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CCRI Alumni Newsletter

CCRI Faculty Focus

Spring 2013

Greetings from VP Lela Morgan ...

Lela Morgan Happy New Year! I hope you all had an enjoyable holiday season and a restful break.

With the new year comes another busy semester ahead, and another opportunity to help our students change their lives. Included in this edition of Faculty Focus is the CCRI Mission Statement, which outlines whom we serve and how we deliver education. I encourage all of you to read the statement and be sure that it guides teaching and learning at the college. It is not enough for an institution to simply have a mission; it must live its mission each and every day.

Also in this issue, you’ll find important information about distance learning, adjunct orientation and online courses about PowerPoint and Blackboard for faculty and staff. CITLA, the Center for Innovative Teaching, Learning and Assessment, had a successful Winter Workshop on Jan. 10 and is planning some exciting offerings this spring, including webinars, the Faculty Learning Community, brown bag lunches and a Spring Symposium. I hope that many of you will participate.

As you begin the semester, please remember the importance of submitting verification of enrollment from Jan. 29 to Feb. 4. If these verifications are not submitted on time, Financial Aid cannot authorize the student’s award to the Bursar to pay tuition and fees, resulting in the student being dropped for nonpayment. Thank you for your attention to this critical matter.

I wish you all a productive and great semester! Thank you all for your dedication to the students of CCRI.

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Mission of the College

The Community College of Rhode Island is the state’s only public comprehensive associate degree-granting institution. We provide affordable open access to higher education at locations throughout the state. Our primary mission is to offer recent high school graduates and returning adults the opportunity to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for intellectual, professional and personal growth through an array of academic, career and lifelong learning programs. We meet the wide-ranging educational needs of our diverse student population, building on our rich tradition of excellence in teaching and our dedication to all students with the ability and motivation to succeed. We set high academic standards necessary for transfer and career success, champion diversity, respond to community needs, and contribute to our state’s economic development and the region’s workforce.

News from OES

Federal financial aid regulations require that "… a student that began attendance and has not officially withdrawn [who] fails to earn a passing grade in at least one course … the institution must assume, for [financial aid] purposes, that the student has unofficially withdrawn, unless the institution can document that the student completed the period." Therefore, effective Fall 2010 the input of the following grades – NA, WP, WF, F and I – must be accompanied by a last date of attendance. This way the institution may stay in compliance with federal financial aid regulations governing the dissemination of financial aid awards.

If you as a faculty member do not know the exact date the student last attended, you should use the date of any academically related activity. Examples of academically related activities are as follows:

  • Examinations or quizzes.
  • Tutorials.
  • Computer-assisted instruction.
  • Academic advising or counseling.
  • Academic conferences.
  • Completing an academic assignment, paper or project.
  • Attending a study group required by the institution where attendance is taken.

Last attend date MUST be in this format: MM/DD/YYYY.

If you enter a last date of attendance for a given student, there must be a grade entered as well.

Thank you for your assistance regarding this important matter.

Information Technology

CCRI CIO Steve Vieira has published the December issue of the IT News

I hope you enjoy the new issue and will take the time to provide some feedback on the articles and presentation.

Here are this issue’s articles:

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Distance Learning

Why I teach online

Beth O'Leary AnishOne reason I teach online is that it gives me a chance to have meaningful contact with every student, every week. In my Introduction to Literature course I use a journal feature. Each week students write their responses to one of the works we have covered in an entry only I can view. I have rich exchanges with these students, who often comment back to my comments. In a classroom with 30 students, many are silent; shyness or lack of preparation can leave students lurking in the back of the room without saying anything. This is not possible in an online environment, where everyone has to participate.

~ Beth O'Leary Anish, assistant professor of English

How to get started ...

If you're interested in teaching online, begin by using Blackboard in an on-campus course. Blackboard workshops are announced in the Crier and a schedule is available from Information Technology's training page. There also will be training opportunities at Professional Development Day. Once you're comfortable with Blackboard, participate in the Online Pedagogy course for CCRI faculty. This course is a five-week fully online course that runs in the first summer session and over the intersession between the Fall and Spring semesters. The Online Pedagogy course covers distance learning pedagogy and best practices as well as the distance learning policy at CCRI.

If you are already teaching online ...

If you are teaching a DL section (600 or 700) in the Spring semester and you are not on the DL mailing list or you do not have access to the DL Faculty Forum in Blackboard, please email Maggie Burke to be added to the list and the forum. The forum contains helpful documents for DL faculty (sample startup letter, syllabus template, course evaluation instructions and semester checklist, among others). If you're on the mailing list, Maggie will send you email reminders throughout the semester to help you with DL policy and keep your course running smoothly.

Teaching online Listserv ...

You are invited to join the URI/RIC/CCRI distance learning pedagogy Listserv. Faculty and staff from the three institutions of higher education are sharing and discussing ideas, articles and resources. If you are unfamiliar with distance learning, this is a great place to find out how it works. You can quietly "lurk" and read your colleagues' discussions, or post your own questions, comments or articles about online learning. Please consider joining this Listserv.

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Important Notes for Faculty

Important Note

Adjunct orientation module

Adjunct faculty members are recognized as playing a critically important role in providing quality education for CCRI students. We are providing an online resource to make your transition to CCRI a smooth and enjoyable experience while providing you with important information and support. Access orientation »

Online courses for faculty and staff

The multicampus environment makes it difficult for faculty and staff to attend traditional workshops. Keeping this in mind the Department of Information Technology staff has developed some fully online courses in two of the most popular applications - Microsoft PowerPoint Basics and Blackboard 101, which covers basic and intermediate skills for the Blackboard Learning System (BLS). These courses were developed within BLS and can be accessed through any Internet-connected computer for anytime-anywhere learning. Faculty and staff may choose to go through the material at their own pace or join their colleagues in a fixed schedule.


NEASC LogoCCRI is scheduled for its 10-year accreditation visit in March 2014. The NEASC executive team began preparations for the self study in April 2011.

Standards co-chairs will have their first drafts of Description and Appraisal returned with comments during the first week in January. They are focusing on creating viable projections for their reports.

Additional information and summary PowerPoints can be found on the CCRI NEASC website.

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Center for Innovative Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Announcements for Faculty

CITLA workshops

“Engaging Students in Text-based Discussions”
Join a Faculty Learning Community

Wendy Aronoff will facilitate the Faculty Learning Community, which will meet once or twice monthly over the Spring 2013 semester. This FLC will use a model of reflective practice to form a collaborative community. Contact Wendy at or 825-2317 for more information. Visit our website to RSVP or find more information.

Americans with Disabilities Act Webinars: Exclusive Replays

CITLA will host exclusive replays of the Salome Heyward ADA webinars on the Newport County and Liston campuses. Discussion with CCRI’s Disabilities Services staff will follow. Dates and times: TBA. Visit our website to RSVP or find more information.

Brown Bag Lunch Hour Discussion
“Using Screencasts and Voice Thread as Teaching and Learning Tools”
  • Presented by Karen Griscom
  • Liston Campus, February
Spring Symposium: Save the Date

CITLA’S Spring Symposium will be held from noon to 4 p.m. on May 23 at the Knight Campus. Our speaker is Amy Baldwin, author of "The Community College Experience."

The Chronicle of Higher Education

  • CITLA encourages you to read the latest news and topics in our profession in The Chronicle of Higher Education — available through CCRI’s Library
  • At the main Library page, go to “browse E-resources by title” and find Chronicle of Higher Education.

January Teaching Tip from CITLA

Making Your PowerPoint Iconic

Teaching TipEver receive an email with one of those "high importance" icons brightening your inbox? The point is that the icon, being more visual than the printed word, indicates something powerful to the brain. Maybe that’s why those stars we all craved on our elementary school papers meant so much to us.

Humans are visual learners. Most of us have learned to apply that principle to our PowerPoints (PPTs), but we’d like to suggest another addition to your PPTs that is sure to improve deep learning and student learning outcomes.

In "Learning to Think Things Through" (Upper Saddle River: Pearson Prentice Hall: 2009), Gerald Nosich defines fundamental and powerful concepts as “those basic concepts that lie at the heart of a discipline or course” (198). And if you haven’t heard us explain the importance of beginning each class with the key concept(s) you’ll be discussing that day, you’ve heard someone talk about the value of daily learning objectives.

So here’s our tip. One way you can minimize PPT clutter while magnifying student learning is through icons. On your PPTs, get in the habit of starting each day with a slide that lists those fundamental and powerful concepts (FPCs). And to make your students metacognitive, let them know these introductory concepts are key by adding an icon beside the FPCs.

For instance, since we want to hammer our students over the head with FPCs, we use as our icon Mjöllnir, so whenever they see the hammer of the Norse god Thor beside a key concept, they know — in their terms — it will be on the test.

Now what would happen to student learning if every course in our discipline, our college or even our university adopted the same PPT symbol? That’s an inquiry for another time.

Submitted by:

Hal Blythe and Charlie Sweet

Teaching and Learning Center

Eastern Kentucky University

If you have a suggestion for a speaker or workshop topic, please let us know. Use the Suggestion Box on our website or email your suggestions to CITLA coordinator Karen Griscom.

Would you like to receive updates on CITLA events sent directly to your email? If so, please join our mailing list. Send an email to

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[Full Spring 2013 calendar]

Important Dates

  • Jan. 21: Holiday
  • Jan. 22: Classes begin
  • Jan. 29-Feb. 4: All faculty report verification of enrollment
  • Mar. 1: Online administration/department chair evaluation becomes available
  • Mar. 11-17: Spring recess
  • Mar. 22: Online evaluation closes
  • Mar. 30-31: Easter recess

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Items of Interest

Library research guides

Research assistance, subject guides and useful resources compiled by your friendly librarians. Know what we know - find it in our Library Research Guides!

Read more »

Library e-resources

We've added a number of new subscription databases.

The library is pleased to provide access to ABI/INFORM, the industry standard for business research.

ABI/INFORM Research indexes more than 1,800 business-related journals, with more than 1,000 of those titles available in full text.

Subjects covered include economics, finance, manufacturing and marketing.

American Women's History Online has been added to our suite of Facts on File products.

The database covers more than 500 years of American women's history and contains:

  • biographies
  • events and topics
  • primary sources
  • timelines
  • images and videos
  • maps and charts

You can search the database by keyword or phrase, or browse by topic or time period. is a suite of 3-D interactive models of human anatomy. Users can zoom, rotate and peel away layers. Supporting media, including MRIs, X-rays, movies and animations are also provided.

While there are many modules, the CCRI Library subscribes to two of them: Functional Anatomy and Radiology: Thorax, Trunk. These modules are checked in green when you access the home page.

Because this is an expensive product, there is a limit on the number of users who can access at the same time. If you cannot get in, wait 20 minutes and try again. When using, please remember to log off to end your session when you are done.

Read more »

Library instruction

CCRI librarians teach classes in library skills and the use of research materials at the instructor's request. Request a session for your class at:

Individual instruction and assistance are also available.

E-classroom policy

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Last Updated: 9/18/18