Pre-Conference Workshops

The pre-conference workshop program is open for registration. Workshop size is limited based on room capacity, and space is reserved on a first come, first serve basis. Join the email list to receive updates.

Click on a workshop title to see more information including the full workshop abstract.

Using a Change Framework and Assessing Institutional Change: Lessons from Boise State University

Susan Shadle, Boise State University
Brittnee Earl, Boise State University

Wednesday, April 3 | 1:00pm - 4:00pm | Brighton 1/2
In this highly interactive session, participants will be introduced to components of a change framework and related change theories that have been used successfully in a large-scale institutional STEM Education reform project at Boise State University. Over five years, with support from an NSF WIDER grant, we deployed Diane Dormant's CACAO model[i] (C=Change, A=Adopters, CA=Change Agents, and O=Organization) (Dormant, 2011) as a framework to achieve institutional transformation in teaching. The purpose of the project was to move beyond individual and isolated departmental pockets of adoption of evidence-based instructional practices (EBIPs) by focusing on departmental conditions for change and the faculty adoption process. Workshop participants will explore important elements of the change process implemented at Boise State, with specific attention to the departmental and campus culture and climate, leadership support, faculty perceptions of factors that impede and promote transformations in teaching and learning, and the power of conversations and collaborations during the change process. We will explore how a clear (and bold) vision can help change agents keep efforts grounded and focused during the change process, while allowing activities to leverage disciplinary social networks, and accounting for departmental nuances. Participants will leave with concrete ideas for both implementation and assessment that can be applied in their institutional context.

Advancing Diversity and Inclusion Through Multilevel Strategic Leadership

Kathy Takayama, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Matthew Kaplan, University of Michigan
Allison Cook-Sather, Bryn Mawr College and Haverford College

Wednesday, April 3 | 1:00pm - 4:00pm | Brighton 3/4
Advancing diversity and inclusion involves working at multiple levels across the entire institution (AAC&U, 2015), and bridging levels always raises complexities (Cook & Sorcinelli, 2005). While catalysts for change can emerge from any of the levels, lasting change entails careful thought about ways to strategically expand impact by crossing into the other levels of the system.

In this workshop, we will share strategies represented as cases from three distinct institutions to address the dynamic relationship between university-wide leadership efforts (macro), interactions and initiatives at the school/college or department level (meso), and efforts by individual instructors and activists to create change in their own classrooms or more broadly at their institutions.

Each case highlights catalysts for, considerations regarding, and approaches to advancing diversity, in relation to the mandates, challenges, and possibilities in our respective contexts. Participants will have the opportunity to use a framework developed by Kezar, Gehrke, and Elrod ("Implicit Theories of Change as a Barrier to Change on College Campuses: An Examination of STEM Reform," Review of Higher Education 38, no. 4, Summer 2015) as a starting point or to review their own institutional contexts to identify both cross-context and institution-specific approaches to advancing diversity.

The workshop will begin with an overview of each of the case studies. Participants will develop a planning process for applying the Kezar framework, and identify strategic entry points and/or partnerships for leadership pathways.

Finally, we also introduce a process for participants to consider in conjunction with the Kezar framework: a strategy for organizational change management. Participants will consider core stages (planning, leadership, communication) that form the basis for successful change management (Jones & Harvey, 2017; Ruben, 2009; Ruben, De Lisi, & Gigliotti, 2016). They will critically evaluate how their multi-level strategies for change are aligned with a carefully considered strategy for change management.

Using the Change Dashboard to Conceptualize Change Projects for Campus Reforms

Charles Henderson, Western Michigan University
Kate White, Western Michigan University

Wednesday, April 3 | 1:00pm - 4:00pm | Woodlawn I

Planning for successful institutionalization of effective instructional strategies and policies in undergraduate education requires understanding the complexity of the system under consideration and purposefully coordinating the key change strategies. Infographics, dashboards, visual communication and data visualization may seem like a new trend, but these and other visual tools have been widely used for years to represent and communicate business strategies and objectives. These types of strategic planning and decision-making aids have the potential to support faculty and administrators in achieving undergraduate education reform. The Change Dashboard is one such tool. It enables change agents to organize and align information about their project goals with their change strategies, tactics, and project activities. The purpose of this workshop is to help campus change agents (e.g. faculty PIs, project directors, department chairs, provosts) understand how to use the Change Dashboard to plan for successful sustainable change. The Dashboard is one of the core tools used to guide team planning during the Accelerating Systemic Change Network's (ASCN) annual Systemic Change Institute (SCI). Each year SCI involves institution-based teams who are seeking to create sustained change on their campus. The Change Dashboard takes a systems perspective of change, meaning that any successful change must consider multiple levels of an institution. It visually scaffolds change agents to articulate the gap between the desired state of the institution and the current state of the institution. Once this gap has been articulated, strategies and tactics are introduced to bridge the gap. The Dashboard allows change agents to see whether strategies are sufficient, aligned, or in conflict. The Change Dashboard is not a static image and should be updated. It can serve as visual artifact for the team, help team members to work towards a shared vision, and support structured conversations around project implementation activities.

Using Social Psychological Interventions to Improve Learning of All Students

Chandralekha Singh, University of Pittsburgh-Main Campus
Kevin Binning, University of Pittsburgh-Main Campus
Emily Marshman, University of Pittsburgh-Main Campus

Wednesday, April 3 | 2:30pm - 4:00pm | Fountainview

Instructors often focus on content and pedagogical approaches to improve student engagement and learning in physics courses. However, students' motivational characteristics can also play an important role in their engagement and success, e.g., in physics. In particular, students' sense of belonging in a physics class, their self-efficacy, and views about whether intelligence in physics is "fixed" or "malleable" can affect engagement and learning. These types of concerns can especially impact the learning outcomes of women and underrepresented students in the physics classes and stereotype threats can exacerbate these issues while learning physics. In this workshop, we will discuss prior research studies that show how different types of social psychological interventions (e.g., social belonging and growth mindset) have improved the motivation and learning of all students, especially women and underrepresented minorities in STEM fields. These interventions include providing data to students about how intelligence is malleable and one can become an expert in a discipline by working hard in a deliberate manner, sharing with students examples of testimonies of past students with diverse backgrounds who struggled initially but then succeeded by working hard and using deliberate practice, asking students to write a letter to a future student about how they can succeed in physics and view struggling as a stepping stone to succeeding and giving students an opportunity to share their concerns. We will discuss how these interventions can be adapted and implemented in physics classes. We will also describe and have participants reflect upon a social belonging and growth mindset intervention that we have incorporated in introductory physics courses and findings from the intervention. The types of interventions discussed in this workshop are short, requiring less than one hour of regular class time even though they have the potential to impact student outcomes significantly—especially for women and underrepresented students.

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