Preconference Seminars are a great way to start your week at NISOD’s International Conference on Teaching and Leadership Excellence. These special learning experiences provide intensive, collaborative, hands-on opportunities for exploring leading-edge teaching and learning skills and strategies. Each Preconference Seminar, facilitated by experts in the field, offers in-depth study and insights into a particular topic that has been specifically developed for the NISOD audience. Participants leave with skills, knowledge, and materials they can immediately use in their own teaching and learning practice.

All Preconference Seminars are held on Saturday, May 27, 2023, from 1:00-4:00 p.m.

Adopting an Employer-Led Career Pathways Framework That Supports and Sustains Innovation

This Preconference Seminar immerses career pathways faculty and staff professionals in best practices and insightful discussions centered around three focus areas: Strategic employer engagement; designing career pathways with stackable credentials; and facilitating non-credit/credit alignment. Exploration of each focus area begins with an interactive presentation and concludes with small group activities during which participants discuss what they learned and work on activities that support their college’s specific priorities. Participants benefit from the experiences of the current Pathways to Innovation National Science Foundation grant cohort and receive tools and resources from multiple grants they can deploy immediately within their K-16 community and employer partners.

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss key features of the business and industry leadership team model and how to apply it to accelerate considerable employer engagement.
  • Identify actionable steps to efficiently address career pathways through stackable credentials, as well as techniques for avoiding common implementation challenges.
  • Learn specific approaches to better align credit and non-credit pathways.

Ann Beheler, Director of Innovation, Career Pathways, Employer-Led Program Development, Collin College; Hope Cotner, President, Career Pathways, Employer-Led Program Development, CORD

How to Propose, Prepare, and Carry Out Learning-Science Research at Community Colleges

This Preconference Seminar is designed for community college instructors interested in conducting learning-science research in their classrooms and publishing their findings in an academic journal. By the end of the Preconference Seminar, participants have a solid understanding of the steps involved in proposing, conducting, and publishing learning science research. The Preconference Seminar begins with an overview of basic learning-science research using successful examples conducted at community colleges. Participants learn how to develop a compelling proposal, including identifying funding opportunities, selecting a research topic, developing research questions and hypotheses, ethical research methods, applying for IRB approval, choosing an appropriate venue, data collecting and analysis, and publishing results.

Learning Objectives

  • Generate testable hypotheses and research questions given an informal question of interest.
  • Describe the elements that make up a compelling proposal that is well-aligned with the objectives of a sponsor.
  • Identify appropriate methodologies to answer educational research questions.

Christopher Bogart, System Scientist, Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University; Majd Sakr, Professor, Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University

Roll Up Your Sleeves for DEI! Building an Equitable Learning Environment in Community and Technical Colleges

After a brief presentation describing the diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives at Bergen Community College, seminar participants identify challenges to equitable practices and develop solutions that show promise for individual classrooms and the college as a whole. Groups will be formed according to areas of interest (i.e., instruction, advising, student services, etc.) and each group will develop and present an action plan. Learn what is being done in other institutions to promote DEI, expand your understanding of possible solutions to identified challenges to equity in education, and leave with a proposed action plan for your institution.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn what is being done in other institutions regarding DEI.
  • Expand understanding of possible solutions to identified challenges to equity in education.
  • Create proposed action plans for institutions in multiple arenas of student contact.

Sara Mastellone, Associate Professor, Mathematics, Bergen Community College

Small, But Mighty: How Faculty Use Small Belonging Activities to Create a Big Impact

The research is clear: When students feel they belong, they persist, complete, and obtain degrees. This Preconference Seminar introduces participants to small teaching tweaks they can infuse into classes that have big belonging impacts for students. Participants are introduced to our evidence-based instructional framework and reflective practice models that can help them embed belonging into what they teach no matter the modality. The Preconference Seminar ends with a review of the plans created, next steps, and resources and professional development materials available to continue participants’ journies into belonging and inclusive teaching.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify the four evidence-based instructional practices key to creating a sense of belonging and inclusion in the classroom.
  • Use actual teacher reflections to examine how faculty use belonging teaching techniques to create a class that engages and respects all students.
  • Create a plan to embed at least one belonging evidence-based instructional practice into an upcoming or current course.

Daysha Jackson Sanchez, Director, Equity and Grant Initiatives, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging, Lumen Learning; Lisa Levinson, Facilitation Lead, Communities of Practice, Lumen Learning

Universal Design for Learning: Understand It, Design It, Live It

Leveraging universal design principles for course redesign is an intentional process that can start with tweaking the format or requirements for a single assignment. While educators cannot anticipate every way students may be unique, we can use what we already know to make our classrooms and course components open to as many types of learners as possible. During this Preconference Seminar, participants learn to construct individual materials or an entire course according to universal design.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the theoretical underpinnings, main tenants, and specific examples of universal design for learning.
  • Assess the level of universal design at the course, discipline, and institution levels.
  • Conceptualize universally designed methods for incorporation across disciplines, course modalities, and assignment/assessment types.

Elizabeth Mosser Knight, Associate Dean, Academic Operations, Psychology, Harford Community College