One of our goals as a Center is to foster innovative, evidence-based teaching and learning practices and critical reflection through workshops, reading groups, and invited speakers involved with national and international research on higher education.

Workshops & Events are free and open to all faculty and staff teaching at Elon, and are designed for instructors working in a range of teaching and learning contexts.

Descriptions for current and past CATL offerings can be found below.


Upcoming 2024 Events




CATL Summer Read: Grading for Growth

Summer Book Discussion

Monday, July 8th, 12:00 – 1:30pm (in-person, lunch served) & July 22nd, 1:00 – 2:15pm (Zoom)| Register

Join CATL faculty, Dr. Olivia Choplin, for two exciting opportunities to discuss the book Grading for Growth this summer. The book will be discussed in full during each of the sessions, and you’re welcome to attend one or both.


Summer Book Alternative Grading Bootcamp

Friday, August 9th, 9:00 – 3:00pm (in-person, lunch served) | Register

CATL faculty, Dr. Olivia Choplin will host a day to work on implementing alternative grading practices into your Fall courses. We’ll provide space, time, and food for you to work on your course & assignments, exchange ideas for feedback from peers, and consult with CATL faculty.

Fall Assessment Reboot

Friday, August 16, Belk 208 | Register

Join us for a day of rebooting yourself and one of your assignments. The day will be lightly structured so you can focus on developing course assignments and figuring out your Moodle GradeBook before Planning Week arrives. The day focus on time dedicated to you planning out your assignment in a quiet space with colleagues who are there to bounce ideas off of and offer feedback. Throughout the day you will be provided with snacks and lunch, and CATL and Teaching and Learning Technology faculty will be available for consultation.

Sign up to join us for a day of focused work and intentional planning to jumpstart the fall semester!



Radical Hope book coverCATL Summer Read Discussion: Radical Hope

Monday, September 2nd, 4:15 – 5:15 & Tuesday, September 3rd, 4:15 – 5:15, TBD | Register

Jump start the semester with a discussion on “Radical Hope”, CATL’s Summer Read. CATL faculty will hold two separate in-person sessions where the book will be discussed in full.



SoTL Blitz

Wednesday, September 4th, 12:15 – 1:30pm, TBD | Register

Do you have a SoTL project you’re thinking about or working on? Looking to submit an application to be a CATL Scholar or for an upcoming CATL Teaching and Learning grant? Join CATL faculty, Dr. Jill McSweeney, for an interactive session where attendees will be in small groups of 4, and each person will have 3 minutes to share or present their SoTL idea, project, or data, and end with asking their peers a specific question they’d like feedback on. The group will then spend 7 minutes discussing the presenter’s question and offer their own thoughts. This is meant to be an informal brainstorming session to help move your work along. Don’t stress about preparing something fancy, think of it as a pitch to peers! And don’t worry if your project is in it’s conceptualization phase; this is open to folks at all stages of the SoTL lifecycle!


Helping students provide meaningful and useful feedback on your teaching

Tuesday, October 1st, 12:15 1:30pm, TBD, | Register

Student feedback is a critical component to the development of our teaching practice. High quality feedback from students can provide insights into how students engage with learning in our courses and experience our pedagogical choices. That being said, many of our students would benefit from support in learning how to provide actionable and constructive feedback about their classroom experiences.  Join CATL faculty, Dr. Jill McSweeney, in a discussion of strategies for nurturing student engagement in the process of providing teaching feedback. We will discuss strategies for (a) engaging students in mid-term (e.g., mid-semester student focus groups) and end-term feedback (e.g., Student Perceptions of Teaching (SPoTS), (b) developing students’ skills in offering constructive and learning-focused feedback, and (c) talking to students about the importance of feedback.

Spring 2024 Events


Mindful Teaching: Overcoming Burnout in Teaching and Faculty Life

Wednesday, May 22nd, 9:00 – 10:00am, Belk Pavilion Rm 208

During and after the COVID-19 pandemic, faculty have been called on to offer compassion to our students to a greater degree than ever before: Flexibility in deadlines and attendance policies, developing alternative ways for students to engage our content, checking in regularly on students’ general well-being, and following up with kindness and curiosity when students disappear, among many others. Like other caring professionals, teachers who operate in this way can themselves be subject to compassion fatigue, as the struggles and needs of our students over time diminish our ability to offer compassion to others. In this workshop, we’ll explore mindfulness practices, both in the classroom and beyond, to help prevent and mitigate burnout and its impacts on our practice.

* This session was facilitated by Dr. Kelsey Bitting (Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies).


Cheers to the Finish Line!

Friday May 10th, 3:45 – 5:00pm, Belk Pavilion Terrace

Come drop in and toast with the CATL Team to celebrate the successes and commiserate over the challenges of the spring semester. We’ll provide a space for venting or strategizing as needed. Let us know if you can make it, but feel free to bring a friend on the day of anyway!


Supporting Summer Teaching Series

Join CATL and Teaching and Learning Technologies for a series of sessions created to help you enhance your summer term course. These sessions will focus on applying an integrated course design model to your asynchronous summer teaching, from crafting learning outcomes to aligning activities with technology. This series includes four separate but scaffolded sessions, allowing you time to work on different aspects of your summer courses between sessions. While the series is tailored towards faculty teaching summer courses, all faculty can benefit from attending.

Session 1: Transitioning your teaching to an asynchronous learning environment

Wednesday March 20th, 12:15pm to 1:30pm, Belk Library 205

We often hear that asynchronous teaching is not as impactful (or fun) as in-person – but we’re here to challenge that! In this session, we will explore what makes teaching meaningful in your in-person classes, and ways to translate that into the asynchronous environment.By the end of the session, participants will be able to:

  • Identify ways to transition their in-person approaches to teaching to an asynchronous environment.
  • Incorporate active learning strategies to engage students in a condensed, asynchronous format.
  • Consider key situational factors when designing and delivering your course

Session 2: Integrated course design for your asynchronous course

Wednesday April 3rd, 2024, 12:15pm to 1:30pm, KLC 230

This session will cover the nuts and bolts of integrated course design by having participants create learning goals and use backward design to start their summer term syllabus. By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Create clear and measurable learning goals for their summer term courses.
  • Consider the alignment between learning goals, assessments, and instructional materials in their syllabus.

Session 3: Choose the right tech for your asynchronous course

Wednesday April 24th, 2024, 12:15pm to 1:30pm, Belk Library 102

In this session, we will discuss how to integrate course learning goals, activities, and assessment opportunities, and how to align them with technology tools. By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Identify technology tools that align with course activities and assessments.
  • Integrate technology tools to support their course learning goals.

AI & Ethics Panel Discussion

Tuesday April 9th, 4:30 – 5:45pm | Innovation Hall Attrium

Panelist will first share their expertise and perspectives on AI and ethics in 5-minute prepared statements before opening the floor for discussion and questions. Co-sponsored by Data Nexus, the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning, the Center for Writing Excellence, and the Provost’s Office. Snacks and refreshments served.

Cennydd Bowles (Fulbright Visiting Scholar; technology ethicist and interaction designer, author of Future Ethics)
Shannon Duvall (Computer Science)
Sowjanya Kudva (Cinema and TV Arts),
Antoinette Polito (Physican Assistant Studies)
Mustafa Akban (Management)

Teaching and Learning Outside in Higher Education

Tuesday April 23, 12:15 – 1:15pm | Outdoor Classroom by Martin Alumni Center

In this interactive workshop, we will be drawing upon Hrach’s (2021) six principles of embodied cognition science to understand how we can use outdoor learning spaces to enhance our teaching. Decades of research suggests that being outside improves mental and physical wellbeing. Furthermore, studies have shown that thinking does not just happen in our brains; rather, we think in our bodies, in our surroundings, and in our relationships (Paul, 2021). Join this workshop to learn strategies that you can use in any of the outdoor learning spaces across campus!

*This session is co-led by Dr. Scott Morrison.


Internship Pedagogy: Creating and Aligning Internship Learning Outcomes and Assessments

March 6th 12:15 – 1:30pm, Moseley 215

Internships provide career readiness skills (critical thinking skills, adaptability, inclusive mindsets) for students to approach their post-grad employment in a context outside of the classroom. Faculty are a critical component for students to successfully approach and experience comprehensive and holistic internships. In this workshop, you will explore evidence-based frameworks that can be integrated into your internship courses, develop learning outcomes that are considerate of disciplinary, employability, and intern site context, and how you can create authentic assessments that align with those learning outcomes.

*This session was co-led by CJ Fleming and Nancy Carpenter.


Hope in a Time of Monsters: Supporting Faculty & Student Mental Health with Sarah Rose Cavanagh

February 8th 12:15pm – 1:30pm, LaRose Commons

Teaching is a vocation. When supported with resources and security, it is a constantly renewing source of excitement and richness. The last several years of disruption, uncertainty, and overburdened workloads have exhausted teachers and students alike. Monsters have reared their heads, and we have understandably shrunk from them. Faculty are burnt out—sacrificing their own mental health, phoning it in out of desperation, or leaving the profession entirely. Students are experiencing an epidemic of mental health problems, especially of anxiety. As instructors, we can support and encourage student mental health through pedagogies of care. A pedagogy of care involves high-touch practices like frequent communication, flexibility, inclusive teaching practices, learning new technologies and techniques, and being enthusiastic and passionate. All these practices involve both a heavy investment of time and a high degree of emotional labor. How can we support our students without burning ourselves out? How can we revive our sparks? In this interactive session, Sarah Rose Cavanagh will present some research and food for thought based on her upcoming book on how higher education should respond to both faculty depletion and the student mental health crisis.

Head shot of Sarah Rose Cavangh

Sarah Rose Cavanagh is the Senior Associate Director for Teaching and Learning in the Center for Faculty Excellence at Simmons University, where she also teaches in the Psychology Department as an Associate Professor of Practice. Before joining Simmons, she was an Associate Professor of psychology and neuroscience (tenured) at Assumption University, where she also served in the D’Amour Center for Teaching Excellence as Associate Director for Grants and Research. Sarah’s research considers the interplay of emotions, motivation, learning, and quality of life. Her most recent research project, funded by the National Science Foundation, convenes a network of scholars to develop teaching practices aimed at greater effectiveness and equity in undergraduate biology education. She is author of four books, including The Spark of Learning: Energizing the College Classroom with the Science of Emotion (2016) and upcoming Mind Over Monsters: Supporting Youth Mental Health with Compassionate Challenge (2023). She gives keynote addresses and workshops at a variety of colleges and regional conferences, blogs for Psychology Today, and writes essays for venues like Literary Hub and The Chronicle of Higher Education. She’s also on BlueSky too much, at @SaRoseCav.

*This event was co-sponsored with the Provost Office.

Building a Syllabus for All: The use of Universal Design for Learning with Georgieann Bogdan

February 21st 12:15 – 1:30pm, Global 301

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an evidence-based approach that appreciates the diversity in student experience and has the goal of removing barriers to learning while also maintaining high standards and

expectations. Your syllabus provides a variety of information to students including how they will be assessed, ways they will participate, and what your expectations are – making it an ideal place to consider the integration of UDL principles into your teaching.  Join us for a hands-on session that asks ‘How do you approach syllabus design through a UDL lens?’ Attendees are asked to bring a syllabus they would like to redesign using UDL.

Georgieann Bogdan is the Director of Academic Services from the Office of Academic Accessibility at Greensboro College.

*This event was co-sponsored with Disability Resources.


Spring Term Syllabus and Moodle Reboot

January 9, 10:00am – 3:00pm, Belk Library, Rm 113

Join us for a day of rebooting yourself and your course at the Syllabus and Moodle Reboot Institute. Co-sponsored by CATL and Teaching and Learning Technologies (TLT), the day will be lightly structured so you can focus on developing a course syllabus and your Moodle site before Spring Term arrives. The day will be broken into two sections: developing your course syllabus (AM) and transitioning your syllabus to Moodle (PM). Each section will start with a short guided intro that will share with you resources and help you set goals, and then the rest of the time will be dedicated to you planning out your course in a quiet space with colleagues who are there to bounce ideas off of and offer feedback. Throughout the day you will be provided with snacks and lunch, and CATL and TLT will be available for consultation.

*This event was co-sponsored with Teaching and Learning Technologies.

Practical Strategies for Blended Learning in Moodle

January 18, 12:00 – 1:00pm, Virtual (Zoom)

In this virtual session, we will guide you through the process of transforming your Moodle course from a repository of resources into a dynamic blended learning experience. We will illustrate how to incorporate flexible learning design into your Moodle course, focusing on research-backed methods that increase student engagement outside of class time. We will demonstrate the effective use of various technology tools and provide you with practical ideas that you can implement in your course right away.By the end of the session, participants will have gained strategies for Moodle course design aimed at breaking down learning barriers and encouraging student choice. Additionally, participants will be able to pinpoint interactive technology tools to integrate into their Moodle courses, facilitating discussion, collaboration, and assessment.

*This event was co-sponsored with Teaching and Learning Technologies.

Fall 2023 Events


Pedagogical Wellness Part 2: Approaches to teaching that center student academic well-being and success

November 1, 12:15 – 1:30pm, Global Commons, Rm 301

Research and our own classroom stories tell us that student mental health and well-being are impacting learning. As teachers, how can we help students engage with and be successful in deep learning while also taking in consideration their wellness and well-being? In this session we will share how even small shifts in your classrooms can make big differences to the student experience when you foreground well-being. We’ll share how syllabus language, assessment design, and the classroom environment can offer opportunities to intentionally incorporate strategies that prioritize student wellness without making learning less rigorous.

Winter Term Teaching

November 13, 4:00 – 5:15pm, Belk Pavilion, Rm 208

The format of Winter Term presents challenges and opportunities for both instructors and students. Whether you’re teaching a short-term intensive course for the first time or are considering how to improve your course, jump-start your thinking by talking with colleagues about how they keep their students engaged, design a coherent term, find time to assess student work, and otherwise leverage the possibilities for meaningful learning.


Book Discussion: Key Practices for Fostering Engaged Learning: A Guide for Faculty and Staff by Jessie Moore

October 3rd and October 17th, 12:15 – 1:30pm, Belk Library, Rm 102

Join us for a reading group co-sponsored by the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning and the Center for Engaged Learning on our own Jessie Moore’s research-informed practical guide for deepening the learning experiences of our students – Key Practices for Fostering Engaged Learning: A Guide for Faculty and Staff. The book distills over a decade of research on engaged learning practices into an eminently readable and practical guide for teachers who seek to improve learning in all the spaces where they teach.

Pedagogical Wellness Part 1: Intentionally designing for your own well-being

October 4th, 12:15pm – 1:30pm, Global Commons, Rm 301

Do you reflect back on the semester and find yourself feeling as though you spent more time on the things that don’t bring you joy than the things that do?  Do you ever wonder how your own well-being affects student outcomes? Pedagogical wellness is an evidence-based approach that seeks to support the well-being of faculty by integrating strategies into our teaching that create compassionate and equitable classroom experiences for both learners and us. In this session, we will engage in critical self-reflection around what inspires you in your teaching and what worries you, and then offer ways you can intentionally prioritize wellness for yourself and students without sacrificing learning.

Exploring Neurodiversity with Dr. Adam Lalor

October 25, All Day | Sankey 308

Join us for a series of sessions on the 25th, with Dr. Adam Lalor, Vice President for Neurodiversity Research and Innovation, Landmark College. Dr. Lalor received his Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Connecticut. With more than a decade of experience in higher education administration, his graduate work focused on the study of the transition of students with disabilities to and within higher education and the preparation of faculty and college administrators to serve students with disabilities. (This event is generously co-sponsored with the Office of the Provost and Disabilities Resources.)

9:00 – 10:30am Untangling Neurodiversity and Neurodivergence: What They Are, What They’re Not, and What They Mean for Student Learning!

Neurodiversity is a term, fact, and movement that higher education faculty and staff members are acknowledging more and more each day. For many, it can be a bit confusing and hard to wrap your head around. Who are neurodivergent people? What do they mean to the future of postsecondary teaching and learning? This presentation will support the Elon University community in better understanding the what, when, why, and how of neurodiversity and neurodivergence.

12:15 – 1:30pm Inclusive Assessment: Strategies and Options for (Manageably) Doing It

Universal Design for Instruction and Learning provides a useful framework for improving the accessibility of postsecondary learning and assessment. That said, how can an educator do it in a manageable way!?! It seems impossible! Join (an admitted convert) to learn how you can design assessments that are more inclusive and accessible. Concrete strategies will be offered. [Seats open: 40]

2:00 – 3:00pm Neuro-Diversifying Conceptions of Diversity: Thinking Through Intersection and Multiple Identities

Neurodivergence is increasingly being recognized and celebrated as a facet of identity. However, the neurodivergent experience is not singular. There is as much diversity among neurodivergent people as within any other identity group. In fact, neurodivergent people are members of every other identity group (less neurotypical). This presentation/conversation will allow diversity, equity, and inclusion advocates the opportunity to explore neurodivergence in relation to other aspects of identity. [Seats open: 30]


CATL Summer Read: Distracted by James Lang

September 11th, 4:00pm – 5:15pm| Belk Pavilion, Rm 201

Join us for CATL’s Summer Read Distracted by James Lang, where we will discuss how we might maintain students’ attention with all the distractions in and outside our classrooms. The session will cover the entire book with the help of guided prompts.

Past Summer 2023 Events

CATL Summer Read: Inclusive Teaching

July 28th, 1:00pm – 2:30pm | Zoom

Join us for the first part of our summer read, Inclusive Teaching Strategies for Promoting Equity in the College Classroom by Kelly Hogan and Viji Sathy. We will begin our 3-session discussion series on July 28th via Zoom, where we will discuss Chapters 1 & 2.

Fall Course Reboot Institute

August 4th, 9:00am – 3:00pm | Belk Pavilion, Rm 208

Join us for a day of rebooting yourself and your course at CATL’s Fall Course Reboot Institute. The day will be lightly structured so you can focus on developing a course syllabus and assessment before Planning Week arrives. The day will be broken into two sections: developing your course syllabi (AM) and designing course assessments (PM). Each section will start with a short guided discussion around design fundamentals and areas of consideration, and then the rest of the time will be dedicated to you planning out your course in a quiet space with colleagues who are there to discuss ideas and offer feedback. Throughout the day you will be provided with snacks and lunch, and CATL faculty will be available for consultation.

Past Winter/Spring 2023 Events

January 2023

Panel Discussion (Online): Refocusing Your Teaching After a Challenging Term

Tuesday, January 10th, 12:15 – 1:15pm |  Zoom
Svetlana Nepocatych (Associate Professor of Exercise Science)
William Schreiber (Assistant Professor of Psychology)
Barjinder Singh (Associate Professor of Management)

Teaching can be a vulnerable process, where we open ourselves, our beliefs, and our thinking to others in a public way. Within that process, we often experience a range of feedback on how our work is going. This feedback can be informal and formal and arise from students, our colleagues, or our own reflections. But what happens when this feedback forces us to re-examine or completely re-think what or how we are teaching? Join us for a panel discussion where colleagues will share their own stories of receiving critical feedback and consider how we can sit with the discomfort of critical feedback, and strategies for moving forward in our teaching.

Workshop: Course Syllabus Reboot

Thursday, January 26th , 9:00am – 12:00pm | Belk Pavilion 208

Get a jump start on the spring semester with a course syllabus makeover. This interactive workshop will offer strategies for re-tooling your syllabus for the spring semester. We will collaboratively explore ways to design a syllabus that maximizes the teaching and learning experience for faculty and students alike. Whether you are creating a course from scratch or revamping an old one, we will discuss tips for designing an engaging syllabus and provide plenty of worktime, space, and food along the way.

February 2023

Workshop: The wave of Artificial Intelligence in HigherEd

Thursday, February 16th, 12:30 – 1:30pm | Zoom

You’re probably wondering if we typed this description ourselves or if we used ChatGPT? This might be the same question you’re asking yourself as you read student work this term. Join Teaching and Learning Technologies, Belk Library, the Writing Across the University, and the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning and together we will explore what ChatGPT is, how it functions, and how we might use this tool to support learning.

Speed Teaching: Teaching with Podcasts

Monday, February 27th, 4:00 – 5:15pm | Zoom

In an age of multimedia consumption and production and different ways of interacting with knowledge, this Speed Teaching session will showcase faculty who use podcasts in their teaching. How can podcasts provide a supplement to course readings and offer different ways of engaging students? How can students showcase their own learning by producing podcasts? If you’re looking to shake up the monotony of traditional reading and writing assignments, join us to learn more about how podcasts can promote student learning.

March 2023

Listening then Libations : A Podcast Discussion Group on “Rigor”

Friday, March 31st, 4:00 – 5:15pm

Given the debates on the word “rigor” that have appeared in the Chronicle and Inside Higher Ed over the past year, what do we really mean by this potentially problematic but also enticing word? Participants will listen to podcasts from the series “Dead Ideas in Teaching and Learning” and discuss and debate what we really mean when we talk about rigor. Please listen to Season 5, Episode 2: “Rigor as Inclusive Practice” with Jamiella Brooks and Julie McGurk, and then pick another episode from the series that interests you: 3. “Rigor as Engagement;” 4. “Rigor as Liberation;” 5. “Rigor as Equity;” 6. “Rigor as Skill Building;” 7. “Rigor as Assessment from the Student Point of View.” We’ll debrief and debate and decide how to reclaim and reframe rigor for ourselves.

April 2023

Epistemic Asphyxiation: Whiteness, Academic Publishing, and the Suffocation of Black Knowledge Production

Tuesday, April 11th, 12:00 – 1:00pm

Join us for a session with our partners in the Office of Inclusive Excellence Education and Development, Student Life, Black Employee Resource Group (BERG), and Black Lumen Project.

Blackness in the white imagination engenders anxiety-producing responses, and, as such, epistemic asphyxiation are the rationalized attempt(s) to restore a normative pattern of breathing, that is, coherence to a white western epistemological ideal. This presentation contributes to the function of anti-Black technologies in and beyond higher education, with specific attention to the academic publishing process. Further, it endeavors to draw out otherwise possibilities for minoritized faculty existence in the wake of anti-Blackness.

Dr. Wilson Kwamogi Okello (he/him) is an accomplished early-career artist and transdisciplinary scholar who draws on Black critical theories to advance research on student/early adult development theory. Most immediately, he is concerned with how Black critical approaches make visible the epistemic foundations that structure what it means to be human and imagining otherwise possibilities for Black being therein. He is also concerned with how theories of Blackness might reconfigure understandings of racialized stress and trauma, qualitative inquiry, critical masculinities, and curriculum and pedagogy. Dr. Okello is a sought-after speaker and consultant; he has delivered over 150 invited keynotes/talks/performances across the United States and internationally. Among other early career awards, he received the 2022 Council on Ethnic Participation (CEP) Mildred Garcia Award for Exemplary Scholarship by the Association for the Study of Higher Education, and he was named a 2022 Emerging Scholar by the American College Personnel Association. Dr. Okello is an assistant professor of higher education at Penn State University, where he is a research associate at the Center for the Study of Higher Education.

Discussion Series: Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking The Stress Cycle

Session 1: Tuesday, March 21st, 4:30 – 5:15pm
Session 2: Tuesday, April 20th, 4:15 – 5:15pm

Burnout happens to everyone at some point or another, and results from repeated or prolonged emotional, mental, physical, and work-related stress. Faculty burnout exacerbated by pandemic-related stressors affect not only their mental well-being and classroom instruction but also overall health.

Join Elon’s Faculty Fellow for Wellness and Well-being (Dr. Svetlana Nepocatych) in a guided book discussion where we will read “Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking The Stress Cycle” by Emily Nagoski and Amelia Nagoski, engage in dialogue focusing on experiences of burnout, stress, strategies, connection and growth, and create a space where you can meet new people on campus.


Past Events:

To view more of our CATL events, see below for previous years.