Speaker / Workshop Leader
Abstract

EdCog David Miele

David Miele

Talk Title - Beliefs About the Nature of Ability and Effort: Their Role in Learning, Parenting, and Teaching 

Research on students' growth mindsets (i.e., their beliefs about whether intelligence is malleable) has grown quite popular in recent years. However, these mindsets are just one understanding in a complex constellation of beliefs that students hold about the nature of intellectual ability and effort, many of which may have important implications for students' motivation and learning. In the first half of this talk, I will explore this complexity, with a particular focus on students' effort source beliefs (i.e., their beliefs about whether intellectual effort originates from internal or external sources).
 
Importantly, students' motivation and learning are not solely influenced by their own beliefs about ability and effort. What parents and teachers believe about the nature of ability may influence the ways in which they support children’s learning. In the second half of the talk, I will discuss research suggesting that parents and teachers with strong growth mindsets are more likely than those with weak growth mindsets to engage in autonomy-supportive instructional practices (practices which may promote self-regulated learning) and less likely to engage in controlling practices, particularly when working with a student who is perceived to have low levels of ability in a particular domain.

EdCog Shana Carpenter

Shana Carpenter

Talk Title - Using Prequestions to Enhance Student Learning  

Much research has shown that practicing to retrieve information enhances learning. In nearly all of the studies on retrieval practice, students retrieve information after they have been introduced to it via a lecture or reading assignment. Very little is known about the effects of asking students questions before they learn something. In a series of laboratory- and classroom-based studies, students were given “prequestions” over information they were about to learn, and their learning of the material was later assessed. In her talk, Dr. Carpenter will report the results of this research and discuss the implications for teaching and learning.

 

Ido Davidesco

Ido Davidesco

Talk Title - Brain-to-Brain Synchrony in the Classroom 

The dynamic interaction between a teacher and a group of learners is fundamental to the learning process in the classroom, yet we know very little about how the brain supports these interactions. My research utilizes portable electroencephalogram (EEG) technology to measure the brain activity of groups of students during classroom activities. Using this method, my colleagues and I have demonstrated that students’ and teachers’ brainwaves become synchronized (i.e. exhibit temporally coupled response patterns) when teachers and students are interacting with each other. Further, brain-to-brain synchrony was found to be predictive of students’ engagement and social relationships. My current research extends this approach to technology-enhanced learning, comparing the brain dynamics of students in face-to-face and online environments. In my talk, I will discuss these findings as well as how brain technologies can be used to engage students in authentic research in their classroom.

Noah Forrin

Noah Forrin

Talk Title - Investigating the Spread of Attention/Inattention in the Classroom 

Everyday experience suggests that attentiveness (or inattentiveness) can spread through a group. We are investigating this “attention contagion” between students in a classroom setting. Our principal hypothesis is that both attentive behaviours (e.g., leaning forward, frequent notetaking) and inattentive behaviours (e.g., slouching, infrequent notetaking) can be transmitted to a student from a nearby classmate, affecting the student’s attentional engagement in the lecture. To test this hypothesis, we conducted an experiment in which pairs of students watched a 45-minute lecture video (on the history of Pompeii) in a simulated classroom environment. One student—the participant—was seated behind another student—a confederate posing as another participant and trained to exhibit either attentive or inattentive behaviours. Consistent with our “attention contagion” hypothesis, relative to students paired with the inattentive confederate, students paired with the attentive confederate took significantly more notes and self-reported being more attentive to the lecture. We also found a strong positive association between attentiveness and lecture comprehension. Implications for sustaining students’ attention in the classroom will be discussed.

Laura Cole

Laura Cole

Workshop - Think Before you Speak

The key to an engaging presentation delivery starts with intentional preparation and practice. Research has shown us how our brain naturally functions and we can use these strengths as the foundation for our techniques and strategies. Think Before You Speak is designed to harness these strengths to support preparation, practice and delivery.

In this workshop we will:
· Discover practical tools to prepare for a presentation that works with our brain’s natural strengths. 
· Learn delivery techniques to avoid reading scripted word-for-word notes to allow you to connect with your audience during delivery. 
· Explore proven strategies to stay calm and mindful during delivering to allow your mental energy to be used for your message, not your nerves.

Shoshana Jacobs 

Shoshana Jacobs

Workshop - Ideas Congress (ICON): A Transdisciplinary Learning Environment for Experiential Learning

Advances in technology and in our understanding of how students learn most effectively are contributing to changes in the way we teach in higher educational institutions (HEIs). In addition to disciplinary knowledge, students must acquire transferable skills including communication, problem solving, team-work, knowledge translation and transfer, and leadership. Teaching these skills requires a collaborative classroom that places students in an environment that recreates the real world without forcing them into a ‘sink or swim’ scenario. In our activity, participants will be introduced to IdeasCongress (ICON), a transdisciplinary learning environment available at the University of Guelph. During the workshop you will take part in some of the activities we run at the beginning of the ICON course, probing thought about discipline-specific thinking, biases, knowing your audience, and self-reflection. Be prepared to harness your illustration skills and visual perceptions that reflect your primary field of study.

At the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:
· Connect the importance of KTT as a tool to the key transferable skills required by students in a post-secondary education. 
· Reflect on how they might creatively hack their academic framework to teach more transferable skills. 
· Lead their own students in short activities related to learning basic skills in active listening and empathy.

Joe Kim

Joe Kim

Workshop - Focusing on what really matters: A reset for workplace productivity

During the course of a busy term, we are pulled in multiple directions with increasing demands for our time and attention. Without a game plan, confusion, procrastination and “busy work” dominate over moving toward higher goals. Research from psychology can provide effective strategies to choose priorities that separate signal from noise, focus attention to engage in deep work, and develop habits that invest limited resources on what really matters. In this workshop we will:
· Explore how understanding the cognitive architecture of the mind leads to developing a working plan to handle daily challenges with optimized solutions. 
· Develop a culture for productivity that promotes deep work and movement towards a goal. 
· Learn about digital tools to integrate into workflows to shift our resources to important tasks like strategic planning which also deserve attention.

Tanya Martini

Tanya Martini

Workshop - Helping Students to See the “Transferable” Part of Transferable Skills

Randy Bass has indicated that students see little value in the assignments they complete for university courses. In this workshop we’ll explore why his concerns should be taken seriously. We’ll also discuss how the literature related to transfer can help instructors ensure that students understand that course assignments build skills that are valued by employers. Doing so relies on helping students to see past the superficial “surface” features of assignments (which often appear unconnected to their career goals) and instead focus on the deep structure of the skills those assignments promote (since they are critical for understanding how the skills transfer beyond a particular course).

By the end of this workshop participants will be able to:
· Articulate the ‘deep structure’ of some key career-related skills (e.g., communication, critical thinking) 
· Apply key suggestions from the workshop to a specific assignment from one of their courses 


Note: Participants should bring one course assignment with them to the workshop.

Jennifer Meka

Jennifer Meka

Workshop - Designing Learning Experiences to Support Cognitive Integration

Learners often struggle with integrating knowledge from different sources and synthesizing in a way that creates deep and durable learning.1,2 The purpose of cognitive integration is to “achieve a conceptual, cognitive connection between different types of knowledge” and is essential for performance in professional activities.1 In this workshop we will explore strategies that enhance cognitive integration such as productive failure, contextual variation, and collaborative learning and testing through interactive activities. We will discuss lessons learned in implementing these strategies for the purpose of promoting cognitive integration and use these lessons to begin to frame/outline a learning experience (class or course) that harnesses the power of these evidence-based strategies.

Learning Objectives:
· Describe evidence-based strategies that support cognitive integration including productive failure, contextual variation, and collaborative learning and testing.
· Discuss barriers and successes to implementing these strategies in the classroom by examining an example class session and course.  
· Develop an outline for a class session or learning experience that incorporates these strategies to deliberately build cognitive associations.

Amy Pachai

Amy Pachai

Workshop - Writing Multiple Choice Questions to Create Effective Tests

The primary goal of testing is to measure the extent to which students have learned the facts, concepts, procedures, and skills that have been taught in the course. In many university courses, instructors use multiple choice questions (MCQs) for some or all of the student assessment. However, many of the questions used by instructors contain critical flaws and most will do no more than test factual recall. Fortunately, writing high-quality MCQs is a learnable skill.

In this hands-on workshop, we will:
· Learn about how to employ the best practices and avoid common pitfalls of writing measurably effective MCQs. 
· Explore how theories of learning such as Bloom’s revised taxonomy can help us determine the level at which a question should be written. 
· Practice writing MCQs and providing valuable feedback to peers.

 

Faria Sana

Faria Sana

Workshop - Taking the Big 3 into the Classroom

The scientific study of human learning and memory consists of thousands of experiments dedicated to identifying cognitive processes fundamental to learning. The big three to emerge from the lab are spaced learning, interleaved practice and retrieval practice. The bigger question is how do I go about implementing these methods into my teaching? In this workshop, we will we will explore activities and exercises for implementing these methods into your classroom. Please bring your syllabus along with a sample lesson (lecture) and assignment that you have used. We will also explore solutions for practical challenges to building durable learning.