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Virtual Symposium Offers Key Resources, Expertise As Faculty Prepare for Fall 2020

Week 1 of ETL Symposium an inspiring success.

As the University of Michigan plans for an unconventional Fall term, College of Engineering faculty and staff continue to share resources, technology, and expertise necessary to deliver a preeminent engineering education, regardless of delivery mode.

The latest effort — an inaugural virtual Symposium on Engineering Teaching and Learning (May 18-29) — represents another key step in helping faculty prepare to teach in a hybrid or online environment.

"Over the next two weeks, this virtual symposium is a unique opportunity for engineering instructors to engage in over 15 professional development sessions to support plans for...Fall 2020," said the Director of the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching in Engineering (CRLT-Engin), Tershia Pinder-Grover, PhD, in her opening remarks.

Organized in partnership between CRLT-Engin, Nexus, and CAEN — the College's information technology (IT) services department — the event kicked off with a keynote address from Alec D. Gallimore, Robert J. Vlasic Dean of Engineering, followed by a panel on lessons learned from the Winter 2020 term. From there, the symposium was off and running, its vision being "to create a centralized service approach for faculty to receive support for preparing their courses in the areas of pedagogy, instructional design, and technology tools," according to Shubha Kashyap, PhD, Nexus' Director of Online Learning Design & Innovation.

The first week's topics ranged from quality standards and alternative assessment strategies to building community in an online classroom. Among the many well-attended sessions was "Synchronous and Asynchronous Content Delivery", which garnered positive feedback from faculty eager to learn about different learning modalities. Remote teaching tools and platforms were also covered, including Thursday's session on digital annotation.

The workshops, webinars, and discussions will continue through the end of the month, beginning with a May 26 faculty panel on designing courses for the remote/online learner. Additional sessions on remote teaching tools, strategies, and best practices will follow suit, including "Remote Mentoring for Doctoral Student Success", a key session led by Mary-Ann Mycek, PhD, the College of Engineering's Associate Dean for Graduate & Professional Education. The symposium will finish on May 29th with a culminating webinar, "Handling the Unforeseeable and Unplannable - What's My Backup Plan?"

The event is co-chaired by Tershia Pinder-Grover, PhD (CRLT-E), Shubha Kashyap, PhD (Nexus), Diane Landsiedel (Nexus), Dan Maletta (CAEN), with many hours of support from key staff and guest faculty speakers.

To view the full upcoming schedule or view recorded sessions from week one, visit the ETL Symposium webpage. For information about future workshops and events, visit our faculty events page or contact