Teaching in Focus (TIF) 2018 issues a call for proposals

The Teaching in Focus (TIF) Conference is the pan-University conference on teaching and learning at York University. This peer-reviewed conference is for all who teach or support student learning at York University. It serves to celebrate teaching, share experiences and innovations in teaching practices, make connections, and build and expand a community and scholarship of teaching and learning.

The theme of this year’s conference centres on exploring and discussing student engagement in its many forms. How are you engaging students in your classroom? What does student engagement mean to you? The TIF Call for Proposals invites presentations, case studies, and poster presentations to address these and similar questions.

The 2018 TIF Proposal Form can be accessed here: http://teachingcommonsforms.apps01.yorku.ca/forms/view.php?id=510961.

Registration is also open to attend TIF, taking place May 16 and 17. Register today: http://teachingcommonsforms.apps01.yorku.ca/forms/view.php?id=510451.

TIF: Five years in review

The Teaching Commons is hosting what is now its sixth annual TIF conference. The inaugural conference took place on May 23, 2013. York University’s President Emeritua Lorna R. Marsden, was the keynote speaker.

The theme of the 2014 conference was “Educational Innovation & Transformation.” The speeches of our two keynote speakers, Dr. Rhonda Lenton, who was at that time the Vice-President Academic & Provost, York University, and Dr. Harvey Weingarten, President and CEO of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO), are available at http://teachingcommons.yorku.ca/conferences/york-conferences/tif2014/.

Because of the growing interest in TIF by the members of the York Community, in 2015 the TIF conference was expanded to be a two-day event. Highlights of the conference included a keynote speech by Osgoode Hall Law School Dean Lorne Sossin, a plenary on the First-Year Experience, moderated by Associate Dean Diane Woody, and a President’s University-Wide Teaching Award winners moderated by then Provost Rhonda Lenton. Session presentations and handouts are available at http://teachingcommons.yorku.ca/tif-2015/.

The Teaching in Focus conference offered by the Teaching Commons always enjoys a full attendance.

TIF 2016 focused on “Putting Research into Teaching and Teaching into Research” on day one, while day two was dedicated to “Celebrating Teaching Innovation and Excellence.” Professor Nicola Simmons from Brock University is well known for her work in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). She outlined what counts as research about teaching and noted that there are multiple points of entry to inquiry into improving student learning. The second keynote speaker, Professor Karin Crawford of Lincoln University, U.K., drew on her work in engaging students with research and students as researchers to discuss pedagogies of partnership in research-engaged teaching. Their presentations are available on the Teaching Commons website at http://teachingcommons.yorku.ca/tif-2016/. Parallel sessions were organized into the following categories of interest: general pedagogy; experiential education; eLearning / eLearning Technologies; Academic Innovation Fund projects; and Ontario Online Initiatives.

Last year’s conference – TIF 2017 – expanded on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) as we welcomed our most recent keynote speaker Dr. Nancy Chick from the University of Calgary. She is University Chair in Teaching and Learning, Academic Director of the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning, and Teaching Professor of English and is well known for her work in SoTL. The second day of the conference included an overview of the Academic Innovation Fund (AIF) and a conversation with recent recipients of the President’s University Wide Teaching Award and the Faculty of Graduate Studies Supervisor Award. Further information about TIF 2016 can be found at http://teachingcommons.yorku.ca/tif-2016/.

This year’s TIF promises to be just as engaging as participants explore student engagement. Consider submitting a proposal: http://teachingcommonsforms.apps01.yorku.ca/forms/view.php?id=510961.

Questions? Send them to teaching@yorku.ca.

To view photos from TIF 2016, visit: http://teachingcommons.yorku.ca/tif-2016-photos/.

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