2018 SoTLA Banner

Note: this list is an archive of speakers and presentations from the 3rd Annual SoTLA Conference, held on January 18, 2019.

Schedule of Events and Speakers

8:00 to 9:00 AM Registration and Breakfast

Ballroom A - First Floor

9:00 to 10:00 AM - Keynote "Why I don't Grade" - Jesse Stommel

Sykes Theater - Ground Floor

We are pleased to welcome Jesse Stommel, Executive Director of the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies at University of Mary Washington as our keynote speaker.  He is also co-founder of Digital Pedagogy Lab and Hybrid Pedagogy: an open-access journal of learning, teaching, and technology.  Essays in his new book, The Urgency of Teachers: The Work of Critical Digital Pedagogy, co-authored with Sean Michael Morris, span almost two decades of pedagogical thinking, practice, outreach, community development, and activism.

Keynote Slides

10:10 to 11:10 AM Breakout Sessions

Communities of Practice: On building a framework for engaging SoTLA
Sykes - 252
Amy Pajewski

Librarians teach students how to identify, access, and use information, however are relegated 50 minutes to deliver a sequence that would take an entire semester to effectively scaffold knowledge and higher-order thinking. This presentation functions as a facilitated discussion to position communities of practice within the larger university culture, both advocating for the strengths and identifying weaknesses. Attendees will explore core questions on CoP and discuss how librarians and classroom faculty can work together to develop shared practice. This presentation shares a framework for developing a Teaching & Learning CoP at WCU to support those invested in general education information-literacy instruction.

Implementing Virtual Reality (VR) in Education: A Guideline for Faculty
Sykes - Ballroom C
Gulbin Ozcan Deniz

This study examines strategies for implementing VR in undergraduate courses with a proposed constructivist model. Constructivist Learning Theory (CLT) (Jonassen, 1999) is used in relation to VR. Best approaches to utilize this technology in class are presented including detailed resources needed. The methodology includes defining educational, resource and design requirements to see how virtual environments can be used in teaching. The presentation will discuss guidelines for faculty to use VR in their courses. A Construction Management (CM) Course will be presented as a case study and lessons learned will be shared with the audience.

Learning Culture in an Ethnographic Museum: Making the Abstract Material
Sykes - 115
Michael Di Giovine

This paper examines the benefits of students co-curating exhibits in West Chester University's Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology. Using examples from previous student co-curated exhibitions on Rwanda's history and culture, and Human Rights in Latin America, this paper discusses the ways in which "high impact learning experiences" (Koh 2008) are cultivated through instructing students to curate a museum exhibit from start to finish. Students are largely unaware of the intricacies of each exhibit's theme, but through hands-on work researching, preserving, displaying and writing about tangible artifacts, largely abstract cultural concepts that seem so distant are made viscerally material.

Notorious Pedagogues: Documenting Student Learning, Our Teaching, and Scholarship through Podcasting
Sykes - 255
Matthew Kruger-Ross and Pauline Schmidt

As the co-teachers of WRH 325, a course designed for future English teachers, we are continually revising the assignments to meet the learning needs of our students and the ever-evolving nature of educational technologies. There exists a growing literature base for the use of podcasting in post-secondary contexts. As we prepare to teach the third iteration of this course, we are revising a long-standing podcasting assignment to require students to assist in creating podcast episodes with us as the ‘podcast hosts’. The podcast assignment illustrates how we dovetail our teaching of the course and document our scholarship.

11:20 AM to 12:20 PM Breakout Sessions

Creating Intentional Partnerships to Enhance Student Learning and Success
Sykes - 252
Jacqueline Hodes and Zebulun Davenport

A high impact practice is to create seamless learning environments to ensure student learning and success. The knowledge, skills and competencies students learn through co-curricular involvement completes the knowledge, skills and competencies they learn in the classroom. Still, the gap between student affairs educators and faculty remains large. In this session we will discuss the type of learning that takes place through co-curricular involvement and the innovative curriculum developed by the WCU Division of Student Affairs. We will also provide insight about faculty and student affairs educator culture and how we can impact student success through intentional collaborative efforts.

Engaging Online Learners: Implementing a learner-led instructional activity
Sykes - Ballroom C
Vicky Katsioloudes, Jared Jackson, Ahmed Fahmy, and Kelly Flartey

Online courses are increasingly popular in higher education particularly amongst adult learners who juggle multiple responsibilities and opt for flexible learning solutions. There is a plethora of learning strategies geared at actively engaging learners in the online environment. This presentation demonstrates an instructor-initiated but learner-led online instructional activity, designed to promote student engagement and learning. Learners’ self-reflections indicated that overall, learners found the activity rewarding and in alignment with the course objectives. Initial challenges and opportunities for learners and instructors are discussed.

SOAR project: Course Redesign to Decrease Attrition and Improve Outcomes
Sykes - 255
Stephanie Fiore and Benjamin Brock

The SOAR Project aims at improving high failure and attrition rates by supporting faculty to redesign their courses according to evidence-based practices for effective teaching. In this session, participants will learn about the SOAR Project and its study that tracks both changes in failure and attrition rates as well as shifts in student and instructor perceptions, beliefs, values, self-definitions, goals, and action-possibilities in the redesigned classrooms. Participants will identify factors that lead to high failure and attrition rates, and will reflect on how to overcome barriers that prevent both students and faculty from making changes that improve learning.

Using Real-Life Data to Teach Statistics and Survey Methodology
Sykes - 115
Laura Pyott

The use of real-life data in teaching statistics has been shown to increase engagement and improve learning outcomes. For my Statistical Methods of Political Polling course, I had my students design and distribute a survey regarding the midterm elections. Not only did the students use the real-life data they collected to learn statistical methods such as weighting and crosstabulation, but they also learned survey design and the importance of probability sampling. They consulted with experts at the Opinion Research Center at Franklin and Marshall College. They received IRB training, and presented their individual research questions at Fall Research Day.

12:20 to 1:20 PM Lunch

Lunch is in the ballroom. 

12:20 to 2:30 "How to Ungrade" Workshop

Keynote speaker Jesse Stommel will expand further on his keynote. 

How to UnGrade Workshop Notes

1:00 to 2:30 PM Technology Showcase

The showcase is dedicated to sharing innovative uses of learning technology in teaching and learning spaces. Each presenter has an individual station in an open room environment to demonstrate their creative application of a learning technology to small groups of conference attendees.  Be sure to check them out during lunch or as part of the third breakout session.  

Embedding Interaction in the Classroom with Student Response Systems
Thereas Boppell, West Chester University

Are you looking for new ways to assess students’ understanding, survey opinions, or increase student engagement? This interactive session will discuss the use of Student Response Systems embedded into your classroom activities to achieve these objectives. No matter the class size, type, or curriculum, student response systems can give everyone a voice and provide feedback. Whether you are new to student response systems, or just want a refresher, come and join our conversation to learn how to get started.

Mobile technology tool to foster interpersonal communication skill development
Alexandria Kile, Penn State Lehigh Valley

Let’s face it – communication today is facilitated by technology! And, technology enables speed and efficiency, but there are consequences for our students, particularly with face-to-face communication skills. Students often perceive that they are more competent face-to-face communicators than they are. In this session, attendees will examine the state of undergraduate students’ interpersonal communication skills. They will also be introduced to a short learning experience to foster these skills based on Fink’s Holistic Active Learning Model. This module can be incorporated in a variety of disciplines.

Put Your Story on the Map
Eileen Grodziak, Penn State Lehigh Valley

Through the use of Google Expedition, Penn State Lehigh valley plans to engage the culturally diverse population of the campus in creating and sharing their stories. In this session participants will be introduced to the Google immersive environment and will learn how to create their own story using this tool. Bring your curious mind and your cell phone to join our exploration.

Using a telepresence robot in higher education: A pilot project
Dana Kemery, Drexel University 

Engaging learners without the constraints of physical and online education environments by providing a physical presence for learners at a distance allows for blending of diverse groups of learners. Learners in upper division courses have the ability to collaborate with learners in entry level course for increased learner to learner knowledge acquisition through feedback.

Walking Tour APPlications To Your Class
Drew Anderson, West Chester University

Make a walking tour of your campus with an easy-to-use App. We'll "walk through" the app and explain its APPlications to all disciplines.

1:30 to 2:30 PM Breakout Sessions

Assessing the inaccessible through objective use of indirect measures
Sykes - Ballroom C
Scott Heinerichs
Vishal Shah

Indirect assessment measures are normally considered to be less effective in evaluating student learning as these measures require us to infer actual student abilities or knowledge. Other times, lack of a representative sample or time it takes to analyze the results limits the ability to fully utilize the data. In this interactive session, we will discuss how in certain cases where direct assessment measures are not available to assess an outcome, indirect measures can provide us with critical and undeviating data. Working through case studies, participants will practice various strategies for generating and analyzing the data.

Creating a Supportive Learning Community for Adult Students
Sykes - 252
Lisa Calvano, Casey Bohrman, Kenneth Jones, Marcie Cohen, and Ben Morgan

This interactive session will explore the challenges and opportunities of teaching adult learners and share lessons learned from the literature and our own experiences.  We will emphasize that student success depends upon sound pedagogical methods, as well as effective admissions processes, support services and academic advising. 

Student produced Audio Narratives: An Innovative Approach to Student Engagement
Sykes - 255
Russell Losco and Laura Guertin

Storytelling through audio has been part of society and education for ages, but students are not typically engaged in listening to or the creation of audio. NSF-funded research is exploring the impact on student STEM career paths if a course requires students to write and record stories with audio. This presentation will explore a pedagogical approach to introducing research, writing, and recording audio in an introductory-level STEM classroom, along with informal student feedback.

2:45 to 3:45 PM Breakout Sessions

Bridging the Science-Service Gap through Graduate-Level Academic Service Learning
Sykes - 255
Stevie Grassetti and Katie Solic

Despite research advances in mental healthcare, research-based services are not always used in community settings. This problem is referred to as the science-to-service gap. Graduate students are in an ideal position to address this gap by learning to integrate scholarship and service. Service learning courses offer high impact, engaging learning opportunities for students integrated with service to populations at need in the community. More information is needed to inform graduate-level instructors about how to design service-learning courses. The current presentation describes a graduate-level course that integrates research and service and describes the process by which the course was developed.

Dismantling the anti-Latino/as immigrant sentiment through In-class readings and critical community service learning
Sykes - 252
Ana Sanchez

This paper explores how to dismantle the anti-Latino/a immigrant sentiment in advanced Spanish as a Second Language classes. The political environment these students are exposed to on a daily basis, teaches them, through politicians’ discourse and the messages sent by mass media, to perceive the speakers of the language they are learning as the ‘other’.  Many stereotypes and identities have been placed on Latin Americans by the American society without evidence to support them. In order to dissect this anti-Latino/a immigrant sentiment, I will draw from Freire’s theory that human beings are unfinished, in the process of becoming, and, also from a post-structuralism framework where identities are fluid and in constant change. Through in class readings, presentations and, critical service learning as critical pedagogy, students will analyze, discuss, critique, question and reflect on why, and how the American society has perpetuated the oppression and discrimination of Latin Americans. The final goal is to help students become social agents to transform self and society.

Let's Circle-up!: Practicing Community Building in the Higher Education Classroom
Sykes - 115
Jodi Bornstein and Alexis Roach

In this highly interactive session, we will work together to focus on the importance of building a caring, connective, and collaborative higher education classroom community. The session will include modeling of specific strategies that can be used in the classroom along with connection making to theories of community, student engagement, and high impact teaching strategies.

Studying the Students: Lessons from My First Online Course
Sykes - Ballroom C
Michelle Blake

Distance education, where every interaction is captured, is the perfect place to study teaching, learning, and assessment—and in my first experience teaching online, I learned a ton about these matters by studying the class itself; though books and workshops and theory are helpful, arguably the best way to learn about effective online teaching is by studying your students to see what works and what doesn’t. In this presentation, I’ll share how and what I learned about engaging the students, creating a community, supporting unsure learners, and teaching writing, and I’ll invite session participants to share what they’ve learned, too.

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