Synergia - Latest News
Adjunct Professional Development Grant Recipients
The following UST faculty received an award from the Adjunct Professional Development Grant. Applications are still being accepted.
From the Director - December 2015
As you know, at colleges and universities across the country students are pressing administrators and faculty to confront racism and privilege within their institutions and classrooms. UST students have spoken up, and across our campus plans are being made now to create conversation and training opportunities for staff and faculty. In Faculty Development we are devoting all of Spring semester to providing avenues for faculty to examine implicit bias, recognize and deal with microaggressions, and build skills for guiding difficult classroom.
Keep an eye out for details on spring semester workshops on "Talking about Hot Topics," on microaggressions, and strategies for managing controversial issues in the classroom.
In addition we’re launching a series of workshops focused on ways to reach effectively the diverse students in our classrooms through attention to course design. How you structure and communicate your goals, how you design and grade your assignments – the choices you make here impact student success, particularly for all those students who need help navigating what Buffy Smith calls “the hidden curriculum of higher education.”
Join the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity
Build Inclusive Excellence
Resources for faculty to create an inclusive environment
In their December 11, 2015 email to faculty and staff, Drs. Sullivan and Plumb encouraged the St. Thomas community to "...support our multicultural student groups by participating in cultural heritage events on campus, visit the Faculty Development website for resources on how to promote inclusion in the classroom, critically examine your worldview by taking one of the Harvard Implicit Association tests, and create a learning community where a robust exchange of ideas occurs on the complexity of 21st century social justice challenges."
In Faculty Development we are devoting all of Spring 2016 semester to providing avenues for faculty to examine implicit bias, recognize and deal with microaggressions, and build skills for guiding difficult classroom. We invite you to explore our resources for building an inclusive classroom and to consider registering for the J-term workshop on "Course Design for the Common Good."
One Button Studio
It's just one button! IRT announces availability of the One Button Studio (OBS) as a self-service option for recording course-related video.
Working with Faculty Writers
“No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else’s draft.” --H.G. Wells
I'll admit that I have this passion. For someone who loves words and sentences and the ideas behind them it’s all too tempting to want to tinker with someone else’s writing.
Features from Past Issues of Synergia Newsletter.
In case you missed it... here are the highlights from past issues of Synergia.
From the Director - November 2015
People who study stress like to point out that not all stress is bad for you. Some forms can be energizing, while other types have a negative impact on health and performance.
IRT establishes funding for faculty to caption videos
A special fund has been established within IRT to support faculty efforts to make learning materials accessible. Captions are text versions of the audio content synchronized with the video. Captioning instructional video or audio proactively addresses a diverse range of abilities and learning needs including:
- students for whom English is a second language
- situational hearing impairments (e.g., students watching/listening in a noisy environment)
- helping students learn the spelling of technical terms spoken in the video
- students with hearing and learning disabilities
Making use of the video captioning funds now not only helps you prepare for the time that you have a student with a hearing disability, but also enhances learning for all students by presenting material in multiple modalities (both visual and auditory).
Faculty may request captioning for a YouTube video, for video hosted on St. Thomas' Ensemble video server, or for videos hosted online elsewhere. You will need to provide information on where the video can be found (e.g. the YouTube link or EnsembleVideo link). To request captioning for any of these types of videos log in to IRT's captioning request form using your St. Thomas username and password. The link to the captioning request form is found at the bottom of this IRT web page.
Questions? Email IRT for more information about the captioning request process.
Faculty Focus @ UST with Dr. Brittany Nelson-Cheeseman
This month we are delighted to launch our new series showcasing UST faculty who are doing interesting and innovative things in the classroom. We begin the series by highlighting the teaching of Dr. Brittany Nelson-Cheeseman, Assistant Professor of Engineering. In this short video, Brittany shares tips for getting students more engaged and for making the most of teacher-student interactions, offering practical ideas for both the flipped and face-to-face classroom.