2010 Symposium on Teaching and Learning

Sixth Annual SUNY-Oswego Symposium on Learning and Teaching:

Communicating Diversity and Diversifying Communication

October 1 and 2, 2010

 To register for some or all of the events in the symposium, please click here.
Friday, October 1
  • 12:30 - 2:00 pm - (CC 214) Luncheon reception for recipients of the President’s and Provost’s Awards for Excellence in Teaching and Advisement. (Lunch cost is $10 and may be paid at the CELT office or at the door. Please RSVP by noon on September 30.)
    Join us to recognize your colleagues for their efforts! (watch the video)

    • President's Award for Excellence in Teaching by full-time faculty: Cynthia Clabough, Art 
    • Provost's Award for Excellence in Teaching by part-time faculty: Thomas Delduchetto. Marketing
    •  President's Award for Excellence in Advisement: Mary McCune, History and Jessica Reeher, Communication Studies
      • COLT award certificates to the following faculty teaching award nominees:
      • Amy Bartell, Art
      • Martha Bruch, Chemistry\
      • Laura Brown, Psychology 
      • Jan Held Woodworth, Vocational Teaching Prep.
  • 2:00 - 4:00 pm - Peer-reviewed poster session in Campus Center Concourse (watch the video)
    • Roger Brooks, Barbara Streets, Karen Wolford, “Planning an international diversity course focusing on multicultural competence for treatment of trauma survivors”
    • Kristin Eichhorn, “Interpersonal and/or Public Speaking: An Assessment of College Students’ Cognitive Communication Competence”
    • Roger S. Taylor, Gautam Biswas, Hogyeong Jeong, Brian Sulcer, & James Segedy, “Affective States as Predictors of Learning Gains”
    • Carolina C. Ilie, Lillie Ghobrial, Michael Evans, Gregory Maslak, Mark Stewart Nicole Scott, Brittany Barrett, and Anna Bontorno, “Multi-Gender Environment and Increased Diversity for Physics Majors”
    • Carolina C. Ilie, Mark Potter, Damian Schofield, “How Can Kinesthetic Learners Benefit in a Typical Class Environment?”
    • Ana Djukic-Cocks, “Using Visuals to address some aspects of Diversity in the German Language Classroom”
    • Daniel Preston and Shannon Pritting, “Using Technology to Facilitate Cross-Disciplinary Collaboration”
  • 4:00 pm - 5 pm - 132 Campus Center (Auditorium) Keynote address by Dr. Eloy Rodriguez (James A. Perkins endowed Professor and Research Scientist in Ethnobotanical Medicine and Health at Cornell University), “Diversifying Medicine: Teaching Science and Culture through Ethnomedicinal Cuisines” (watch the video)

    Dr. Rodriguez was born in Texas, is a Chicano (Mexican American) and joined Cornell University in 1994 after teaching and conducting research at the University of California at Irvine for 18 years. He received his B.A. in Zoology and Ph.D. in Natural Products Biochemistry and Biology and conducted Postdoctoral research at University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada in Plant Medicinal Biochemistry. He has published over 175 research articles, 2 books and is currently writing a book on the "Genesis of Applicability of Natural Medicines." Dr. Rodriguez has also presented over 500 lectures throughout the world and has trained over 300 minority and majority undergraduates in chemical ecology, oncology (cancer), control of infectious diseases and nature-based pharmaceuticals. Dr. Rodriguez, with Dr. Richard Wranghan (Harvard), established the discipline of Zoopharmacognosy (animals self-medication) and he has built field laboratories in the Amazon of Peru and on the Caribbean island of the Dominican Republic. Dr. Rodriguez has also established the program of "Ethnobotanical Medicine and Health" at Cornell Ithaca and collaborates with Medical Doctors at Weill Cornell Medical College in teaching "Wilderness Medicine" to medical students at Cornell and Columbia.

    Abstract: The lack of racial and gender (especially underrepresented minority women) diversification in the Sciences and Biomedical Sciences is still the major challenge facing all colleges and universities in the USA. As a basic research scientist interested in the natural history, evolution, organic chemistry, proteomics, social & cultural sciences, pharmacology and oncology of natural medicines, I have developed new courses (tutorial) and research programs that are very attractive to undergraduates (especially women students) many of which are not in the hard sciences, but are interested in connecting the social, anthropological and cultural sciences with hardcore health and medicine. In this presentation, I will highlight innovative approaches we have developed to entice more students into the sciences and at the same time expose the students to new and intriguing areas of study involving food, health and global ethnic medicinal cuisines. An example of a "super medicinal cuisine" is the Mexican dish "mole' con chile y mas" (cacao, hot peppers & loads of antioxidants & no sugar).
  • 5:00 -7:00  pm - dinner with keynote speaker - 114 Campus Center (For dinner reservations, visit the CELT office or contact celt@oswego.edu by noon on September 30, 2010. Dinner cost is $10, payable at CELT or at the door.)

Saturday, October 2 
  • 9:00 - 9:30 am - coffee, bagels, and informal discussion (no charge for those attending from SUNY-Oswego)
  • 9:30 am - 11:30 - workshop lead by Eloy Rodriguez -
    “An open and candid discussion on the demise of underrepresented diversity in the sciences”
  • 11:30-12:30 - lunch - pizza and soda/water (no charge for those attending from SUNY-Oswego)
  • 12:30 - 4:00 pm - sessions on learning and teaching

Sessions on learning and teaching 
Poster presentations - on display in CC 114 - 12:30 - 4:00
Session 1 - Communicating Diversity I 
Room: 202
Time: 12:30 - 1:30 pm
Title: “The Global Laboratory: an innovative research and cultural experience for SUNY Oswego students” (watch the video)
Time: 12:30 - 1:00
Presenters: Shashi M. Kanbur, Lorrie Clemo, Cleane Medeiros, Webe Kadima, Deborah Stanley

The Global Laboratory is an innovative research experience recently started at SUNY Oswego. Here juniors/seniors spend 8-10 weeks working on a cutting edge research project with a SUNY Oswego STEM faculty member at a major research institution abroad. They will collaborate with both students and faculty at their host institution. Examples of possible projects include Robotic Telescope development (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina), Condensed matter Physics (Universidade Federal de Paraiba), Astrophysics (National Central University, Taiwan) Protein Folding (Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India), Diabetes Prevention (National Institute of Health, Democratic Republic of Congo) environmental effects on Lake Tanganayika (Hydrobiological Institute, Democratic Republic of Congo).


The benefits to the student are multiple. Exposure and ownership of a global cutting edge research experience which, in many cases, has practical applications in the local setting. This can be a transformative learning experience for the student in a global setting which enables the student to understand the diverse world in which they live. This suits in particular the international theme of the symposium.


We describe in detail two examples of these: robotic telescope development in the South of Brazil and wetlands ecology in the Pantanal, Brazil.

Title: “Communication, Engineering and Ethnography: How a Curricular Approach can aid Social and Cultural Understanding” (watch the video)
Time: 1:00-1:30
Presenters: David Vampola and Rachid Manseur

This talk will present some of the results obtained by a team of SUNY - Oswego faculty members whose task was to infuse communication skills in a new electrical and computer engineering program that is "project based" and which includes innovative and multidisciplinary aspects in its curriculum. These communication skills will be "infused" through the combination of a technical writing course, the integration of communications skills into engineering materials,  and multidisciplinary methods that bring students enrolled in Arts, Media and Communication Studies together with teams drawn from Engineering courses. Assessment of the efficacy of the infusion methods will be based upon the systematic collection of both "process data" (e-portfolios, accounts of interactions between students) as well as the more traditional types of "outcome data" in the form of reports and presentations. The accumulation of data from both process and outcomes sources can also provide the opportunity for understanding how engineers at an early stage of their careers interact in a social environment to produce technological products.

But beyond this opportunity, the ethnographic perspective afforded by the collection of qualitative as well as quantitative assessment data can potentially shed light on how members from diverse populations can interact in a technical culture to achieve a defined goal. The ethnographer, like the specialist in communication, tries to understand a social group through the ways that symbols (often in the form of language) serve to mediate interaction. These interactions, in turn, serve not only to coordinate individual actions towards a goal, but also they can create inter-subjective understandings that lead to the establishment of shared meanings. The methods of data collection and analysis that are proposed in the new engineering curriculum might serve as an empirical foundation for understanding how populations that might initially possess diverse cultural viewpoints form into more cohesive groups characterized by teleologically determinant collective action.   

Session 2 - Diversifying Communications I
Room: 202
Time: 1:30 - 2:30 pm 
Title: “Using Digital Filmmaking & Documentary Production To Teach Community Awareness” (watch the video)
Presenters: Jane Winslow

The high def digital age pops up everywhere we look.  Developments and advances in digital video technology, such as digital video cameras and computer-based edit systems (known as Non-linear Edit systems) now allow for broader access in documenting our world in high quality images.  And although this allows us as educators to utilize more digital filmmaking technology within the classroom for projects and digital papers, the new community-based participatory style of documentaries is what is the real innovation of HD (high-contact dialogue) digital age.


    Globally, people are producing digital video programs that not only document parts of the world different from their own but also reach out to other communities to better understand them.  Documentaries are being produced by groups within our communities empowered by access to digital video equipment that reflect their personal unique visions and the social issues of primary importance to that group.  


    In the college classroom, students learn the art of digital filmmaking such as camera use, lighting, and field audio as well as post-production skills such as video and audio editing.   Through collaborations between community groups and colleges, documentary production can become more than just an artistic endeavor.  The student artist can become a bridge between the scholastic and filmmaking community and the larger social communities.


    By producing an actual community-based participatory documentary project, instructors can facilitate the classes understanding of their relationship and responsibility within the community.  In addition to technology of digital filmmaking, student artist learns how to develop and research a project as well as developing ethics and a sense of responsibility in exploring communities and societies that are different than their own.  They become socially active and conscience of the issues beyond their ken.


    The assessment of the effectiveness of a community-based participatory style documentary would not be solely in the final product, the video program itself, but also in the quality of the process the students experience in the making of this document.  This assessment can be done by assigning a reflection paper, a personal statement style video project that goes along with the documentary, or a presentation that accompanies the screening of the documentary program.

Session 3 - What do students say? 
Room: 206
Time: 1:30 - 2:30 pm
Title: “Focus group results” (watch the video)

Presenters: Jennifer Knapp and Diana Boyer

In order to learn what motivates and de-motivates SUNY Oswego students, a series of focus groups were conducted during the spring 2010 semester. Responses varied, and there were discernible themes, but ultimately students at all levels stated they respond best when material is clearly put into a broader context. In addition to elaborating on these results, this workshop will discuss best practices from both the instructor and student perspective, as well as address how instructors might be more sensitive and/or cognizant of varying student backgrounds, needs, and motives.

Session 4 - Instruction and research in virtual worlds 
Room: 202
Time: 2:30 - 3:30 pm
Title: “Ethnographic Research in Second Life” (watch the video)
Time: 2:30 - 3:00
Presenters: Kathryn Pole, Ph.D, and David Taylor, doctoral student, Saint Louis University

Increasingly, qualitative researchers are turning to virtual worlds – graphic 3-dimensional online social networking environments – to study human culture.  This virtual form of ethnography is both promising and challenging.  In this presentation, two qualitative researchers, one a professor teaching a methodology course, and the other a doctoral student who was enrolled in the course, will discuss experiences with participant observation in virtual worlds, focusing on the use of these virtual worlds as a field site for learning the tools of qualitative research.


This session will be presented in Second Life. If you wish to attend in Second Life, the session will take place at: http://slurl.com/secondlife/SUNY%20Oswego/79/154/30.

Title: “Using Second Life to assist learning in a foundational writing course” (watch the video)
Time: 3:00 - 3:30
Presenter - Jim Pangborn
    A tour and discussion of the Eng 102 site under construction on the SUNY-Oswego Second Life island. This site consists of a collection of spheres that each represent one of 5 aspects of writing: action, agent, scene, agency, and purpose. During this interactive session. Jim Pangborn will provide an overview of this project from within Second Life.
Session 5 - Diversifying communications II
Room: 206
Time: 2:30 - 3:30 pm
Title: Osw3go.net 2010: Racism on Campus (watch the video)
Presenters: Ulises Mejias and Patricia Clark 

In the academic year 2009-2010, students in Prof. Ulises Mejias' Social Networks and

the Web (BRC 421), Videogame Theory and Analysis (BRC 422/522), and students in

Prof. Pat Clark's Ethnicity and Cultural Difference (ENG 537) designed and conducted an

online simulation or "Alternate Reality Game" using social media tools. The purpose of

this activity, known as Osw3go.net, was to involve the campus and the community in

exploring various "what if?" scenarios related to racism on campus and its obvious

impact on the community.


The scenarios in the simulation included stories about an affirmative action hiring

decision, a racially-motivated prank carried out during a lecture, allegations about a

professor's record of inflating the grades of students of color, rumors about mandating

students of Latino heritage to get vaccinated for the H1N1 virus, and a campaign to form

a White student union. The experience was open to all students, faculty and staff at

SUNY Oswego. Participants could play a number of fictional characters or an anonymous

version of themselves. For more information see http://osw3go.net.


The mission statement of the annual Osw3go.net event reads as follows: "Our mission is

to conduct an engaging and interactive Alternate Reality Game to help our community

address present and future challenges. We seek to involve the community in a

constructive dialogue about what we can do, individually and collectively, to prepare to

meet these challenges. Our focus is on raising awareness, facilitating the generation of

solutions, and eliciting action and involvement from members of the community.

Additionally, we want to research how new media can be used as a platform for

simulation, collective problem solving, and social organizing."


One of the advantages of this format is that is combines an engaging pedagogical model

with interactive technology in a way that allows students with increasingly diverse

backgrounds to discuss difficult topics in a "safe" space. As one participant expressed,

"Osw3go gave people a chance to express themselves without having to feel guilty about

how they feel." Another remarked, "Overall, I thought it was a pretty cool way to get

people to talk about serious issues, without them even happening." Many problems

remain to be worked out, but we are confident that this program will emerge as a strong

solution in our campus for communicating diversity in the future.


During the presentation and workshop, we will cover the following:


1. A review of how the project was set up (how the scenarios were created, how

the website was developed, etc.).

2. An assessment of the project (including quantitative survey and server data, as

well as qualitative interview data), and a discussion of future plans.

3. A workshop discussion of the scenarios in the simulation.


Session 6 - Diversifying communications III

Room: 206
Title: “Teaching Science to a Diverse Student Population: Strategies and Resources””
Time: 3:30 - 4:00
Presenter: Venera Jouraeva

Last semester, I took Dr. Roberta Schnorr’s course, Teaching for Inclusive Schooling, as a part of my professional development. Throughout the semester, I have tried to incorporate my newly-acquired knowledge into practice and would like to share my experience with my colleagues. Strategies that may improve students’ science learning experience include but are not limited to: making adjustments to pedagogy and curriculum development, refocusing on application-based teaching methods, diversifying teaching and assessment methods, incorporating accessible technology, using both verbal descriptions and visual aids to introduce major concepts and terminology. In addition, I would like to share some resources available for science instructors seeking to address the learning needs of diverse population of students. Utilization of these teaching approaches and resources would allow students to develop an appreciation for and a positive attitude toward science, and might open the door to a wide range of exciting careers that utilize science.