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Click on each title to view complete details and registration information.

May 8 & 24: Study Group on Online Learning
May 9: Developing a First-Year Seminar
May 10: How the Brain Learns and What It Means for the Classroom
May 14: Fostering Collaborative Student Faculty Research in the Social Sciences and Humanities
May 15: Faculty Engagement in Global Learning: From Classroom to the World and Back
May 17: The Writing Assignment and Feedback Loop: Rethinking Our Approach to Assignment Design
May 21: Using Learning Catalytics to Create an Interactive Classroom
May 22: What is the Point of Reflection? How Integrative Knowledge Portfolios Help Students to Synthesize and Articulate their Most Important Learning Experiences
May 23: Liberal Arts Advising
May 21-23 Five Colleges Summer Institute on Scientific Teaching
May 30 Tenure and Promotion Workshop


Joseph O'Rourke
Time: May 8, 12:00-2:00 and May 24, 10:00-2:00 (lunch provided on both days)
Location: College Hall 301 (Emma Proctor Room)

The purpose of this workshop is to form a group of faculty, students, and staff to study online learning over the summer. The initial planning meeting will lead into a longer meeting after commencement, and several summer meetings yet to be scheduled. One possible route we might take is for each participant to enroll in some online course or MOOC for the summer, perhaps in pairs, so that we each gain experience that can be shared to educate the entire group. Other study suggestions may arise in our planning meeting. We anticipate participation could demand a substantive time investment over the summer. We seek divisional and multidisciplinary representation; participation will be limited. Sponsored by the Provost.

Alice Hearst and Julio Alves
Time: 9:00-2:00 (continental breakfast and lunch provided)
Location: Conference Center, Lower Level (Oak Room)

In this half-day workshop, FYS/WI instructors will consider a range of questions and topics focused on FYS teaching and learning. FYS instructors will exchange ideas for designing FYS syllabi, building intellectual and social learning communities among their first-years, connecting the FYS to Smith’s resources, and crafting good assignments that help students learn to write, speak and think better. We will discuss the use of peer tutors and the writing assessment project. We will also make every effort to reserve time for discussing whatever particular issues the workshop participants wish to address.

For additional information and questions, e-mail Alice Hearst, Director of the First-Year Seminar Program, Sponsored by the Provost’s Office. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Daniel Willingham, Professor, University of Virginia
Time: 9:00-12:30 (continental breakfast provided)
Location: Ford Hall 240

The last fifty years has seen unprecedented growth in our knowledge about how people learn. This information has been slow to affect education practice—it’s no small matter to move from the laboratory to the classroom. Dan Willingham will present a summary of the most important principles of memory, as well as a summary of research investigating how those principles are best put into classroom practice. Participants will have a chance to reflect on and discuss how this information might apply to their own teaching, and also to ask wide-ranging questions about cognition and how it applies to classroom practice.

Sponsored by the Jacobson Center, Sherrerd Center and the Provost’s Office. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Bio: Daniel Willingham earned his B.A. from Duke University in 1983 and his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from Harvard University in 1990. He is currently Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia, where he has taught since 1992. Until about 2000, his research focused solely on the brain basis of learning and memory. Today, all of his research concerns the application of cognitive psychology to K-16 education. He writes the “Ask the Cognitive Scientist” column for American Educator magazine, and is an Associate Editor of Mind, Brain, and Education. He is also the author of Why Don't Students Like School? (Jossey-Bass) and When Can You Trust the Experts? (Jossey-Bass). His writing on education has been translated into eleven languages.

Sue Peterson, Reves Professor of Government and International Relations, College of William and Mary
Time: 9:00-1:00 (continental breakfast and lunch provided)
Location: Conference Center, Main Dining Room (Paradise Room)

Are undergraduates good at research, and is research good for undergraduates? Some faculty worry that their scholarly research is too complex for, or does not lend itself easily to, undergraduate participation, while others are concerned that research, which tends by its nature to be narrow and specialized, may be inappropriate for or undermine a commitment to their students’ liberal arts education. This workshop discusses the example of a collaborative student-faculty research institute at the College of William & Mary involving faculty in the social sciences. It also explores institution-specific obstacles to and strategies for effectively engaging undergraduates in faculty research in the social sciences and the humanities. By creating a pipeline of increasingly complex research opportunities for students and an institutional structure for supporting research, faculty can simultaneously provide meaningful research experiences for students while advancing their own research agendas.

Sponsored by the Provost’s Office. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Bio: Sue Peterson is the Wendy and Emery Reves Professor of Government and International Relations at the College of William and Mary, where she also served as Dean of Undergraduate Studies and Dean for Educational Policy. She is the founding co-director of the Institute for the Theory and Practice of International Relations, a center for interdisciplinary, student-faculty research that uses social science methods to create policy-relevant knowledge. The Institute is home to the $25million USAID-funded AidData Center for Development Policy, as well as six other research projects. Most recently, Prof. Peterson was awarded a $307,500 grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York to support the Teaching, Research, and International Policy (TRIP) Project at the Institute. She received her B.A. from St. Lawrence University and her Ph.D. from Columbia, and her teaching and research interests include international relations theory, U.S. and comparative foreign policy, international security, and global health.

Kris Holloway and Scott Tayloe, CISabroad
Time: 9:00-1:00 (continental breakfast and lunch provided)
Location: Global Studies Center Lounge

This workshop is designed for faculty interested in integrating global learning into their teaching – whether through course-based activities or by leading short-term study trips abroad such as a Global Engagement Seminar. Professional program staff of CISabroad will introduce faculty to best practices from intercultural education on how to enhance an academic program or curriculum with integration of cultural learning before, during and after leading a group abroad.

Workshop participants will learn of successful activities which accomplish the following intercultural development goals for students:

  • increase cultural self-awareness,
  • increase awareness and understanding of other cultures, and
  • learn skills to appropriately interact with other cultures.

Faculty and staff affiliated with Smith’s Global Studies Center will be part of the workshop and offer examples of global learning supported by the Center.

9:00-10:00: Bringing the world into the classroom
10:00-11:00: Taking the classroom into the world
11:00–noon: Going abroad with students
Noon–1:00: Informal Q&A follow-up over lunch

Note: We will want to keep the focus on the academic goals of a program, while also demonstrating how integration of cultural learning enhances the academic learning. What we will need to do is created a kind of “blended approach”, i.e. if I am a faculty member who outlines what I want my students to learn on a field trip, how can that learning be enhanced through cultural awareness?

Sponsored by the Global Studies Center and the Provost’s Office. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Bios: Kris Holloway is the author of Monique and the Mango Rains: Two Years with a Midwife in Mali, based on her experience as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mali, West Africa. She serves as Director of University Relations at CISabroad. Kris holds a MPH in administration and education from the University of Michigan and has used her unique background in writing, public health, and strategic planning to further the mission of numerous non-profits and educational institutions including Planned Parenthood, the National Priorities Project, the University of Michigan, Springfield College, and the Greenbelt Movement International. Scott Tayloe is Director of Customized Programs at CISabroad, where he works with faculty and advisors planning study abroad programs. He holds a BS in Aeronautics and an MBA from Jacksonville University.

Recommended readings:

  • Brewer, Elizabeth and Kiran Cunningham, eds. 2010. Integrating Study Abroad into the Curriculum: Theory and Practice across the Disciplines. Stylus Publishers.
  • Savicki, Victor, ed. 2008. Developing Intercultural Competence and Transformation: Theory, Research, and Application in International Education. Stylus Publishers.
  • Slimbach, Richard. 2010. Becoming World Wise: A Guide to Global Learning. Stylus Publishers.
  • VandeBerg, Michael, R. Michael Paige, and Kris Hemming Lou, eds. 2012. Student Learning Abroad: What Our Students Are Learning, What They’re Not, and What We Can Do About It. Stylus Publishers.

Jill Gladstein, Associate Professor, Director of Writing Associates Program, Swarthmore College
Time: 9:00-2:00 (continental breakfast and lunch provided)
Location: Ford Hall 240

This workshop will help faculty address questions related to the crafting of writing assignments and to giving feedback on drafts. It will address the following questions:

  • What makes for a good assignment? For example, how much detail should be in the description of an assignment?
  • Why do some assignments succeed and others fail to produce the desired outcomes?
  • What type of feedback leads to successful revision?
  • What should assignment design and the evaluation of the writing students produce have in common?

Sponsored by the Jacobson Center and the Provost’s Office. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Bio: Jill Gladstein is an associate professor of English and directs the Writing Associates Program at Swarthmore College, which received a CCCC Writing Program Certificate of Excellence. She is one of the co-founders and the current chair of the Small Liberal Arts College-Writing Program Administrators consortium. She has published on writing centers, writing fellows programs, and writing program administration. Her most recent publication, Writing Program Administration at Small Liberal Arts Colleges discusses the administrative, curricular, and support structures of 100 small liberal arts college writing programs.

Brian Lukoff, Co-founder, Learning Catalytics
Time: 1:30-3:00 (refreshments provided)
Location: Neilson Browsing Room

Peer instruction and other interactive teaching methods have been shown to dramatically improve conceptual understanding. While no technology is necessary to take advantage of these teaching methods, technology can enable the instructor to better understand student understanding, prompt students to engage in deeper thinking, and facilitate more productive student discussions in the classroom. In this talk, I will introduce Learning Catalytics, a cloud-based platform for interactive teaching that allows students to use web-enabled devices -- laptops, smartphones, and tablets -- to engage in rich, authentic tasks in class. With Learning Catalytics, instructors can go beyond clickers and other response systems to create a rich interactive environment that integrates assessment with learning.

In advance of the workshop, please sign up for a Learning Catalytics instructor account at Bring a web-enabled device with you (smartphone, tablet, or laptop) to the workshop; you'll play the role of a student during the workshop as we interactively model how you might use Learning Catalytics for engagement, formative assessment, and peer instruction in class. Sponsored by the Sherrerd Center and Educational Technology.

Bio: Brian Lukoff is co-founder of Learning Catalytics, a company that grew out of his research work in educational technology at Harvard University. Before coming to Harvard, he was a software engineer at, a video advertising startup in Silicon Valley. In addition to his research and technology development work, he has also taught mathematics at Harvard University and Boston University. He received a Ph.D. from the Stanford University School of Education where he studied educational measurement and technology. He also holds an M.S. in statistics from Stanford University and a B.A. in mathematics from Cornell University.

Jessica Bacal, Director of the Wurtele Center for Work and Life,
and Minh Ly, Assistant Director of Assessment
Time: 2:00-3:30 (refreshments will be provided)
New Location: Campus Center 205

This past year, the Wurtele Center for Work & Life and the Office of Institutional Research collaborated with several other offices to pilot a “Global Engagement and Leadership ePortfolio Project" with a small cohort of students. Over six months, group leaders guided students in developing online portfolios about their most important learning experiences. Opportunities for deep reflection and conversation were essential, because leaders also wanted every student to walk away with the ability to tell a compelling story about herself, and to articulate the ways in which Smith’s mission of educating globally engaged citizens resonated with her. During the course of the workshop, Minh Ly and Jessica Bacal will give you an overview of the process that these students went through. They will invite you to engage in some of the program's most successful exercises so that you leave with tools for encouraging reflection in the classroom. In addition, they will talk about implications for assessment.

Sponsored by the Offices of the Dean of the College and Provost. Faculty who participate in the workshop will also receive a $100 stipend.

Kate Queeney, LAA Director, Lauren Duncan, LAA Director-Elect, and Jane Stangl, First-Year Class Dean
Time: 10:00-2:00 (refreshments and lunch provided)
Location: Campus Center 103/104

This workshop is for current and future Liberal Arts Advisers, although faculty interested more broadly in improving pre-major advising are welcome to attend. We will discuss student and faculty feedback from past advising experiences and will share strategies for effective advising. Sponsored by the Provost’s Office.

Location: DuBois TBL Classroom, UMass-Amherst

This workshop is intended as an introduction to active learning and what we know about how people learn. Faculty with little or no exposure to these ideas will benefit most from the workshop.

Joseph O’Rourke, Associate Provost and Dean for Academic Development, and Hayley Spizz
Time: 10:00-12:00
Location: College Hall 301, Emma Proctor Conference Room

The Office of the Provost invites faculty members to attend a workshop on the Tenure and Promotion process. This session will provide an opportunity for anyone approaching tenure and/or promotion reviews to meet with former members of the Tenure and Promotion Committee, John Davis, and Hayley Spizz from the Provost's Office. Information to help in the preparation and submission of materials will be provided, and sample dossiers will be available for viewing. There will be ample time for questions. Sponsored by the Provost’s Office, this workshop is offered each January and May and faculty members may attend as often as they wish.

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