Focus on Teaching – March 2019

A career as a university instructor or K-12 teacher is full of stories. There are successes, failures, humour — but they’re always a source of professional learning and reflection. CELT's podcast Adventures in Teaching gives you an inside look at the world of educators, as they tell their stories of learning inside and outside the classroom. The March show brings together Dr. Brett Fairbairn (President of TRU) and Alison Sidow (Superintendent of School District #73) along with host John Churchley.

To keep up to date with CELT's events, you can now follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! We post regular updates on our events and workshops, as well as articles and opportunities. But don't worry, our calendar and program guide are always available.

Workshops and Courses

Classroom Assessment Techniques

Formative Assessment for Better Teaching and Learning

March 20, 27, & April 3, 12-1 p.m., OL344

Do you ever question if students are on track with their learning in your courses? Do you ever wonder if your teaching strategies are effectively reaching them? If so, this workshop is for you! Based on the book Classroom Assessment Techniques by Angelo and Cross, this three-session series will offer you the opportunity to explore formative assessment strategies to help you determine how well your students are learning and how well your course is progressing. Register before March 6 to get a free copy of the book!

Rushing through your presentations?

Streamline your content at our Timed Talks workshop

March 12, 3:30-5:00 p.m., OL340

This workshop is intended for faculty, staff, students, and administrators… anyone who has to speak in front of a group in a limited amount of time.  This could include a presentation at an academic conference, sharing some key information at a meeting, or any other time when you’re asked to speak “…but please be brief.” This workshop will offer tips and strategies for planning your talk and for managing yourself as you present. You will get an opportunity to practice in a non-threatening exercise. Register here

Welcome to my classroom

As part of the TRU I-Days Events

March 13, 1-2 p.m., Terrace Room, 2nd Floor, Campus Activity Centre

We all have personal histories from our school experiences as children that have shaped our identities. This panel presentation will feature stories from faculty, staff, and students from around the world about their elementary, secondary, and tertiary education. What did their classrooms look, sound, and feel like in their home cultures, and how did that affect who they are today as learners?  Register here

Facilitator Development Workshop (FDW)

April 23-27,  8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Cost $800, 

TRU Kamloops

The Facilitator Development Workshop (FDW) is a five-day training event to prepare facilitators to lead the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW). Participants refine their teaching techniques through the mini-lessons and, with guided practice and feedback, develop strategies for facilitating the group process. Participants have the opportunity to develop new knowledge and techniques for facilitating group development, to discover new teaching methods, to explore formative evaluation techniques, and to receive feedback on their own teaching and facilitating skills. Register here

Interculturalizing the Curriculum Faculty PD Program

May 8-10, 8:30 a.m - 4:30 p.m., TRU Kamloops

Since 2008, the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching has offered a unique and intensive professional development opportunity for faculty members to enhance culturally responsive teaching strategies and incorporate intercultural learning outcomes in curriculum. Over 90 faculty from 18 departments have completed the program; they have improved their teaching, revised curricula, presented at conferences, and published in education journals. Register here

Course (Re)Design Institute (CRI)

May 13-17, 8:30 a.m. -4:30 p.m., OL344

Have a course you'd like to create or tweak? This five-day workshop offers you the opportunity to apply evidence-based design principles to create or revise a course. Modelled on an approach developed at McGill University and documented in Saroyan and Amundsen’s Rethinking Teaching in Higher Education (2004), the CRI includes study of theories of course design and learning, peer discussion and feedback, and time for systematic reflection. The workshop’s activities focus on concept mapping, developing learning outcomes, selecting instructional strategies/learning activities, and assessment planning. Register here

Learning Technology Workshops

New to Moodle, or would like to learn more? Along with our regular Moodle Drop-in sessions, we will be running a series of specific workshops for users. Check the CELT Calendar for specific dates, times, and to register.

Orientation to Moodle  |  Using Gradebook |  Wikipedia for Education | Open Web Tools | Creating Interactive Content using H5P | Big Blue Button

For full descriptions of each workshop, visit our website.


Join your colleagues for our lunch-and-learn speaker series. Each 20-minute presentation will give you insight into teaching strategies, trends, or emerging research. If you can't make it in person, watch live, or later on our Livestream.

Upcoming Talks

March 12: Creating a Sensory Smart Post Secondary Classroom - Nan Stevens & Creating Better Open Textbooks - Steven Earle

March 28: Creating a Sense of Belonging: Value of Building Community and Connectedness with Students - Amy Tucker & The Brain on PlayDo - Kim Calder-Stegemann

April 9: MOOCs for Teaching and Learning - Matthew Stranach & Introduction to Group Testing - Carolyn Ives

For full descriptions, visit the CELTalks webpage


Learning at Intercultural Intersections

Toward Equity, Inclusion, and Reconciliation

TRU Kamloops, March 13-15, 2019

This international conference brings together researchers, practitioners, learners, and community to envision and explore the intersections of intercultural learning, internationalization, and Indigenization with a focus on educational approaches to equity, inclusion, and reconciliation. Learn more

Cascadia Open Education Summit

SFU Harbour Centre, April 17 & 18, 2019

This event is for new and experienced OER advocates, offering the opportunity to learn and share effective practices in awareness building, implementation, collaboration, strategy, and research. Register here

ISW Spring Institute

Naramata, BC, May 29-June 2

Theme: Being our Authentic Selves – Practicing the Art, Craft and Science of the ISW

In 2019, we are celebrating 40 years of the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) Program and Network, now offered at places around the world. This year we return to Naramata Centre for our Spring Institute for ISW facilitators and trainers. The Naramata Centre was the site for our residential ISW Spring Institutes for 30+ years, before this event moved to other places in British Columbia, Ontario and Nova Scotia.

In honour of our 40th anniversary year, we have asked Jeanie Cockell and Joan McArthur-Blair, two of our ISW pioneers, to serve as lead program planners and process facilitators for this event. Register here

Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE)

Winnipeg, Manitoba, June 11-14, 2019

There are four conference threads associated with the STLHE 2019 conference theme, Guiding the Journey: Learner – Teacher – Learner, which will help to ground discussions about the journey in education from one of learner to teacher to learner.  Register here

Awards and Opportunities

Awards for Excellence in Open Education

BCcampus, Nominations accepted every month

The Awards for Excellence in Open Education recognize outstanding contributions to the open education movement in British Columbia. These contributions may include significant leadership, OER development, research, or advocacy by faculty, students, support staff, or administrators at post-secondary institutions in B.C. or others that support the post-secondary system in B.C. Individuals or teams may be recognized. Nomination Form

3M National Teaching Fellowship

In 1986, the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE) and 3M Canada partnered to recognize exceptional contributions to teaching and learning in Canadian post-secondary education. The community of 3M National Teaching Fellows embodies the highest ideals of teaching excellence and scholarship with a commitment to encourage and support the educational experience of every learner.

Up to ten Fellowships are selected annually. We encourage faculty interested in applying for the 3MNTF to contact us early so we can help you prepare a strong nomination package prior to the September deadline. A helpful introduction to the program is on this livestream. Visit the STLHE website to learn more.

Call for Proposals

Educational Technology Users Group (ETUG)

Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops, June 20 & 21, 2019

Call for proposals deadline April 5

Western Conference on Science Education (WCSE)

Western Univesrity, London, Ontario, July 3-5, 2019

Call for proposals deadline April 1

Digital Pedagogy Institute Conference

University of Waterloo, Ontario, July 31-August 1

Call for proposals open now

Currents in Teaching and Learning

Submission deadlines: December 15 & August 15 each year

Save the Date

March 12: CELTalk

March 13: [I-Days] Welcome to my classroom

March 14-16, April 12,13: PIDP 3100 Foundations of Adult Education

March 20, 27 and April 3: Classroom Assessment Techniques

March 28: CELTalk

April 9 : CELTalk

April 10: K-16 Mind the Gap Project Showcase

April 23-27: FDW

May 13-17: Course (Re)Design Institute

CELT activities at a glance

For an overview of all upcoming CELT workshops, speakers and other events, view the monthly calendar hosted by the TRU Library. Workshops are open to faculty, staff and graduate students unless otherwise noted.

Focus on Teaching is the monthly newsletter of the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT). We showcase instructional development opportunities for TRU faculty and staff, and up-to-date information on our current projects, initiatives and learning opportunities. To read past issues of Focus on Teaching or to subscribe to our mailing list, visit our Newsletters page.

Questions about learning and teaching? Contact CELT or visit us in OL 349.