Part 11 – Spring 2020 Labs

217 Connecting with Personalized Content – 02.20.2020

On February 20, 2020, participants in the Active Teaching Lab strategized how to personalize content (at scale for students). Current examples of personalization were shared along with potential roadblocks to tailoring the learning environment to meet a student’s personal preference for pace and content.


  • Structure student workflow: Establish clear benchmarks and deadlines; encourage regular meetings to discuss progress and challenges; schedule in-class work time for students to connect with peers but also to help carve out dedicated work time.
  • Everything might not go according to plan…and that’s okay! Adopting new methods to enhance student learning sometimes can result in frustration, but you can learn from past miss-steps by including reflection components to student work. Also, be upfront with students that you’re adopting a new strategy to enhance their experience in your course! 
  • Begin with the end in mind. At the end of the semester, what does “done” look like? What steps are needed to show mastery of learning? Engage students in the construction of learning objectives and outcomes for their own project, focusing on Backwards Design, as well as in the design process for the rubric you will use to assess their work.

To learn more and discover new resources, visit the session’s activity sheet.



The Active Teaching Lab is a Faculty Engagement program with sessions held on Thursdays from 1:00-2:00pm and Fridays from 8:30-9:45am in the Middleton Building (1305 Linden Dr.), room 120. Check out upcoming Labs or read the recaps from past Labs. We build interdisciplinary conversations that are more emergent than a presenter and more dynamic than a panel — a conversation with colleagues sharing challenges, solutions, and experiments on topics selected by a variety of stakeholders.

Sign up for regular Lab announcements by sending an email to


Active Teaching Lab eJournal Copyright © 2016 by DoIT Academic Technology and the UW-Madison Teaching Academy; Jennifer Hornbaker; John Martin; Julie Johnson; Karin Spader; Margaret Merrill; Margaret Murphy; and Jeffrey Thomas. All Rights Reserved.

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