Pew FTLC: Late March 2023
Pew FTLC: Late March 2023
Grand Valley State University
Pew Faculty Teaching & Learning Center
March 30, 2023

Director's Note

Making Space. 

Are you maxed out? This was the title of a recent NCFDD Monday Motivator newsletter. I appreciated the reminder that time management is a relatively universal but ultimately addressable issue for many in academia. As we take a deep breath and head into the last few weeks of the semester, the advice and reflective prompts provided by NCFDD are worth a glance. In order to receive these excellent weekly mailings and access other high-quality faculty mentoring resources, you can active your NCFDD membership here. Maybe this sample will pique your interest. 

Are you making space for the work that matters most? Particularly in light of recent faculty workload conversations, I am hearing about the heavy lift required to support students this year. Much of this labor is invisible but nonetheless takes a toll. Your student engagement and support efforts are extremely important, much of this work is new for us, and, quite simply, intense. As it is unlikely to slow down any time soon, I encourage you to think about how to account for it, share it, celebrate it, and plan for continued learning.  

How are you spending class time? Given that space has been on my mind, I appreciated the solid advice in this blog post, Mini-lectures to create active learning spaces. Additionally, while I likely mentioned it in the last newsletter, I encourage you to carve out some space in your classes to talk with students about how things are going. Are you looking for practical suggestions for such conversations? I offer a 2017 piece, Creating more caring university classrooms and recently released recommendations from the post-COVID Care in the Academy project. The Pew FTLC is also here for you, so don’t hesitate to reach out for a confidential chat or meeting.  

As you think about your workload between now and Fall 2023, be sure to make space for exploring Blackboard Ultra. Starting with Spring/Summer 2023, all Blackboard courses will have this new format, so take the time now to familiarize yourself with the general layout and plan time to dig in and learn the features you will need for your upcoming courses. 

Making Visible. 

A few weeks ago, a friend shared an International Women’s Day GIF that has stayed with me. It features an animation of figures alternating reaching down and then lifting one another up. It really touched me and it seems applicable beyond March 8. In what ways have you recently supported a friend, colleague or student by reaching to help lift them up? If we were in class, I would ask you to turn to a neighbor and share an example. To the extent you feel comfortable, consider taking a moment to share a “lifting up” story with someone in your sphere.  

How visible are your students’ struggles? I am certain that answers will vary. We sometimes hear that faculty are not sure how to respond to a student, where to locate available resources, or how to refer a student to appropriate support services. Did you know that there is a GV Mental Health app for faculty and staff to assist with these concerns? Read more about the app in this GVNext article and learn more on the University Counseling Center site. See below for additional faculty-focused resources. 

Making Contextual. 

Learning from and with others (read: getting out of your own head) may not be on your radar at this point in the semester, but just in case, here are a few new-ish items written by folks I admire and about which I have heard good things. The context here is that others are thinking about some of the same issues that we are facing at GV and offering interesting suggestions and guidance. I plan to dig into these in May:  

Keep up the good work, folks.

Christine Rener

Supporting Student Health & Mental Health at GVSU Webpage

More and more students are coming to college with a variety of mental health challenges. Students trying to navigate and succeed in college while managing these challenges need support. Our newly developed Supporting Student Health & Mental Health at GVSU page offers resources for faculty who want to use leading practices for creating a culture of care that supports student health and mental health.
Some resources linked on this page include:

Apply for a Teaching Innovation Grant

Teaching Innovation Grants support faculty pursing innovative projects that enhance teaching and learning. AND...the application process has been updated so that Affiliate faculty can apply without a sponsor!
Award amounts range from $500-$3,000 for a single applicant to up to $9,000 for a proposal that involves three faculty applicants.
Applications are accepted and reviewed quarterly. The next deadline is April 1, 2023.  Learn more by visiting our Teaching Innovation Grant webpage.  

Inclusive Excellence Teaching Institute 2023 

This year's virtual institute will be facilitated by Dr. Chasity Bailey-Fakhoury and Dr. Mirta Paola Leon and take place over three full days: May 11 (Thursday), May 23 (Tuesday), and June 8 (Thursday). The Institute will meet via Zoom from 9AM-3PM for each of the dates with a break for lunch. Registrants are expected to attend all meetings.
The Inclusive Excellence Teaching Institute is specifically designed to provide Affiliate and Tenure-Track faculty at all ranks with a transformative space to learn and strategize about inclusive excellence in teaching and learning. The Institute will encourage an atmosphere of cultural humility through the examination of social identity and bias. Motivational frameworks, barriers to learning for diverse student learners, and proactive strategies will also be introduced. Essential pedagogical approaches that promote an inclusive classroom environment will be modeled and explored. Through pre-assigned readings, access to a group Bb site, and facilitated discussions, participants will begin the process of transforming their courses/curriculum, units, and colleges. For more information, please contact Chasity Bailey-Fakhoury at baileych@gvsu.eduRegistration is limited to 12 faculty. Register in Sprout.

Professional Certification in College Student Wellbeing, Trauma, and Resilience 

We are pleased to announce a NEW opportunity for a cohort of GVSU faculty and staff to engage in an online certification out of Florida State University. Organized through our Pace Initiative for Connecting Mind and Health, the cohort activities take place May 2 through June 28 and includes two in-seat sessions. The certificate benefits include:  
  • Enhancing your professional knowledge, skills, related to student mental health and wellness
  • Gaining a transformative understanding of how trauma can affect the developing brain, interfere with learning, and impact student success
  • Learning powerful new principles of trauma-informed approaches applied to the higher education setting
  • Understanding resilience and how campuses can play a role in building more resilient students
  • Acquiring tools to avoid secondary traumatization
Learn more by visiting our Sponsored Teaching and Learning Event Grants page. Application deadline: April 21, 2023.

Sponsored Teaching and Learning Event Grants—Still Accepting Applications

Our Sponsored Teaching and Learning Event Grant fully supports faculty attending a curated set of teaching and learning related workshops, institutes, and conferences. We've extended the deadline to apply for the STLEs listed below.
Lilly Conference–Traverse City, MI
October 11–13, 2023 Traverse City, MI
Application deadline: May 12, 2023

Amount: $2000
Lilly-Traverse is part of the overall Lilly Conference Series. For nearly 40 years, Lilly Conferences on College and University Teaching and Learning have provided opportunities for the presentation of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. 15 faculty spots open.
Best Teachers Institute
June 14–16, 2023 Remote (Zoom)
Application deadline extended to March 30, 2023
Amount: $595

Led by Ken Bain, author of What the Best College Teachers Do, James Lang, author of Distracted, and Eric Mazur, this online workshop focuses on creating "super courses" (Bain) and "small teaching" (Lang). Three faculty spots remain!

Reacting to the Past Summer Institute
June 8–11, 2023 Barnard College, New York, NY
Application deadline extended to March 30, 2023
Amount: $1900

Reacting to the Past is a pedagogy of complex role-playing games used in disciplines fro STEM to the humanities and more centering around clashes of ideas form the crisis in democracy in ancient Athens to the collapse of apartheid in South Africa to debates over Title IX in American Universities. Three faculty spots remain!  
Learn more about these and other STLEs by visiting our Sponsored Teaching and Learning Event Grant webpage. Apply online via our online grants system.
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