Proposal Planning Workshop, Tuesday, February 21, 4-5 pm, Premont 116

Need help preparing a proposal for the Innovation Fellowship or the Technology for Innovative Learning & Teaching Pilot Project Grants? Not sure if your idea fits the CFPs? This hour-long workshop will review successful proposal strategies, as well as pitfalls in proposal preparation. Participants should come with ideas and will leave with a proposal outline and/or rough draft.

Innovation Fellowship

Technology for Innovative Learning & Teaching Pilot Project Grants

CFP: Innovation Fellowship Proposals due March 10, 2017

Innovation Fellowship Proposals Due March 10Innovation fellowships support faculty who need time, resources, and expertise to include pedagogical experimentation in their courses by providing a $1200 stipend, participation in the Summer 2017 Innovation Institute, May 15-26, 2017, and a community of faculty fellows focused on pedagogical innovation. We encourage applications that focus on a wide variety of pedagogical innovations and experimentation with an emphasis on design or redesign of courses as part of the new general education curriculum or to support our Quality Enhancement Plan, “Vocation: Discovering One’s Purpose in a Changing World”.

Proposals are due Friday, March 10, 2017.  For more information about the fellowship, the institute, and detailed instructions for applying, please consult the CFP and Guidelines for 2017-2018 fellowships.


Insights from the Innovation Fellows Reunion 2016

Thanks to all of the innovation fellows who joined us for the reunion yesterday. Each table had a lively discussion about what they found valuable about the fellowship (especially from the perspective of time) and what they want to try next. We asked each table to share just two insights from that discussion. Here is what we heard:

Benefits of the Innovation Fellowship included:

  • Dedicated space and time to think about teaching
  • Discussion with colleagues devoted specifically to teaching, and even more so with structure and guidance.
  • Collective knowledge of SEU faculty
  • Better understanding of risk in the classroom and strategies for helping students feel more secure by managing their expectations
  • Value of discussing your pedagogical project repeatedly with colleagues and support staff who can help you realize your idea

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Sign-Ups Now Open to All SEU Faculty and Staff for Innovation Institute Workshops

As part of the Innovation Institute, Innovation Fellows will participate in their choice of three of five workshops that will provide more focused resources related to the fellow’s project.  These workshops will also be open to others in the St. Edward’s University community, and fellows may participate in additional workshops if desired. To see the list of available workshops and sign up, please visit the Workshops 2016 page.  Workshops begin Wednesday, May 18 and continue through Tuesday, May 24.

Save the Date: Innovation Institute 2016

May 16 – 25

Based on feedback from last year’s fellows, we have condensed the institute down into a 1.5 week model. All fellows will attend a set of core workshops and activities together, and then will select an additional 3 workshops from a list of topic choices, based on what is most useful to your project.

Week 1: May 16- 20

  • Mon, Wed, and Fri: core, required sessions, 10 am – 2 pm, lunch provided
  • Tues, Thurs: Additional, optional workshops run in 1-2-hour blocks between the hours of 10 am – 2 pm. Lunch on your own.

Week 2: May 23- 25

  • Mon: Core sessions, 10 am – 2 pm, lunch provided
  • Tues: Additional, optional workshops run in 1-2-hour blocks between the hours of 10 am 0 2 pm. Lunch on your own
  • Wed: End-of-Institute presentations: 1:00 -4:30 pm

Announcing Innovation and Global Innovation Fellows 2016-2017

We are pleased to announce the Innovation Fellowship and Global Innovation Fellowship recipients for 2016-2017.  This fellowship supports faculty with the resources and expertise needed to experiment with the pedagogy in a course. We consider this fellowship a marker of significant potential and achievement; these fellows are not only pursuing valuable pedagogical innovation but also are contributing in significant ways to the university’s mission and goals.  Please join us in congratulating the 2016-2017 fellows:

Shannon Baley, Visiting Assistant Professor, University Studies
Innovation Fellow | American Dilemmas/ Living Newspaper

Patricia J. Baynham, Professor, Biology
Global Innovation Fellow | Embedding Australia into Biology 1305

Lisa M. Goering, Professor, Biology
Global Innovation Fellow | Evolution Down Under, Capstone with Australia topics

Jennifer Jefferson, Visiting Assistant Professor, University Studies
Innovation Fellow | The American Experience

Katherine Lopez, Assistant Professor, Accounting
Innovation Fellow | Intermediate Accounting

Jack Musselman, Associate Professor, Philosophy
Innovation Fellow | Legal Ethics

Georgia Seminet, Associate Professor, Spanish
Innovation Fellow | Mexican Literature of the XXth and XXIst Centuries

Amy Nathan Wright, Visiting Assistant Professor, University Studies
Diversity Innovation Fellow | Domestic Academic Travel Experience

See the Innovation Fellowship Blog for the full list of fellows with abstracts of their proposed course redesigns.

We received many excellent submissions this year.  The Innovations in Teaching Committee (composed of a faculty representative from each school), as well as the Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence, the Director of Munday Library, and the Director of Instructional and Emerging Technology reviewed all proposals, ranked them by selection criteria–significance of innovation; connection to the Holy Cross mission and strategic goals of the university; feasibility of the proposed experiment; potential impact on student learning; and planned public dissemination and potential for scholarship and publication based on this experiment–and made recommendations as to which proposals should be accepted.

All Fellows will participate in the Innovation Institute, currently scheduled for May 16-27, 2016, offered by the Center for Teaching Excellence, the Munday Library, and the Office of Instructional Technology.

We thank everyone who submitted a proposal and are looking forward to seeing the courses develop.  Fellows (both past and present) share their projects with the faculty via the Innovation Fellowship Blog as well as through events organized by the Center for Teaching Excellence and the Office of Instructional Technology.


Deadline Extended: Proposals for 2016-2017 Innovation Fellowships and TLTR Pilots due February 8, 2016

finger touching tablet and releasing learningThe deadline has been extended for Innovation Fellowships and TLTR Pilots (aka Technology for Innovative Learning & Teaching Pilot Project Grants).

CFPs are available online for both the 2016-2017 Innovation Fellowships and the 2016 Technology for Innovative Learning & Teaching Pilot Project Grants. Proposals for each are due Monday, February 8, 2016. There is an abbreviated TLTR form for those submitting combined proposals.

These opportunities are open to both tenure-track and non-tenure-track (including adjunct) faculty. You may apply for one or both of these opportunities, even if you have already applied for and received a Presidential Excellence Award for the summer of 2016.

More Information is available online:

Blog Assignment 8: End-of-Course Reflection

Some of the students were better prepared and more organized than others.  I was surprised to find that there were times everyone in the group had come unprepared. I’ve learned to have back up material just in case.
In some groups communication between students was poor. It was a good skill for students to learn by working together.
Some of the speakers had to cancel at the last moment, luckily with enough of advance time for me to come up with an alternative.  Going forward I would like to plan for a back-up just in case.
Some of the technical difficulties were unanticipated. I’ve learned at times to go with the flow and lower my expectation of a perfect video recording. As time went on, I’ve also learned how to use the equipment better to accommodate for poor or interrupted connection with the virtually visiting artists.
Students started to seek out more information about the visiting artists, became much more proactive in getting to know more about artists and art related events. Some continued following the artists and their career. Students felt proud that they’ve met an artist like Dana Younger who contributed to creating a relief at the Bullock Texas State History Museum. Many downloaded the iphone app designed by visiting artist Laurie Frick and started using it on a regular basis. Overall I found that student participation increased dramatically.

Unexpected Outcomes:
After having composer, Yevgeniy Sharlat, visit our class one of the students got inspired to go back to writing music and performed a brand new piece for us at the end of the semester. Having a diverse group of visiting artists have been a great asset to the class.

After working together on assignments, some students who never talked to each other developed friendships and continued working together.

Your learning and growth:
I’ve learned that it is much easier to come up with a solution by working in a group of fellows. Each of us has a broad range of experiences and various ways of solving problems that could benefit others.

SoTL questions:
Yes, I would like to design more assignments with student initiated learning.

Impact on others:
The library I am creating would be useful for other students and faculty on campus, especially in the Fine and Performing Arts. Lectures are easily accessible and have synopsis written by students.

Yuliya Lanina Blog Assignment 7: Mid-Course Check-In

1. Where are you in your experiment?
So far we’ve had half of the scheduled artists visit the class, some virtually and others in person. It seems that having an artist physically present in the class works better than the alternative; however, both methods are effective in their own ways. We had artists give demonstrations both in the class and virtually in their studio. Having them in the class was a blast but some artists were reluctant to demonstrate by bringing their materials to the classroom. It is much easier for them to do from the studio.
Having students prepare the introduction and questions was effective: it made students more alert and engaged in the conversations. Many of the questions posed during a talk would not have come up without advance research. That made the Q&A part more interesting for everyone.
The lectures are now alive on YouTube, and we are working out ways to write better descriptions for future use. Having lectures recorded enabled students who missed the class still see them and respond to them.
There are still a few more artists coming into the class later this semester, therefore I have not collected any response papers yet. Those promise to be reliable indicators of the experiment’s effectiveness.

2. How are things going?
• Students are more involved in interviewing the artists. Their questions are more informed and engaging. The participation and interest are much greater than before.
• As each student could pick the artist of their choice to research, it’s more likely that their subject was more in line with the student’s own interests and creative aspirations.
• Approximately half of all students found virtual presentations to be less effective than physical ones. The other half was OK with either method. Having visiting artists lectures recorded allowed all of the students see the lectures whether they were present or not.
• I look forward to utilizing the recorded lectures in future classes.
• Having a group responsible for an assignment often means students who are normally passive get away not doing the work. Since there were many aspects to visiting artists assignments – interview, introduction, a YouTube description and a response paper – all students had to participate in some form or other.
• Having artists walk students though their process was an eye opening experience for many students. It inspired them be creative.
• All artists were very impressed by the informed introduction made by students before their presentations.

Since a lot of material has not yet been submitted by students, it is hard to fully gauge the effect the artists research has had on students. So far the response has been very positive.

Blog Assignment 7: Mid-Course Check-In

Length: Aim for 500-750 words
Due:  November 18 for those piloting projects in the fall; March 4 for those piloting in the spring

Address and reflect on the following two questions:

1.  Where are you in your experiment? That is, what components of your course redesign plan have you completed so far, and what components have not yet happened?

2. How are things going?  You can choose what to focus on for this question, but you might consider:

  • Student engagement and reactions – How are students experiencing the course, and what are you noticing as differences in student engagement compared to prior semesters or previous versions of the course?
  • Student learning – how does your redesigned course seem to be affecting students’ learning? Where, in particular, do you see evidence of students’ learning?
  • Workload – Has your innovation project changed your prep, student interaction, or grading / feedback activities in ways that substantially alter your workflow or workload? How are you experiencing this impact?
  • Your learning and professional development – what are you learning from piloting your innovation project? You might think about: a) what you are learning about the pedagogical method you are using, b) what you are learning about how students respond to various approaches; c) what you are learning about others in your field who are doing similar things; d) any new knowledge and/or skills you have gained through working on the project.
  • Ongoing questions and areas where you need support- Has your work on this project raised new questions for you about your course or the project? Have you discovered areas where you could use additional support, resources, or input?