Pre-Meeting Workshops

WEDNESDAY, January 20, 2:00–5:00 p.m.

How Technology Can Enhance Liberal Education: The State of the Art in 2016

How can technology enhance, rather than undermine, what we do in liberal education?   How can colleges and universities thoughtfully draw on the ever-changing, constantly growing digital world in productive ways? 

This workshop explores current projects, practices, programs, and strategies in order to determine the state of the art in 2016. Topics include mobile devices, learning management systems, the digital humanities, social media, the role of the library, fostering a project management culture, questions of digital and information literacy, open access, and data analytics. This workshop will be very interactive, based on a mixture of provocative yet practical presentations and active audience involvement.  The presenter draws from two decades of work in liberal arts and technology.

Bryan Alexander, President, Bryan Alexander Consulting, and former Senior Fellow, National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education


Integrating Global Learning for All: Using Essential Global Learning Outcomes

The vast majority of colleges and universities have a global mission, but what does this mean? How do we know students are gaining skills and perspectives to live and work in our increasingly diverse, interconnected, and global world? This interactive workshop will take participants from vision statements to tangible action plans to integrate global learning across their campuses. Intentional global learning must be guided by global learning outcomes that impact all students, and this workshop will explore strategies to provide these types of experiences.

Five critical questions will guide the workshop:

  • How is global learning defined?
  • What are the guiding global learning outcomes?
  • How is global learning integrated across the curriculum?
  • How is global learning assessed?
  • How is global intentionally designed for all students?

Stephanie Doscher, Associate Director of the Office of Global Learning Initiatives, and Hilary Landorf, Director of the Office of Global Learning Initiatives and Associate Professor in the College of Education—both of Florida International University; Dawn Michele Whitehead, Senior Director for Global Learning, AAC&U


Supporting Student Learning through the Holistic Department

The academic department is the building block of higher education, and its work is fundamental to educating undergraduate students. Yet the current structure of academic departments hinders the ability of faculty to support student learning in and out of the classroom.   The New American Colleges & Universities, with support from The Teagle Foundation, has developed an integrated “holistic” structure for academic departments to more effectively and efficiently manage faculty work, while supporting more time for faculty student interactions.  The holistic department recognizes the full range of faculty work and its variation from semester to semester.  Faculty in a holistic department work as a team to ensure that student-learning objectives are appropriate to the mission of the institution and the department and that the curriculum meets these objectives.  The department supports and rewards faculty for doing differentiated work to fill institutional and departmental goals, including those beyond traditional definitions of teaching, scholarship, and service.

This interactive workshop will discuss the components and development of a holistic department including the role of the department chair, departmental accountability, faculty workload and revision of administrative policies.  Participants will leave the workshop with a draft plan for developing a holistic department.  A copy of the NAC&U recent monograph—Redefining the Paradigm: Faculty Models to Support Student Learning—will be given to each participant.

Stephen Wilhite, President, Widener University; Richard Alan Gillman, Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs and Professor of Mathematics, Valparaiso University; Ann Auman, Professor of Biology, Pacific Lutheran University

This workshop is presented by the New American Colleges & Universities


Creating Inclusive Courses: Practical Approaches to Engage STEM (& Other) Faculty

The goals of this workshop are twofold—to provide information and strategies for creating inclusive courses and to share strategies for developing an inclusive workshop that will engage more STEM faculty (and others) in student success initiatives. Most STEM faculty members are aware of the importance of diversifying their fields and the value of having diverse classrooms for increased student learning. This workshop will provide participants with the tools to construct inclusive courses for their students and workshops for their faculty.

Using a “backwards-design” approach, the workshop will begin with practical, research-based strategies that can immediately be used by faculty members teaching any discipline or course to improve student learning in their courses. The first activity will reinforce the well-researched concept that inclusive teaching practices benefit all students.  Faculty members may recognize strategies they already use in their courses during this activity, and more tools will be shared to increase their collection of inclusive teaching practices. The workshop then will address concepts that hinder student success and will offer strategies that faculty members can use to overcome those challenges.  

Although originally developed with STEM faculty in mind, the workshop will be useful for all those who are interested in strategies for inclusive teaching. Deans, department heads, faculty members, and colleagues working in centers for teaching and learning will be able to use the materials and information they gain at their home institutions.

Angela Linse, Executive Director and Associate Dean for Teaching, and Suzanne Weinstein, Director of Instructional Consulting, Assessment, and Research—both of the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence, Pennsylvania State University

This workshop is presented by the POD Network


Cultivating a Culture of Evidence-Informed Decision Making:  Foundational Principles for Higher Education Leaders

Developing a campus culture that encourages and facilitates effective use of assessment data to improve student learning is essential to the future success of any college.  Yet, although most colleges and universities collect mountains of data about student experiences and student learning, faculty and other campus leaders too rarely consult this data to learn more about how they can shape student experiences to improve learning.  This interactive workshop introduces principles and strategies administrative and faculty leaders can use with their colleagues to begin creating a campus culture that both values and utilizes evidence about student learning. 

The workshop facilitator has led a multi-year, Teagle Foundation-funded initiative exploring ways to help faculty utilize assessment data to improve student learning while fostering a culture that values evidence-informed course and program development. The workshop exercises and discussions are drawn from the facilitator’s experiences working on his own campus and assisting dozens of other campuses with implementing evidence-informed processes to improve student learning.  Participants will have the opportunity to apply these principles to their own institutional initiatives, and leave with a first-steps plan to begin the process of systematizing the ways in which faculty use data to make decisions about curriculum, course design, and teaching.  

Michael Reder, Director, Joy Shechtman Mankoff Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning, Connecticut College, and Senior Teagle Assessment Scholar, Wabash National Study of Liberal Arts Education


ACAD Workshop
Converting Constraints to Capital: Recruiting and Retaining a Diverse Faculty

This workshop offers strategies to move the needle on faculty diversity. Many institutions have made access and inclusion a guiding principle in their recruitment and retention of faculty. Some institutions have found success in diversifying their faculty by increasing resources. The rest of our institutions have the same aspirations, but face seemingly insurmountable constraints such as location, resources, reputation, and institutional history.

This workshop’s leaders come from a variety of types of institutions in different locales—small liberal arts colleges, a community college system, and a public land-grant university. Each will share creative strategies they have used to enhance the diversity of their professoriates. Participants in this workshop will also be invited to complete a brief SOAR (Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations, and Realities) questionnaire. The SOAR analysis will focus participants on the capacities and hidden assets of their home institutions. Participants will use the SOAR results to turn their constraints into capital and take the first steps toward an institutional-specific strategy for diversifying the professoriate.

This workshop is intended for anyone interested in building institutional diversity, Chief Academic Officers, Associate Deans, Chief Diversity Officers, and those who work with human resources or belong to institutions in a strategic planning process.

Paula O’Loughlin, Associate Provost and Dean of Arts and Humanities, Gustavus Adolphus College; Pareena Lawrence, Provost, Augustana College; Bruce King, Special Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity, Saint Olaf College; Rickey Hall, Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion, University of Tennessee; Christopher Lee, Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resource Services, Virginia Community College System


ACAD Workshop
Q.E.D.: Incorporating Quality, Equity, and Diversity in Student Success Initiative

The literature on high-impact practices (HIPs) clearly indicates that they contribute meaningfully to student success, yet we are often challenged to scale initiatives across colleges while at the same time customizing them to meet the unique needs of underrepresented, first-generation students. This session will focus on helping academic leaders build a toolkit for designing HIPs for the new majority students.

The facilitators have each seen enrollment growth and changing demographics on their campuses over the last decade. Despite the differences among the institutions and their contexts—rural and urban, unionized and not, HSI and MSI—we have all instituted various support systems and high-impact practices to serve the new majority students.

In this workshop, we will share our own successes and challenges as examples as we lead participants through a planning process for how deans and provosts can lead student success initiatives.  Exercises will include creating an inventory of current practices and resources and discussion of best practices; engaging internal and external communities; creating student support structures and providing faculty and staff development; and setting goals and assessing the effectiveness of HIPs, with particular attention to diverse student communities.

Bonnie D. Irwin, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, and Kris Roney, Assistant Vice President for Academic Programs and Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies—both of California State University–Monterey Bay; Robert “Bud” Fischer, Dean, College of Basic and Applied Sciences, Middle Tennessee State University; Patricia Poulter, Dean, College of the Arts, Kennesaw State University