Mastering Midterms

Midterms - For Your Students

According to the Office of Student Success, course attendance and early grades are powerful predictors of student attrition risk. Midterm exam grades also predict final grades. Therefore, midterm break is a critical time to check in on how your students are doing and provide resources to any who might be struggling.

One of the most important things faculty can do to help students is to interact with students one-on-one. This helps students feel like they're valued, and it gives them an opportunity to ask questions they might be unable to ask during class sessions. 

After determining students' midterm grades in Isidore's Gradebook, take some time to consider what resources might be helpful for students who are falling behind.
5 Ways to Help Your Students. 1: Connections. Arrange a meeting during office hours to motivate the student and understand barriers to their success. Email students to provide campus resources. 2. Office of Learning Resources. They offer tutoring, supplemental instruction, academic coaching, writing coaching, and disability services. 3. Student Success Network. Flag students to alert advisors and support offices about struggling students. Complete progress surveys for your rosters. 4. Write Place. Students may walk-in or schedule an appointment to receive writing assistance for a paper. Students may also submit papers to the Write Place in Isidore by clicking on the "Write Place" tool on their Isidore homepage. 5. Knowledge Hub. Research help from Roesch librarians. Tech help from UDit Tech Express experts. Study and research spaces and technologies.
The PDF version of this infographic includes links to resources.

Midterms - For Your Courses

In keeping with the theme of mastering midterms, Quick Write is a new learning app available in Isidore that can help you get some quick feedback about how the course is going. Use the questions below from the LTC's midterm instructional diagnosis program or write some that are specific to your class:
  • What is helping you learn in this course?
  • What is hindering your learning in this course?
  • What suggestions do you have to improve the learning in this course?
The Quick Write learning app can be used for more than just collecting feedback, though. Here are some other uses you might try with this feature:
  • Before the beginning of a class session, create several questions about the content you plan to cover. After class, have students complete the same questions. Not only will this reinforce the students' learning, it will also tell you how well they learned the content and what may need to be revisited in future classes.
  • Ask students to complete Quick Write questions that connect together topics from multiple weeks. This will help your students understand the broader themes of your class.
  • Introduce a concept you have never taught before or try a new learning activity in class. Ask students to complete Quick Write questions after class to assess how well your new approach worked.
Find out how to use the tool by watching the 2 minute video below or read more in our E-Wiki.

Midterms - For Yourself

A reasonable concern we often hear is that videos take too long to make. It's true that long lecture and high production value videos can be extremely time-consuming, but a good first step for video creation is to try something small - perhaps a lecture teaser like the one below.
This lecture teaser is about one minute in duration. Including learning some fun words to say about the SR-71, shooting the video, a blooper, minor editing in Snagit, and uploading to Warpwire, this video took about 7 minutes to create. Folks who actually know their lecture content down-pat would be able to create this video in about 4 minutes. Moreover, if no editing is required, you can record directly from your phone or webcam into your Warpwire media library.

Learn how to make teaser lecture videos like the this one by attending our upcoming video training session: "How to Capture Video and Share it with Students." It will be held on Monday, March 5th from 2:00 - 3:00 PM in the LTC Meeting Space, Room 028. Register for this and other upcoming training sessions by clicking the Register button below.
Let us know any feedback or questions by contacting us at or (937) 229-5039.
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