Faculty Convocation offers online teaching strategies, technology training

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State World Campus will give Penn State online instructors the opportunity to improve their teaching skills and strengthen connections with students at its third annual Faculty Convocation.

This year’s event will take place on Dec. 2 and 3 at The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel on the University Park campus and includes skill-building sessions, specialized workshops and expert lectures.

The conference introduces attendees to problem-solving strategies and technologies that they can implement in their online courses, according to Andrew Tatusko, assistant director for faculty development at World Campus. Participants will network with other faculty members and familiarize themselves with University support services that are available to help them with their teaching.

Keynote speaker Rena Palloff is the author of several publications about online learning and faculty development. Palloff, a mentoring faculty member in the Educational Leadership and Change Doctoral Program at Fielding Graduate University, will discuss tactics teachers can employ to create dynamic learning communities within their online classes.

The convocation also includes two panel discussions: one for MOOC (massive open online course) instructors to explain how the classes have affected their teaching styles and another for students to give instructors insight into their experiences and perspectives as online learners. 

“The whole purpose of this is under the philosophy that excellent teachers can help students persist and receive degrees,” Tatusko said. “It’s a way for us to show that distance education isn’t just asynchrony in a course. There are a lot of other ways we try to engage our students.”

This year's Faculty Convocation coincides with the 15-year anniversary of the World Campus. All convocation attendees are invited to a special panel discussion, "Penn State World Campus – Past, Present and Future," and a reception beginning at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 2.

For a detailed program schedule or to register for the Faculty Convocation, visit the website.

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Last Updated November 18, 2013