PRESS RELEASE: NISOD and TEEL Lab Partner on Social and Interactive Learning at Community Colleges Program

NISOD Press Release

For Immediate Release

NISOD and TEEL Lab Partner on Social and Interactive Learning at Community Colleges Program

Austin, Texas, October 7, 2021– The Technology for Effective and Efficient Learning Lab (TEEL Lab) at Carnegie Mellon University and the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) will collaborate to create a more engaging and inclusive curriculum for teaching information technology and computer science in community colleges.

The Social and Interactive Learning at Community Colleges program will be piloted at colleges representing a variety of geographic locations, rural and urban settings, school sizes, faculty and student demographics, required learning objectives, and other factors.

“We are thrilled to be able to work with the TEEL Lab to provide additional professional development that builds capacity for research-based teaching methods for information technology and computer science faculty members at our member colleges,” said NISOD’s Executive Director Edward J. Leach. “Considering the demographic changes taking place in the U.S., it will be especially rewarding to help engage faculty members in culturally responsive teaching practices.”

SAIL-CC will design and develop innovative methods and tools to improve teaching and learning in entry-level information technology and computer science courses taught at community colleges. The project will be led by TEEL Lab educational researchers, working in close collaboration with NISOD and disciplinary instructors from five community colleges across the U.S. The SAIL-CC grant has been funded as a Level III Engaged Student Learning Project through the National Science Foundation’s Improving Undergraduate STEM Education Initiative.

The goal of SAIL-CC is to generate new knowledge about STEM teaching and learning by refining and pilot-testing novel tools, resources, and methods that

(1) can be easily transferred to a wide variety of academic contexts;

(2) are shown to increase student engagement and learning in information technology and computer science courses at community colleges; and

(3) will increase the use of research-based teaching practices by community college faculty members.

In addition, SAIL-CC will integrate culturally responsive teaching practices to help faculty members consider the intersectional identities and contexts of their students, their institutions, and themselves.

“We are delighted to work with NISOD and our partner colleges as we co-design, develop, and teach courses that adopt project-based learning and focus on exploring methodologies to improve self-efficacy, promote STEM identity and belonging, and incorporate culturally responsive teaching,” said Principal Investigator Majd F. Sakr, a teaching Professor at CMU’s Computer Science Department and the project lead inside the TEEL Lab. “We plan to reach out and engage with as many community colleges that are interested in adopting our courses, teaching methods, and platform that enables data-driven teaching.”

Project launch activities are scheduled to begin shortly, including recruiting eight beta test colleges and 25 pilot colleges from NISOD member institutions. They will be recruited from NISOD member institutions within a 12-month period.

For additional information, contact Majd F. Sakr at msakr@cs.cmu.edu or Edward J. Leach at ed@nisod.org.

About the National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development
The National Institute for Staff and Organizational Development (NISOD) provides budget-friendly, high-quality, and faculty-focused programs and resources for community and technical colleges that want to make the most of their professional development dollars. For over 40 years, NISOD has aligned a wide array of benefits with the needs of our members, which explains why the American Association of Community Colleges named NISOD, “The country’s leading provider of professional development for community college faculty, staff, and administrators.”
www.nisod.org

About the Technology for Effective and Efficient Learning Lab, Carnegie Mellon University
The Technology for Effective and Efficient Learning Lab (TEEL Lab), within the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon University, focuses on research in learning methods, technology for learning systems, curriculum development, and workforce training. The ultimate goal is to forge a path for lifelong learning and career ever-readiness through innovative bridging of learning between formal education, informal education, and the workplace.
http://teel.cs.cmu.edu/

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