Concurrent Session Two

Thursday, April 27th - 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM

Title: It’s not called Funiversity

Abstract: An open conversation and exploration regarding the role of fun in teaching and learning in the classroom at the University of Lethbridge. As we reflect upon the changes in social structures and the role of the professor and the student within the past 50 years of this institution to look forward towards the next 50, we recognize great change not only within the way technology is shaping our teaching both within and without these walls but also great change in the expectations and goals of higher learning. I pose the following questions to discuss:

  • Professor or entertainer? Does the professor need to become entertainer in order to engage today’s student?
  • Student or insouciant observer? Is the student become an audience member as opposed to an engaged learner?
  • Is “fun” appropriate and/or necessary in today’s classroom?

In order to teach students today as well as plan for the future, instructors need to not only recognize the changes in how students today are learning but also adapt our teaching styles accordingly. Or do we?

Presenters: Lee Burckes - Instructor, Faculty of Fine Arts (Drama)

Room: M1040

Title: Evaluating Evaluation: Quantitative Explorations of Student Performance

Abstract: For some time now, my colleagues and I have been getting increasingly interested in explicitly studying and quantifying student outcomes in undergraduate courses.  In taking a scientific approach to exploring questions all instructors surely consider in the course of teaching and evaluating students, the hope is to more rigorously and empirically investigate students' learning and progress, to examine specific trends and features within and across evaluative components such as exams, and to better identify and understand links between other metrics (e.g., student attendance) and subsequent student performance and success.

In addition to some earlier questions originally spurred by our curiosity over certain aspects of student evaluation/examination in larger, lower-level psychology courses, we would like to share with the broader undergraduate teaching community not only some basic observations -- some fairly intuitive, some decidedly counter- -- but also more generally a taste and enthusiasm for this type of thinking and quantitative query-based approach to examining student outcomes and evaluation across a broad range of courses.

In this session, we hope to offer our colleagues across campus the opportunity to hear about some of these approaches and observations along with the chance to discuss and concretely explore potential applications of this kind of inquiry and analysis to their own courses and evaluative approaches.  Resident Stats Wizards Scott Allen and John Vokey will be on hand for both the discussion and the more applied/workshop aspects of this session, to help share relevant techniques, insights, and expertise with interested participants.

Presenters: Dr.  Javid Sadr - Assistant Professor, Psychology

Room: M1060

Title: Internationalizing our curriculum: Strategies and outcomes

Abstract: How important is it for Alberta university students to acquire the skills, knowledge and outlook to live and work in a globalizing environment? Is it surprising that only 7% of Alberta’s post-secondary students reported having had an international educational opportunity while completing their program? How can students develop international competencies without travelling abroad?

This session will combine a short lecture by the presenter followed by ample discussion on ways to “internationalize” our courses. The lecture will highlight the design, structure and components contributing to the success of a Fall 2016 international Health Sciences course with faculty and students from China. This “internationalization at home” (i@home) initiative was funded by Alberta Innovation and Advanced Education to evolve a prototype for “non-mobile” Alberta students to enhance their global awareness, improve intercultural skills and share expertise and approaches with their international peers. Faculty attendees are encouraged to exchange their multiple ways of internationalizing the curriculum, along with the barriers and merits of such efforts.

Presenters: Dr. Bonnie Lee - Associate Professor, Health Sciences

Room: M1035

Quick Links

Concurrent Session Three

Spark 2017 Schedule Overview