Center for Faculty Excellence


The Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) holds events, throughout the year, that are intended to provide our teaching community with opportunities for learning and improving teaching skills, networking, sharing ideas, and viewing demonstrations of some of the new, emerging pedagogical techniques and technologies that we are exploring.


Workshop Listing


Teaching for Student Success Symposium

The Center for Faculty Excellence hosted a Teaching for Student Success Symposium on the afternoon of Thursday, August 18.  The on-campus event provided information, motivation, and new ways to think about teaching your students. 

11:30–11:55 a.m., Registration/Pick up Box Lunch—Outside Student Success Center Auditorium, Room 009

11:55 a.m.–12:15 p.m., Welcome Provost Thompson—StudentSuccess Center Auditorium, Room 009

12:15–12:50 p.m., Keynote, Brian Boyd—Student Success Center Auditorium, Room 009

1–1:45 p.m., DEI Panel Discussion—Student Success Center Auditorium, Room 009

1:55-2:40 p.m., Breakout Session 1

2:50-3:35 p.m., Breakout Session 2

3:45-4:30 p.m., Breakout Session 3

Using and Creating Picture Books as a Formative and Summative Assessment of Undergraduate Knowledge—Erin Lunday, Lisa Bakita, Blair Eberhart, and Stefanie Wilcox

For undergraduate students, picture books can be used to introduce theory, build background knowledge, make theory understandable, create an image of theory and its vocabulary terms, and help make connections between theory and its application in the real world (Meyerson, 2006). Well-chosen picture books are motivating and cognitively stimulating because, when information is presented both verbally and visually, learning is enhanced and made more meaningful (Zambo & Hansen, 2005). This workshop will explore how the analysis and creation of children’s picture books aid as both a formative and summative assessment (i.e., group work, mid-term, and final exam) for undergraduate learning. Applying the tropes associated with educational psychology, specifically Bloom’s Taxonomy and the Experiential Learning Cycle, the assessments provide both group and individual activities to assess student knowledge that may be applied in any educational field to understand key theories associated with that field (i.e., Nature of Engineering, Psychology, Mathematics, Social Sciences). Participants will receive a brief introduction to the method of instruction and assessment by two instructors who utilized this method during the Spring 2022 term. In addition, selected students will share their reflections on the assessment and the degree to which this method aided their learning and understanding of theoretical concepts. Participants will then work in small groups to create a storyboard that reflects the theories relevant in their own fields, with the assistance of the workshop leaders and students. Participants will depart the workshop with a new and unique way of assessing student knowledge, as well as materials to aid them in creating their own version of the assessment.

Designing Classes for How People Learn—Sheri Stover

New cognitive research shows us that many of the learning strategies used by students are highly ineffective. Participants will learn how to design their classes to incorporate the new science of how people learn to enhance their long-term memory. This session will allow participants to utilize Nearpod, a highly interactive cloud-based technology. Nearpod transforms learning experiences from passive lectures to interactive and engaging sessions. Nearpod can be used in live classrooms and also asynchronous online environments.  Major theme This presentation will show faculty how to use the Retrieval Practice theoretical concept to improve the design of the classes to improve students’ long term retention. It will also show faculty how to utilize educational technologies such as Nearpod to implement Retrieval Practice into the design of their class. Therefore, the major theme of the presentation will be about the theoretical concept of Retrieval Practice, Instructional Design, and educational technologies.

So That's What Happens When I Issue an Alert; EAB Navigate’s Early Alert and Progress—Tim Littell and Amanda Watkins

In Fall 2021, 220 faculty issued 2,214 alerts on 1,021 unique students.  Come to this session to hear what happened as a result and learn about Navigate (formerly called RAPS).  Presenters will walk you through the essentials of the early alert and progress report system, including faculty who have used the alerts to help their students and the success coaches who provide the interventions.  Learn when and how to issue an alert as well as what happens when a case is initiated. Also, presenters will share strategies on texting students through the Navigate system.

Cohort-Building Through a Research Methods Preparation Course—Meredith Rodgers and Jason Deibel

The critical need for an effective cohort building experience is central to many evidence-based interventions for advancing STEM student success. The ultimate success of a STEM program can be significantly affected by a program’s ability to build a community of students while also providing them with a desired skillset of experiences and tools. This workshop will benefit teams that are seeking to design their own cohort/community building experience as well teams that that intend to reform theirs. While Wright State’s cohort building modality aims to prepare students for undergraduate research while laying a pathway for them to build their scientific identities, there are common core elements and best practices that exist that are applicable across varying student populations, scientific disciplines, and academic institutions. This workshop will provide the audience with the motivation and rationale for achieving effective community building within S-STEM and similar programs, guidelines for design and implementation, and finally assessment and evaluation. Workshop attendees will participate in a facilitated experience in which they conceptualize and affect a preliminary design of their own cohort building experience.

Using Humor in Supervision: Building Effective Andragogical Relationships—Jessica Warrick

The use of humor in therapeutic relationships has been well-documented. As a counselor educator, it is clear that many of the same skills that are used as clinicians can be applied to the student-teacher relationship. However, effectively using humor in building andragogical relationships is a skill and requires tact and cultural humility. In this workshop , a foundation will be laid regarding what we know about the use of humor in supervision and attendees will be engaged in discussions using different types of humor and how to effectively use it to engage with students to increase self-efficacy, confidence and performance.

Recording and Livestreaming Your F2F Classes—Erik Potts

I will show attendees how I have been livestreaming and recording my face-to-face (F2F) classes this year using the new Cisco technology in many of our classrooms. I especially want to show how I have created a system to capture any work done on the board in the room, as the technology is not good at this by default. This presentation will be useful to attendees who are curious about this topic, those who may be intimidated by the technology, and those who tried and did not get good results before. I plan to engage attendees primarily via the Q&A session, but I want people to actually come up and see what I’m doing with the technology.

Navigating the Metaverse: Incorporating Cognitive Wrappers to Enhance Metacognition—Amanda Hinson-Enslin

Meta-cognition or thinking about thinking can help improve your learning; however, getting students to reflect on their own thinking can be difficult because they may lack the skills to describe their process, or they enter higher education with misconceptions about how they learn (Bowen, 2013). Cognitive wrappers can aid student reflection, connect their thoughts, and understand their learning process. A cognitive wrapper can be applied after a variety of assignments and assessments. Students who utilize cognitive wrappers can improve their study habits, time management, and their performance in class. In this session, we will discuss the variety of ways cognitive wrappers can be incorporated after assessments and assignments. students. Attendees will have an open discussion on encouraging meta-cognition in their courses and brainstorm methods of facilitating cognitive wrappers. This session will be beneficial for attendees because it aids in facilitating a conversation with students about how they can be proactive in their learning.  

Incorporating Library Instruction for Student Success—Mandy Shannon and Kayla Henning

Have you ever thought about the role librarians can play in teaching for student success? We will provide an overview of data that demonstrates the impact of library instruction on student success specifically at Wright State University, both in individual class work and for persistence and retention. We’ll discuss the variety of ways you can work with your subject librarian to find an approach to collaboration that works for you and your students. Finally, we’ll work with you to explore the various options for embedding access to librarians and resources directly in your Pilot pages.

Integrating Meaningful Low-Stakes Writing Activities Into Your Courses—Sarah McGinley

A distraction. Frustrating. Irrelevant. I’m not a writing teacher / this isn’t a writing class. Have you or your students said this about integrated writing? This workshop explores how to develop activities across the curriculum that are genuinely integrated into the course, provide meaningful activities to assist in student understanding and success, and, as a bonus, are easy to grade! We’ll use strategies developed by John Bean – an expert in active learning and integrating writing – to come up with ideas about your courses. Please bring a course description and typical assignment sequence.

Helping Students Work Productively in Groups—Brian Boyd

Are you interested in having students work productively in groups during class? Are you having any frustration when you do have students work in groups and it doesn't go as expected? This session will focus on some ideas to consider when having students work in groups, as well as some structures that promote student participation and learning from one another.

Metacognition and Mindsets—Patrick Sonner

Growth and fixed mindsets have become rather important topics in the educational discourse; both identifying what a growth versus fixed mindset is, and how can we teach students to recognize their own mindsets for various disciplines and begin to potentially transition them from a fixed to growth mindset. One very important tool is metacognition; essentially, thinking about one’s own thinking. In this session, we will discuss topics related to mindsets and ways in which this can be taught to students. As well, we will discuss how metacognition can be used to teach our students about their own learning as a means to work towards shifting from a fixed to a growth mindset. Additionally, we will discuss ways in which metacognition might be used to enhance our own teaching.

Science Education—Brittany Swank and Eric Rowley

The theme of the presentation is to make students more aware of what science education is, especially the diversity within it as far as jobs, titles, and different types of education possible with the multitude of degrees we offer at Wright State. Currently, the sciences are the least enrolled of all the education programs. We want to present from each of our expertise to show how many students can find a fit in the growing demand workforce of the sciences. Brittany Swank graduated from Wright State with a MA in Biology Education. She will focus on the program itself and also the benefits of biology. This topic can allow future educators the chance to teach students about the world around them using hands on learning, project-based learning, and labs. Eric Rowley runs the physics education and is also highly involved in the science education program. He sees the demand for science teachers and wants to show how physics can also offer an ability to have active learning / the importance of science education on a diverse background of students. 

Story Telling in the Classroom—Christine Sproles

Story telling goes way beyond “Once upon a time” in this interactive presentation geared towards helping you create an engaging and exciting classroom experience.

Theory to Practice While Avoiding Conceptual Ruts—Melissa Spirek

Helping STEM students to think in ways that they have never thought before can be challenging. Adding to this difficulty is that professors demand both rigor and imagination when bridging theory to practice. This workshop shares a systemized toolkit developed by Dr. Allan Wicker in 1985 and used in the communication quantitative research methods course to address these challenges. Both the professor and the students tap this framework to generate their research questions and begin research programs. Participants will be encouraged to use the same framework for getting out of conceptual ruts of STEM teaching. Faculty will be asked to share a course that they frequently teach so that a fresh perspective and examples can be considered. Participants will need to bring a means to write or type answers for applying the framework to their class that they will share with the group. This framework has been used with undergraduate and graduate students. A white board and PowerPoint will be used to share and apply the framework.

Get Active…It’s Easier Than You Think—Michelle Newsome

Are you unsure about trying active learning?  Are you afraid it takes too much effort to change?  Let me show you how to use activities and Top Hat to make the transition to using active leaning in your classroom. I will share techniques, organization, and activities. Come ready to be active! 

Practical Methods to Promote Student Success—Amanda Hinson-Enslin

We know what a burned-out student looks like— apathetic, stressed, unexcited about the course. They are unlikely to participate in class activities because their well-being may be impacted. The goal of this session is to provide you with practical methods to promote well-being, keep students engaged, and stop or at least curb burnout among students. It starts with proactive communication, inclusive design, and embedded support. Topics discussed will include integrating wellness moments, incorporating off-camera options to help maintain mental health, and creating a well-designed course with effective communication, a supportive environment allowing students to tend to other obligations, and developing a diverse and inclusive classroom environment. Attendees will have the opportunity to practice a wellness moment as well as practice and discuss their experiences in preventing student burnout and disengagement.

Creating Programs for, and Teaching, Student Veterans—Seth Gordon

This is an intensive workshop that covers how specific department of Veterans Affairs educational benefits and other DOD related benefits interact with program creation. Information covered will also explore some basic do's and don'ts of teaching student veterans and military-connected students.

Including Students as Teachers in Your Classroom—Marilyn Kindig, Elisabeth Adkins, and Emily Young

At Boonshoft School of Medicine, in our OBGYN department, we know how important the education of our students and residents is. In fact, so important, that we have increased our need for resident educators, not just faculty educators. Our fourth-year students, like Elisabeth Adkins and Emily Young, are excellent teachers and improving as we continue to use them to support other students. As challenging as it is to match for an OBGYN residency position, we feel that our educator candidates are more likely to have the entire package, not just scores, research, and excellent interview skills. It is the teaching experience that will put candidates ahead of the crowd when applying for a job.  We will discuss virtual instruction, interactive learning, instructional design and articulate modules using your upper-level students to help you educate the next generation.

Setting the Stage for Optimal Learning—Lorrie Kubaszewski

The intentional moves we make as instructors and the backstage work we do prior to a class can promote high investment by our students in our coursework.  During this roundtable session, learn about the intentional moves and backstage work you can add to your toolbox to bring new energy to your classroom sessions and higher quality in student work.

First-Year Seminar Course for Majors Improves Retention—Kathrin Engisch, Nick Christian, and Mike Bottomley

The College of Science and Mathematics has begun to incorporate a First Year Seminar for majors into the curriculum for several programs. Currently there is a First Year Seminar in Physics, Neuroscience, and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Students in these majors are required to take the First Year Seminar. We compared the first to second year retention for students in PHY 1000, NEU 1000 and 1010, and BMB 1000, to that of students in UVC 1010 and students who did not take a First Year Seminar. In statistical analyses that employed propensity score matching, first to second year retention was 75% for students in First Year Seminars for majors, vs. 66% for students who did not take a First Year Seminar. The retention for students in UVC 1010 (the University First Year Seminar that is not required) retention was intermediate, at 70%. We will present and explain the statistical data, and will describe the course activities that are shared by the First Year Seminars for majors. Course materials and resources are available on a Microsoft Teams site which participants and anyone interested are welcome to join. Our goal is to assist any undergraduate program that would like to add a First Year Seminar to their curriculum.

Intro Bingo: Building Classroom Community and Readiness for Content Understandings—Romena Holbert

Introductory Bingo activities can be used in face-to-face or online formats to help your students get to know one another and to gain a preview of the themes represented in the content you will teach across the term. Your students will engage with one another, tell stories, and start to form relationships around common experiences as well as content they most look forward to or have questions about. This highly customizable activity will energize the beginning of your course and serve as a springboard for positive relationships and enthusiasm!   In this session, we will consider your aims for your group and how this activity might best support them. We could customize the activity to focus on the needs and contributions of diverse groups, specific research aims of particular interest to you, pre-assessment of student knowledge or a variety of other aims. I’ll share a short article I wrote about the activity, and we can customize it together to craft something that will be amazing for your learners!


Recorded Workshops and Presentations

We also collaborate with different groups and departments, across campus, to develop events that are specifically tailored to your needs. If you would like to request such an event, contact CFE at