Welcome to the April 2019 issue of Innovatus

The innovatus special issue header

Welcome to the April 2019 issue of Innovatus, a special issue of YFile that is devoted to teaching and learning innovation at York University.

Will Gage

Every spring, York University hosts its annual Teaching in Focus Conference. This year’s conference will take place May 15 and 16 in the Accolade East Building. I urge everyone with a passion and interest in teaching, learning and the student experience to attend TiF. It offers a wealth of interesting sessions, each one showcases the work of your colleagues from the Keele and Glendon campuses. Best of all, there’s no conference charge, TiF is offered free of charge. Register early because it fills to capacity quickly.

There are some intriguing stories offered in this issue of Innovatus. One of our lead stories is about Glendon students, who recently spent 15 days in Seville, Spain, where they experienced the world of poet Luis Cernuda.

Another interesting story is the development of a new practical learning aid that uses smartphone technology. The pilot, I am proud to say, was funded through a grant from the Academic Innovation Fund. The story offers an exciting glimpse of the new SmART Toolbox and I hope you take some time to read it.

We also have a terrific story that coincides with Earth Day and sustainability initiatives on campus. There’s also a recap of a very successful networking breakfast held with business leaders and representatives from York Region and the City of Markham and hosted by my office.

As always, I am truly delighted with how everyone has engaged with Innovatus. These are your stories, your triumphs and your innovations.

Featured in the April 2019 issue of Innovatus

Experiential education course takes Glendon students to Spain
Hispanic Geopoetics: A field trip to territory, identity, literature and art, is a new course that was developed with seed funding from a 2017 Academic Innovation Fund grant. As part of the course, students travelled to Seville, Spain to investigate and experience the world of poet Luis Cernuda. Click here for the full story.

Teaching & Learning networking breakfast touts benefits of York University in meeting the needs of business
York Region and City of Markham business leaders heard how York University students and graduates set themselves apart because of hands-on experience they’ve gained from leading-edge degree programs that integrate eLearning and experiential education. Click here for the full story.

New platform focuses on using smartphone technology to teach practical skills
Practical skills required in a variety of disciplines are enhanced through the new Smartphone Accommodation Resource Toolbox (SmART), a platform that allows York students to hone their skills in a simulated workplace or clinical environment. SmART was developed with funding from the Academic Innovation Fund. Click here for the full story.

Earth-conscious experiential education flourishes at York University
Keeping sustainability in the forefront of campus consciousness is Nicole Arsenault’s mission. Arsenault is the University’s program director for sustainability. She advances the University’s Sustainability Strategy, which includes exploring ways to advance York’s reputation in creating curricula that include sustainability, and finding opportunities to incorporate sustainability into teaching and learning by turning the campus into a living laboratory. Click here for the full story.

2019 Teaching in Focus Conference returns May 15 and 16
York University’s acclaimed and highly popular Teaching in Focus Conference (TiF) returns May 15 and 16. TiF is offered free of charge and will feature an engaging and funny presentation by Ryerson University Professor (and York alumnus) Eric Kam. Register today to avoid disappointment. Click here for the full story.

Innovatus is produced by the Office of the Associate Vice-President Teaching & Learning in partnership with Communications & Public Affairs.

In closing, I extend a personal invitation to you to share your experiences in teaching, learning, internationalization and the student experience through the Innovatus story form, which is available at tl.apps01.yorku.ca/machform/view.php?id=16573.


Will Gage
Associate Vice-President Teaching & Learning