Office of the Provost

Teaching and Learning Conference

January 25, 2023

9:00am - 3:25pm

Monroe Lecture Center & C.V. Starr

Conference Schedule:

9:00am - 9:25am - Monroe Lecture Center, Room 142

Welcome (Coffee/Tea)


9:30am - 9:40am - Monroe Lecture Center, Room 142

Opening Remarks from Provost Charlie Riordan


9:50am - 10:35am 

Gamification and Simulation in Physician Assistant Education - C.V. Starr 204

Christine Zammit & Gina Pontrelli

Learning is an active process and critical thinking activities based on real-life scenarios are essential to medical education and allow for a safe learning environment to assist students with refining the skills needed to practice as competent clinicians. Gamification has proven useful in the advancement of clinical reasoning skills (White, Lewis, & McCoy, 2018). Serious games are a form of simulation that use game elements to enhance problem-solving skills in non-game settings and provide learners the opportunity to experiment and see the impact of their decisions in a benign learning environment (Lean et al, 2020). Although this activity was used to expand clinical knowledge in PA education, gamified systems have been successful in engaging learners and promoting problem-solving in a multitude of higher education disciplines such as economics, management, and engineering (White et al, 2018). Gaming and simulation have been found by our program to engage students and promote student self-reflection and active learning. The goal is to share our program’s experience with gaming and simulation to assist members of other health professions to implement similar teaching modalities that cultivate critical thinking and have a positive impact on health care outcomes. The use of gaming technology can be instrumental in changing the delivery of medical education topics and serve as an innovative tool in uncovering social determinates of health, reduce health care disparities and equip educators with interactive approaches in navigating instruction related to global emergencies and population health.

Modeling Innovative Practices in Teacher Education Classes (panel) -  C.V. Starr 205

Alan Singer, Andrea Libresco, Alan Flurkey, Theresa McGinnes, & Roberto Joseph 

In many ways a teacher education program is an apprenticeship program and a problem is modeling innovative practices for elementary, middle level and high school classrooms while teaching adults in university undergraduate and graduate classes. Participants will discuss ways they teach literacy, technological developments, and civic activism while encouraging active student participation and dialogue in learning communities. Classrooms communities with respectful dialogue and positions supported by evidence is at the core of our practices. We teach "how to" by modeling "how to" in our methods classes. Our work is based on the latest theory and research in our respective fields.

Oral Exams and Scaffolding in Online and Hybrid Chemistry Courses -  C.V. Starr 204a

Sabrina G. Sobel

Oral exams in STEM courses are not the norm, but can be used successfully in online and hybrid undergraduate chemistry courses by harnessing technology and intentionally scaffolding the oral exam process. Multiple oral exam experiences allow students to practice and refine their performance. Students in two hybrid courses, General Chemistry 1 and Foundations of Inorganic Chemistry, were required to complete four oral exams in the semester, each associated with midterms and final exam. Oral exams were conducted through video conferencing; students were graded on oral explanation and worksheet details using a shared rubric. A comprehensive survey was administered after each semester to get student feedback. Student performance was generally good, and students reported less anxiety as regards speaking about chemistry by the end of the semester. Some students did recognize the transferability of the oral exam training to explaining science in other contexts. One student reported, “I felt more comfortable answering questions in other classes after being 1v1.”

Pathways for Curriculum Reform: Developing Literacy Experiences Rooted in Student Identities - C.V. Starr 209

Lorraine Radice

Acknowledging and honoring students’ identities can elevate the literacy learning that transpires in the classroom. This presentation will showcase the journey that teachers and administrators are on in effort to put students first when making decisions about literacy experiences and inclusive text offerings. The presentation will showcase authentic work and practices from the journey that have led to changes in curriculum and reflective conversations among educators. Participants will be invited to consider the importance of culturally relevant texts and experiences for teaching and learning. They will also learn practical strategies for starting conversations about the need for diverse literacy experiences for students. Participants will personally experience the reflection protocols of this curriculum project during the presentation. The format of this presentation will mirror the process that teachers went through to show how when we reflect on who we teach, we can discover the need for curriculum revisions. Participants will be asked to engage in conversations about the reflection protocol that was used in the curriculum project that is being presented. They will also be asked to explore the identities of students they work with so that this presentation experience is meaningful and contextualized. Participants will share ideas, compare and contrast reflections, and think about how to be responsive to students through the literacy experiences and texts in their current school settings. I will use digital tools, writing invitations, and conversation to encourage participation during the workshop.


10:45am - 11:30am

Career Readiness in the Liberal Arts Classroom: Teaching Students to Articulate the Value of their Education (panel) - C.V. Starr 205

Michelle Kyriakides, Julie Byrne, Rosanna Perotti, & Terry Tompkins

Students and their families often indicate they are seeking “ROI” from their college education, and in recent years the public and the media have questioned the value of a liberal arts education – yet, the skills gained from a liberal arts education are very much aligned with the competencies employers are seeking when they hire college graduates. In fact, one can argue that there is not a skills gap amongst college graduates, but rather an articulation gap. This session will feature a panel discussion about how liberal arts faculty have integrated career readiness education into their courses, so students may gain a better understanding of how to translate their transferrable skills from the classroom to the workplace. Attendees will leave with examples and ideas about how to integrate research-based competency education into their classes.

Creating Semi-automated Grade Updates to Keep Students Informed and Engaged - C.V. Starr 204a

Elisabeth Ploran

(Note: This session contains an active participation component; faculty members should bring a laptop and a Spring 2023 syllabus.) Students often struggle to understand how their grades come from a series of smaller assessments and assignments. Further, students may not be able to accurately predict what their final grade will be on the basis of their current level of work on individual assignments compared to an overall weighted grade composite. To aid in ongoing feedback on performance, professors can develop semi-automated email updates that include (1) a reminder of the course grading structure, (2) current individual levels of performance in each assessment category, (3) personalized feedback on performance with pointers for potential improvement, and (4) predictive calculations of the final grade assuming no change in performance until the end of the semester. Though this sounds quite onerous, these updates can be created fairly easily through the use of basic functions in Excel and Word as previously described in the Faculty Hallway Chat blog ( For the first 20 minutes of the session, I will present versions of the updates that I have used in previous classes with different assessment structures. Then I will demonstrate the basics of how to create the two key components using Excel and Word. For the remaining 25 minutes of the session, faculty members will actively work through creating the structure for deployment to be used later in the semester. By setting aside time to create their own, faculty will be more likely to use the method as intended.

Increasing Inclusivity through Culture-Centered Approaches: A Workshop -  C.V. Starr 209

Tomeka Robinson & Lisa DeTora 

This workshop by two interdisciplinary scholars whose work bridges humanities, social science, and science, will review culture-centered approaches to communication, explain how these approaches can be used in various types of pedagogy, and engage faculty in exercises to develop lessons that foster student engagement. Culture-centered approaches recognize that existing social structures impact culture and personal agency. If existing structures limit access to resources, agency and learning will be negatively impacted. Assuming that existing classroom structures are culturally neutral may unintentionally reinforce pre-existing inequalities. Culture-centered approaches begin with the audience and exhibit respect for their culture, agency, and autonomy by asking questions and listening to the answers. Instead of first developing specific messages and then delivering them, culture-centered approaches focus on audience needs, especially among the most marginalized groups. Importantly culture-based approaches do not assign positive or negative values to specific structures or practices, but instead seek to find ways to address inequality before communicating. By meeting an audience and filling gaps, instructors can improve student outcomes without sacrificing rigor or quality. This workshop will illustrate different ways of obtaining and using student input to enhance lecture-based, discussion-based, and project-based learning. The facilitators will then present an exercise to help faculty members identify opportunities for culture-centered learning in their existing classes. By asking questions and listening to the answers, researchers and educators can discover what is important to the audience and which knowledge and skills gaps actually exist. This information can then help faculty members improve student learning and outcomes.

Innovative Approaches to Course Design and Delivery for Asynchronous Online Courses -  C.V. Starr 204

Kaushik Sengupta

As part of courses developed for the Online MBA Program at the Zarb School of Business, faculty have adopted various innovative approaches to designing and delivering the courses in the program. This session will go over some of these approaches including interactive multimedia cases, innovative discussion forums, videos generated for the course including professional video recording at the CV Starr studio, lightboard videos and a reflection paper based final assignment for the Operations and Supply Chain Management course in the program.


11:40am - 12:30pm - Monroe Lecture Center, Room 142

Keynote Address with Derek Bruff, Ph.D.

Derek Bruff is an educator, author, and higher ed consultant. He directed the Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching for more than a decade, where he helped faculty and other instructors develop foundational teaching skills and explore new ideas in teaching, and he consults regularly with faculty and administrators across higher education on issues of teaching, learning, and faculty development. Bruff has written two books, Intentional Tech: Principles to Guide the Use of Educational Technology in College Teaching (West Virginia University Press, 2019) and Teaching with Classroom Response Systems: Creating Active Learning Environments (Jossey-Bass, 2009). He writes a weekly newsletter called Intentional Teaching and produces the Intentional Teaching podcast. Bruff has a PhD in mathematics and has taught math courses at Vanderbilt and Harvard University.


12:30pm - 1:10pm - C.V. Starr, 2nd & 3rd Floors



1:15pm - 2:00pm

Active Student Learning - The Use of Activities and Simulations to Prepare Students for Professional Success -  C.V. Starr 204

Gail Marcus

To increase the likelihood of success after graduation, students need to be able to demonstrate the ability to apply classroom lessons in the real-world. Healthcare clinical programs have long used simulations and hands-on activities to reinforce classroom lessons. I believe these types of activities are just as important in other professions, including business management programs. Many business programs use case studies to bring in real-world situations, but these are retrospective analyses. In this talk, I will discuss ways to use real-time exercises to help students apply content and develop valuable skills. These include simulations (such as electronic medical record systems, role playing and critical thinking exercises.

Interprofessional Education: What, Why and How? -  C.V. Starr 204a

Yasser Salem

Interprofessional education (IPE) and interprofessional collaborative practice (IPCP) play an essential role in the future of healthcare as concepts strongly associated with patient safety, and quality care. Since IPE is an integral educational pathway to interprofessional collaborative practice and optimal healthcare outcomes, there is a critical need to develop and implement IPE programs to prepare students as the future healthcare professionals. This presentation will describe IPE and outline the educational benefits of IPE. This session will present the essential components of an effective IPE program, including the unique features and challenges in an academic and clinical IPE experience. Planning, design, and implementation of interprofessional learning is challenging but achievable. This session will discuss the essential components of a successful IPE program. The presentation will focus on the critical elements of a successful and impactful IPE activities and will provide guidance for overcoming barriers to IPE development and implementation, supported by examples. Learning Outcomes: Following participation in this session, participants will: 1. Identify the distinguish characteristics of interprofessional education (IPE) and interprofessional collaborative practice (IPCP). 2. Discuss the importance of interprofessional education (IPE) and interprofessional collaborative practice (IPCP) to patient-centered care. 3. Discuss the IPEC Core Competencies for Interprofessional Collaborative Practice. 4. Advocate for own profession’s roles in patient-centered care. 5. Identify the most common challenges for IPE programs and possible solutions.

Pedagogical Approaches in Asynchronous Online Courses (panel) - C.V. Starr 205

Alexander Pelaez, Daphna Motro, Glen Vogel, & Kaushik Sengupta

Zarb School's Online MBA Program courses have adopted a standard approach in terms of course structure, development components and best practices for asynchronous online courses. Working closely with Instructional Designers, this approach has provided an excellent model for faculty to develop the courses where students encounter an uniform approach to how these courses are structured. However, each faculty member approach the teaching of the courses in their own way of how the course should be taught in the most effective manner. This has resulted in different pedagogical approaches across the various courses in the program. A part of these differences also come from the differences in content across courses where some are more quantitative than others, some are more case based than others etc. This panel discussion would cover the various approaches to how different faculty members perceive how their course should be delivered and how they are actually doing this in practice. Each of the panelists teach one course in the program. Collectively, the four courses are very different from one another. The session will cover the varying pedagogical approaches across these courses and will provide attendees a 'best-practice' suggested set of approaches to teaching a variety of different types of online courses.

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in the College Classroom -  C.V. Starr 209

Stephen J. Hernandez 

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn. The framework of UDL focuses on the why, what, and how of learning by engaging learners who are motivated, strategic and goal directed through the presentation of material and the expression of knowledge in a myriad of ways. This presentation will present the elements of UDL and engage attendees in an in-depth discussion of how it can be applied in higher education settings, whether instruction is conducted in a face to face or virtual manner. In order to achieve this outcome, I will provide attendees with examples of how instructors can easily facilitate learning through various UDL oriented strategies. These will include ways in which content can be presented through multiple means of representation while also promoting the active expression of content understanding. I will then engage the attendees in brainstorming activities to explore how each participant can apply UDL strategies in their specific courses to facilitate learning for all students in their classes.


2:10pm - 2:55pm

Are you a World Language Professor? Let's Discover Ways to Actively Engage Our Students for Proficiency and Future Success! - C.V. Starr 204

William C. Anderson & Elvira Morse

This workshop is designed to familiarize university-level world language educators with the guiding principles of NYSED's newly revised P-16 World Language Learning Standards as well as to share high-interest and energizing teaching and learning strategies. We will explore several ways to integrate technology and the growing body of knowledge and application of language acquisition theory, brain-based and active learning strategies, project-based learning, content-related interdisciplinary connections, social-emotional learning, and intentional planning to tap students' assets (i.e., cultural and linguistic backgrounds, academic interests, and multi-modal talents). The goal of this workshop is build upon the momentum of the newly revised World Language Standards and help our students realize their language potential and full spectrum of benefits associated with learning a world language.

Classroom Discourse and Participation: Reflections on Class Activity, Discourse, and Conversation (panel) - C.V. Starr 205

Brian McFadden, Rosemary McGunnigle-Gonzales, & Jingsi Christina Wu

A pedagogy rooted in class discourse as a means for assessing student retention is not new. Scholars have spoken about the importance of cultivating healthy class discourse. Dewey (1968) speaks about classrooms as a space for cultivating the “enduring attitudes” governing our students’ lives after they leave our classrooms (p. 48). Rheingold (2008) says that increased participatory opportunities can “help students turn their self-expression into a form of public participation” (p. 25). Together, these scholars speak to the classroom's potential to affect our students long after the semester ends. However, the question of how to foster a participatory classroom remains unclear. After all, student engagement in our classes isn’t as simple as flipping a switch from ‘off’ to ‘on.’ Of course, scholars share their best practices for increasing participation. Jenkins et al. (2009), for example, say a classroom possessing low barriers for expression, strong support for creativity, some type of mentorship, members who believe their contributions matter, and some degree of social connection with one another assist with increased student participation and engagement (pp. 5-6). However, with many classroom variables, it seems there are other assignments and situations that can help create a highly participatory class. Therefore, this panel will feature educators who have established a highly engaged learning environment in their classrooms. The panelists will reflect on assignments and situations that have (un)intentionally encouraged higher levels of student engagement. The goal of this panel is to reflect on lessons learned and best practices related to student discourse and participation.

Object-based Learning at the Hofstra University Museum of Art (panel) -  C.V. Starr 204a

Karen T. Albert, Alexandra Giordano, Patricia Navarra, & Debora Riccardi

Hofstra University Museum of Art (HUMA) is a curricular resource for developing interdisciplinary academic and research skills. The mission of HUMA is to advance knowledge and understanding through experiences with authentic works of art. As an academic museum, Museum staff collaborate with faculty to tailor class sessions to meet course requirements and create connections to specific curricula. The class session may utilize the changing exhibitions or view works of art and objects from the collection. Object-based learning supports learning in a variety of subjects by providing an alternate lens for examination, fostering diversity awareness, varying points of view, inquiry, and discussion. The panel presentation will be led by HUMA staff along with HU faculty who have previously worked with HUMA. During the presentation, conference attendees will participate in a “slow looking” activity that will model how to use works of art during a class session. Learning objectives from this activity can be applied to multiple disciplines, building observational, perception, collaboration, communication, and recording skills. Examples from previous HU class sessions will also be presented.

Using the Engineering Design Process to Teach Problem-Solving Skills -  C.V. Starr 209

Amy Catalano 

The engineering design process (EDP) is a system of steps used by engineers to develop products, processes and solutions. However, this often recursive process has recently been included in the new science learning standards for both children and adolescents. Its applications go far beyond use in STEM subjects and can be used to teach problem-solving skills in all subject areas. This presentation will share the research supporting the use of the EDP to teach problem solving-skills and provide practical examples of using this system among diverse subject areas.


3:05pm - 3:25pm - Monroe Lecture Center, Room 142

Closing Remarks, Raffle Announcements and Wrap-Up