Monthly Archives: August 2012

Participate in a community of faculty peers by coming to our new faculty seminars

If you are a new professor here at Penn State, please consider joining us for our new faculty seminar series. Four times this academic year we are offering seminars that should not only get you more in the know about various aspects of your new role, but they will also serve as an excellent forum for meeting other new professors who are going through the same kind of adjustments as you. Who knows when you may need a colleague across campus to partner with on a proposal or to go hiking with on Mt Nittany?

Please join us at any or all of these events by going to:


Top 10 Things Every New Faculty Member Should Know

Tuesday, September 11, 2012, Noon – 1 pm, Rider 315

Two pre-tenure faculty, Dr. Erika Poole and Dr. Kamesh Madduri, will share what they have learned about teaching and learning, workload issues, and faculty expectations during their first few years at Penn State. Their insights are worth hearing and joining in will be a good way for you to begin developing a community of new faculty peers.


Using Your Voice in the Classroom

Wednesday, November 7, 2012, 12:15 – 1:15 pm, Rider 315

University professors are professional public speakers and the skill to speak healthily is just as important as keeping current in research and being able to create a stimulating environment in the classroom. Make sure you are getting your message across in a confident, sustainable manner by joining Professor Jennifer Trost, School of Music, who will discuss the proper care of the voice and offer suggestions to increase your stamina and ability to project.


Analyzing Your Student Evaluations

Thursday, January 24, 2013, Noon – 1 pm, Rider 315

You just got your first set of student evaluations back. Would you like to discuss them in an environment where others, just like you, are figuring out for the first time how to interpret and utilize the results? Come to this session to take a closer look at the SRTEs and to figure out how to use these ratings to guide teaching improvement.


Getting the Most from Your Mentor

Wednesday, March 27, 2013, 12:15 – 1:15 pm, Rider 315

Going it alone is not a recommended path for new professors. With all of the new opportunities and expectations, you may feel you don’t have any time for relationships. Yet you need support and guidance. During this session, we hear from a faculty with mentoring expertise and we will listen to your perspectives on the mentoring you have received so far. At the end, you should leave with some new ideas on how to enhance your mentoring experiences.


Part-time Faculty welcome at Penn State’s teaching center

The article below from the Chronicle of Higher Education found that Part-time Faculty, aka Adjuncts, feel that they lack instructional resources.  Please help us get the word out to all part-time faculty teaching Penn State students that they are welcome to work with the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence instructional consultants, participate in our programs, and access our resources!  

Adjuncts’ Working Conditions Affect Student Learning, Report Says
By Audrey Williams June
Short-notice hiring and a lack of instructional resources are major impediments to effective teaching, says the report, based on a survey of adjuncts last fall.

Give Penn State Learning your Inquisitive, by Neill Johnson

This post was authored by Neill Johnson, Director of Penn State Learning.

“Give me your tired, your poor,” says the Statue of Liberty in that famous poem by Emma Lazarus. If we take this approach to tutor referrals, we perpetuate the image of academic support resources as anchors for students adrift.  In learning as in life, nobody wants to be lost, not even temporarily. However, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t want to be skilled at asking and answering questions. That’s why I implore you, please, to “give Penn State Learning your inquisitive.”  We want and need students who enjoy asking questions, who are eager to be challenged, and who are eager to help their peers “get it.” We also want students who aren’t afraid to say they don’t know. We annually employ over 100 inquisitive writing, foreign language, and math tutors and over 20 equally curious leaders of drop-in study groups for various accounting, economics, math, statistics, and physical science courses. All members of these learning communities are undergraduates, all are fairly compensated, and all take either English 250 or Curriculum and Instruction 200 and receive ongoing feedback from mentors and supervisors.


Without these inquisitive student leaders, no peer tutoring operation has a ghost of a chance of helping all the students who haven’t yet figured out how to ask their own questions and who dread being asked something they can’t answer. So in addition to your inquisitive, yes, give us your shy, your timid, your quiet novices yearning to speak free. We want them, too. In your syllabi and on your ANGEL course sites, please encourage your students to stop by our labs, visit our study groups, and check out the “Employment” and other links from our home page,