Opening Session: 9:00 am - 10:45 am

"Good Enough" Teaching in Changing Times
Gayle Davis, Provost, Jay Cooper, College of Education, Kathleen Bailey, School of Criminal Justice, Christine Yalda, School of Criminal Justice

Teaching excellence at GVSU requires effective teaching that facillitates student learning in part by "challenging and engaging students, by supporting their academic and professional growth, and by establishing and maintaining high academic standards" (Administrative handbook, Section 2.9.1.A).  Faculty development efforts have embraced these liberal education ideals in many ways, including offering faculty tools to improve content delivery, develop student critical thinking skills, and create effective learning environments.  The growing diversity of our student body, coupled with the rising popular/political demand for relevant (read: practical) education, invites us to continue to investigate new pedagogical approaches.  This presentation draws on the work of British psychologist D.W. Winnicott to introduce GVSU faculty to the idea of "good enough" teaching.  Together we will explore how faculty might use this relational approach to facillitate students' abilities to succeed in increasingly fluid social and employment settings, thus providing lasting benefits beyond the classroom. 

Breakout Session 1: 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

myGVSU Survey: Student Perceptions of the Most Recent University Climate – Understanding the Changing Student
Neal Rogness, Statistics, Dana Munk, Movement Science, Pew FTLC
EC (11:00 – 11:30)

The myGVSU Survey (4th climate study at GVSU) was administered in February 2011. This presentation will share select and early findings of student perceptions from the survey. Because students’ perceptions can influence how they learn and approach their overall university experience, faculty participants will reflect on how these findings might impact their teaching and discuss ensuing teaching strategies. Discussion points will be recorded and available electronically to participants by the end of start-up week.

Utilizing Assessment for Maximum Student Success: A review of MAP-Works
Colleen Lindsay-Bailey, Student Services, Nancy Giardina, Provost Office
EC (11:30-12:00) 

In 2009, Grand Valley first utilized the student success tool, MAP-Works (Making Achievement Possible). Research indicates that the first 3 weeks is “make or break time” in determining if students will be retained at the institution. Instead of guessing what support and engagement students need, MAP-Works provides an in- depth look at the student experience and provides a collaborative tool to help faculty and staff target the individual needs of each student. This presentation will review MAP-Works, aggregate data collected, and will engage participants in conversation about best practice in better understanding our students.

Retention of Minority Students in Higher Education Using a Student Peer Support Model
Cynthia McCurren, Nursing

This session focuses on diversity and inclusion in the classroom using a “student peer support” model. While the example emanates from nursing education, the strategies employed have potential for application with other groups of students to enhance awareness of the minority experience in the “majority” classroom: feeling alone/different; teachers’ lack of acknowledgement of individuality and support; peers’ lack of understanding about cultural differences; and coping with insensitivity and discrimination. An introduction to a simulated intercultural experience and minority students’ stories of lived experiences will be shared.

Developing Professionalism in Graduate Students
Cynthia A. Grapczynski, Occupational Therapy

This session will focus on activities to help develop professional attitudes and behaviors among graduate students, including aspects of critical thinking, leadership interest, voluntary service to the profession, communication, advocacy, and independent learning skills, and other characteristics of professional people. Using a self-rating scale for students developed by Dr. Grapczynski, based on the work of several authors working with students in different professions, the goal is to identify activities and potential research partners to enhance professional development in graduate students.

Bridging the Gap: Assessing Student Technology Preferences in the Advising Process
Christine Drewel , Liberal Studies And Cherilyn Denomme, BCOIS Dean’s Office

The demographics of GVSU students are changing. Faculty and advisors may be un- aware of the disconnection between their approaches to technology (or lack thereof) and how essential technology is to students. Expanding on advising training videos created from a 2010 FTLC grant, this interactive workshop will help faculty and advisors identify and assess the need for evaluating student communication preferences. We will address concrete strategies to implement appropriate levels and types of technology that can enhance the advising process.

What are you packing (to class)? Embracing the Technology You and Your Students Bring to the Classroom
Paul Lane, BCOIS & Seidman College of Business


Learn about embracing the technology that students bring to class. You will develop strategies for using this technology in the class environment. Across the disciplines you will brainstorm how to engage and excite students of different backgrounds, learning styles, and abilities. You will use an intercultural example to see how this works in class. You will have a chance to see how it is fun, interesting, and dynamic to embrace technology. You will develop an exercise for this semester. You are encouraged to bring your own technology to this session.

How Clear is Your Lens? A Discussion About Diversity and Strategies for Inclusion Both In and Beyond the Classroom
Michael M. G. Scantlebury, Hospitality & Tourism Management, Muthoni Imungi, Social Work

We come to GVSU with our individual perspectives on life and learning based on our home environment, our journey and all the things that make us who we are. The same is true for our students. How do we create an environment of inclusion given our diversity, our biases and our lens, our world view? This workshop examines ways of creating an inclusive instructional environment and techniques for helping students enhance their skills in creating an inclusive workplace on graduation.


Breakout Session 2: 1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

Bridging the Gap: Conversations about Student Mental Health on Campus, How Academic and Student Affairs can Work Together for a Healthier Campus Community
Counseling Center, Women’s Center, Faculty, and Undergraduate Students


College counseling centers across the country report increased frequency and severity of students’ mental health concerns. This session looks to provide both an individual and university perspective around this topic as more and more of our student population are attending college with mental health challenges. Panel members, consisting of students, faculty, and staff will provide information on mental health to in- crease awareness and reduce the stigma associated with it. Opportunities to strategize best practices those who feel the pressure to do something, yet are unsure as to how to begin.

Psychological Research on Student Learning: Basic Principles and Classroom Strategies
Michael Wolfe, Psychology, Sandra Portko, Psychology

For decades, psychologists have conducted research designed to understand and improve student learning. We discuss two areas of recent research that have direct applicability in classrooms. First, when students take tests as a study strategy, they show dramatic improvements in later retention compared to more traditional methods of studying. Second, when students prepare for class beforehand by completing on-line quizzes, they show improved performance on tests and grades earned for the course compared to other methods of class preparation.

Integration of Professional Skills and Academic Content during Co-op Semesters via Distance Learning Modules
Chris Plouff, Engineering, and Ron Garrett, Engineering

Distance-learning modules ranging from ethics and professionalism to project management were developed and delivered during co-op semesters. Content of the modules was selected to enhance the experience of students in the workplace, providing an opportunity for the students to apply what they were learning. The scaffolded curriculum was designed to account for the maturity level of the students. This session will discuss results from the pilot program in 2011 and applications to other programs including internships and service learning activities.

Role of Teamwork and Assessment in Student Learning
Heather Gulgin, Movement Science


Teamwork and communication are valued in the workplace, but often we teach and require students to do individual work. As a result of participating in the Honor’s Institute last August, I saw the benefits of teamwork during the learning process. Students take on a role within the group and become accountable for their work. Assessment of their performance also provides individuals feedback allowing them to grow. In this interactive session I will place participants into teams and facilitate an exercise.

Writing Courses and Outside Audiences: Creating Communities of Practice
Laurence José, Writing
EC (A 1:15 – 1:35) 

Incorporating real audiences in the classroom is key to help students engage in meaningful learning processes. Research has demonstrated that assignments requiring the consideration of audiences beyond the classroom greatly impact motivation and learning outcomes. In this presentation, I share strategies for building collaborative processes between course sections but also between the classroom and a wider campus audience. By doing so, I illustrate how cultural diversity can become a pedagogical means to build new communities of practice in and outside of the classroom.

Green? Groan? Great? - Making Ebooks Work for Your Students
Debbie Morrow, University Libraries
EC (B 1:35 – 1:55) 

Even as we consider how to adjust for a changing student body, our technological environment is changing, too. One recent reality in the publishing world is E-books. Book content in digital format now comprises a significant proportion of the information resources available in the university library’s collection. Learn how E-books have been used effectively in several settings in place of traditional print, and participate in discussion about taking more advantage of books as digital objects.

Using Wikis to Facilitate Critical Thinking
Brian Bowe, Communications
EC (C 1:55 – 2:15) 

Two journalism courses utilized wikis to engage students in a virtual discussion of how to best report on diverse groups of people. The contents of the wikis were compiled into best practices documents that are available online for use both in classrooms and newsrooms. This session presents a use of media technology that fosters student interaction and growth and provides educators with an outline for how to create similar devices in their own classrooms.

A Generation with Too Much Information: Reversing the Research Paper Process
Kim Ranger, University Libraries
EC (A 1:15 – 1:45) 

Students often feel overwhelmed by the amount of information available to them in research assignments. Typically, we present the process as reading expert opinions before trying to create a thesis which puts forward a new idea. However, if student inquiry originates with observation, writing from what they know, conversation, and finally, addressing the research, then anxiety (and plagiarism) will decrease. This session will provide a practical strategy to engage students in evaluation, interpretation and synthesis (a.k.a. information literacy).

Meat and/or Potatoes: Information Literacy Instruction à la Carte
Kathryn Waggoner, University Libraries, Nicholas Johnson, English
EC (B 1:45 – 2:15) 

Do you have a class with diverse information literacy skills and needs? Do you want to customize information literacy instruction to meet those needs? Come hear about one approach that a WRT 150 instructor and a research and instruction librarian took to do just that. You will learn about the Information Literacy Core Competencies and come away with ideas for using them to customize information literacy instruction and integrate it into your course.