Related Programs

Related Programs are relevant workshops, conferences and other events being offered by other organizations around campus. Many of them are sponsored by members of the Graduate Development Network . For information on past workshops, please see our Workshop Archive.

If you know of a workshop or session that might be of interest, please contact us.

Spring 2010

Tuesday, January 19
Brown Bag Luncheon Talk: Academia and Teaching as a Career with Richard Cyr, Department of Biology, Penn State University
11:30AM - 12:30PM, Room 129, Featheringill Hall

Sponsored by the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL) at Vanderbilt

Richard Cyr is a Professor of Biology and the Associate Head for Undergraduate Affairs
in the Biology Department at Penn State. He has received several teaching awards at
Penn State while maintaining an active research program in plant cell biology. He has
taught classes that range from freshman seminars to graduate courses in plant
biology. He has participated in many nationally sponsored workshops on
undergraduate education and has organized various workshops for graduate students,
post-docs, and faculty on various instructional topics.

IMPORTANT NOTE: 30 person maximum. You must contact Jean Alley at 3-2766 or to reserve a spot.

Tuesday, January 19
Scaling Best Practices in a Large Introductory Biology Course with Richard Cyr, Professor and Assistant Department Head, Department of Biology, Penn State University

4:00 - 5:00PM, Jacobs Believed in Me Auditorium, Featheringill Hall
Reception immediately following seminar to include Poster presentations from the Fall 2009 Teaching as Research Fellows.

Sponsored by the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL) at Vanderbilt

Introductory biology courses have changed over the last decade, with a greater emphasis being placed on problem solving, student engagement, information access, and
investigatory lab experiences. These changes have not always been easy, especially in
universities where mega-size classes of over a thousand students present logistic
challenges. In this seminar, Dr. Cyr will outline the value of taking a goal-oriented
approach in making progressive improvements in large introductory courses. By
approaching course reform with a set of learning goals in hand, a more logical and
systematic change is achievable at any scale of class size.

In the last decade the Penn State Biology department has constantly worked on improving learning in a large, first semester introductory course. Mean performance on difficult application questions has risen from 57% to 75%, with a concomitant rise in question effectiveness. The course has improved retention, with over 90% of students who begin the course completing it with a grade of “C” or better. These improvements are the results of a number of factors that include the development of on-line tutorials, the use of case-studies, changes in how class time is used, and the development of a peer-tutoring program. Future studies will reveal whether these practices not only engage students, but also help in maintaining their enthusiasm for learning in other science classes throughout their undergraduate years and beyond.

Friday, February 5
Integrating Sustainability into the Curriculum
8:30AM - 4:00PM, Belmont University

This one-day workshop will be held on February 5, 2010 at Belmont University in Nashville. Workshop participants will explore how sustainability principles can be integrated within the curricula of higher education institutions in Tennessee. The workshop agenda includes small group discussions that allow for intensive attendee involvement.

The workshop will be led by Lindy Biggs, Associate Professor of History & Sustainability Coordinator for Auburn University, who has conducted summer curricula workshops for Auburn faculty over several years. The workshop is sponsored by the Belmont Environmental Studies Program, with additional contributions from the Belmont Office of the Provost, Belmont Teaching Center, and the Fisk University Community Environmental Awareness/Sustainability Program. 

Saturday, February 6
PROF 101 WORKSHOP: Launching Successful Faculty Careers

8:30AM - 1:15PM, Featheringill Hall

Prof 101: Launching Successful Faculty Careers is a workshop held for Ph.D. students who plan to pursue careers in the professoriate. The workshop will explore the roles and responsibilities of new faculty members with a variety of Vanderbilt professors and administrators, as well as former Vanderbilt graduate students sharing their perspectives and expertise in the following panels:

Choosing a Job: the Differences between Academic Institutions Environments
The difference between academic institution environments for faculty at small liberal arts colleges, regional state universities, and Research I universities can be quite different. This panel will consider the primary differences among various types of colleges and universities. Differences in the cultures, students, and expectations for faculty members will be considered.

Writing for Publication: Pleasures & Problems in the Academic Writing Process
These panels will center on the academic writing process, including problems that arise. Panelists will talk about outlets for publication and the editorial review process. Guest speakers include journal editors and faculty with exceptional publishing records.

Balancing Life as Your Career Progresses
What does it take to be a successful professor? This panel will explore topics including managing teaching, balancing home-life, and meeting professional demands. In addition, panelists will discuss their experiences with departmental and institutional expectations for tenure, how one goes about learning about these expectations, and what the review process is often like. Strategies for establishing timetables, cultivating mentors, and negotiating departmental politics will be addressed.

To register for this event and to learn more about the Prof 101 workshop, visit the Prof 101 web site.

This event is sponsored by the Enhancing Graduate Education Initiative in the Office of the Vice Provost for Research and Dean of the Graduate School.


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