• Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

  • 2020-2021 SIGs

    Each of the five Faculty Fellows will be hosting a Special Interest Group (SIG) on their selected topic, listed below. We encourage you to review the recordings, join the SIG Canvas courses, and participate in the live discussions.

    Retain without the Mundane

    Ann Culton, Communication

    Teaching in a classroom can be challenging, no matter the modality. The layers of complexity intertwine as we attempt to help students learn new content in a welcoming and intriguing environment. The goal should be to have students experience transformative learning while moving them closer to their final goal - graduation. This SIG will focus on teaching strategies to retain students’ through comfort, connectedness, and engagement while eliminating mundane practices. Learn new ideas by watching a brief video, self-enroll in the “Retain without the Mundane” Canvas course for resources, and stay tuned for some interesting statistics, engaging conversation, and practical application.


    SIG Reflect and Respond Dates and Location:

    • Wed., Sept. 9th (11:30am-12:00pm, CST) via Zoom
    • Wed., Oct. 21st (11:30am-12:00pm, CST)

    How to Win Students & Influence Faculty - Communicate with Carnegie

    Lacey Finley, Business

    Receivers of messages construct their attitudes towards others based on nonverbal communication more than actual words spoken (Mehrabian, 1971). How do we build influence and drive exceptional communication when only a small percentage of our overall communication messages are conveyed with the words we use? Is it time to press the rest button on how we engage with students and peers?

    Self and intrapersonal awareness is the cornerstone to exceptional communication and influence. This Special Interest Group will encourage participants to discover their strengths, gain connection with people, handle conflict productively, communicate with influence and congeniality and spark enthusiasm! Learn new ideas by watching a brief video, self-enroll in the "How to Win Students and Influence Faculty" Canvas course, and join us as we share best practices for communicating.


    SIG Reflect and Respond Dates and Location:

    • Wed., Sept. 23rd (11:30am-12:00pm, CST) via Zoom
    • Wed., Nov. 4th (11:30am-12:00pm, CST)

    The Dark (and Bright) Side of Human Communication

    Samantha Quinn, Communication

    The overall goal of this SIG is to arm faculty and staff with knowledge about common “dark side” communication issues (e.g. jealousy, envy, conflict, social aggression, deception, etc.), how these issues manifest at work and in the classroom, and how such issues can be constructively addressed, ultimately turning them into “bright side” learning and growing opportunities. Seeing the “bright side” of stereotypically negative issues, can have a significant impact on Park University culture, such as cultivating a happier and more empathetic employees, facilitating a greater understanding of human behavior, increased respect between colleagues and greater employee and student morale.


    SIG Reflect and Respond Dates and Location:

    • Wed., Oct.. 7th (11:30am-12:00pm, CST) via Zoom
    • Wed., Nov. 18th (11:30am-12:00pm, CST)

    Co-Fellowship: Authentic Teaching in a Digital World

    Leslie Umstattd, Liberal Education and Amy Wolf, Education

    The proportion of students taking online courses (exclusively) continues to grow each year, especially in the time of COVID 19. Park University continues to be a front runner in the digital learning arena, and as we chart new paths, our hope is to provide students with an innovative and engaged learning experience. This SIG aims to further conversations and “try on new ideas” for authentic teaching and engaged learning toward that goal. Learn new ideas by watching a brief video, self-enroll in the “Authentic Teaching and Engaged Learning in a Digital World” Canvas course for resources, and join us in the conversation as we set the stage for specific “go and do challenges” that can be applied to your own course work.


    SIG Reflect and Respond Dates and Location:

    • Wed., Aug. 26th (11:30am-12:00pm, CST) via Zoom
    • Thurs., Oct. 29th (12:00-12:30pm, CST)