Contact Us

Contact Us

August 29th, 2013 by Eric

Faculty Lounge
Lamson Rm. 113
Monday- Friday
Can reserve for meetings!

Mailing Address
17 High Street
MSC #47B
Plymouth, NH 03264

Teaching Strategies for Large Classes

January 25th, 2016 by Melinda

Got a class of 50 or more students? Want to share with and learn from your colleagues about how to engage effectively with students and to facilitate meaningful learning experiences? Join us!

Tuesday, Feb 9th 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. CETL Faculty Lounge (Lamson 113)

Facilitator: John Kulig, Professor of Psychology

Please RSVP if you plan to attend via email to

Team GPA: Goals, Planning, & Accountability!

January 25th, 2016 by Melinda

Moving student teams from cooperation to collaboration. Learn the software, join the beta-testing, and help improve collaborative student work.

Tuesday, Feb 2nd 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.  at Frost Conference Room

Wednesday, Feb 3rd 8:00 – 9:00 a.m. at Frost Conference Room

 Facilitator: Scott Coykendall, Professor of
Communication & Media Studies

Please RSVP if you plan to attend via email to

“One-Page Thoughts on Interdisciplinarity” requested by PSU’s CETL

December 21st, 2015 by Melinda

John Krueckeberg (HPSSE). 10/5/2015.

Definitions.  “Interdisciplinarity” is the resulting blend of two (or more) disciplinary approaches, producing something specific and new.  The practitioner of interdisciplinarity must have a level of adequacy in each discipline used and be able to point to the way(s) each disciplinary “expertise” influenced the end result.  Interdisciplinary Studies is NOT ‘non-disciplinary’ studies.  Instead it relies upon everything disciplines can bring to the table – and then moves beyond what those disciplines usually “control.”   It is not “transdisciplinarity,” which discounts disciplinary expertise in the name of grand topics that are rootless to an epistemological tradition.  It is more than a non-integrative “multidisciplinarity” which can place disciplines alongside each other while maintaining strict boundaries.  Such boundaries remain entrenched when Discipline A sees the phenomena/issues of Discipline B’s traditional domain through Discipline A’s lenses, or when one articulates the differences between disciplinary approaches to phenomena without reconciling those differences within a new construct/community.

Metaphors:  IS Production vs. IS Consumption.  One can see and taste the distinctiveness of berries and bananas sitting loosely in a bowl, but new sensations occur when they are blended into a smoothie:  “it” has a different feel, smell, and taste; yet very clearly “it” is the intersection of fruit from very different and distinctive plants which have characteristics still recognizable as hints on the palate.  A smoothie is some serious integration!  A less developed but equally valid vision of interdisciplinarity (at least in my view) can be found in a less complex  scenario that avoids the blender metaphor yet keeps to a frozen desert analogy.  Indeed, the IS requirement of “transformation” (which some might rightly see as “destruction,” though importantly it is not “obliteration”) can be artfully dodged by challenging just what makes something “new.”  Interdisciplinarity, I hold, can be a Dairy Queen Swirl (!).  It has two flavors, side-by-side yet eaten together; and they melt into an ever-softening cone that itself is transformed into a culinary delight when its soggy existence finally is devoured.  This experience represents change, being “more” than eating chocolate or vanilla soft-serve separately, and transforms the once-dry cone (if not also the consumer’s appetite and general disposition), into a “new” product upon completion.

Put another way:  a student minors in Field A and also in Field B.  When the student completes their coursework they are required to construct a project (a paper, a plan, a survey, a performance, etc.) that is informed by each field but needs not owe a dominant allegiance to one.  In an ideal interdisciplinary “blender” experience, this student finds places of contradiction between the disciplines used, interrogates those points through research, synthesizes the findings, and reports those findings in a scholarly way.  In the “swirl” metaphor, an IS product still is purposefully constructed from the basics of disciplinary purviews (where knowledge still is discovered/created within epistemological traditions) yet the sum of its parts is expected to be consumed interdisciplinarily.  Consumption could happen in a practicum, or “open lab”; it could be more personal or applicable than placed within the scholarly canon.

Personally.  Titans of IS theory include J.T. Klein and V. Boix-Mansilla, though probably my own disciplinary training has let me be swayed most by an historian turned interdisicplinarian:  A. Repko.  Much of the above comes from his three books on the subject which lead the “disciplinary field” of IS.  Another historian in the news concerning IS is Peter Graff, who traces the history of academia’s dalliances with IS.  My own experiences in IS began as an undergraduate:  I took a course taught alternatingly by a military historian and a professor of literature – my final project was to write about “war qua war”;  in one of my senior capstone courses  I combined studies of environmental ethics, feminist theory, and cartography into an “ecofeminist map.”  As an historian, my world has been rocked by geographical analysis (namely in the Annalesschool), anthropologically informed structuralist historians, and the linguistic turn that revolutionized cultural history.  And the future of history seems to be moving in an ever more integrative way as “Big History” is developing (with much help from Bill Gates and the natural and social/behavioral sciences) the story of humanity’s connections toeverything since the Big Bang.  Still, however, these last examples focus on integrative histories, thus they are not “pure” IS.

Must integration insist upon IS/“blender” purity?  What is gained by trying; what is lost by not?

Interdisciplinary Work and Clusters at Plymouth State University:

December 21st, 2015 by Melinda

One Faculty Member’s Perspective

Brian Eisenhauer, Social Science, Office of Environmental Sustainability

Faculty from the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) recently approached me and asked if it would be possible for me to, “compile a one-page document that synthesizes and distills information about interdisciplinarity from your professional perspective…[that] could include definitions, examples of successful & unsuccessful interdisciplinary endeavors in your fields or among your networks, critical questions for PSU to address, recommendations for how to advance interdisciplinarity in ethical, informed ways at PSU, and/or recommended reading.” I am honored to share my thinking on these important matters with others in our campus community, but have to be honest that I am intimidated by what has been requested of me. Aside from the challenges inherent in addressing all the topics identified in the request I received in very limited space, I want to be frank that I do not believe I have the authoritative answers to questions about interdisciplinary work, clusters, and their future at PSU. However, with a background and professional career in interdisciplinary work I am happy to share the experience I have in the hopes it may help further the conversation about these topics on our campus. With that goal in mind in the remainder of this work I will offer ideas about what interdisciplinary work involves, and example or two of it from my own field and work, and will conclude with some thoughts about the relationship between interdisciplinary work and “clustering” in higher education and at PSU.

Disciplines and disciplinary boundaries are a result of the professionalization and social organization of academe that resulted from the belief that knowledge and information germane to specific topics should be concentrated and studied in isolation to achieve educational ends and define professionals’ expertise. This processes was strengthened by the continued professionalization of knowledge, and the resulting works have obviously made great contributions to knowledge and the improvement of the human condition. However, unintended consequences have also resulted. The process of scientific and other forms of inquiry popular in academia have led to an increasing specialization within the disciplines. As one light-hearted example of this, I have heard it asserted that having a PhD means that, “you know a whole lot about very little.” In short, while specialization has led to great depth of knowledge, it has also led in many cases to the development of information that is isolated and often not applied outside the realm of a discipline and its practitioners.

In recent years academia has been challenged to prove its value to the public at large, and while those working in higher education are typically strong believers in its many benefits, it is very reasonable to recognize that increasing the contributions higher education makes to addressing public problems and making positive contributions to our communities can and will improve the future of higher education. However, for much of our work to affect the world we must move beyond the boundaries we use to organize knowledge within academia and back into the “real-world” where affecting change involves boundary-spanning work done by thinking about systems. For example, to understand recycling and achieve change in our lives we can’t just focus on the economics of recycling, we also have to understand the attitudes and beliefs that underlie individual recycling decisions, the social psychology of what facilities and prompts actually change behaviors, the chemistry behind what recycling is possible, and a host of other disciplinary specific topics that must be integrated with one another to best inform an accurate understanding of the situation that can lead to change. While it is a stereotypical example and there are countless variations on the integration described, this kind of perspective and willingness to work together in an integrated, complimentary fashion is at the heart of interdisciplinary work.

Discussions of interdisciplinary work tend to focus on research, but it is essential to note that interdisciplinary approaches also apply to teaching. Interdisciplinary teaching can take many forms, including 1) team teaching topically focused classes with staff from different disciplines; 2) ensuring discussions within disciplines include considerations of how they will integrate with work and people in other fields; 3) problem based learning; and many other forms. Simply put, interdisciplinary teaching involves a conscious effort to apply knowledge, principles, and/or values from more than one academic discipline through a central theme, issue, problem, process, topic, or experience (Jacobs, Heidi Hayes.Interdisciplinary curriculum: Design and implementation. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 1250 N. Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314, 1989). Interdisciplinary teaching typically emphasizes the application of the skills and/or knowledge being acquired to current problems, and in doing so provides excellent means for relating students’ work to their lives and futures.

Interdisciplinary research and work has many definitions, but the following from a National Academies’ report is one I find well constructed,
“Interdisciplinary research is a mode of research by teams or individuals that integrates information, data, techniques, tools, perspectives, concepts, and/or theories from two or more disciplines or bodies of specialized knowledge to advance fundamental understanding or to solve problems whose solutions are beyond the scope of a single discipline or area of research practice,” (Committee on Facilitating Interdisciplinary Research, Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy (2004). Facilitating interdisciplinary research. National Academies. Washington: National Academy Press, p. 2.; In a recent textbook on interdisciplinary studies, Allen Repko et al. define it as, “…a cognitive process by which individuals and groups draw on disciplinary perspectives and integrate their insights and modes of thinking to advance their understanding of a complex problem with the goal of applying the understanding to a real world problem, (Repko, Allen F., Rick Szostak, and Michelle Phillips Buchberger. Introduction to interdisciplinary studies. Sage publications, 2013). These conceptualizations share common themes that define interdisciplinary work: integration of multiple disciplines and the application of the insights generated to real world problems, but may also raise questions about how such collaborations work.

Interdisciplinary work takes many forms, and some scholars including Repko et al. (Repko, Allen F., Rick Szostak, and Michelle Phillips Buchberger. Introduction to interdisciplinary studies. Sage publications, 2013) discuss the concepts of multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary to describe different approaches to interdisciplinary work. These terms represent a continuum of integration, where multidisciplinary involves teams or people from different fields working independently on an issue, and both sets of perspectives and findings are used to understand the issue at hand. Interdisciplinary work brings insights from multiple disciplines together throughout the research process, and each work is informed by the other perspectives involved. For example, a few years ago I worked on a project to encourage homeowners to reduce their use of fertilizer to protect water quality that involved turf scientists analyzing grass growth in different regions of New England to identify how much nitrogen plants actually needed, social scientists researching the key factors driving fertilization decisions by homeowners, and Extension staff and communications faculty working with both teams to ensure data that can be used to create effective outreach and education is collected. Our work was integrated because what one group of disciplinary experts did what directly informed by others on the project team. Finally, Transdisciplinary is a term that is debated, but most commonly refers to interdisciplinary research that has a practitioner project partner, or client, who will use the information generated to work to address the problem or issue studied. Interdisciplinary work can take many forms and no single from is more correct that any other one, but the degree of integration between fields on a particular project is one important dimension by which these types of works are classified.

Plymouth State University is exploring the possibility of creating “clusters” of expertise, which are connected to the idea of interdisciplinary work.  When thinking about interdisciplinary work at PSU it should first be emphasized that such work involves teaching as much as research. By having a more interdisciplinary focus in our teaching we may improve our ability to connect our work with students’ lives and demonstrate the value of our work to them and the community of which we are a part. In my opinion, one role clusters should play at PSU is facilitating work with partners external to the University, as well as within it, so we are connecting our cluster ideas with the community beyond campus. As one thinks of the relationship between clusters and interdisciplinary work at PSU, it must be noted that in addition to stimulating new forms of teaching and scholarship, clusters are also intended to create identity in key areas of excellence at PSU. As a result it is my expectation that both interdisciplinary and disciplinary research with have a home within a cluster. For example, a cluster focusing on “Climate Change Adaptation” would be a great place for interdisciplinary research on community preparedness, but if a meteorologist did a single study of climate change effects it would also “have a home” in the cluster. It is my hope clusters will exist to foster interdisciplinary teaching and scholarship, while also contributing to and assisting work in a  single discipline relevant to the cluster, as doing so provides the best means under the proposed system for growing areas of excellence and improving our reputation at PSU.

Interdisciplinary work is challenging, exciting, and frustrating, but is growing in popularity in higher education. Plymouth State University has the opportunity to become part of this change to make the work of higher education more applicable to, and useful for, the world beyond our campus, and I hope what I have shared has been helpful in some small way as we continue to create our understandings of what interdisciplinary work and clusters will mean at Plymouth State University.


December 21st, 2015 by Melinda

Mark Fischler, Criminal Justice, Dean of First Year Experience, October 2015

Interdisiplinarity is a complicated competence requiring a high level of cognitive development (Boix Mansilla)  (Stein 2007). Stein points out that understanding a discipline requires deep comprehension of the methodologies that contribute research in that particular field. And that skill set is first necessary “as one builds their map of competencies necessary to become multi-disciplinary, cross-disciplinary, inter-disciplinary and then trans-disciplinary” (Stein 2007). Stein bases that hierarchy of skill sets based on Kurt Fischer’s model of cognitive development (1980). One needs essentially to develop the skillsets of a specialist in a particular field before we can “branch out and relate our expertise to the expertise of others” (Stein 2007). Thus, we need to clear about what is expected and necessary from each method that includes multiple perspectives.

For the past fifteen years I have been a student of the multi-disciplinary approach entitled Integral Theory and the method of Integral Methodological Pluralism (Wilber 2003).  With regards to IMP, three foundational principles apply. They are: nonexclusion (acceptance of truth claims that pass the validity tests for their own paradigms in their respective fields), enfoldment (some practices are more inclusive, holistic and comprehensive than others), and enactment (phenomena disclosed by various types of inquiry depend in large part on a host of factors that influence the researcher who is disclosing the phenomena).  (Hargens, Zimmerman 2009)

Here is Ken Wilber who is the founder of this particular integral approach in a forward to the book Integral Medicine-“The whole point about any truly integral approach is that it touches bases with as many important areas of research as possible before returning very quickly to the specific issues and applications of a given practice…..Any integral approach-…is a panoramic look at the modes of inquiry (or tools of knowledge acquisition) that human beings use and have used, for decades and sometimes centuries. An Integral approach is based on one basic idea: no human mind can be 100% wrong……when it comes to deciding which approaches, methodologies, epistemologies, or ways knowing are “correct,” the answer can only, “All of them.” That is, all of the numerous practices or paradigms of human inquiry-including physics, chemistry, hermeneutics, collaborative inquiry, meditation, neuroscience, vision quest, phenomenology, structuralism, subtle energy research, systems theory, shamanic voyaging, chaos theory, developmental psychology-all of those modes of inquiry have an important piece of the overall puzzle (Wilber, Forward to Integral Medicine).

I have scanned three case study examples from the book Integral Ecology (Hargens, Zimmerman 2009)for which an integral model was applied to three ecological issues. I think these case examples do a fantastic job illustrating a comprehensive transdisciplinary approach to serious issues in society.

For further readings on interdisciplinarity I would recommend reading the following:

Learning to Synthesize: the development of interdisciplinary understanding-Veronica Boix Mansilla (Oxford Handbook of Interdisciplinarity)

Modeling the Demands of Interdiscipinarity: Toward a Framework for Evaluating Intedisciplinary Endeavors– Zachary Stein (Integral Review 2007)

Exercising Quality Control in Interdisciplinary Education: Toward an Epistemologically Responsible Approach—Zachary Stein, Michael Connell, and Howard Gardner (Journal of Philosophy of Education Vol 42, No.3-4 2008)

Transdisciplinarity: Basarab Nicolescu talks with Russ Volkmann(Integral Review 2007)

Integral Ecology-Unitiing Multiple Perspectives on the Natural World(Sean Hargen and Michael Zimmerman 2009)

Integral Spirituality-Ken Wilber (2006)

The Theory of Communicative Action: Reason and the rationalization of society-Jurgen Habermas (1984)

What is the meaning of Integral? Jack Crittendon  Forward to the book entitlted The Eye of Spirit (Ken Wilber 1997)

Defining Interdisciplinarity in Early Childhood Studies: One Narrow Viewpoint

December 21st, 2015 by Melinda

A single understanding of practice: Meagan K. Shedd, Early Childhood Studies

During the last 10 years, my research interests have focused on the role of early childhood educators in supporting the development of young children, particularly as young children transition to formal school settings. In this capacity, I am particularly interested in two areas examining the importance of aspects traditionally viewed as “school readiness” for young children noted in the literature including literacy development and physical wellness, with specific attention to how these two domains intersect. My research is informed by constructivist theory, as well as social cognitive theory and the human ecological framework, considering the specific role that parents, early childhood educators, and society at large play in the facilitation of young children’s construction of knowledge in these two domains. Due to the nature of this work, literacy development is often presented in a separate context, but I choose to examine it by juxtaposing literacy development and nutrition as an emerging field.

This interest has resulted in a number of studies examining the ways in which educators can use books with positive food and physical activity messages to enable children to construct their own knowledge about both nutrition and health and literacy. One study was successfully presented as part of an interdisciplinary panel presentation at the annual conference of the Literacy Research Association in December 2013 as part of an alternate format. In presenting my research, I was able to collaborate with other researchers examining mechanisms for facilitating the development of content literacy knowledge, working with researchers in social studies, science, math, and early childhood. This format was intended to share studies in process but also gather feedback from participants, and also enabled additional collaborations with my colleagues from other institutions, further develop the study, and present the final data at another conference aimed at practitioners. To me, this underscores the nature of interdisciplinary not only because there are multiple disciplines working together, but that the work is ongoing and informing subsequent research as well as practice.

Further, this research in connecting books and nutrition and physical activity resulted in the development of a grant application and subsequent poster presentation at the National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators in November of 2014. Results of this study prompted pedagogical changes in one of my courses (ER2400 Nutrition, Physical Activity and Health for the Young Child and a General Education course), as well as another practitioner-based presentation to further disseminate this information in ways practitioners were sharing was not happening in the field. Again, “work” precipitated more “work”, but in a cyclical, collaborative, informative way.

Defining interdisiplinarity

A basic, working definition of interdisciplinarity is that one is combining two or more academic disciplines as part of one’s effort. In early childhood education, educators are often doing this as we work with young children as evidenced in Project Approach (Helm & Katz, 2011), where children investigate a question and educators facilitate the children in addressing the question by providing tools, inviting speakers to come to the classroom, engaging in site visits, finding out what children already know and how to add to that body of knowledge, documenting learning, and so on. Early childhood education by its very nature is interdisciplinary in that early childhood educators must demonstrate competency in content knowledge across multiple areas (Kagan, Moore, & Bredekamp, 1995), but also possess an understanding of how to teach content (pedagogy), as well as the intersection of the two (pedagogical content knowledge) (Shulman, 1986). Questions aren’t simply answered, but explored using resources from a variety of areas and disciplines to enable the children satisfactorily address their own questions that can then be shared with others in meaningful ways.


Helm, J. H. & Katz, L. (2011). Young Investigators: The Project Approach in the Early Years

(2nd Ed.). New York, NY: Teachers College Press.

Kagan, S. L., Moore, E., & Bredekamp, S. (Eds.). (1995). Reconsidering Children’s Early

Development and Learning: Toward Shared Beliefs and Vocabulary. Washington, DC: National Education Goals Panel.

Shulman, L. (1986). Those who understand: Knowledge growth in teaching.

Educational Researcher15(2), 4-14.

Critical questions to ask of PSU include

  • What are the ways we can capitalize on the existing partnerships within existing departments/colleges? What does this look like in terms of workload, effective mentorship of students, service, and scholarship?
  • How do we involve students in meaningful ways that allow them to successfully articulate their experiences for themselves, with community partners, and to future employers? How do we ensure the highest standard of ethical and engaged scholarship and service for those taking part in experiences?
  • How is this work disseminated in an ethical, deliberate, and strategic manner? From my perspective as a researcher and practitioner, it’s not enough to “do for the sake of doing” but one should engage in deliberate practice with an understanding of the theory guiding the work (or an intention of building theory). Will students be able to understand and articulate this? At what level does this start?

Interdisciplinarity: Roy Stever

December 21st, 2015 by Melinda

Roy Stever, Contract Faculty, College of Business Administration

Interdisciplinarity, or the state resulting from the combination of two or more academic disciplines, is at the core of most successful learning units.  Without interdisciplinarity, organizations of any size or motivation are predestined to move deterministically, without the leveraging of “value” afforded by cross-informed frames of reference.  The regrettable results of working exclusively “within discipline” are well documented.  Indeed, ample proof exists in both the public and private sectors to support the notion that interdisciplinarity is essential to survival in a world characterized by explosive change.

This was the premise on which Novelis, Inc. set out to change culture, in the period 2004-2008.  Novelis, a global leader in the manufacture and recycling of aluminum, successfully embedded innovation within its business model and engendered a culture that generates new value-creating ideas at speed, and as a normal course of business.

The underlying value which interdisciplinarity brings to organizations, beyond the  potential for competitive advantage, includes the development of internal competencies, as follows.

  • a basis for shared conversations and ownership of ideas
  • a lab for innovation based on discrete, repeatable processes
  • a portal to the outside through which ideas may flow in both directions
  • a vehicle for efficient, resourced delivery of results

Interdisciplinarity, however, is better thought of as a prerequisite, not a solution.  In the Novelis experience, the company recognized the following additional critical drivers of success for its innovation teams, or “iTeams”.

  1. Top management support and engagement in review needs to be unwavering and systematized
  2. A charter for a particular project within a “domain” (i.e. cluster) should be directional, not prescriptive
  3. Team make-up should reflect different behaviors and diversity, as well as drawing on an appropriate combination of disciplines
  4. Teams need to struggle early on with specific deliverables, resources required and timeframe
  5. Teams need to involve customers and partners early
  6. The tools used by designers, artists, ethnographers, and elsewhere in the social sciences, are quite powerful in informing business innovation
  7. Teams and top management need to expect periods of frustrated inquiry, or wandering, and an occasional failure, in pursuit of truly innovative solutions
  8. Healthy disagreement among iTeam members and a competitive spirit between iTeams emerge, over time, as unintended motivators
  9. A rich set of process tools, from innovation to project management, needs to be made available to the teams, through a central core group of facilitators
  10. The entire process needs to be monitored, measured and evaluated by a steering committee, through the various stages of development

It was natural for a busy, proficient organization such as Novelis to resist the change implicit in layering platform-based activity on top of existing operations.  Top management leadership, promotion of early successes, and departmental champions all served to reduce organizational anxiety.  Early jealousies emerged among individuals and departments, as big ideas emerged from different parts of the organization.  These feelings were assuaged as the benefits of all innovation flowed to the organization as a whole, and with the recognition that core resources were required to “mind the shop”.


Without pretending that the transformation at Novelis would be a “drop-in” at Plymouth State University, or any academic institution, I am struck by the similarities of the challenge, hopefully captured above.  For those interested, there is much more detail available in two articles available through CETL – Novelis Driving Innovation (Novelis, 2008) and The Ambidextrous Organization (O’Reilly and Tushman, HBR, 2004).  Many of the concepts and processes, referenced in this paper, are taught by me in PSU’s BU 3380 – Business Innovation.

January Jamboree 2016

December 15th, 2015 by Melinda

Save the Dates!

January 12th, 13th, 14th, 19th and 21st 2016


Join us for this year’s January Jamboree! Topics include: Advising, Student Support, Interdisciplinarity, Orientation, Annotations, Video, Gradebook, Collaboration, and Strategic Clusters. Learn in community about professional development issues that matter to you and PSU!

Please RSVP (so we can book appropriate rooms & food) to the sessions you’ll attend via this link:  

Tuesday, January 12th

10 a.m.-noon  Strategic Cluster Conversations

Topic: Education, Democracy, & Social Change   Location: Frost Commons

TopicInnovation & Entrepreneurship   Location: Lamson 124

Noon-1 p.m. Lunch outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

1-3 p.m.  Moodle Gradebook Overview 

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

Wednesday, January 13th

10 a.m.-noon  Strategic Cluster Conversations

Topic: Digital Arts & Technology   Location: Frost Commons

Topic: Health & Human Enrichment   Location: Lamson 124

Noon- 1 p.m. Lunch outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

1-2 p.m.  Annotate the Internet with the Hypothesis online annotation tool.

Scott Robison.  Marginal note-taking is an age-old learning practice that needs little pedagogical justification. Collaborative annotation using web-based tools like Hypothesis similarly develops the traditional skills of reading comprehension and critical thinking but also introduces students to newer digital literacies (media literacy, visual literacy, informational literacy, to name a few). In this session we’ll consider the Internet as a participatory space for students, explore how Hypothesis facilitates this perspective, and answer any questions you may have. You will be AMAZED!

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

2-3 p.m. Using video in your courses – Kaltura, screencasting, and troubleshooting any issues you have.  

Scott Robison. In this session, we will cover most of Kaltura’s features including uploading and storing existing video in your online library, creating screencasts, creating webcam videos, and then using those videos in your courses. All of the Kaltura features available to you as an instructor are also available to students. Bring any questions or issues you have been having and we’ll work through them.

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

Thursday, January 14th

10 a.m.-noon    Strategic Cluster Conversations

Topic: Justice & Security   Location:  Frost Commons

Topic: Future Environments   Location:  Lamson 124

Noon-1 p.m. Lunch outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

1-3 p.m.  Synchronous Meeting Spaces: Bb Collaborate and Ultra, Skype for Business, Connect NH, Google Hangouts.

Stacey Curdie.  PSU has a variety of web conferencing tools available to assist you and your students in connecting virtually with each other and with the rest of the world. In this session we will look at the variety of features among the tools, why you might use one tool over the other, and get some hands on experience testing one or more of them out. Please bring your laptop for this event.

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

Tuesday, January 19th

10 a.m.-3 p.m.    Moodle Drop-In and Gradebook Tune-up sessions

Location: Lamson 113 – in CETL Faculty Lounge

10-11 a.m.   Advising First Year Students: Conversation about Student Success Coaches

Patrick Cate, Mark Fischler and Stephanie Halter.  This fall the Academic Affairs Committee (AAC) examined the challenges before PSU in terms of advising (large and growing numbers of undergraduate advisees, heavy advising loads and inequity across programs/majors in advising loads), as this falls under our charge and voted 10-0 at our last meeting motioning tht the administration support a different approach to advising for first year students.  Please come and join the conversation about advising first year students, hear the reasons the AAC members decided to support this initiative and talk with the experts on advising.

Location: Outside of Lamson 113  (CETL Lounge)

11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.    Advising: Best Practices and Training

Patrick Cate. Plymouth State University has signed on to the EAB Student Success Platform and recently completed a pilot of the software.  Come hear about what we learned from that pilot and be trained on the use of the software. Please send an email to if you plan to attend this event so we can register you with the software.

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

12:15-1 p.m. Lunch outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

1-3 p.m.    What is “interdisciplinarity” and what could it be at Plymouth State?

Join colleagues for an open discussion about interdisciplinarity and its role in the future of Plymouth State. Individual faculty from Early Childhood Studies, Criminal Justice, English, Interdisciplinary Studies, College of Business Administration, Social Science, Office of Environmental Sustainability, and History & Philosophy have each written brief statements (most approx 1 page) on the topic, offering definitions, examples, cautionary words, and inspiration. Documents can be accessed here for perusal before the conversation. With Meagan Shedd, Mark Fischler, Robin DeRosa, Roy Stever, Brian Eisenhauer, and John Krueckeberg.

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

Wednesday, January 20th

Chair’s retreat-no events

Thursday, January 21st

10 a.m. – 3 p.m.   Moodle Drop-In and Gradebook Tune-up sessions

Location: Lamson 113 – in CETL Faculty Lounge

10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.   Supporting our Students across the Campus

10:00 a.m. Writing Center (Jane Weber)

10:20 a.m. The Helping Center (Stephen Flynn)

10:40 a.m. Counseling Center (Robert Hlansy)

11:00 a.m. PASS (Patti May)

11:20 a.m. break

11:30 a.m. Math Activity Center (Annie Hagar)

11:50 a.m. Student Life (Kerry Keating)

12:10 a.m. Campus Ministry & Caring Campus Coalition (Amy Robison and Kathy Tardif)

Meet staff and find out how you can support our students! Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

12:30-1:15 p.m. Lunch outside of Lamson 113 (CETL lounge)

1:15-2:15 p.m.    August Orientation: A new model

Mark Fischler and Marylena Sevigney. Based on our comparator schools and best practices, the Orientation Advisory Group has recommended that PSU also have August Orientation “welcome days” before classes begin for our first year students. Come talk with the architects of the plan as we continue to reshape it to build a meaningful experience for our students!

Location: Outside of Lamson 113 (CETL Lounge)

Panel discussion on First Year Seminar

November 20th, 2015 by Melinda

Come hear some of our best First Year Seminar instructors share the process and experience of teaching this important course for our first year students.


Thursday, Dec 3rd from 1-2 p.m.

Our panelist: Wendy Palmquist, Jay Moskowitz, and Gerry Buteau in Frost Commons.


Friday, Dec 11th from 12:30-1:30 p.m.

Our panelist: Wendy Palmquist, Jay Moskowitz, Gerry Buteau, and Liz Ahl in Frost Commons.

Teaching with Technology Blogs

October 20th, 2015 by Melinda

teaching with technology blogs