Pew FTLC: Early April 2024
Pew FTLC: Early April 2024
Grand Valley State University
Pew Faculty Teaching & Learning Center
Grand Valley Marching Band sculpture
April 11, 2024

A Busy Month

May is a busy month in the Pew FTLC. In addition to the wonderful opportunities below, we are hosting events that are either at capacity (e.g., Personnel Portfolio Workshop) or are part of special initiatives (e.g., CLAS Voyage Summer Institute, Gardner Institute Gateways to Completion). What these activities have in common is that they bring together multidisciplinary groups of faculty and staff to focus intently, in ways not possible during other times of the year. From course redesign, development of new experiential learning opportunities, to fostering more inclusive learning environments, the work being done is extremely important. And not easy.

We are also engaged in projects related to a few other hot topics including generative AI, climate resilience, growth mindsets, active learning classrooms, student mental health and wellbeing, faculty thriving, and expanded programming around diversity, equity, and inclusion to name a few. Oh, and welcoming a new Assistant Director on May 1st!

Whether in person or virtually, I do hope to see you soon. If there are other ways in which we can support you or your colleagues, do not hesitate to reach out.

Christine Rener


On Zoom and in-person, check out this faculty-led and student-focused session of our Minds that Matter series to learn more about how to better support students who fall on the autism spectrum in your classroom. Explore leading practices for Universal Design Learning and hear from our very own students about their experiences at GVSU.
Register Here for the Minds that Matter - Understanding Autism Session
How can we ensure that students begin their GV career with a strong start? The Strong Start Teaching Institute focuses faculty attention on best practices for engaging students in first year undergraduate courses. Together we will explore resources and examples around four themes:
  • Clarity of academic expectations
  • Foster a sense of belonging (at GVSU and in our classrooms)
  • Familiarity with available student resources
  • Active learning strategies that promote student engagement, motivation, and achievement
Whether you are teaching a course for the first time or are looking to strengthen a course to best engage students, we invite you to participate. The in-person and asynchronous components of this Institute will apply to a range of instructor experience levels and disciplines. See the Strong Start page for additional details. 

Limited to 40 participants. Preference given to adjunct, affiliate, and visiting faculty. Register by April 26th.
Register for the Spring 2024 Strong Start Teaching Institute

Inclusive Teaching is Better Teaching

Inclusive teaching involves a deliberate effort by faculty to create a learning environment that attends to and supports the needs of students with a variety of backgrounds, learning interests, and abilities. Inclusive pedagogical strategies shape the dynamics in teaching-learning spaces, affect individual's experience in those spaces, and influence course and curriculum design. 

The Inclusive Excellence Teaching Institute (IETI) 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. The Institute will be facilitated by Drs. Chasity Bailey-Fakhoury and Sherry Johnson. 

Limited to 18 participants. Register today!
Register on Sprout for the Inclusive Excellence Teaching Institute

The campus novel is a subgenre of fiction spotlighting the human comedy of academic life. Wherever you are—at the beach, overseas, in your office toiling away--join us Fridays in July 3:00-4:00pm on Zoom to talk about a book. Register for just one or as many discussions as you like, and FTLC will send you either the print or audio version of the book(s), your choice. Please register for only the book(s) you will meet to discuss. Open to all GVSU faculty and staff.

Changing Places: A Tale of Two Campuses
David Lodge
At an English Department party an assistant professor gets tipsy and jokes about having never read Hamlet. Several years later, the incident is raised when he goes up for tenure…

Register Here for JULY 5: Changing Places by David Lodge (1984)
Gordon Haber
An adjunct writing instructor tries to land a tenure-track position. 

The author of this novella will join our discussion!
Register Here for JULY 12: Adjunctivitis by Gordon Haber (2013)
Dear Committee Members
Julie Schumacher
This epistolary novel is told entirely in letters of recommendation in which a tenured professor bemoans his colleagues, students, administration, the state of academe in general, and his own undistinguished career.

Register Here for JULY 19: Dear Committee Members by Julie Schumacher (2014)
Real Life 
Brandon Taylor
A queer Black graduate student in biomedical science comes of age in a White midwestern college town.
Register Here for JULY 26: Re
al Life by Brandon Taylor (2020)
Learn More About Summer Book Club Here

Spring + Summer 2024 Learning Communities:

Looking to connect with other faculty? Hoping to engage in some learning and exploring that's just for you? Consider joining or leading a Spring or Summer Learning Community (LC).

LCs bring faculty together to foster a 1–2 semester-long conversation on a topic of mutual interest and encourages an application of the new knowledge gained. Past participants consistently report the experience as restorative, fun, and a chance to build relationships across the university.

Check out the list below of Spring/Summer 2024 LCs now accepting members—click on a title to see the full description:
  • Teaching with AI  AI is here - what should instructors know and do?
  • ADHD & Higher EducationHow might basic knowledge of explicitly designed instruction and other evidence-based practices assist with successfully supporting those with ADHD at the university level?
  • Generations How might greater understanding of the characteristics of our students, as compared to those of previous cohorts and our own demographic, help us connect with and teach them more effectively?
  • How to Integrate AI in Advertising and Public Relations TeachingHow AI can improve the teaching practice in Ad and PR courses?
  • Transforming the College Classroom How might creating a classroom environment that is conducive to learning benefit students for the world beyond college?
Visit our Current Learning Communities webpage for more information and the link to the online application. Interested in leading a Fall 2024 LC? Have a topic you are passionate about or looking to explore? Submit an LC Letter of Intent to propose an LC.

Strong Start Teaching Institute LIGHT Lunch Series

1:00  2:00, JHZ 3068
Tuesday May 7th

Let’s come together one last time to share teaching struggles and successes from this last year, and plot a strong start to 2024-25.
Please RSVP by emailing
Authentic Assessment Workshop
Joint Program of eLearning Technologies and Pew FTLC
Wednesday, May 8, 2024
10am – 12pm, 3068 JHZ

New Faculty Orientation

August 7, 8 and 9, 2024

30th Annual Fall Conference on Teaching and Learning
August 15, 2024
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