Center for the Advancement of Innovative Teaching

DVDs at CAIT

Several DVDs are available for short-term loan.  Please contact Sandra Meyer at smeyer@hpu.edu.

 1. Writing Across Borders (30 minutes)

This is a 3-year documentary project funded by Oregon State University's Center for Writing and Learning and its Writing Intensive Curriculum Program. The documentary's purpose is to help faculty, writing assistants, and other professionals work more productively with international students in writing environments.

The film's goal is to address some of the most significant challenges international students face when writing for American colleges and universities. In addressing these challenges, it asks the following questions:

A.How does culture play out in writing, and how are our expectations shaped by cultural preferences? B.How do we assess international student writing when we have to grade it alongside the writing of native speakers, and how can we think about surface error in a fair and constructive manner? C.What kinds of teaching and testing practices disadvantage international students and which help them improve as writers?

2. Generation Next (58 minutes)

This documentary, originally screened on PBS, explores the attitudes, concerns and beliefs of the 42 million young Americans between the ages of 16 and 25, whose views and attitudes shape a large part of society today and most of HPU's enrollment.  It is hosted by veteran journalist Judy Woodruff.

To  understand the beliefs of her subjects on today's most pressing issues -- among them, terrorism, immigration, environment and health care -- Woodruff traveled across the country interviewing young people at colleges, urban, suburban and rural settings, workplaces and homes.   Her objective was to create a profile of the next generation, and to provide current decision-makers with better information about them. "We want to help everyone understand the views of young people. And just as important, we want young people to know their opinions will be heard by decision-makers in business, politics, education and the media."

3. Declining by Degrees (2 hours)

This 2005 Public Broadcasting System documentary offers a balanced and thought-provoking look at the many challenges facing American higher education:  more under-prepared students; student expectations of the college learning experience fail to match what is delivered; teaching often is not learner-centered  or challenging.  Professors, students, and administrators talk frankly about all these problems, which spare no colleges - they affect even very selective and affluent institutions.  The program also examines possible solutions and prompts reflection on our individual roles in these solutions.

The program suggests that national commitment to provide every qualified student, regardless of economic status, an opportunity to go to college, has weakened.  In many college classrooms, an unspoken "understanding" allows as many as 20% of students to coast their way to a diploma without learning much at all.  Employers - and graduates and accrediting agencies - are pointing to the inadequacy of preparation for the workplace.  This decline is occurring at the same time other countries are investing heavily in higher education.

John Merrow takes viewers behind the scenes of American higher education to experience college through the eyes of students, professors, parents and college administrators in four very different institutions.

How can we each (and collectively) best prompt the student self-discovery that underlies emotional and intellectual growth?

4. A Touch of Greatness (54 minutes)

This documentary traces the teaching years of teacher Albert Cullum, who, in a description provided at Amazon.com's web site, "broke the mold for the boring, uninspiring public school teachers in the 1950s and 60s." This film depicts how he inspired his students of all ages through movement and imagination, and how he challenged them to want to learn more through acting in theatrical productions of the classics. The productions were unconventional by every school standard, but gained recognition throughout the state for being groundbreaking and inspiring.  Much of the archived footage for the documentary was shot by Robert Downey Sr.

5. The Act of Teaching (41:35 minutes)

Produced by the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University, this videotape shows Nancy Houfek, Head of Voice and Speech for the American Repertory Theater at Harvard University, directing a workshop intended to help teachers improve their presentation skills.  Houfek's belief is that teachers can convey ideas more powerfully by using some of the techniques employed by actors. She helps participants to identify what they wish to say and what effect they want that message to achieve.