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Teaching Tip: Five Ideas for Ending Your OM Semester

April 15, 2016

classIts often been said that first and last class sessions are the bookends that hold a course together. Here are a few ideas from Faculty Focus (April 13, 2016) that might help us finish the semester with the same energy and focus we mustered for the first class.

Integrate the Content—Let the students bring it all together by integrating the major concepts, important ideas, and a few significant supporting details of the OM course. Perhaps they will follow the 10 operations decisions around which we build the text.

Review for the Final—Make the students do the work. Students are often at a loss when it comes to knowing how to study for comprehensive finals. Devote some time to working with them to develop a study game plan. What’s the best way to review notes?

Get and Give Useful Feedback—Although colleges have moved toward online course evaluations, use this last class to get and give a different sort of feedback. For example, create a list of every assignment students completed during the semester. Ask what you should stop, start, or continue doing. Or give students feedback on how you experienced the course. Share 5 things you’ll remember about this class and one thing about teaching you’ve learned from these students.

Bookend Activities—Tie the end to the beginning. Ask students what reasons justify making this a required class. (You don’t have to think they’re good reasons.)

Celebrate—It’s been a long semester. Get everybody walking around, talking, telling stories. Be part of the crowd. Shake hands; pose for selfies. Bring snacks or invite students to contribute snacks. This is a unique collection of individuals who will never again be together with you and the course content. End with applause and say “Thank you” if it’s a class that’s made you thankful.

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