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Engaging Pedagogy Conference 2023

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Engaging Pedagogy is a regional, interdisciplinary conference serving faculty and staff committed to producing deeper and more effective teaching and learning initiatives.

The Engaging Pedagogy conference, hosted by Texas Lutheran University, provides a forum for participants from over 20 regional schools to share the ways in which we critically reflect on our teaching and learning and creatively adapt what we know to serve our diverse community of students.

When we are at our best, students learn to critically reflect on their learning and life practices. National trends tell us that colleges and universities struggle to help students persist and succeed in this endeavor.

In answer to these challenges, we will critically reflect on our own teaching and learning, and creatively adapt what we know to serve our diverse community of students, and by so doing, make ourselves better able to help our students.

Inclusivity and Engagement: Charting the Course Ahead

The last two years have given us many reasons to rethink and revise our pedagogy and practices to focus on improving student engagement and creating a more inclusive, diverse, and equitable learning environment for all students.

We have also learned that we and our students can do hard things: navigate a global pandemic, contend with the threat of violence on school campuses, and push beyond our comfort zones in conversations about politics and human rights.

The focus of this conference will be on sharing what we have done and are doing to continue to make our classrooms spaces for learning and progress where all students feel able and welcome to engage in intellectual pursuits that help them live through the current moment while also preparing them for their lives ahead.

Schedule of Events:

8:30 a.m. Registration & Light Breakfast, Schuech Fine Arts

Registration after 10 a.m. will take place in the Tschoepe Hall Lobby

9 a.m. Opening, Wupperman Little Theatre, Schuech Fine Arts Center

Dr. Rodrick Shao, Dr. Sarah Ferguson, and Dr. David Ortiz, Texas Lutheran University

9:15 a.m. Keynote Speaker: Dr. Kevin B. Vichcales

Navigate a Global Pandemic & Contend With the Threat of Violence on School Campuses

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Kevin B. Vichcales, Ph.D., is Associate Provost for Undergraduate and Graduate Education and Professor of History at the University of the Incarnate Word. He provides vision and leadership for undergraduate and graduate student learning and success. He assists the Provost in planning, directing, evaluating, and developing undergraduate and graduate academic programs; collaborating with other divisions of the University to analyze and develop recommendations in response to evolving issues; and providing leadership for developing and achieving strategic initiatives that serve the institutional mission. He oversees the University’s academic programs and coordinates with the academic deans to ensure that all programs identify and achieve the highest standards in preparing students to become leaders in their respective fields. He also provides administrative oversight for UIW’s Honors Program.

Dr. Vichcales previously served as Dean of the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (2015-2021). He represented the College to internal and external constituencies and provided academic and administrative leadership to the College faculty and staff. He also previously served as Dean of Research and Graduate Studies (2006-15), providing leadership and management oversight of all institutional research operations and programs that served faculty and students. He served as the university’s research compliance officer. He provided leadership and direction to the University’s research compliance bodies, such as the Human Subjects Institutional Review Board, Biosafety Committee, and Responsible Conduct of Research Committee. He was also responsible for all academic, administrative, programmatic, and fiscal activities related to delivering graduate programs and services, including developing and implementing long-range and short-range strategies consistent with the University's strategic direction.

Before his work at UIW, Dr. Vichcales served at Western Michigan University’s Graduate College as the Associate Director of the College and Director of Awards, Training, and Special Projects. Dr. Vichcales is an active scholar with multiple publications to his credit. He has provided leadership to several national boards, including the Alliance of Hispanic Serving Institution Educators (AHSIE), Science Foundation of Arizona KickStarter 2.0 Advisory Council, and Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) – Government Relations Committee and continues to serve on others such as the Mexican American Catholic College (MACC).

11-11:40 a.m. Breakout Sessions, Tschoepe Hall

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Veterans and Disabled Veterans Welcome to Our School and Classroom, Room 127

Dr. Joseph Harrison Jr., University of Phoenix

An Educational Transmogrification: Motivating Students in Post-Pandemic Times, Room 128

Dr. Ariadne de Villa, Texas Lutheran University

Creating a Community of Inquiry in Your Online Courses, Room 130

Mr. James Osborne, Texas Lutheran University

Motivating Students Through Servant Leadership Theory, Room 131

Dr. Tony Aguirre, Texas Lutheran University

5-Minute Miracles: Metacognition as Motivation, Room 245

Prof. Beth Barry, Texas Lutheran University

Basics of Fair Use, Room 250 & Zoom

Ms. Christine Fruin, American Theological Library Association

11:45 a.m. Lunch, Tschoepe Hall Lobby

12:30-1:15 p.m. Plenary Session, Wupperman, Dr. Patrick Valdez

Push Beyond Our Comfort Zones in Conversations About Politics & Human Rights

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Dr. Patrick L. Valdez is an accomplished higher education executive with 25 years of experience developing and executing academic and student success programs. Dr. Valdez is a Visiting Professor at the University of Kentucky’s College of Education and Program Chair of the Senior Diversity Officer Certificate Program. He is a former Chancellor and Professor of Education at The University of New Mexico – Taos.

He has held senior-level positions at the College of Mount St. Vincent in New York City, The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU), the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) and Lehman College, CUNY. Dr. Valdez is the current Chair of the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE) Board of Directors, a member of the NSF Includes Accelerate Latinx Representation in STEM Education (ALRISE) Advisory Board, and a member of the American Council on Education (ACE) equity-minded leadership advisory committee.

Dr. Valdez has researched and practiced the challenges and obstacles of first-generation college students, given presentations on executive leadership and African American faculty experience at a tier-one university, increased the number of underrepresented students in STEM, and bridged the gap between higher education and the community. His current research focuses on the policy formation of Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) legislation and the role that HSIs will play in educating the nation’s fastest-growing student population. He is a St. Edward’s University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in International Studies, a master’s degree in student personnel administration from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a doctorate in higher education administration from The University of Texas at Austin.

1:30-2:10 p.m. Breakout Sessions, Tschoepe Hall

Integrating Computation Into Courses Using the Jupyter Notebook, Room 127

Dr. Calvin Berggren, Texas Lutheran University

Fostering Community, Inclusion, and Social Justice in IRW, Room 128

Doctoral T.A. Elahe Mahmoudi, Doctoral Candidate James M. Dyer & Dr. Michael McConnell, Texas State University

Ungrading & Labor-Based Grading Contracts: The Highs & Lows of Challenging the Status Quo, Room 130

Dr. Margaret Gonzales, Texas Lutheran University

CLAP for Student Success Post-COVID: Collaborate, Leverage, Achieve, & Plan, Room 131

Dr. Pamela Ray, Texas Lutheran University

Culturally Informed Teaching and Mentoring in STEM, Room 245

Dr. Elizabeth Woods & Dr. Toni Sauncy, Texas Lutheran University

2:20-3 p.m. Breakout Sessions, Tschoepe Hall

Fair Use Applications in Teaching, Room 127 & Zoom

Ms. Christine Fruin, American Theological Library Association

Finding Relativity, Room 128

Dr. Christopher Bollinger, Texas Lutheran University

Embracing the Future: How AI-Powered Chatbots Enhance Education in the Digital Age, Room 130

Dr. Sam Hijazi, Texas Lutheran University

What I’ve Learned About Teaching Software Acquisition, Room 131

Dr. Steven Vrooman, Texas Lutheran University

Neurodivergence as a Springboard for Inclusive Learning Experience Design, Room 250 & Zoom

Dr. Georgianna Laws, Geo Laws Consulting

3:15 p.m. Closing Session & Reception, Wupperman

The CTL Committee: Dr. Shirley Bleidt, Dr. Patrick Cereceres, Dr. Danna Salinas, Dr. Margaret Gonzales, Dr. Sycora Wilson, Dr. John Sieben, Dr. Sam Hijazi, and Dr. Rodrick Shao