Come, STAY and learn about teaching at York University

A professor teaching a classrooom of students

On May 2, graduate students from across the University will gather in the Technology Enhanced Learning Building on York’s Keele campus for the second annual Supporting Teaching at York (STAY) symposium.

Offered by the Teaching Commons at York University, STAY is a free resource and features sessions prepared by the University’s senior teaching assistants. Participants will learn about the role of a teaching assistant, how to plan classes, incorporate popular media, engage diverse student learners and teaching students with disabilities. They will also learn how to use active learning strategies, support first-year students in transition, and how to communicate across cultures.

Celia Popvic, director of York Teaching Commons

“Whether this is your first experience at STAY or you are returning for a second year, our new line-up of presentations promises to deliver invaluable and transferable information across all disciplines and all levels of TA experience,” says Celia Popovic, director of the Teaching Commons. “Participants who attend the full day will receive a ‘Record of Completion’ Certificate. So, come and STAY for what promises to be an inspiring and energizing day to engage with your peers.”

Registration begins at 9am, the symposium runs from 10am to 4pm. The event takes place in room 0016 TEL Building. A complimentary light lunch will be provided to all who register.

The following is a sampling of three of the symposium’s nine sessions:

Theresa Beesley, a graduate student in the School of Kinesiology and Health Science in the Faculty of Health will present “Oh I get It Now: Putting Popular Media to Work in the Classroom”. Beesley will explore how active learning strategies are often employed to evoke students’ engagement in class. Popular media can provide an optimal tool for active learning that will enhance student understanding of theoretical material. Twitter, YouTube, blogs and other forms of social media provide additional resources for students to access popular media. Beesley’s seminar will explore effective use of social media in the undergraduate classroom. She will also cover the effective methods for teaching students about how to use and employ critical thinking when using popular media.

Holly Clayton, a PhD candidate in the Department of Psychology in the Faculty of Health will talk about teaching students with disabilities. Students with disabilities add to the diversity of the University community. Clayton will review the University’s policies concerning academic accommodation for students with disabilities. She will also discuss strategies for maintaining a disability friendly classroom and other aspects new teaching assistants will need to know to teach students with disabilities.

Terri-Jane Stapleton, a graduate student in the Critical Disabilities Studies Program will explore the signs of burnout and how to prevent it in her session titled “Burnout! Who me?” Many graduate students cope with burnout as they work in the classroom and work towards their degree. They can also have outside responsibilities, which can add to the possibility of burnout.

For more information and a detailed itinerary, visit the STAY Symposium webpage or e-mail