Teaching in Focus Conference features panels, presentations on ‘balance’

Notes lecture workshop meeting

York University’s Teaching in Focus (TiF) Conference will return to the Keele Campus May 9 and 10 with the two-day in-person event organized around the theme of “Exploring Balance.”

The pan-University conference aims to create space for conversations and knowledge exchange about teaching and learning, while taking a deeper look into the benefits and challenges of implementing new ideas and concepts across all platforms – in the classroom, a virtual learning environment, a bilingual space, a clinical setting, or out in the field (among others).

This year’s conference will take a closer look at the effects of the pandemic. During the last several consecutive years, teaching and learning across the post-secondary sector has been destabilized for many, with profound changes to course design and delivery, assessment strategies and teaching practices, and student learning and engagement. The pace of these shifts in the higher education classroom seems to be slowing, providing an opportunity to reflect and consider where to go from here, both collectively and as individual educators. 

The various thematic parallel sessions include presentations on lessons from COVID, students as partners and student leadership, student engagement, STEM, belonging, care and community, scholarship of teaching and learning, assessment and Academic Innovation Fund (AIF) presentations.

Presenting the keynote address this year is Fiona Rawle, a professor of biology at the University of Toronto Mississauga and a 3M National Teaching Fellow. Her research focuses on learning from failure, the science of learning and public communication of science. She is also a member of the University of Toronto’s TIDE group (Toronto Initiative for Diversity & Excellence), through which she gives lectures and workshops on unconscious bias, equity and diversity. Her talk, entitled “Learning from Failure Across the Disciplines,” will dive into the science of learning to explore how to support students in learning through failure when little to no structural and sustained mechanism exists in academia to support the rhetoric of embracing failure. It takes place at 10 a.m. on May 9.

The closing plenary, at 3:25 p.m. on May 10, will feature a panel of two instructors and two teaching and learning specialists putting their heads together to answer questions. Questions can be submitted ahead of the conference using the registration form.

Registration is open until April 30.

For a full look at the program for TiF 2023, visit the online agenda.