AAC&U News, December 2017
News & Events

Meetings, Projects, and Publications

Meetings, Projects, and Publications

AAC&U Annual Meeting Preliminary Program Now Online

Can Higher Education Recapture the Elusive American Dream?
January 24–27, 2018, Washington, DC
Register by December 15 for Best Rates

AAC&U’s 2018 Annual Meeting will be held January 24–27 in Washington, DC. The preliminary program and a listing of all sessions are now available online. The meeting will open with Doris Kearns Goodwin, who will present the inaugural Carol Geary Schneider Lecture on Liberal Education and Inclusive Excellence, titled “Where Do We Go From Here? Leadership in Turbulent Times.” The opening plenary, “Identity Matters: Realizing the American Dream,” will be an open discussion moderated by AAC&U President Lynn Pasquerella with speakers Linda Martín Alcoff, author of The Future of Whiteness; Naomi M. Barry-Pérez, director of the Civil Rights Center at the US Department of Labor; Tamara Draut, author of Sleeping Giant: How America’s New Working Class Will Transform America; and Wes Moore, author of The Other Wes Moore. The final plenary, “Higher Education: Crisis and Purpose,” will be delivered by William Deresiewicz, author of Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a Meaningful Life. The Annual Meeting will also feature a pre-meeting symposium and the 9th Annual Forum on Digital Learning and ePortfolios (see below) on Saturday, January 27. Hotel and registration information is available online.

9th Annual Forum on Digital Learning and ePortfolios

ePortfolios and the American Dream: Empowering Students to Take Ownership of Their Futures
January 27, 2018, Washington, DC

AAC&U is pleased to present the 9th Annual Forum on Digital Learning and ePortfolios, held in conjunction with the 2018 Annual Meeting. The robust forum schedule includes plenaries and more than thirty-five presentations by higher education’s leading ePortfolio researchers and practitioners:

  • Opening plenary: “Excellence on Display: Helping Students Narrate their Educational Stories,” presented by Amelia Parnell, vice president for research and policy at NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education
  • Luncheon plenary: “Where Are We Headed? The Future of ePortfolios in Higher Education,” with Helen Chen of Stanford University; Gail Matthews-Denatale of Northeastern University; Tracy Penny Light of Thompson Rivers University and the Association for Authentic, Experiential, and Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL); C. Edward Watson of AAC&U; and Marc Zaldivar of Virginia Tech
  • Final plenary: “Liberate Learning through Next Generation Assessment,” presented by G. Alex Ambrose and Atun Anggara—both of the University of Notre Dame

Registration information is available here.

Send a Team to AAC&U’s 2018 Summer Institutes

AAC&U’s team-based summer institutes offer campus teams a time and place for sustained collaborative work in support of advancing campus change initiatives, along with a curriculum focused on important trends, research, and best practices delivered by a resident faculty of educational experts and consultants. The Institute on General Education and Assessment will take place June 5–8 in Salt Lake City, Utah, and will provide opportunities to refine and advance general education programs and their assessment. The Institute on High-Impact Practices and Student Success will take place June 19–22 in Salt Lake City, Utah, and will help campuses and state systems advance student success by making quality and equity the foundations for excellence in undergraduate education. The Institute on Integrative Learning and Signature Work will take place July 17–20 in Boston, Massachusetts, and is intended to develop faculty and staff leadership to advance programs and curricula that build students’ capacity to integrate their learning across general education, majors, and the cocurriculum, and to connect it to prior professional, academic, and life experiences. Information about institutes, including application materials, is now online.

Register Now: 2018 General Education and Assessment Conference

Foundations for Democracy
Network for Academic Renewal Conference
February 15–17, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Register by January 5 for Best Rates

“Foundations for Democracy” will focus on how educators throughout all sectors of higher education can promote a coherent, seamless undergraduate experience that champions evidence, values integrity, embraces diversity, requires collaboration, and ensures equity in practice and results. Plenary sessions will include “Reimagining General Education: Design Thinking and Intrinsic Motivation Perspectives” featuring Richard K. Miller, president of Olin College of Engineering; “Faculty Innovation and Leadership: Connecting Student Learning Outcomes across General Education and the Majors,” featuring Claire Howell Major, department head and professor of Higher Education Administration at the University of Alabama; “Hallmarks of Assessment Innovation: Flipping the Conversation about General Education and Assessment,” featuring José F. Moreno, associate professor of Latino education and policy studies at California State University–Long Beach; and “Reinventing Employer Engagement to Support Student Learning,” featuring Jason A. Tyszko, executive director of the Center for Education and Workforce at the US Chamber of Commerce. Visit the conference web page to see a full program and to register. For questions, contact Karen Kalla at Kalla@aacu.org or 202.884.7417.

Register Now: 2018 Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Democracy Conference

The Inconvenient Truths
Network for Academic Renewal Conference
March 22–24, 2018, San Diego, California
Register by February 14 for Best Rates

“Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Democracy: The Inconvenient Truths” will provide opportunities for participants to explore the inconvenient truths that stand in the way of fresh and critical thinking about how institutions can prepare all students for success in work, in life, and as globally engaged citizens. Jeff Chang, executive director of the Institute for Diversity in the Arts at Stanford University, will critique the state of diversity, equity, race, and resegregation in higher education and provide context for campus practitioners, students, and stakeholders to advance the democratic ideals necessary to serve today’s nontraditional, technologically advanced, and equity-focused student population. Together, presenters and participants will examine the inconvenient truths experienced by faculty, staff, and administrators and design learning opportunities that value students’ cultural wealth, recognize their lived experiences, and honor their exploration and critique of current democratic practice. Visit the conference web page to see a full program and to register. For questions, contact Karen Kalla at Kalla@aacu.org or 202.884.7417.

PKAL–Undergraduate STEM Education News

PKAL Regional Network Meetings in Massachusetts; Upstate New York; Southern California; the Washington, DC, Area; and Ohio

PKAL STEM Leadership Institute

Institute I: July 10–15, 2018
Institute II: July 17–22, 2018
The Claggett Center, Adamstown, Maryland

The PKAL STEM Leadership Institute—grounded in the theories of leadership studies, adult learning, and social psychology—is designed to offer early- and mid-career STEM faculty a five-day intensive leadership development experience that strategically blends deep reflection and introspection with didactic and experiential learning. The institute has proven effective in promoting leadership self-efficacy among its participants, with more than 65 percent of its alumni noting a significant increase in their ability to (1) facilitate change, (2) effectively respond to problems, and (3) fully consider the effects of diverse cultures on institutional transformation. Intent to apply due by January 17, 2018.

AAC&U Announces New Interdisciplinary Approach to STEM Higher Education Reform

AAC&U has received $4.8 million from the National Science Foundation to implement a new interdisciplinary approach to STEM higher education reform. AAC&U’s Project Kaleidoscope will lead a five-year-long professional development experience for disciplinary STEM faculty and STEM education researchers to develop and more precisely pinpoint metrics for accurately and easily documenting quality undergraduate STEM teaching that broadens the participation of talented low-income students. This initiative will substantially accelerate STEM higher education reform through a uniquely-designed professional development model that represents an interwoven cycle of highly integrated face-to-face and virtual interactions. Through the creation of knowledge studios, regional clinics, and a robust online platform, a national community of scholars and practitioners will be supported in establishing and maintaining a shared interest in, knowledge of, appreciation for, and proficiency in broadening the participation of talented low-income STEM students.

Project News

AAC&U Announces Launch of the VALUE Institute

AAC&U and Indiana University’s Center for Postsecondary Research (IU CPR) have launched the VALUE Institute, higher education’s most comprehensive resource for student learning assessment that will enable institutions to leverage learning outcomes evidence to improve student success. The institute, in tandem with IU CPR’s National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), will create a national resource for direct and indirect evidence of student learning in higher education. Assessment results from the institute will provide actionable information about students’ learning to participating institutions and support capacity building for faculty, institutions, and policy makers on how to use VALUE evidence to support student success and effective pedagogy. For information about the VALUE Institute and how to participate, visit http://valueinstituteassessment.org.

Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Action Network News

Compilation of Resources for Student Wellness

The Bonner Program has compiled resources for faculty seeking ways to promote student wellness on campus. These recently shared resources on student wellness provide guidelines, campus examples, and downloadable documents to help faculty facilitate good health and wellness practices in higher education settings.

Upcoming Webinar and Webinar Recording Support Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement

NASPA, the American Democracy Project, and The Democracy Commitment are hosting an online course, “CLDE: Emergent Theory of Change,” on December 13, 2017, from 1–2 p.m. (ET). This online session intends to assist individuals preparing proposals for the 2018 CLDE Annual Meeting, which focuses on this topic. The American Democracy Project hosted a webinar, with the authors of Teaching Civic Engagement across the Disciplines addressing the key concepts of their publication. The recording from this November 1 webinar is available free of charge from the American Democracy Project web page.

The Bonner Foundation, AASCU’s American Democracy Project, The Democracy Commitment, and NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education are members of the CLDE Action Network, an alliance of twelve leading civic learning organizations convened by AAC&U. Responding to the ambitious goals set forth in A Crucible Moment: College Learning & Democracy's Future, the CLDE Action Network coordinates, constructs, and advances efforts to prepare college students for informed and responsible citizenship and make civic inquiry and engagement expected rather than elective in college. See the CLDE events calendar for upcoming civic conferences and webinars.

BTtoP News

Wabash Center Publishes Review of BTtoP’s Recent Publication

Ryan Korstange, assistant professor at Middle Tennessee State University, captured the very core and objective of the BTtoP publication Well-Being and Higher Education: A Strategy for Change and the Realization of Higher Education’s Greater Purposes (2016) in his review for Reflective Teaching, a Wabash Center publication. Korstange’s review encapsulates the work’s essence—the prioritization of student well-being—while offering an accessible and engaging summary of each of the book’s four sections.

BTtoP Director Donald W. Harward to Retire in July 2018

BTtoP’s founding and only director, Donald W. Harward, will retire in July 2018 after fifteen years of service. Alongside cofounder Sally E. Pingree, Don has been a staunch advocate for the greater purposes of higher education: learning and discovery, civic engagement, well-being, and preparation for a meaningful life. Under his leadership, BTtoP has funded over five hundred grants, published two major books and a five-volume monograph series, and organized nationwide conferences, most recently the May 2017 conference “The Whole Student: Intersectionality and Well-Being.” BTtoP is currently accepting nominations and applications for the director position: nominations are due December 1, 2017, while applications are due January 15, 2018. For more information on applying, please read the position description online.

BTtoP-Sponsored Gathering: Building Faculty Capacity to Support New Majority and Underserved Students

From November 10–12, BTtoP cosponsored the first of two working group seminars at Berea College in Kentucky. Scholars and colleagues came together to explore how to better shape higher education for the flourishing of new majority students (including first-generation students, adult learners, and students of color), particularly by examining strategies to better prepare faculty through culturally responsive pedagogies, identity mindfulness, empathy enrichment, new curricula, and reward structures.

Meeting the LEAP Challenge

The Forum on Education Abroad Recognizes Student Achievement Abroad

The Forum on Education Abroad announced recipients of its 2017 Award for Academic Achievement Abroad, which recognizes excellence in academic work completed by students as part of a study abroad experience. These programs reflect the LEAP vision for engaged learning experiences that advance critical learning outcomes for students. Nathanael Bartosch, a student at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU), received the award for his “Lemurs Living Near Farmers (Year 2): Behavioral Study of Endangered Primates” project in northern Madagascar. “Collaborating with his professor and other students, Bartosch documented the ecology and social behavior of two endangered and rare species of lemurs living near local farmers,” the award announcement said. Cassandra Wanna, a student at Middlebury College, received the award for her “Life in Blue: Perspectives of Syrian Refugees in Azraq Camp" project at the Middlebury–C.V. Starr School in Jordan. According to the award announcement, “she conducted extensive interviews with Syrian refugees about their experiences in the camp and explored the topic of early marriage among daughters of families living in the camp.”

Other News

Support AAC&U through the Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Fund

Through AAC&U’s new Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Fund, we invite our community to join us in our work to advance quality and equity in higher education in service to democracy. Initiated in 2016 by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, TRHT is a comprehensive, national, and community-based process to plan for and bring about transformational and sustainable change, and to address the historical and contemporary effects of racism. In establishing Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Campus Centers at colleges and universities across the country, AAC&U seeks to harness our collective intellectual, social, and financial resources to transform words into action as we advance racial equity and healing in our nation. To make a tax-deductible gift to the TRHT Fund and to demonstrate your commitment to our shared values and common purpose, you may make a donation online or mail a check, payable to AAC&U with the notation “TRHT Fund,” to the Office of the President, AAC&U, 1818 R Street, NW, Washington, DC 20009.

Call for Submissions for “The Academic Minute,” Cosponsored by AAC&U

Producers of The Academic Minute radio segment are seeking submissions from faculty, staff, and administrators before you go home for the holidays. AAC&U President Lynn Pasquerella is the host of The Academic Minute, produced by WAMC Northeast Public Radio in partnership with AAC&U. The Academic Minute features faculty and researchers from colleges and universities around the world discussing what’s new in the academy and the ways in which academic research contributes to serving the public good. Please send your submission to David Hopper at dhopper@wamc.org

Bandwidth Recovery: Helping Students Reclaim Cognitive Resources Lost to Poverty, Racism, and Social Marginalization

By Cia Verschelden
Foreword by Lynn Pasquerella, President of AAC&U

This new book, published by Stylus Publishing in partnership with AAC&U, “argues that the cognitive resources for learning of over half our young people have been diminished by the negative effects of economic insecurity, discrimination, and hostility against non-majority groups based on race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity, and other aspects of difference. Recognizing that these students are no different than their peers in terms of cognitive capacity, this book offers a set of strategies and interventions to rebuild the available cognitive resources necessary to succeed in college and reach their full potential.” AAC&U members receive 25 percent off the cost of the book by using the code AACU25.

About AAC&U News

AAC&U News is written and edited by Ben Dedman. If you have questions or comments about the newsletter's contents, please e-mail dedman@aacu.org.

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