Frequently Asked Questions
MT Engage is our university’s Quality Enhancement Plan for 2016-2021. Our goals are to foster a culture of engaged learning and improve student retention, progression, and graduation. The MT Engage student learning outcomes are that students will use integrative thinking and reflection across multiple contexts and educational experiences and develop an ePortfolio which will showcase the integration of the knowledge, skills and abilities gained during their time at MTSU.
Attend our faculty development programs at the Learning, Teaching, and Innovative Technologies Center, sign up for our annual Summer Institute, contact Director Mary Hoffschwelle at firstname.lastname@example.org or 615-898-5806, or stop by our office in Room 306 of the James Union Building.
MT Engage offers many faculty development opportunities, such as workshops at the Learning, Teaching, and Innovative Technologies Center and guest speakers such as Dr. C. Edward Watson. Faculty receive stipends for participation in our annual Summer Institute or specialized training sessions. These events and Faculty Learning Communities supported with MT Engage funding provide opportunities for dialogue with colleagues across departments and disciplines.
MT Engage supports academic programs through its Major Pathway initiative. Faculty can apply for Professional Learning Community grants to plan how MT Engage designated courses, assessments, and ePortfolio can benefit students in their majors and enhance their department’s degree programs.
Research demonstrates that engaged learning improves students’ academic success. High-impact practices employed by MT Engage faculty, enhanced by integrative learning strategies such as reflection and ePortfolio, build students' metacognitive skills (learning how to learn). Learning opportunities in MT Engage courses encourage students to envision how they will extend their college experience into their futures as professionals and citizens.
MT Engage also provides students with support services, incentives, and recognitions of their learning that include:
- Free personalized ePortfolio training
- Annual recognition reception
- ePortfolio scholarship worth up to $6,000 (sophomores and rising juniors)
- Cash awards (seniors)
- Priority registration
- Certified digital badges
- Graduation distinction with cord
Every MT Engage course shares four components:
- High impact educational practices (HIPs)
- A beyond the classroom experience
- A signature assignment that faculty assess using the MT Engage Rubric
- ePortfolio: submission of the signature assignment to the D2L ePortfolio OR creation of an ePortfolio presentation as the signature assignment
High impact educational practices are pedagogies that create opportunities for engaged learning and that research shows improve student learning. The Association of American Colleges and Universities has recognized eleven pedagogies as high-impact practices. MT Engage recognizes several additional pedagogies that our faculty use, such as Reacting to the Past and problem-based learning. You can see all of these pedagogies on our course certification form.
A beyond the classroom activity is an assignment that requires students to take action outside the regular onsite or online class schedule or goes beyond a standard assignment such as a reading assignment. The activity should be related to the course content and goals, including integrative thinking and reflection, and students should write about or discuss it in their regular class setting or as part of a class assignment. Examples include assignments that require students to independently engage with community members or institutions, such as service learning or civic engagement activities. Faculty may also select appropriate MT Engage Week events, Connection Point events, Constitution Day activities, speaker events supported by the Distinguished Lecture Fund or a department or college, Scholars Week, or on-campus conferences and special events.
An MT Engage signature assignment is an assignment that you have designed or revised that meets your course goals and elicits integrative thinking and reflection from your students, and that you can assess with the MT Engage Signature Assignment Rubric.
You can view the Signature Assignment Rubric on our website. The rubric has five indicators: Connection to Experience, Connection to Discipline, Transfer, Integrated Communication, and Reflection. All faculty must assess for Reflection and may choose two or more of the other four indicators as relevant or appropriate for their signature assignment.
To use the Signature Assignment Rubric on D2L, select “Assessments” from a course navigation bar and then “Rubrics.” Full step by step instructions are available here.
For D2L assistance, contact Jimmy Williams
Peer ePortfolio tutoring at The Tutoring Spot in Walker Library
MT Engage online resources:
- ePortfolio Help Guide button on MT Engage web pages
- How-to presentation
- Lib Guides
- How-to videos
- ePortfolio content support at the University Writing Center
- ePortfolio software support at Walker Library Tech Coach
MT Engage staff use student data from ARGOS and EAB to track eligibility for program opportunities such as scholarships. We collect data from signature assignment rubrics, end of course surveys, the MTSU Student Engagement Surveys, and other MTSU databases to analyze the impact of MT Engage courses on student learning and success in comparison with students who do not take MT Engage courses. We analyze that data by year, student standing (freshman, sophomore, etc.), and course level (1000, 2000 etc., lower or upper-division). We also use that data to identify areas for improvement or reconsideration in our program.
We share our data in annual reports to our Leadership Team, Oversight Committee, and as needed to IEPR in preparation for the required QEP Impact Report in the Fifth-Year Interim Report to SACSCOC as well as the university’s Quality Assurance plan for THEC.
NOTE: We do not examine or share individual instructor or course section data. Faculty can view statistics for the signature assignment rubric in their own courses on D2L.
MTSU faculty provide high-quality courses for our students and many employ high-impact practices that support engaged learning. MT Engage seeks to amplify our individual efforts by creating a network of courses that promote integrative learning. MT Engage faculty and the signature assignments they design encourage students to make connections across their experiences and across disciplines, to value the work they do in our courses, and use ePortfolio to document and reflect on their learning.
MT Engage also fosters a campus culture of engaged teaching and learning in which faculty have more opportunities for dialogue with each other and in which students are active participants in learning with each other and with faculty—one of the major goals of our Reach for Distinction Academic Master Plan.
Experiential Learning (EXL) was MTSU’s first Quality Enhancement Plan and one of the building blocks for MT Engage. Experiential learning is a high-impact practice that faculty may use in MT Engage courses. The MT Engage and EXL programs overlap—you and your students do not have to choose between them. Faculty can certify a class for both MT Engage and EXL, and students can become both MT Engage and EXL Scholars.