2020 Retreat Program

Resilience in an Ever Changing Work Environment

Room:  Gold Room    Moderated by:  Marva Ferguson Speakers:   
  • Elaine Mullen (English, Languages and Cultures)
  • Guy Obrecht (General Education)
  • Pearl Herscovitch (Library)
  • Shiraz Kurji (Accounting & Finance)
How far Mount Royal University has come! The University was founded in 1910 with 197 students. MRU became a university in 2009. Since then, the institution has and continues to experience change. What is change? It is an act to make something different. Change can be personal, professional, a way of thinking, how we relate to others and the wider community. Keynote speakers will share their experiences of change in higher education: academic life, working conditions, achievements and community. Drawing from the presentations, the intent is to generate discussions for members of the MRFA to explore and develop new ideas to respond to the consequences, rewards and achievements during these changes in a contemporary society.

In Defense of Reason: Creating a Climate for Academic Freedom

Presenter: Sinc MacRae

Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

In this session I will provide an overview and analysis of an underappreciated great book – Joseph Heath’s Enlightenment 2.0 – and consider the implications of his defense of reason for our responsibilities as academics and as a Faculty Association, especially as regards our duty to protect and promote academic freedom. In response to the disparaging of reason both outside and, perversely, within the university, I will explain and defend Heath’s claim that “the very possibility of progress in human culture and society depends upon the exercise of our rational faculties”.

Reading for our Disciplines

Presenters: April McGrath, Brett McCollum, Karen Manarin, Jon Mee, and Scott Murray

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Many faculty claim students struggle with the reading they are asked to do in post-secondary contexts. The texts are often more difficult; the expected activities, and more importantly the epistemological assumptions underlying those activities, differ from earlier reading experiences (Shanahan and Shanahan, 2008). In post-secondary and professional contexts, disciplinary assumptions and goals constrain and shape the reading process, affecting both what is read and how. Wineburg (2001) says reading and thinking like a historian is “unnatural,” a label that fits other disciplines too. Shanahan and Shanahan (2008) link the reading patterns demonstrated by disciplinary experts to “the intellectual values of a discipline and the methods by which scholarship is created in each of the fields” (p. 50): the historian, the chemist, and the mathematician read texts differently. Moje, Stockdill, Kim and Kim (2011) note that even what counts as text differs between disciplines.

However, faculty members as disciplinary experts may not recognize how to promote the reading practices needed for success by novices within the discipline. They may have expert blind spots, where “educators with advanced subject-matter knowledge of a scholarly discipline tend to use the powerful organizing principles, formalisms, and methods of analysis that serve as the foundation of that discipline as guiding principles for their students’ conceptual development and instruction, rather than being guided by knowledge of the learning needs and developmental profiles of novices” (Nathan and Petrosino, 2003, p. 906). At the same time, students may be more focused on the assessment task rather than the learning that the assessment is supposed to demonstrate. In the process, reading difficult texts for understanding can be seen as a risky and unwise use of time (Roberts and Roberts, 2008; Pecorari, Shaw, Irvine, Malmström, and Mežek, 2012; Manarin, 2019). We want to learn more about how disciplinary experts and novices read texts as a first step towards supporting disciplinary reading in post-secondary classes through assessment design.

In Spring 2019, six faculty members from different disciplines began to plan a scholarship of teaching and learning project about the differences between novice and expert readers in different disciplines. We began by talking about our reading practices before interviewing each other’s students in Fall 2019. This panel will describe what we have learned through the process, focusing not only on what we learned about our students, but also what we learned about ourselves and our disciplinary reading practices. This panel will encourage participants to reflect on their own reading practices and consider how they can support their students’ reading practices.

Shifting My Teaching Frame: The Value of the Journey Metaphor, Neuroscience Insights, and Compassion to Transforming Teaching Practices

Presenter: Amanda Williams

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

This presentation outlines three major “aha moments” that helped me reenergize my teaching practices: 1) a SOTL research project which confirmed the complexity of the learning journey for students when dealing with challenging material (research methods), 2) a growing awareness of neuroscience research and what it means to be teaching a population whose brains are still in development; and 3) a quest to explore the power of becoming an empathetic educator. This presentation will be of interest to those wanting to consider the power of neuroscience to support the following: changes in pedagogical practices, shifts in classroom dynamics, and the capacity to embrace a more empathetic and compassionate mindset when aiming to promote transformational learning. The discussion invites dialogue and debate about both the value and challenges of being empathic and compassionate educator within a post-secondary setting.

The MRFA is the Place For You: Benefits of Association Membership

Presenters: Derrick Antson and Melanie Peacock

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

As a member of the Mount Royal Faculty Association (MRFA) you have access to various resources (people, events, space, worker rights and financial support) that enable you to energize your teaching, service and (where applicable) scholarship. Join in this session to learn about key benefits that you may not be aware of and should be accessing as a member of the MRFA. As well, a summary of critical issues that your Association has addressed over the past academic year will be discussed, with an overview of strategic plans and key areas of focus going forward. Learn why membership in your Association is important and why planning for, and continuing to build, a strong Faculty Association is critical to your ongoing success as an educator within the MRU community.

Energizing Our Teaching through Universal Design for Learning

Presenters: Andrea Phillipson, Brenda Lang, Brent Oliver, Deb Bennett, Joan Harris, and Stephanie Zettel

Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

In Fall 2019, Mount Royal faculty members gathered in an ADC Community of Practice to explore Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principles and practices. We asked questions such as: What is UDL? Why is it important? How is it different from accommodations? How can I implement UDL in my class?

Community of Practice participants joined the discussion from a variety of disciplines and starting places with UDL, with some teaching face-to-face and others working with blended and online courses. All were quickly surprised by how much of their teaching already enacted UDL principles. By the end of the term, Community of Practice participants were committed to intentionally integrating accessibility into the design of their courses by making one feasible change.

Come to this session to hear from these faculty members about their journeys, from grappling with the language, complexities, and technicalities of UDL to planning a concrete change that both facilitates student learning and energizes everyone in the class. In this session we will briefly discuss UDL principles, and then panelists will share their stories, strategies, and useful resources. Session participants will have a great opportunity to ask questions and to share any of their own UDL experiences.

Getting into the Canoe: Impact of the Blanket Exercise upon Students

Presenter: Helena Myllykoski

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

This presentation summarizes the results of a mixed-methods research study undertaken to uncover the impact of the Kairos Blanket Exercise upon nursing student professional role development. Student nurses participated in the interactive workshop and while the experience was uniformly transformational, it left students with a “what now” question in terms of how to integrate these experiences into their developing professional role. As such, action strategies and further, open discussion may be helpful to translate these experiences into meaningful professional change. Options for moving forward are offered and invited in this interactive presentation.

MRU’s Rational Space Network: Assessing the Second Year of Free Speech and Academic Freedom Advocacy

Presenters: Frances Widdowson, Paul Johnston, and Peter Zizler

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

In 2019-2020, the Rational Space Network continued to pursue its mandate of promoting open inquiry, critical thinking, and evidence-based decision making at Mount Royal University. To this end, it held a number of events in its second critical thinking series that were documented and advertised on the Rational Space Network’s twitter feed (https://twitter.com/SpaceRational), facebook account (https://www.facebook.com/rationalspacenetwork/) and YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC37dWE2KLCCy_tsKFiCkyug). It also opposed the imposition of prayers at public events and organized efforts to defend a faculty member who was being denounced for criticizing diversity policies. In this group presentation, the core members of the Rational Space Network will discuss the opportunities and challenges that the organization continues to experience. Some of the issues discussed will include the need to confront the secretive attempts to stifle free speech and academic freedom on campus and the politicization of the faculty association, as well as the difficulties inherent in balancing decisive action with extensive consultation. Issues of academic freedom and free speech relative to broader issues, notably climate change, Indigenization, religion, and trans activism, also will be considered.

Are We Glazing Over Paraphrasing?

Presenters: Jenelle McAllister and Silvia Rossi

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

In Fall 2019, two thirds of the students in a 4000-level course submitted written assignments containing major referencing gaps and problematic paraphrasing. In many cases, the students had blended source information with their own conclusions, making it appear as though the conclusions were present in the original source. Students met with the instructor and were given the opportunity to resubmit their assignments. Surprisingly, many of the paraphrasing problems persisted in the resubmissions, and additional referencing issues were exposed, with many instances of previously unreferenced content now misattributed to sources that did not present such information at all.

The unpacking of this experience exposed disturbing gaps in the students’ understanding of paraphrasing and citation as well as flaws in their process for collecting and tracking information from their sources. This incident has prompted much reflection and discussion of how, when, and indeed if, students at MRU receive direct instruction in the complex academic skill of paraphrasing during their programs. Should paraphrasing instruction be intentionally woven into every program? If so, at what stage(s)? And who should be responsible for providing this instruction? Is it practical for instructors to provide students with feedback on paraphrasing in their written assignments?

This session will provide faculty members with the opportunity to exchange ideas on these questions and consider the roots of the paraphrasing problem, which may lie in differing conceptions–even amongst scholars and educators–of where to draw the line between paraphrasing and plagiarism, of what the true purpose of paraphrasing actually is, and of how best to teach students the acceptable and nuanced use of source material.

Bringing the Maker Studio into the Classroom to Explore the 4 C’s + 1, Creativity, Critical Thinking, Collaboration, Communication and Confidence: Examples from a Recent Psychology of Sexuality Class.

Presenters: Evelyn Field and Kerry Harmer

Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Discussions about the changing needs of education at the post-secondary level abound. 21st Century Competencies is one idea that is receiving considerable attention as we move into the fourth industrial revolution. The four C’s of 21st Century Competencies: creativity, collaboration, communication and critical thinking, while not novel in and of themselves, can now be explored via technologies that were not easily accessible, even a decade ago. To explore the four C’s in the light of our current technologies we incorporated a Maker Studio project into a third year Psychology of Sexuality class. Students were given the opportunity to create T-shirt designs with Adobe Illustrator. These designs were subsequently printed on T-shirts that were physically displayed, and also virtually projected with captions in the 360 degree Immersion Studio at MRU. During this presentation we will showcase several examples of the designs along with student descriptions of the importance of their designs and their reflections on the process. We will discuss this work in the context of the four C’s and how this project melded student’s ability to create, communicate, critically reflect, collaborate, and more importantly build confidence, as they completed a project that was outside of their perceived technological abilities and expertise.

Team Teaching – Two for the Price of One!

Presenters: Alana Gieck and Karen Owen

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

In this team presentation, Alana Gieck and Karen Owen will discuss what they have learned about effective co-teaching in Broadcast Media Studies and why they will never willingly give it up! Teaming teaching involves “messiness” (Plank, 2011, p. 2) that “moves beyond the familiar and predictable and creates an environment of uncertainty, dialogue, and discovery” (Plank, 2011, p. 3). But once you embrace the muddle you can create a fantastic learning environment for your students and a wonderful working environment for yourself. Team teaching or co-teaching forces teachers to view a course from another perspective, and since our students come with a variety of experiences and backgrounds, looking at your area of expertise through another person’s eyes is good for everyone in the classroom. The presentation will address three main points. 1. Learning how to co-teach effectively 2. Creating an identity as co-teachers 3. Risks and Benefits

Learning About how Students Understand the University

Presenters: Deb Bennett and Glen Ryland

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

Within our presentation we will share emerging themes from anonymous student surveys distributed to sections of an undergraduate studies course, UGST 1001: Effective Learning in the Undergraduate Context. In this course students build capacities in critical and creative thinking, goal-setting and motivation, time management and organization, self-care and wellness, note-taking and reading, and memory and test-preparation, while being introduced to the university. The surveys which were distributed to multiple sections of the course will support the development of a SoTL inquiry that will explore how undergraduates perceive meaning, purpose, and the social roles of the university and its graduates. The study will involve conducting student interviews where we can further explore student understandings of the university and the impact of diverse experiences. Having a dialogue about themes identified and language used by students offers the opportunity to reflect on how various student experiences, understandings and expectations impact learning and teaching. Gaining insights on how students integrate their learning to other courses and life endeavors can inform curriculum development and delivery. It can help ensure we continue to learn and remain energized.

Corporate Fraud and Spillover

Presenters: Rafik Kurji and Tashfeen Hussein

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Corporate fraud is a significant issue in the economy. Over the last few decades, corporate fraud and scandals in companies like Enron, WorldCom, and Lehman Brothers have shaken the trust of investors and other stakeholders regarding the quality of governance of firms in general. Also, these events have received substantial attention from press and academics. Studies indicate that corporate fraud has severe consequences for the firm that commit the fraud (e.g., Palmrose, Richardson and Scholz, 2004; Firth, Rui and Wu, 2011; Chava, Huang and Johnson 2018; Choi and Gipper 2019). A very important question to address is whether fraud committed by a firm entails spillover effect. Impact of fraud of one company on its peers is referred to as the spillover effect of corporate fraud. For example, do shareholders and debtholders change their perception regarding the integrity of peer companies’ financial information when a specific company’s fraud is revealed? Is there empirical evidence that peer companies are motivated to commit fraud when they become aware that a specific company is engaged in fraudulent activities? In this presentation, I will focus on the critical aspects of the spillover effect of corporate fraud on peer firms. The key objective of this presentation is to provide a critical understanding of whether there exists spillover effect of fraud events regards to peer firms, and if it does, what the different dimensions of the spillover effect are.

Appreciative Inquiry: A Fresh Approach to Research and Teaching

Presenter: Nancy Doetzel

Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

One of the challenges to and for researchers in the 21st century is the shifts in approaches to inquiry and teaching. A reductionist approach to education has resulted in overlooking latent essences, such as a butterfly within a caterpillar, or a tree within an acorn, which are metaphors for spirituality within a person. Emergent scholarly inquiries about spirituality within education coincide with post-modernist paradigm shifts towards appreciative inquiry, a constructive mode of research and teaching that is a shift from vocabularies of deficit to conversations of possibility. Different from many modes of inquiry and teaching, appreciative inquiry promotes transformative dialogue and action by presenting positive questions and feedback on assignments. Spirituality is evident in this form of inquiry and teaching when participants and students begin to feel more of a sense of hope, excitement, co-operation and ownership about their future. This presentation will encourage a discussion about how an evolution in perceptions of education can mean formulating new approaches to inquiry and teaching.

Accelerating Innovation: Examining the Role of Students in the Corporate Innovation Process

Presenter: Simon Raby

Location: Dawson Room (main floor by convention lobby)

This presentation provides insights to the integration of a senior Innovation and Entrepreneurship course to a professional development program. Attendees will learn about the Innovation Accelerator (www.growthcompass.org/innovationaccelerator) industry program that helps company teams develop their innovation practice and culture by taking a product or service concept from an initial idea to market adoption. For the most recent cohort delivered in the winter semester of 2020, the MRU course ENTR-4344 “Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship” ran in parallel to the Innovation Accelerator. This presentation will provide an insight to this innovative experiential learning and engaged scholarship model and the resulting impact on scholars, students, industry and policymakers.

Better by Design: Design Thinking, Experiential Learning and the Development of a Growth Mindset in Undergraduate Classrooms.

Presenter: AnneMarie Dorland

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

How might design thinking — the interactive, human-centered pedagogical approach that has recently been recognized as a valuable strategy in the development of a creative practice (Brown, 2008) — complement existing approaches to experiential learning in higher education classrooms? This paper presents findings from a comparative study of 400 undergraduate business school students enrolled in a common first year marketing class, and reveals the ways that design thinking protocols can be mobilized to strengthen experiential learning in the post-secondary learning environment. The survey data collected from students participating in both the design thinking and the non-design thinking samples of this research study shed light on whether this pedagogical approach can indeed effectively foster the development of a growth mindset (Dweck, 2008), and on the relationship between the use of design thinking approaches, the resonance of reflective practices and the alignment of experiential learning goals in our classroom partnerships. In this presentation, I will discuss specific outcomes of the research study related to the phenomenon of design-thinking, and the way that design-thinking oriented learning strategies might contribute to the development of a growth mindset in undergraduate students within an experiential learning environment.

What Matters Most: A Chair’s Journey to Re-energize Teaching, Learning and Scholarship

Presenter: Jane McNichol

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Following ten years as a department chair at Mount Royal University, I embarked on a one-year chair sabbatical for the 2018-2019 academic year. A chair’s sabbatical provides time to undertake an ‘acceptable plan of activities, designed to improve professional competence’ and allows that the plan ‘may be modified’. How does one transition from a significant period of service to students, faculty, staff, institution and the broader community to a time focused on individual improvement of ‘professional competence’ which, according to Mulder (2014), is the capability to deliver sustainable effective and worthy performance in a certain professional domain. Is this period of time provided to us by the organization meant to be a personal journey of achievement and discovery or about alignment with organizational goals? How does one choose when every choice embodies both positive and negative consequences? Through the lens of the scholarship of teaching and learning perhaps I refresh the innovative curriculum in applied ethics I introduced to the classroom? Perhaps I focus solely on my own scholarship to complete and defend my doctoral dissertation in education? Perhaps I explore something radically new and personally challenging? A quote by Benjamin Franklin in Poor Richard’s Almanack (1747) “Lost time is never found again” bounced around in my head like a mischievous mosquito as I wrote my application for chair sabbatical. I didn’t understand then, but I came to understand. At the core of this broadly applicable journey of discovery is a personal message of learning; crossroads embraced; and choices made to answer the question – ‘What matters most’?

Supporting Students who are Parents

Presenter: Michelle Briegel

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

Students who are also parents attending university are a unique population and are not experiencing the same undergraduate experience as their non-parenting peers. What are the supports needed for parents to achieve success in post-secondary learning environments? How is Mount Royal University doing in terms of supporting parenting students? Is this even our responsibility? These questions will be discussed in this presentation, along with what the literature tells us about parenting students in post-secondary institutions, and what a small focus group of Mount Royal University parenting students have to say about their experience on campus.

What does anti-racism work look like in the academy? 

Presenters: D.A. Dirks, Gabrielle Lindstrom, Leah Hamilton (moderator), Scott Murray, and Victoria Bouvier.

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Combatting racism should be fundamental to the work of universities – but doing so means much more than just teaching our students what racism is. It also requires that we hold ourselves and the academy accountable for participating in and perpetuating intersectional forms of oppression, such as discrimination based on “race”, gender identity or expression, and religion. We’re living in a time when both university administrators and faculty associations often refuse to challenge the racist, homophobic, transphobic views of faculty and the repressive conduct of governments. Thus, anti-racism, as a transformative activity, demands that we not only take up those challenges, but also call our institutions to account.  We’ll make the case for this work by sharing insights from our own teaching practices, research and scholarship, drawing on our commitments to academic freedom.

21st Century Competencies: What are they, Why do we need them and How do we build them?

Presenters: David Finch, Erik Christiansen, Evelyn Field, Kerry Harmer, Luciano da Rosa dos Santos, and Pat Kostouros

Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

21st Century Competencies, soft skills or employability skills are terms that are often evoked to describe a similar set of abilities that are increasingly becoming required of students before and after graduation. These abilities most often include; communication skills, teamwork skills, problem solving, creativity and innovation, resilience, critical thinking, information and digital literacy, interpersonal and self management skills. This panel brings together Mount Royal faculty and staff researching and practicing teaching and learning in these areas. In this panel we will attempt to define 21st century competencies, soft skills, and employability skills, identify what industry is looking for in our graduates and why they are seeking these skills now more than ever and demonstrate how we can incorporate this kind of skill and competency building into curricula and the program and course levels. We invite discussion around how we might move forward as a community to better prepare our students for their academic, working and personal lives.

Cannabis: Youth, Young Adults and the Developing Brain

Presenter: Christina Tortorelli

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Cannabis in its’ various forms is an evolving story with varied impacts on different sectors of the population. This presentation will focus on the evolving nature of use post legalization. Will take a look at jurisdictions that have gone legal ahead of Canada and what their experience tells us. We will take deeper look at the impact on vulnerable populations supported by literature and research results available to date. Participants will be asked to consider the following during the presentation to set the stage for a discussion following the presentation. What does this mean for university students and faculty as we navigate new territory? Where does the research, experience and risk information belong in curriculum? As students move through university experiencing practicums, clinical practice, work experience what knowledge do they need?

The Cases For/Against Re-Submission

Presenter: Katrin Becker

Location: Dawson Room (main floor by convention lobby)

There has long been a practice – sometimes unofficial, but sometimes codified in an institution’s plagiarism policies – that all work submitted for grading by a student must be, in some sense, wholly new work. We typically do not allow students to submit anything for grading that has previously been submitted in another course. Some years ago, I began to re-examine all of my teaching practices and philosophies. Doing so has opened up new possibilities as well as helping to re-focus my efforts on the core principles that have guided me throughout my teaching career. I have always seen my role as more of a coach than a gate-keeper. Given that, two questions deserve to be asked, and answered when it comes to what we are asking our students to do: How does this practice help my students learn what I need them to learn? What are the reasons for the exercise being done in the way it is? When it comes to the thorny issue of re-submission, both on a single assignment, and across courses, we should really be asking ourselves what we are really measuring when we impose restrictions such as hard deadlines, no re-submission, and that all work must be original? When we submit papers to journals, for example, we often go through multiple rounds of review and editing before the submission is deemed acceptable. This process is an important way to learn how to write. Why then don’t we do allow this for our students?

Conceptualizing a Holistic Approach to Educational Leadership at MRU

Presenters: Gaye Warthe, Luciano da Rosa dos Santos, Israel Dunmade, Miriam Carey, and Nancy Ogden

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

Educational Leadership is an important aspect of a faculty member’s career, represented by its emphasis on tenure and promotion criteria. However, it is often equated solely to the acquisition of formal positions from which operational processes are managed (i.e., chairs, academic directors, Deans, senior administration…). This traditional model relies on a step-up framework, where faculty gradually progress during their careers by occupying formal positions associated with different responsibilities and influence. Instead of this step-up model, a working group of the Teaching and Learning Standing Committee is developing a more holistic view of both the opportunities for and the contributions of Educational Leadership. We suggest that Educational Leadership is demonstrable in any of the domains of faculty workload: teaching, service, and scholarship. In each of these domains, leadership could take place in four spheres of influence: micro (individual), meso (departmental), macro (institutional), and mega (broader communities). We further distinguish leadership and management as two distinct realms which often overlap in individuals or positions.
In this session, we will introduce this holistic approach and invite discussion into how this perspective could be used to better understand and support faculty practices at MRU.

Listening to Students – What 7 Years of Critical Incident Questionnaires Can Reveal

Presenter: Katrin Becker

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

Critical Incident Questionnaires (CIQ) have been around for quite some time. They consist of 5 simple directed questions and are meant to help students reflect on a specific time period in their class (often a single session or week). Typical Questions are: At what moment in class this week were you most engaged as a learner? At what moment in class this week were you most distanced as a learner? What action that anyone in the room took this week did you find the most affirming or helpful? What action that anyone in the room took this week did you find most puzzling or confusing? What surprised you most about class this week? I started using CIQs in my classes in the late 1990s. While I have not kept all of the responses, I have kept many of them. This presentation will highlight some of the common trends in students’ responses over the years and discuss some of the implications of using the CIQ as a formative assessment of teaching.

(ref.: http://www.ccmountainwest.org/sites/default/files/Hessler-CriticalReflectionviaGoogleFormsCIQs_1.pdf https://www.stephenbrookfield.com/ciq/ )

Teaching in the Active Learning Classroom

Presenters: Brett McCollum, David Sabiston, Glen Ryland, John Cheeseman, Kumar Chandrasekhar, and Luciano da Rosa dos Santos

Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

The Academic Development Centre launched the Active Learning Initiative in Winter 2018 in
response to MRU’s Academic Plan. The primary goal of the initiative is to promote active learning pedagogies and investigate the effects of classroom design on teaching and learning practices that involve active learning pedagogies. One component of this initiative is our experimental classroom, the Active Learning Classroom (ALC). The Academic Development Centre has partnered with 45 instructors who have taught in the ALC, since the launch of the initiative. Approximately 1100 students have experienced over 900 instructional hours in this unique learning space. Preliminary evidence suggests this classroom is effective from both instructors’ and students’ perspectives. Its design supports instructors who implement collaborative and active learning pedagogies in their teaching. Student feedback is highly positive and indicates the design attributes of the ALC contribute to their learning.

In essence, the ALC invites faculty members to transform their teaching practices, engaging students as practitioners of their own disciplines. How does this transformation in pedagogy take place? Join our panel discussion with several Mount Royal faculty who have taught in the ALC. The panelists will share their experiences, as well as provide advice to faculty colleagues who are curious about collaborative/active learning in a learning space specifically designed for this modality of teaching. Topics will include group management, assessment, and student resistance.

….and Call 9-1-1: Basic Emergency Care for the Lay Provider and the Science Behind Them

Presenters: Heather McLellan, Holly Feist, Joan Harris, and Joanne Bouma

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Health care emergencies happen all around us every day….in the mall, on airplanes and even in the classroom. A student has a seizure in your classroom….a colleague falls unconscious at the gym….you come across a student who has potentially overdosed on opioids….your child’s friend has a reaction to peanut butter…you come across a maintenance worker with a wound that is bleeding heavily. Do you know what to do? Taking immediate action and applying the appropriate first aid techniques can considerably reduce deaths and injuries, and the impact of everyday emergencies.

The presenters for this session are all ER/ICU nurses teaching in the Advanced Studies in Critical Care Nursing certificate program. Between them they have 115 years of combined ER, ICU and Critical Care Transport experience. They will review several emergency scenarios, demonstrate the basic interventions required for lay providers and explain the science behind them. They will even provide the opportunity to practice some of the very simple skills on manikins so that you can feel confident responding or assisting with an emergency!

Promoting Well-being and Self-Care through the Creative Arts

Presenter: Pattie Pryma

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Working within an Academic Institution brings with it many challenges. Demands on our time from teaching responsibilities, scholarship endeavors and service commitments to list only a few. We are constantly balancing work/family/life commitments which leaves little time for self and self-care. In Winter 2018, I developed and initiated research within the Faculty of Health Community and Education exploring the questions; What happens when professional educators are invited to engage in creative arts practices? What do arts-based methods reveal about the self-care practices and wellbeing of professional educators? The purpose of this research was to use the creative arts to engage academic professional educators, in the exploration of relational practice through self-care endeavors to promote wellbeing. As part of offering access to the creative arts the project was intended to be inclusive and challenge the normative discourses that suppress self-care, relational engagement, self-expression and wellbeing in academic communities. Faculty from the Faculty of Health Community and Education at Mt Royal University convened weekly for 8 weeks to explore arts based methods of inquiry. Supporting creative arts practices encouraged inquiry into lived experiences, reflections on, and memories of time/space and self/other from multisensory perspectives (Pink, 2009). I would like to share the findings of my research as well as engage the group in an experiential exercise highlighting the benefits of creative arts-based methods to promote self-care and wellbeing.

Supporting Families on Campus During a Disaster Evacuation

Presenter: Michelle Briegel

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Twice, Mount Royal has served as an evacuation site for Alberta families following a natural disaster in the last seven years. It is reasonable to think that we could be called to action again after a disaster or emergency event. The Centre for Child Well-Being and the Centre for Community Disaster Research supported researchers, devised of faculty and students, to examine and evaluate Mount Royal University’s preparedness to house and support families while they were evacuated. The research team discovered that Mount Royal University was ill-prepared to support the psychological well-being of children and families. This session will review the white paper that was devised by the Centre for Child Well-Being research team including what they have identified as best practices for trauma-informed evacuation programming; policy and procedure recommendations; and a volunteer support guide for those who are acting as helpers.

How a Mini-Conference Assignment Energized Students and Facilitated Skill Development in an Undergraduate Studies Course

Presenter: Deb Bennett and Kumar Chandrasekhar

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

Our presentation will share how a Mini-Conference Model assignment in an undergraduate studies course, UGST 1001: Effective Learning in the Undergraduate Context, energized student learning. We will describe how the assignment affected learning and teaching, how it helped establish connections with campus resources and the future learning and research opportunities it has presented. We will begin with a description of the UGST 1001 course and the conference assignment. This group assignment offered students the opportunity to explore a chosen topic related to education and learning. Poster presentations by each group were held at the Immersion Studio, Riddell Library and Learning Centre. The studio offered a conference setting for students and audience members, which included MRU faculty, staff and poster judges. Student learning experiences and skills developed through the conference group assignment will be shared through the identification of broad themes that were described within anonymous student surveys. Feedback from poster judges and the impact of this assignment beyond the class room will also be shared. The presentation will conclude with description of how the assignment energized teaching and scholarship.

The Politicization of Faculty Associations: What are the Implications for Open Inquiry?

Presenter: Frances Widdowson

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Over the last few years, a number of faculty associations have made statements opposing the expression of certain ideas at their universities. This opposition is often justified because the ideas are believed to justify the marginalization of oppressed groups, with some faculty associations even arguing that talks should be cancelled because of their perceived negative impact on society. This presentation will provide an overview of these incidents at the University of Waterloo, University of British Columbia, and University of Regina. It will argue that although these actions can be justified on the basis that it has been demanded by the membership, this deference to popularity should be resisted. Faculty associations represent a community of scholars, and this requires creating a climate that respects intellectual autonomy and a diversity of ideas. If faculty associations take a particular political position, it will encourage groupthink and undermine the cultivation of the independent judgement needed to determine if support for a particular political position is warranted.

Dwelling in the Liminal Spaces of Performance and Performativity in Higher Education: An Experiential Journey of Two GINs

Presenters: Joanna Szabo and Stephanie Zettel

Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

As two Associate Professors from the department of Nursing who have 20 + years of various teaching experiences between us, we came together around shared stories of our struggles within our teaching practice. Our journey has been one that evolved from shaky foundations and messy imperfections to evoke the pedagogical question: How do I/we facilitate a robust learning environment when I/we struggle with presencing in the classroom?

We will highlight some of Jessamyn Neuhaus’s work in Geek Pedagogy, where she describes how the academic “geek”, “nerd”, and “introvert” (GIN) lens offers unique possibilities and challenging complexities when attending to the dynamics in the classroom. We also grapple with facilitating a learning space of nomadic subjectivity (Rosi Braidotti), as a counter to the construct of the ‘individualized learner,’ we consider how one is enmeshed in power relations external to and within the classroom. Such a subjectivity is necessarily sentient, in flux, and albeit awkwardly so, relational. These highlights will focus on the following reflective narrative themes: 1) the trickiness of using humor and embodied experiences in the classroom; 2) performativity meets authenticity; 3) awareness of the identity markers of individuals amidst group dynamics that shape the classroom context; and 4) improvised planning (or what Ted Aoki describes as the gap between curriculum as planned and curriculum as lived).

This session offers: performative inquiry (Lynn Fels) as a means of sharing tragically laughable stories and unsettling conversations, with openings that aspire to engage the audience and cultivate collective strategies. We will provide a few teaching resources ‘to go’.

Creating Learning Strategies to Support the Success of International Students

Presenters: Brent Oliver, Christina Tortorelli, Gina Adams, and Marva Ferguson

Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

Increasing numbers of international students are choosing an education at Mount Royal University (MRU). The University’s Academic Plan and Strategic Research and Scholarship Plan identify internationalization as an institutional priority and acknowledges that extensive supports are required to ensure the success of international learners. In times of fiscal austerity, the recruitment of international students has become an increasing source of revenue for Alberta post-secondaries. Scholarship in this area indicates that the acculturation process for international students presents challenges including the need for learners to reconcile complex emotional, social, and academic pressures (Fischbacher-Smith, M.2015, p7). In this context, thoughtful and intentional planning to support the success of students is a significant responsibility for faculty and administration.

In September of 2019, we welcomed an unprecedented number of international students to the social work program. With little knowledge or experience in this area, our team set out to explore the best ways to engage and support this cohort of learners. Identifying a need for increased pedagogical approaches as our classroom, practicum, and program grew in their diversity, we initiated a SOTL study to explore the learning experiences of these students. In the process we moved from problematizing the issues related to internationalization to exploring ways to creatively engage international students in our program and recognize the contributions they make to our learning community.

In this panel presentation, our team will use our collective experience at MRU as a launching point for a dialogue focused on creating strategies to support international students studying at MRU. We will discuss our collective learning in designing and implementing a SOTL project with a specific focus on creating positive beginnings with international students, enhancing the learning experience, meeting educational outcomes, and closing well.

Learning Communities in General Education

Presenters: Bill Bunn, Celeste MacConnachie, Charles Hepler, Guy Obrecht, and Glen Ryland

Location: Walker Room (second floor)

The Department of General Education has offered a small number pairs of courses formatted in what is called a Learning Community. These courses are successful in a variety of ways. They emphasize to students that individual topics can be viewed through different lenses brought forth by disparate disciplines. They are invigorating for teachers in that teachers get to interact with one another in new ways. These successes bring a number of questions beginning with: how well can we scale up these kinds of offerings? 

Join a group of people who have taught in GNED learning communities to find out about our experiences and discuss how we can extend them in the future.

Archives in Action: Using Archival Collections in the Classroom

Presenters: Peter Houston and Marty Clark

Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

To fulfill its mandate to support teaching and research at MRU, the Archives and Special Collections has developed a robust instruction program through which faculty members can bring their classes to learn about archives and primary sources. Over the past two years, the program has grown significantly and now sees classes in a variety of disciplines attending archives sessions to develop archival research skills by working with unique collections. This session explores how archivist Peter Houston and instructor Marty Clark acquired and used a major new collection, the Blaine Canadian Sports History Collection, to build an interactive archives session and assignment for students in HPED 1010: Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Sport and Culture, a first year course in the Department of Health and Physical Education.

The presenters will explain the design of the archives session and present some preliminary thoughts on how getting students in the archives to “do” historical research teaches them valuable lessons about the historical method while meeting course objectives. There will be an interactive component to this session, as participants will briefly try the class assignment in which students are asked to find and analyze racialized representations of Indigenous peoples in Calgary Stampede programs from the 1950s. Participants will also learn about future opportunities to have students experience archival research through hands-on work in the Archives and Special Collections.

Building Connections and Strengthening Your Association

Presenters: Brenda Lang, Karen Manarin, Lee Easton, Melanie Peacock, Michele Holmgren, Qasim Syed, Rafik Kurji, and Yuhuan Wang

Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Join your colleagues as they reflect on their experiences serving on MRFA committees. Learn how their involvement in the MRFA has impacted their experiences as Association members, how it has connected them to the broader campus community, and how their contributions have built the Association we have today. And, learn about the various opportunities you have to become more involved in the Association.

DAY ONE – April 27, 2020

8:00 – 9:00am – Arrival and Coffee (Convention Lobby)

9:00-10:30 – Keynote: (Gold Room)

Resilience in an Ever Changing Work Environment

Room:  Gold Room    Moderated by:  Marva Ferguson

  • Speakers:   
    • Elaine Mullen (English, Languages and Cultures)
    • Guy Obrecht (General Education)
    • Pearl Herscovitch (Library)
    • Shiraz Kurji (Accounting & Finance)

10:30 – 10:40 Coffee Break (Convention Lobby)

10:40-12:00 Session One

  • In Defense of Reason: Creating a Climate for Academic Freedom
    • Presenter: Sinc MacRae
    • Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Reading for our Disciplines
    • Presenters: April McGrath, Brett McCollum, Karen Manarin, Jon Mee, and Scott Murray
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • Shifting My Teaching Frame: The Value of the Journey Metaphor, Neuroscience Insights, and Compassion to Transforming Teaching Practices
    • Presenter: Amanda Williams
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)
  • The MRFA is the Place For You: Benefits of Association Membership
    • Presenters: Derrick Antson and Melanie Peacock
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

12:00 – 1:00 – Lunch (Rockies Dining Room)

1:00 – 2:00 – Session Two

  • Energizing Our Teaching through Universal Design for Learning
    • Presenters: Andrea Phillipson, Brenda Lang, Brent Oliver, Deb Bennett, Joan Harris, and Stephanie Zettel
    • Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Getting into the Canoe: Impact of the Blanket Exercise upon Students
    • Presenter: Helena Myllykoski
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • MRU’s Rational Space Network: Assessing the Second Year of Free Speech and Academic Freedom Advocacy
    • Presenters: Frances Widdowson, Paul Johnston, and Peter Zizler
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • Are We Glazing Over Paraphrasing?
    • Presenters: Jenelle McAllister and Silvia Rossi
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)

2:00 – 2:15 – Coffee Break (Convention Lobby)

2:15 – 2:45 – Session Three

  • Bringing the Maker Studio into the Classroom to Explore the 4 C’s + 1, Creativity, Critical Thinking, Collaboration, Communication and Confidence: Examples from a Recent Psychology of Sexuality Class.
    • Presenters: Evelyn Field and Kerry Harmer
    • Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Team Teaching – Two for the Price of One!
    • Presenters: Alana Gieck and Karen Owen
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • Learning About How Students Understand the University
    • Presenters: Deb Bennett and Glen Ryland
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)
  • Corporate Fraud and Spillover
    • Presenters: Rafik Kurji and Tashfeen Hussein
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

2:50 – 3:20 – Session Four

  • Appreciative Inquiry: A Fresh Approach to Research and Teaching
    • Presenter: Nancy Doetzel
    • Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Accelerating Innovation: Examining the Role of Students in the Corporate Innovation Process
    • Presenter: Simon Raby
    • Location: Dawson Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Better by Design: Design Thinking, Experiential Learning and the Development of a Growth Mindset in Undergraduate Classrooms.
    • Presenter: AnneMarie Dorland
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • What Matters Most: A Chair’s Journey to Re-energize Teaching, Learning and Scholarship
    • Presenter: Jane McNichol
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Supporting Students who are Parents
    • Presenter: Michelle Briegel
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)

3:20 – 3:30 – Coffee Break – (Convention Lobby)

3:30 – 4:30 – Session Five

  • What does anti-racism work look like in the academy? 
    • Presenters: D.A. Dirks, Gabrielle Lindstrom, Leah Hamilton (moderator), Scott Murray, and Victoria Bouvier.
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • 21st Century Competencies: What are they, Why do we need them and How do we build them?
    • Presenters: David Finch, Erik Christiansen, Evelyn Field, Kerry Harmer, Luciano da Rosa dos Santos, and Pat Kostouros
    • Location: Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Cannabis: Youth, Young Adults and the Developing Brain
    • Presenter: Christina Tortorelli
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • The Cases For/Against Re-Submission
    • Presenter: Katrin Becker
    • Location: Dawson Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Conceptualizing a Holistic Approach to Educational Leadership at MRU
    • Presenters: Gaye Warthe, Luciano da Rosa dos Santos, Israel Dunmade, Miriam Carey, and Nancy Ogden
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)

4:30 – GROUP PHOTO Meet at the Pond: This will only take a couple minutes then we can go do the fun stuff!!!

4:40pm – FUN STUFF – Meet up after photo

  • Photography Walk – Shiraz Kurji. Meet up at the Registration table at 4:40pm after the group photo.
  • Nature Walk – Paul Johnson. Meet up in the Conference Foyer at 4:40pm after the group photo.
  • Take a Break. Check the Hotel Website for services and amenities.

7:00pm – Dinner Banquet – Gold Room

8:30pm – 1:00am – Evening Activities – Party and Dance

  • Music, Dancing and Karaoke – Gold Room
  • Self-directed – Explorer Room (board games provided)

DAY TWO – April 28, 2020

8:30-10:30 – Breakfast – Gold Room

9:00-10:00 – Faculty Lightning Talks – Gold Room

10:00 – 10:30 – Checkout

Please take this time to check out of your room. A space will be provided for luggage storage – see signage at registration table.

10:30 – 11:30  – Session Six

  • Listening to Students – What 7 Years of Critical Incident Questionnaires Can Reveal
    • Presenter: Katrin Becker
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)
  • Teaching in the Active Learning Classroom
    • Presenters: Brett McCollum, David Sabiston, Glen Ryland, John Cheeseman, Kumar Chandrasekhar, and Luciano da Rosa dos Santos
    • Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • ….and Call 9-1-1: Basic Emergency Care for the Lay Provider and the Science Behind Them
    • Presenters: Heather McLellan, Holly Feist, Joan Harris, and Joanne Bouma
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • Promoting Well-being and Self-Care through the Creative Arts
    • Presenter: Pattie Pryma
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)

11:30 – 11:40 – Coffee Break (Convention Lobby)

11:40 – 12:15  – Session Seven

  • Supporting Families on Campus During a Disaster Evacuation
    • Presenter: Michelle Briegel
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • How a Mini-Conference Assignment Energized Students and Facilitated Skill Development in an Undergraduate Studies Course
    • Presenter: Deb Bennett and Kumar Chandrasekhar
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)
  • The Politicization of Faculty Associations: What are the Implications for Open Inquiry?
    • Presenter: Frances Widdowson
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)
  • Dwelling in the Liminal Spaces of Performance and Performativity in Higher Education: An Experiential Journey of Two GINs
    • Presenters: Joanna Szabo and Stephanie Zettel
    • Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)

12:15 – 1:15 – Lunch (Rockies Dining Room)

1:15 – 2:30  – Session Eight

  • Creating Learning Strategies to Support the Success of International Students
    • Presenters: Brent Oliver, Christina Tortorelli, Gina Adams, and Marva Ferguson
    • Location: Palliser Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Learning Communities in General Education
    • Presenters: Bill Bunn, Celeste MacConnachie, Charles Hepler, Guy Obrecht, and Glen Ryland
    • Location: Walker Room (second floor)
  • Archives in Action: Using Archival Collections in the Classroom
    • Presenters: Peter Houston and Marty Clark
    • Location: Dawson/Stewart Room (main floor by convention lobby)
  • Building Connections and Strengthening Your Association
    • Presenters: Brenda Lang, Karen Manarin, Lee Easton, Melanie Peacock, Michele Holmgren, Qasim Syed, Rafik Kurji, and Yuhuan Wang
    • Location: Champion Room (second floor)

Load More