Best Practices

An activity that can be used to get groups talking and to get the creative juices flowing is to provide a list (content-focused or not) and

  1. ask participants: What would you add to, subtract from, or edit in this list? This could be used to jump-start a blog or class discussion. There are no right or wrong answers, though most of the time the reasons behind an action are volunteered.
  2. or if the list is a ranking of items, discussion of how the items ended up in their places can be interesting.

Creating your own lists for the group or having the group create the list can focus members on one or more topics. If your purpose is community-building, you can find lists that will evoke humor and some debate in books (Everything I Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten and The Book of Lists are natural choices.) or on many websites.

A Sample of Resources for General Use

Humor with a point.

Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
Author Unknown
Adapted from

Top Ten Lists

Many topics have ranked lists. In cases where the data determines the ranking, discussions of reasons for the rankings or of changes over time can be enlightening. In cases where the ranking is determined by expert opinion or polls, discussions of reasons for the determinations and whether or not the group agrees can be interesting.

TIME Magazine's 25 Top Ten Lists

The People's Priorities: Gallup's Top 10

A Sample of Resources for Specific Disciplines

College of Arts and Humanities
These Headlines are not just for Journalists; all writers can learn from them:

The Writing Teacher's Book of Lists with Ready-to-Use Activities and Worksheets, 2nd Edition by Gary Robert Muschla

Your course content might not include mechanics, but you might wish to review and reinforce good practices using some of the lists in this book. (Example: One Minute Paper: Give the group a list of words and ask them to identify one or more synonyms or antonyms for each. Nice warm up activity.)

Top 10 Significant Presidential Elections in American History '

College of Business
Seventeen Things I Believe
Bob Sutton, Stanford Professor and Author
In left side bar of

College of Health and Public Affairs
Men's top 10 health threats: Mostly preventable ' Mayo Clinic
The Top Ten Reasons for Soaring Health-Care Costs by Charles Wheelan, Ph.D.!0_Reasons.html

College of Sciences
United States Geological Survey Earthquake Top 10 Lists

Resources for Faculty Teaching in Times of Crisis or Difficulty

Below are several resources for university community members to refer to for support and counseling in times of difficulty and crisis.

UCF faculty members Ana Leon, Roberta Ergle, Vicki Lavendole, Steven Berman, Dana-Marie Dennis, and Chia Yuan have created a document addressing the handling of difficult moments in the classroom: "Proactive Strategies for Minimizing Difficult Moments in the Classroom: Reflecting on Lessons Learned."

Download a reading list from the University Press of Florida addressing the current American political climate.

Download a coping skills handout provided by UCF Counseling and Psychological Services.

External Web Sites

  • Dr. Lisa Rodriguez provides a comprehensive list of classroom management procedures and tips
  • Offers 15 common problem behaviors and possible solutions for them
  • Gives tips on setting a productive classroom atmosphere and how to connect to students
  • Gives list of ways to help students become College students

  • Excellent letter to students regarding Academic Integrity

  • Faculty provided a consensus on a few common problem and offered their suggestions

  • Discusses building a reputation of effort, flexibility, firmness, and fairness
  • Emphasizes having a knowledge of content and how it can keep students engaged
  • Provides insight on how to keep students interested and how to respond when your authority is challenged

  • Provides suggestions on how to handle specific crisis scenarios

Faculty Spotlight View Other Award Winners

Humberto Lopez
College of Arts and Humanities Humberto   Lopez If I were to encapsulate the most important principle in my teaching philosophy it would be that one must enjoy being a teacher in order to be a good one. I am passionate about education because I am a learner myself who believes that learning should be curiosity driven, active, and enjoyable, and should emphasize...

George Bagley
College of Sciences George Bagley If there is a paramount object to teaching, it should be community. Community leads to confidence among my students that the course will be dynamic, will add to their own intellectual growth, while simultaneously ensuring that each point of view will be respected, all assumptions lying at the heart of the complex ...

Graham Worthy
College of Sciences Graham  Worthy During my 22 years in academia, I've tried to excel at teaching, research, and service. I love interacting with students and mentoring them to achieve more than they realize they're capable of. As an undergraduate student, I was known to walk out of a lecture if l didn't think I was going to get s...