are designed to prepare teachers for today’s classrooms, including implementing the Tennessee Academic Standards and engaging in best practices in planning, assessment and learning strategies.  The innovative and highly relevant courses are funded through a $571,000 grant from the Governor’s Online Innovation Fund and in partnership with the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. The courses are being designed to be incorporated easily into teacher preparation programs in universities across the state or for teachers to complete the non-facilitated versions on their own.

The teacher preparation MOOCs can be viewed at The Courses @ Ayers Institute website: http://courses.ayersinstitute.org.

The first three courses have strong ties to implementing the Tennessee Academic Standards in K-12 classrooms:

  • Introduction to the Tennessee Academic Standards
  • Planning and Assessing for Learning
  • Pedagogical Shifts to Instructional Strategies

The additional seven courses include other key topics that future teachers and in-service teachers should consider as they refine their practice:

  • Role of the Teacher
  • Engaging Students
  • PLC and Working Community
  • Personalized Education through Differentiated Instruction
  • The Learning Environment
  • Role of Technology in Education
  • Being a Connected Educator

Launch of First MOOC

The Ayers Institute is excited to announce the public launch of our first Teacher Preparation Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). The Teacher Preparation MOOCs are online courses that will be open to all for their own professional knowledge or for inclusion in a teacher preparation program if the institution so chooses.  The first course, Introduction to the Tennessee Academic Standards, is designed to provide pre-service and in-service teachers with the information and resources needed to successfully implement the Tennessee Academic Standards in classrooms.

Access to the Introduction to the Tennessee Academic Standards MOOC is free and open to anyone who enrolls at The Courses @ Ayers Institute website.

Course Content

The course includes topics such as the research behind and structure of the Tennessee Academic Standards, the instructional shifts, the Mathematical Practice Standards and content standards, the ELA/Literacy Anchor Standards and content standards and special considerations for learners with diverse needs. Students taking the course will find that each activity is organized with an overview, learning objectives, background information, instructions, and resources. Integrated within each activity, students will find questions that will focus and direct their learning and take their knowledge one step further with meaningful application.

A highlight of the course is the inclusion of a variety of activities that involve the creation of materials which will be saved to a course portfolio and can be used in the classroom. These same artifacts may be used in a professional/employment portfolio to demonstrate knowledge and skills if so desired. A printable certificate will be issued upon successful completion of the course.

Facilitator’s Guide

The Facilitator’s Guide, available upon request, is helpful to any instructor planning to use a portion of the course or even the entire course within his/her own program. This comprehensive guide contains the same icons and information provided in the online environment while going a step further and including how to fully integrate the online course and resources into otherwise face to face classes.

Getting Started

To get started with the course today, visit The Courses @ Ayers Institute website.

If you are an instructor in a teacher preparation program and would like a copy of the full Facilitator’s Guide, send an email request with your name, institution name, job title and phone number to ayersinstitute@lipscomb.edu.

Additional Courses

Course two, Planning and Assessing for Learning, is expected to be launched in September. Course three, Pedagogical Shifts to Instructional Strategies, is expected to be launched in October.