With the shift to a virtual conference this year, pre-conference sessions are just one of the things that look a little different. Pre-conference sessions will be offered as two-week hybrid post-conference events in Spring 2021. Take a look at all the amazing topics that are included!

You will need to register separately for pre-conference sessions as attendance is limited. 

No separate registration fee will be required for registered #POD20 attendees. (There may be a small nominal fee to facilitate the registration process).

Keep an eye out for an email with registration information in the next few weeks and put a save-the-date note in your calendar for the session(s) you are interested in.


Creating a Strategic Plan for SoTL at Your Center/Institution

January 15-29, 2021

Meeting Times: Fridays 1/15 and 1/29 @ 1:00-2:00pm ET

  • Laura Lukes, George Mason University – llukes@gmu.edu
  • Ed Brantmeier, James Madison University – brantmej@jmu.edu
  • Kim Case, Virginia Commonwealth University – casek3@vcu.edu
  • Jessica Dauterive, George Mason University – jdauteri@masonlive.gmu.edu
  • Kim Filer, Virginia Tech – kfiler@vt.edu
  • Dayna Henry, James Madison University – henryds@jmu.edu
  • Jessica Taggart, University of Virginia – jt2bb@virginia.edu
  • Melissa Wells, University of Mary Washington, mwells@umw.edu
  • Lindsay Wheeler, University of Virginia, lsb4u@virginia.edu

Are you currently or planning to offer faculty at your institution SoTL professional development programming to support them in developing their own SoTL projects?  In this workshop, participants will learn about common SoTL support programming models across institution types; exchange lessons learned (or aspirational ideas); anticipate new challenges (particularly with the upheaval of COVID-19); create a strategic SoTL professional development program (re)design plan for their institution; and receive peer feedback on their plans.  Participants will have access to a shared resource folder and the opportunity to participate in future peer feedback beyond the workshop/conference.

Participation Min 6 – Max 100

Emerging as a Great Leader with Heart, Soul & Mind

January 22- February 5, 2021

Meeting times: Fridays 1/22 and 2/5 @ 3:00-4:00pm ET

Esther Zirbel – ezirbel@gmail.com

This workshop of leading with soul, heart, and mind combines five research-based leadership models into one coherent framework.  The soul section focuses on identifying core values and strengths; the heart section on using emotional/social and conversational intelligences to understand leadership practices; and the mind section on applying results from cognitive neuroscience to leading consciously, deliberately, and responsibly.  Through a series of exercises, participants will learn strategies to connect deeply with faculty, students, and administrators.  By looking inward, transforming themselves, and mobilizing others to grow, participants will co-create a new vision of what it means to lead in a changing world.

Participation Min 6 – Max 60

Taking Flight: Starting (or Revitalizing) a New Center for Teaching and Learning

February 3-17, 2021

Meeting times: Wednesdays 2/3 and 2/17 @ 3:00-4:00pm

Whether you are opening a new center or revitalizing your current center, these highly interactive sessions will provide an opportunity to work with experienced coaches to develop short- and long-term plans to help your CTL be successful. The sessions begin with activities to help participants identify resources, institutional priorities, challenges, and opportunities. Coaches will then share strategies conducting a needs assessment, planning programming, building networks, setting the Center’s goals and priorities, and cultivating a campus culture that supports excellence in teaching and learning. Working with colleagues and coaches from similar institution types, participants will create action plans to achieve their goals. Participants are encouraged to join as institutional teams (e.g. CTL staff, senior leaders), but individual participants are also welcome.

Participation Min 6 – Max 25

Small & Mighty: Starting & Sustaining Educational Development at Small Colleges & Single-Leadership Programs

POD Sponsored Session: Small Colleges SIG

February 9 – 18, 2021

Meeting Times: Tuesdays and Thursday 2/9, 2/11, 2/16, and 2/18 @ 11:00am-12:00pm EST

This workshop focuses on starting a new or continuing to run a CTL or educational development program at small college or universities or as a solo-practitioners at any type of institution. It is designed for both new and experienced educational developers who may hold a full-time CTL position, are chairing a faculty development committee, or doing such work as only a portion of their portfolio (as a Dean or faculty member still teaching). Emphasizing both theory and practice, we will examine the challenges and advantages of supporting teaching and learning in these contexts. After briefly considering educational development theory drawn from and relevant to our “small” contexts, you will apply this theory to your own institutional situation and explore approaches that capitalize on the  particular resources and strengths of your context. We will also provide tools to analyze and prioritize your programming, as well as discuss approaches to gathering and sharing assessment data. 

Our synchronous four sessions will offer a variety of smaller breakout groups to address the needs and experience levels of the workshop participants.  You will leave with a “next immediate steps” plan to move forward your work, in addition to a bibliography for further reading.  There will be approximately one to two hours of readings and homework between each of our four synchronous meetings.

Participation Min 6 – Max 45

Uncovering hidden resources and strategic partners through asset mapping

February 18-25, 2021

Meeting Times: Thursdays 2/18 and 2/25 @ 3:30-5pm ET

In a time of uncertainty and shrinking budgets, we’re often compelled to do more with less. How can we uncover overlooked resources and potential collaborators within our communities? How can we pool assets instead of competing or reproducing efforts? This workshop will begin by asking participants to share a specific programmatic challenge they are facing. We will then demonstrate a hands-on asset mapping exercise that participants will complete on their own. At our final meeting participants will complete a reflective exercise and leave with concrete next steps for how they might engage in this process on their own campuses. 

Participation Min 6 – Max 25 

Creating Programs for Adjunct Faculty in a Time of Change

POD Sponsored Session: Adjunct/Part-Time Faculty SIG

March 12-26, 2021

Meeting Times: Fridays, 3/12 and 3/26 @ 2:00-3:00pm ET

  • Sarah Oliver, Creighton University –  saraholiver1@creighton.edu
  • Douglas Jerolimov, IUPUI (Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis) -djerolim@iupui.edu
  • Reba Wissner, Columbus State University – wissner_reba@columbusstate.edu
  • Kristin Morley, Salt Lake Community College – kristin.morley@slcc.edu

Adjunct faculty compose the majority of faculty in American higher education. It’s essential that faculty developers think about and create virtual and in-person programming for this population that address the different circumstances of adjunct faculty, and their different modes of teaching/learning (f2f, online, hybrid). Using the Delphi Project model, facilitators from the Adjunct/Part-Time Faculty SIG will help participants to identify the characteristics and needs of their own adjunct faculty and to arrive at strategies to support them. The workshop will provide collaborative opportunities for participants to develop an action plan and programming options for adjunct faculty at their institutions.

Participation Min 6 – Max 60

Using Data to Look Forward: Promoting Effective Educational Development Planning and Practice

March 19-April 2, 2021

Meeting Times: Fridays, 3/19 and 4/2 @ 2:00-3:30pm ET    

This workshop engages participants in considering what data is most useful to informing educational development practices. Grounded in strategic planning constructs, participants will examine how data can inform assessment and program development (e.g., FSSE-Faculty Survey of Student Engagement and COACHE-Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education). Participants will analyze a snapshot dataset relevant to educational developers. Additionally, participants will explore institutional and center data sources that support assessment and planning efforts. Finally, participants will review recent tools (e.g., syllabus rubrics, classroom observation protocols, and other instruments) that can complement their data portfolio.   

The workshop will have opening and closing synchronous sessions (Fridays, 3/19 and 4/2 @ 2:00-3:30pm EST), and Optional Check-in Q&A Session (Friday 3/26, 2:00-3:00 pm) and include LMS-based activities, sharing and discussions across its two week duration.

Participation Min 10 – Max 50

Directors as Catalysts: Transformative Pathways for Center and Professional Growth

POD Sponsored Session: Professional Development Committee

March 26-April 9, 2021

Meeting Times: Fridays, 3/26 and 4/9 @ 12:00-2:00pm ET

Directing Centers for Teaching and Learning demands energy, strategy, and the ability to tell meaningful stories about the data and information you gather and analyze. Join three experienced directors for a session that is a combination of readings, reflection, asynchronous slack discussions, and dynamic small group exercises to introduce tools and approaches that will help you unleash your catalytic power as a new or aspiring center director. Using the principles of communities of practice, you will develop a supportive network while building a plan to advance your center’s mission in alignment with institutional priorities, and developing your own leadership plan. 

We will convene with a 2-hour session, 12:00-2:00 EST (9:00-11:00 PST) on the first Friday where we will orient participants to the digital tools, build community through relationship building and facilitate an initial workshop. Over the course of the two week range, participants will join in small peer sessions that they select based on availability. We will wrap-up by sharing lessons learned and preparing action plans at a concluding 2-hour session, 12:00-2:00 EST (9:00-11:00 PST) on the final Friday. 

Participation Min 5 – Max 60