Call for Proposals: PKAL-Ohio Spring 2015 Conference

Ohio-PKAL 2015 Conference
May 16, 2015 | Otterbein University

Deadline for proposal submission: Monday, December 15, 2014. (CLOSED)

Ohio PKAL is pleased to announce the Call for Proposals for the 2015 Ohio PKAL Increasing STEM Student Success in Higher Education conference. Proposals are invited and encouraged to showcase evidence-based practices that reflect any of the themes below, and that are poised for immediate uptake and adaptation in a wide range of institution types, including community colleges and minority serving institutions. Of particular interest are proposals that effectively integrate two or more of the conference themes.

 

CONFERENCE THEMES

The specific themes to be addressed with this Call for Proposals are the following:

  • Meeting the Needs of Underprepared STEM Students
  • Promoting Effective Learning in Large Lecture Classrooms
  • Improving First-Year Experiences
  • Improving Upper-level STEM Experiences

Theme I: Meeting the Needs of Underprepared STEM Students

This theme includes presentations and sessions that highlight theory-driven models and innovations directed toward the recruitment, retention, and persistence of underprepared students in the STEM disciplines. Special emphasis is placed on initiatives that are readily transferable across various institutional types. Proposals representing research and/or practices from any STEM discipline (including the social sciences) that include and apply valid quantitative, qualitative, and/or mixed research methods to improve the remediation and ongoing support of underprepared STEM students, on the individual or institutional level, are highly encouraged.

Examples of activities might include:

  • an examination of the underlying issues affecting the differential participation and graduation rates in STEM undergraduate education for underprepared students;
  • innovative strategies for enhancing STEM education, pedagogy, and STEM persistence among underprepared STEM students; and/or
  • institutional collaborative models that have significant impact on increasing underprepared STEM student success.

 

Theme II: Promoting Effective Learning in Large Lecture Classrooms

Promoting effective learning in large lecture classrooms focuses on sessions and presentations that provide faculty with knowledge, materials, and strategies to enhance learning and engagement in large lecture classes. Special emphasis is placed on initiatives that are readily transferable across various institutional types. Proposals representing research and/or practices from any STEM discipline (including the social sciences) that describe the impact of these activities using valid quantitative, qualitative and/or mixed research methods are highly encouraged.

Examples of Improving Effective Learning in Large Lecture Classrooms include:

  • active learning activities;
  • the creative and effective use of technology innovations to draw students into course content;
  • ways to structure class sessions to promote critical thinking and engagement; and/or
  • ways to measure outcomes: learning, motivation, persistence, etc.

 

Theme III: Improving First-Year Experiences

This theme focuses on sessions and presentations that provide faculty with knowledge, materials, and strategies for revising first-year experiences for STEM students. Special emphasis is placed on initiatives that are readily transferable across various institutional types. Proposals that describe the impact of curricular and co-curricular first-year experience from any STEM discipline (including the social sciences) using valid quantitative, qualitative and/or mixed research methods are highly encouraged.

Examples of Improving First-Year Experience activities might include:

  • first-year experiences that foster research-capable students;
  • activities in introductory and general education course that draw students into declaring STEM majors;
  • the development of bridge programs that help students move from high school to college; and/or
  • ways to measure outcomes: learning, motivation, persistence, etc.

 

Theme IV: Improving Upper-level STEM Experiences

This theme focuses on sessions and presentations that provide faculty with knowledge, materials, and strategies for developing and revising experiences for upper-level STEM students, including experiences related to applying for graduate and professional programs, internships, and post-graduation employment. Special emphasis is placed on initiatives that are readily transferable across various institutional types. Proposals that describe the impact of creative experiences for upper-level students from any STEM discipline (including the social sciences) using valid quantitative, qualitative and/or mixed research methods are highly encouraged.

Examples of institutional change strategies might include:

  • upper-level experiences that transform students from consumers of scientific knowledge to producers of scientific knowledge;
  • assessment of student learning gains related to independent undergraduate research experiences; and/or
  • activities for upper-level students that help them bring their science into the community as researchers, advocates, or educators.

 

SESSION FORMATS

Poster (60 minutes; 4’x3’ poster)

Posters share visual models of research findings; course, program, curricular/co-curricular designs; concept maps; assessment rubrics and feedback loops; strategic planning frameworks and high-impact practices. The poster session provides an opportunity to reach a broad audience and initiate conversations with colleagues with similar interests. Posters are displayed on a 4’x3’ poster board.

 

Oral Presentation (15 minute presentations [12 minutes to speak, 3 minutes for questions]; computers and video projectors are standard in the presentation room)

Oral sessions share current work—in research, theory, or practice—related to the conference domains. They engage participants in considering how to use this framework to promote student success. Proposals should explicitly connect to a particular theme and use any of the guiding examples. Presenters should provide data/findings related to the topic, effective practices, milestones for success, and strategies for change, and engage participants. Please, note that the session should be an analysis of effective frameworks, theories, and practices that are adaptable to others – not a show-n-tell of what you did.

Roundtable Discussions – Shared Interest Groups (60 minutes during lunch; room set in roundtables, no audio visual)

Facilitated discussions provide time for colleagues to more deeply examine topics of similar interest through sharing of expertise and experiences. These informal discussions will take place over lunch. Signs on lunch tables will indicate topics of interest.

The facilitators briefly set the context for the conversation related to one of the conference domains. Contexts may reflect institutional type, position, or a particular area of practice. For example the discussion topic, i.e., inclusive excellence in STEM higher education might be more narrowly focused on specific sets of strategies in 2-year colleges, faculty perception, or disciplinary/integrative approaches. Facilitators assist the group in examining new ways of thinking about the topic and strategies for moving forward given the complications of each individual’s professional reality and expertise at the table. This session should allow for questions from all participants to stimulate and focus the conversation so that the issues discussed are meaningful to all involved and potentially lead to cross-disciplinary and/or inter-institutional collaboration.

 

Contribute-a-Theme Session (multiple presentations during a 75 minute session on a STEM education theme of your choosing; computers and video projectors are standard in the presentation rooms)

Contribute-a-theme session is a set of related presentations about current work—in research, theory, or practice—on a STEM education theme of your choosing. They significantly engage participants in considering how to use this framework to promote student success. Facilitators should provide data/findings related to the topic, effective practices, milestones for success, and strategies for change, and engage participants. Please, note that the session should be an analysis of effective frameworks, theories, and practices that are adaptable to others – not a show-n-tell of what you did.

 

DEVELOPING AND SUBMITTING A PROPOSAL

Proposals are accepted through an online form and must include:

  • Name, title, institution, and email address of each facilitator
  • Session theme and format
  • Session title (100 character limit including spaces)
  • Brief abstract to be used in the conference program if accepted (150 word limit)
  • Statement of intended audience (100 word limit)
  • Participant outcomes (100 word limit)
  • Description of evidence indicating that the method, activity, or pedagogy was effective (150 word limit)

 

Proposal Review Criteria

Ohio PKAL strives to offer a balanced, informative and thought provoking conference that best fits within the framework of increasing STEM student success, which also empowers and emboldens STEM academicians to dramatically impact the quality of STEM education in Ohio. The conference proposal selection committee includes experienced, diverse academic STEM professionals. In evaluating conference proposals, reviewers are asked to consider both the technical aspects of the proposal and the way in which the presentation/session contributes to increasing STEM student success. The following elements are considered in the review of conference proposals:

  • the potential for the proposed session/presentation to advance knowledge and understanding of STEM undergraduate education;
  • the extent to which the session/presentation offers creative, novel and transformative mechanisms for enhancing STEM learning, particularly for diverse audiences;
  • the extent to which the proposed session/presentation effectively incorporates two or more of the conference themes; and
  • the ease by which conference session/presentation materials and outcomes can be adapted to a wide range of institution types (except for cases involving highly specialized institutions and/or student populations).

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The deadline for proposal submission is December 15, 2014.​

Upon submission of a proposal, the session contact should receive an automatic message indicating that the OH-PKAL event committee has received the proposal. If the contact does not receive this message (and it is not in his/her spam filter), please e-mail OH-PKAL@aacu.org.

Notifications
The primary contact will be notified via email of the decision on the proposal by February 15, 2015.

Expenses and Fees
All session facilitators are responsible for conference registration fees, travel, and hotel expenses. Please, be sure that all individuals listed in the proposal have this information and the lead facilitator is available to present throughout the event. Presentation times range from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, May 16, 2015.  Presenters are expected to be available at the time they are scheduled by the conference organizers.