Faculty Development Digest, April 2024

The Faculty Development Digest highlights events and resources that may be of interest to faculty and other educators on campus. The Digest will be posted on the Faculty Resources site periodically throughout the year. If you have an item that you would like to suggest for inclusion in a future issue, please send the details to Director of Faculty Development Rachel Weir at rweir@allegheny.edu. To access previous issues, use the links in the Recent Posts box or on this page.

Center Survey

The Center for Faculty Research and Teaching Excellence is envisioned as the campus hub for faculty and staff development, supporting transformational teaching and research and enhancing the use of educational technology. Faculty and staff, we invite you to complete this survey to let us know what you would like to see in the Center and how you might want to contribute to the Center. Thank you for your input!

Spring Educator Resource Institute

The schedule for the Spring Educator Resource Institute (ERI), which will take place on Tuesday, May 14, is now being finalized and will be posted soon.

Advising Second Year Students. Thanks to the Maytum Center for Student Success and the William Beazell Memorial Fund, the ERI will kick off early this year. Dr. Laurie Schreiner, a national expert on the second-year experience, will give the keynote address Thriving or Surviving? A Vision for the Second Year of College in the Tillotson Room at 4:15pm on Monday, May 13, with a reception to follow. Her presentation should be of interest to all faculty, staff, and administrators who mentor and advise students. Her workshop We Have Some Data… Now What?! will focus on Allegheny’s results from the recently-conducted Sophomore Experiences Survey and will take place at 9:00am on Tuesday, May 14 as part of the ERI. Please direct questions about Dr. Schreiner’s visit to Second Year Class Dean Amy Stearns.

Save the Date. The Fall Educator Resource Institute will take place on Monday, August 19.

Course Reflection Coffee Break

When you have a moment to look back on your classes this year, you might want to consider the ideas in Rachel Toor’s blog post Love Them More; Care Less. In short, we as educators work hard to make our classes as effective as possible and if things don’t go well, we often take that to heart. Toor’s advice is to do “the best you can, while also not contorting yourself to try to fix things you can’t manage.”

This advice will be the theme of our spring Course Reflection Coffee Break. On Friday, May 10, we invite you to take a break from grading and spend time with colleagues looking back on your teaching successes and challenges this semester. There will be an open tab for participants at French Creek Coffee & Tea between 1:30pm to 3:00pm and we will gather in the meeting room at the end of the upstairs hallway at French Creek. Bring a copy of each of your syllabi so that you can record notes about each course for next time – your future self will thank you!

New Faculty Orientation

New Faculty Orientation for any incoming, full-time faculty will take place on Wednesday, August 14, and Friday, August 16. There will also be a Canvas workshop for new users on Thursday, August 15. Please be aware of these dates as you schedule departmental retreats or other meetings in the lead-up to the fall semester. Additional information for new faculty can be found on this page.

In the Library

Looking for a resource to guide your teaching? Each month we will highlight relevant materials from our collection in Pelletier.

Books in the Faculty Development Collection. Tressa Snyder, Dean of the Library, is showcasing two books from the Faculty Development Collection located in the soon-to-be renovated Allegheny Authors area on the main floor next to the study rooms. The first book, Journal Sparks: Fire Up Your Creativity with Spontaneous Art, Wild Writing and Inventive Thinking by Emily K. Neuburger, offers out-of-the box ways to apply journaling concepts to stimulate creativity in the classroom. These formats can be applied to all subject areas from traditional writing to mathematical thinking to comp research. The second book, The Second Mountain: The Quest for a Moral Life by David Brooks, is more for personal introspection. Brooks explores the characteristics of lives of meaning and purpose, and how we can use our gifts to build a “life of interdependence and commitment to others.”

Study Away Workshop.

Do you work with students in an advisory capacity at Allegheny? Have you wondered how you might help them if they asked you about study away? Then you’d benefit from attending an engaging training workshop about supporting diverse students who express an interest in studying away while at Allegheny. Join Allegheny’s Global Education Office as we welcome veteran Higher Education Leader, Dr. Shakeer Abdullah, to lead our faculty and staff community in a training seminar on Using Multicultural Competence to Support Diverse Students in Study Away Programs on Monday, May 13, 12:00pm-4:00pm (lunch included). Please RSVP using this form. Support for this event was provided by the Great Lakes Colleges Association through its Global Crossroads Initiative, made possible by a grant from the Mellon Foundation.

Professional Development Opportunities

WTF: Way(s) to Fail. Materials from this GLCA Consortium for Teaching and Learning workshop on embracing the pedagogy of failure in your classroom are now available. This interactive workshop was led by our colleagues Lydia Eckstein, Amelia Finaret and Lisa Whitenack on Wednesday, March 20. You can view the workshop recording here. Additional resources can be accessed via this Google doc.

Scholarship of Service-Learning Workshop. The SoTL SIG of the POD Network will host the free webinar Conducting and Supporting the Scholarship of Service-Learning, facilitated by higher education consultant Dr. Barbara Jacoby, on Wednesday, April 17, from 3:00pm to 4:00pm. See more information on this page. Interested participants can join the webinar via this link.

Teaching Conferences

TLTCon 2023. The 7th Annual Teaching, Learning, and Technology Conference (TLTCon 2024), hosted by the College of Charleston, will take place online on May 7-8, 2024. This year’s keynote speaker is Josh Weiss, Director of Digital Learning Solutions at Stanford University. The conference is free but spaces are limited, so register today!

The Grading Conference. Interested in learning about alternative grading methods in higher education? Register here for the 2024 Grading Conference – Higher Ed Focus, which will take place online from June 13 to June 15. The registration fee of $50 can be reimbursed from your Faculty Travel allowance. The keynote speakers will be Dr. Susan Blum, Dr. Laila McCloud, and Jeff Schinske.


Upcoming Events

  • May 10, 1:30pm-3:00pm – Course Reflection Coffee Break (French Creek Coffee & Tea Meeting Room)
  • May 13, 4:15pm – Keynote Address: Thriving or Surviving? A Vision for the Second Year of College, Dr. Laurie Schreiner
  • May 14 – Spring Educator Resource Institute (schedule coming soon!)
  • August 14 and 16 – New Faculty Orientation
  • August 15 – Canvas Workshops (more details soon)
  • August 19 – Fall Educator Resource Institute (save the date)

Past Events and Materials

See the Faculty Development Opportunities page for additional links to previous events.