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Three faculty members named CATL Scholars

Brandon Essary, Jennifer Uno and Barbara Gordon will work on projects that explore the way students learn in Italian, in biology service-learning courses, and through writing and multimodal assignments, respectively.

From left: Jennifer Uno, Brandon Essary and Barbara Gordon

Elon University professors Brandon Essary, Barbara Gordon, and Jennifer Uno have been named CATL Scholars for the 2015-16 and 2016-17 academic years.

The Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning’s Scholar program supports innovative and scholarly teaching projects that transform student learning. The award comprises a two-course reassignment for two consecutive years, plus $2,500 per year in project funding.

Essary, an assistant professor of Italian, will incorporate into both upper- and lower-level language courses the transcription, translation, and interpretation of documents from Italian archives. Activities will complement traditional textbook content and engage students in the application and identification of cultural themes, grammatical structures, and vocabulary from real-world, historical situations. Student engagement with document analysis will continue beyond the classroom in monthly conversation sessions in the target language on a specific document. The paleographic activities will allow students to encounter the culture and heritage of the Italian language through both scholarly inquiry and immediately practical speaking exercises.

Gordon, an associate professor of English, will explore best practices for implementing intellectually rigorous, multimodal assignments—ones combining writing, visuals, sound, and other modes of communicating ideas—in the classroom.  The project will focus on addressing the challenges faculty members currently face when assigning multimodal projects, including creating learning objectives, employing appropriate scaffolding, and determining effective grading criteria. After analyzing current scholarship and examples of multimodal writing, Gordon will create a web-based resource of models and strategies for faculty members to use when incorporating multimodal assignments into their courses.

Uno, an assistant professor of Biology, will further develop and evaluate a service learning section of Human Physiology (BIO 264) involving Elon students and Western Alamance 6 grade students. Undergraduate students will develop inquiry-based interactive projects to bring hands-on learning to middle school students, the goal of which is to promote science literacy both on campus and within the great Elon/Burlington Community, and to develop in undergraduate students the process-oriented thinking and communication skills necessary for future careers in health science.

Essary, Gordon, and Uno will join 33 current or past CATL scholars, including current scholars Cassie Kircher (English), Omri Shimron (Music), Kathy Lyday (English), Paula Patch (English), Kevin O’Mara (Management), Kristina Meinking (Latin), Mary Knight-McKenna and Cherrel Miller-Dyce (both from Education).

A call for applications for CATL Scholars is announced early each fall. All faculty are encouraged to apply. CATL Scholars are selected by a faculty committee comprised of other Scholars and CATL faculty advisory committee members. This year’s committee was:

Phillip Motley (Communications), Michael Terribilini (Biology), Cassie Kircher (English), Cindy Fair (Human Service Studies), and Mary Jo Festle (History).

Laura St. Cyr,
10/24/2014 2:35 PM