Faculty Development Newsletter

2015-2016: issue #12 - August 6, 2016

Fac Dev Website

Pedagogy Corner:

"The Absolute Worst Way

to Start the Term"

"Hey, is anything important happening on the first day of class?" Have you heard that before? Do student expectations for a brief first class meeting lead you to adopt a fifteen-minute "syllabus day?" Kevin Gannon of the CHE Vitae blog says you should not give in. There is too much to be gained on the first day in setting the tone for the term.

Kevin Gannon, "The Absolute Worst Way to Start the Semester," Chronicle of Higher Education, August 3, 2016.



ACM Notes
Click on image for ACM Notes.

Highlights in the summer 2016 issue:

Weihong Du and Mike Schneider participate in ACM Off Campus Study Conference. (Yes, that's us in Pilsen.)

Sharon Clayton leads Knox group garnering FaCE grant on Cognitive Science Research. Congratulations to Sharon, Judy Thorn, Mark Shroyer, and Nate Williams!

India Site Visit: Apply for the faculty site visit to the ACM India program by August 15.

New ACM off-campus program in Amsterdam features sciences and global health; visiting faculty position available in fall 2017. Apply by August 31.

Six ACM-CIC Mellon Faculty Fellows begin at ACM colleges this fall.

Newsletter Bonus: Mike appears again in the ACM Notes. Can you find him?



Join Your Students in the

Summer Common Reading

The Summer Common Reading has been sent to all entering students and will be part of the New Student Orientation. The reading is entirely online this year.

Join in the reading. Use it in your courses. Serve as a facilitator of an orientation discussion. Mary will circulate an invitation for volunteers.

New Bearer, Same Torch

This newsletter marks the end of my term as associate dean. In the spirit of the Olympic Games, I pass the faculty development torch to Mary Armon with the utmost confidence that she will carry it ably into the future. Starting today, she assumes responsibility for all matters relating to faculty funds, upcoming events, and all the other tasks associated with the faculty development agenda.

One of the great pleasures of the faculty development coordinator's role is that it is also a faculty development experience -- for the coordinator. I learn with you. In this role, one has ample opportunity to observe with unnerving regularity the forces that are reshaping higher education: the tough economic environment, the high stakes testing regimes for high school education, our know-nothing politicians, the sensationalizing news media, and, to repeat the literally millenia-old lament, less-than-serious students. While there is an occasional villain in that mix, I have learned that attempting to assign blame elsewhere is rarely productive or healthy. Faculty development builds on the assumption that the best chance to improve teaching and learning lies with us. Another workshop, a snappy Chronicle essay, a few preachy messages like this one, or worst of all, a webinar may seem like so much watery gruel in the face of serious challenges. But our investment in these activities expands and extends our capacity to experiment and innovate, to adopt radical change if necessary, to improve the faculty-student relationship. I do not expect that everyone will come to the same conclusion, but you have helped me understand better the possibilities for change in higher ed. It has been a pleasure to serve in this new post. Thank you for your participation, support, and enthusiasm for our faculty development agenda. Best wishes for the upcoming year.

-- Mike Schneider


New Fac Dev Website has Launched!

      Fac Dev
     Click the image to visit the new site.

We are happy to announce the launch of the streamlined, more user-friendly, more mobile-friendly Faculty Development website. We hope the new website gets you to the information you need quickly and efficiently.

As always, please send comments and corrections on the website to facultydevelopment@knox.edu.


Click the Dollar Sign:
Next Round of Research / Creative Work Funding Requests for 2016-2017 - Apply by September 1 for academic year funding

The Committee on Faculty Resources invites applications for funding of Faculty Research and Creative Work for 2016-2017 fiscal year (July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017).

A full description of available grants is here.

If funds remain, a final round of requests will be due January 1, 2017.


Click the Dollar Sign Again:
Mellon Faculty Career Enhancement Grants for 2016-2017 - Apply by September 1

The Committee on Faculty Resources is accepting applications for funding of faculty pedagogy, course, and program development projects, for activities between now and June 30, 2017.

A full description of the grant categories and the application process is here.

The current Mellon FaCE Grant runs through the end of this academic year. Now is the time to seek funding for that good idea you have been mulling over.


Knight Funds in Religious Studies - Apply by September 1

Financial support is available for faculty projects in Religious Studies, made possible by a gift from Knox Trustee Mary Kent Knight. Examples of fundable activities include: course development, research, and other professional development. Proposals will be reviewed by faculty in the Religious Studies program and the Dean of the College.

Read about Knight Fund opportunities here.


Conference Travel Allocations for 2016-2017 Fiscal Year - Remember to apply in advance

The Committee on Faculty Resources is now accepting requests for Conference Travel Allocations for the 2016-2017 Fiscal Year (July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017).

The Conference Travel Allocations policies for 2016-2017 are here. Please apply for CTA funds before you attend a conference. All requests for the year are due no later than March 1, 2017.

Direct link to the Online Form for Conference Travel Allocation Requests for 2016-2017