20 Years of Growth
The Teaching and Technology Collaborative began working on the first Enriching Scholarship back in 1997, running the conference every May since then. Also known as TeachTech or TTC, this diverse organization has been working to improve the learning and research experience for the UM community. This year was particularly special, as we celebrate not only the 20th Annual Enriching Scholarship, but also the Bicentennial of the University—200 years of commitment to scholarship in both academics and research.
To appreciate the growth the conference has had, here are some numbers:
This year the conference had a total of 92 different presenters offering 101 sessions, including several sessions with multiple presenters. There was a total of 2,462 registrations (about 300 more than last year!), which represents 702 unique participants.
The first year (1998) offered 50 sessions, with a total of 803 registrations, representing 149 unique participants. That’s a tremendous growth, which the TTC hopes to continue for another 20 years!
The planning committee strove to have this year’s conference focus specifically on elements of teaching and learning—rather than simply showing new technologies; the presentations tended to look more at pedagogical issues and the instructional techniques that can be applied to the technologies. Early evidence suggests that this has been well received.
LSA Instructional Support Services
In addition to Instructional Support Services staff playing a part in the planning, A/V recording and streaming, and operations behind the scenes, LSA-ISS consultants presented in a number of sessions. Sessions covered everything from Canvas to classrooms, from Video Production to Wacom touch screens, from i>clicker to Active Learning, and from understanding student use of current technology to looking at the faculty experience with the transition to new technology. This year’s sessions all reflect the TTC’s focus on Teaching and Learning. Rather than simply hoping to expose instructors to new technologies, the hope was that we would give them guidance on more effectively integrating the various technologies that are available. Of the over 100 sessions offered, themes of Active Learning and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion played a part in the majority of them, whether directly or indirectly.
Opening Keynote Address
The Opening Keynote Address by Dr. Scott Page (UM College of Engineering and the School of Information) was called Technology, Diversity, and Equity. It succinctly linked these three issues together, providing guidance and food for thought to instructors regarding what technologies they are considering, and how they are considering incorporating them into their courses. This kind of thinking dovetails perfectly with goals of LSA’s Opportunity Hub and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiative. The winners of the 2017 Teaching Innovation Prize were also announced during the keynote and presented their courses, including LSA’s Adam Simon (Associate Professor, Earth and Environmental Sciences) and Peter Knoop, (LSA-IT, Advocacy & Research Support) for their work in the course EARTH 380 “Mineral Resources, Economics, and the Environment.” This prize, Sponsored by the Office of the Provost, CRLT, and the University Library, provides $5,000 to five faculty members (or teams) for their innovative projects to improve student learning. Applications for the 2018 prize are open!
Closing Keynote Panel
The Closing Keynote Event, titled “Emerging Landscapes: A Cross-Disciplinary Conversation with U-M Faculty Members,” featured a faculty panel hailing from throughout the University. Dr. LaVaque-Manty (Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and Associate Professor of Political Science, Director of Undergraduate Studies, and Director of Philosophy, Politics and Economics) moderated the discussion. Other U-M faculty panelists included Dr. Michelle Aebersold (Nursing), Dr. David Chesney (Computer Science and Engineering), Dr. Sabine Gabaron (Romance Languages and Literatures), and Dr. Scott Page (Complex Systems, Political Science, and Economics). Their discussions explored over 20 years of innovation in technology and education, and thoughts on the future of teaching and learning.
Looking Toward the 2018 Enriching Scholarship Conference
The TTC planning committee is happy with this year’s Enriching Scholarship, but they are already thinking forward to next year. They are currently taking assessment of conference, but it won’t be long until ES2018 is announced. In the meantime, members of the UM community are encouraged to look into other TTC classes, which are offered year round. If you have ideas for next year, would like to offer a session anytime throughout the year, or have are part of a Teaching and Learning support group on campus and want to know more about the TTC, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the committee via email.