The 2022 INSPIRE Convening captured the most promising developments in teaching and learning in higher education today and featured speakers that highlighted major changes, challenges, and opportunities in California’s higher education landscape. On this page you can access all of the available recordings from the event.
A Look Back
at the 2022 INSPIRE Convening
October 14 – 15, 2022
UCLA Meyer and Renee Luskin Conference Center
Pre-convening workshops gave insights into how philanthropic organizations do their work, offered practical advice on project evaluation and educational research, and discussed the state of data science in California higher education.
According to the National Academy of Sciences, “Data science is emerging as a field that is revolutionizing science and industries alike.” Learning Lab’s next Grand Challenge aims to expand data science pathways and offerings and position California as a leader in data science undergraduate education. Join us as we hear from some of California’s data science pioneers about their journey and explore opportunities for collaboration.
HOW TO WORK WITH
Have you wondered about how to get on a funder’s radar or are you new to the world of philanthropy? Join funders for this post- lunchtime workshop to learn about formal and informal channels for communicating, understand what funders are looking for, and learn how to identify which funders may be the right fit for your project. Lunch will be included and served prior to this session from 11:30am-12:30pm.
DESIGNING FOR THE END
For those who may be newer to evaluation or who seek advice on thorny issues when things do not go according to plan, this workshop is for you. WestEd evaluation experts will share practical advice for assessing if your evaluation design reflects your intended results and will offer insights into topics, such as centering evaluation around learning and contextualizing findings toward meaningful data points. All levels of evaluation experience are welcome. The workshop will include time for Q&A and provide strategies and resources.
Thought-provoking discussions with higher education leaders on teaching and learning, funding priorities in the higher education landscape, initiating change, and more.
THE NEW REALITY: WHAT SHOULD TEACHING AND LEARNING
LOOK LIKE IN THE 21ST CENTURY?
Higher education has undergone tremendous change over the last two years. The drive for equity, a global pandemic, and a changing world of work are challenging traditional notions of what it means to learn and work in institutions of higher education. What should teaching and learning look like in the modern era, and how can we rise to the challenge and design a “classroom for the future” that aligns with how students will live, learn, and work in the 21st century?
WHAT GETS FUNDED IN HIGHER EDUCATION AND WHY?
Among the many billions of dollars spent on California public higher education, smaller sums of funding – from hundreds of thousands to multiple millions and more – can be targeted for special purposes in hopes that dedicated funding can catalyze broader change. How do state and philanthropic funders think about targeted funding? What gets selected and why, and what outcomes do they seek?
WHO'S REALLY IN CHARGE IN HIGHER EDUCATION?
Advancing innovation in higher education doesn’t happen in isolation, it requires buy-in from multiple stakeholders and courageous leadership. But who are the stakeholders and who has the authority to make the changes that are needed to transform higher education? What about the governance structure of higher education empowers and enables change, and what stands in the way of achieving the bold goals that faculty and administrators across higher education want to achieve?
COVID DIDN'T BREAK US: WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
The metaphorical earthquake of COVID shook up higher education… yet campuses persevered despite the myriad difficulties they faced. While higher education is still feeling the tremors, there’s hope and opportunity on the road ahead. Join us for this closing panel as we reflect on the most challenging experiences of the past few years, what we learned, and how we can seize the moment to make us better than we were before for faculty, staff, and students.
Learning Lab grantees and other faculty teams showcased innovative approaches to teaching and learning to foster greater student success.
From liquid syllabi to question generators to adaptive learning platforms, these projects showcased innovative ways technology can be harnessed to improve student success.
Toward Achieving "A's for All" in Computer Science Education
Dan Garcia, UC Berkeley
Solomon Russell, El Camino College
With the observation that with sufficient time, any student can in principle achieve any desired proficiency, this project utilizes PrairieLearn, a computer-based assessments platform developed by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, to create, deploy, evaluate, and refine computer science course materials with a mastery learning approach. While students have reported positive experiences with the platform, faculty developed policies for late student work and other equitable grading practices that inspired the A’s for All movement in computer science education. New faculty and student collaborations and opportunities for scaling the work have also resulted from the project.
Humanizing Online Teaching: A Pathway to Equity in STEM
Michelle Pacansky-Brock, Foothill-DeAnza Community College District
Kimberly Vincent-Layton, Cal Poly Humboldt
Di Xu, UC Irvine
Attend this session to find out how one professional development program is influencing faculty mindsets and teaching behaviors. The Humanizing Online STEM Academy, an evidence-based professional development program, hones the equity-mindset and digital fluency of faculty by facilitating the development of eight humanized online teaching elements through the use of asynchronous video communications and discussions. Through interactions with their facilitator, participants experience “warm demander” culturally responsive pedagogy at a distance, dispelling the myths that online classes are isolating and that a caring instructor can’t also be challenging. This session will also explore research findings regarding the impact on faculty and the experiences of students, particularly those from minoritized groups.
Intro CS, Meet OLI: The Case for Technology-Enhanced Collaborative Learning
Marisol Clark-Ibáñez, CSU San Marcos
Youwen Ouyang, CSU San Marcos
This project sought to improve retention rates for Introductory Computer Science classes by utilizing the interactive content and learning analytics facilitated by Open Learning Initiative (OLI)—which, when applied to creating an active learning and culturally responsive approach to Introductory Computer Science classes, is a powerful tool. This session will highlight the ways OLI empowered faculty and students to transform the traditional lecture experience into one focused on collaborative learning.
Change can’t happen without faculty. These projects showcased how faculty learning communities and other structured supports can help faculty foster student success.
“You again?”: PD That Makes Teachers Come Back for More
Karen Givvin, UCLA
Ji Son, Cal State L.A.
CourseKata designed professional development (PD) around this question: what kind of experiences would make instructors want to invest their time? Because CourseKata’s modern approach to statistics — heavily emphasizing modeling as well as data science skills and tools — is new, even to many seasoned instructors, the multifaceted professional development is designed to engage instructors’ curiosity and kindle the joy of learning new ideas and skills.
Nurturing An Identity-Conscious Community of Practice through Disciplinary Texts, Tasks, and Talk
Nika Hogan, Pasadena City College / 3CSN
Emily Daniell Magruder, CSU Office of the Chancellor
From individual development to institutional and statewide transformation, this project has big aims to improve student equity and learning through a community of practice that bridges the California Community College and the California State University systems. This session will highlight how biology, chemistry, physics, engineering, and math faculty are using a powerful framework for teaching and learning—the Reading Apprenticeship framework— to disrupt the status quo and to adopt culturally relevant and high-intensity active learning techniques.
Mental FLOSS for Faculty: Cultivating A Community of Practice and
Modeling Evidence-Based Instruction Techniques for Biology Faculty
Jules Winters, UC Berkeley
Hear from this project team about how it cultivated a community of practice for biology faculty to build instructors’ abilities and confidence in using evidence-based, inclusive teaching approaches with the support of their peers. Faculty learning was supported with multiple technology tools, techniques, and asynchronous opportunities to delve deeper into resources centrally housed in Canvas. Presenters will share project results including increased knowledge and confidence gains in curricula topics among faculty participants.
Whether it’s thinking like a scientist, explaining coding to peers, or doing real lab work, these projects showcased effective ways to engage students through the curriculum.
Cultivating Student Identities as STEM Thinkers and Learners
Cory Antonakos, Diablo Valley College
Carmen Bustos-Works, Cal Poly Humboldt
Paul L. Daubenmire, College of Marin
The power of group-worthy tasks was tested through the engagement of students in sorting, using, and making sense of data, trends, and patterns. These tasks, which require a set of skills that no one student has all of, but that all students have some of, surface the value of each student’s contributions to the team so that all students may see themselves as STEM thinkers and learners. Learn more about how these classroom practices and out-of-class experiences led to observed shifts in students’ sense of their capabilities.
Think Like a Scientist: Engaging Students through Authentic Research Inquiry
Sonal Singhal, CSU Dominguez Hills
The best way to learn science is by doing science. Over the last two years, faculty at CSU Dominguez Hills, El Camino College and UC Irvine have been re-designing courses to provide students with authentic scientific research opportunities that improve students’ scientific identity. This session will showcase the diverse and creative re-designs offered by faculty, as well as provide initial data on project efficacy.
As Told By Students: Capturing Relevant Coding Concepts through Student Videos and Technology
Kevin Buffardi, Chico State
Richert Wang, UC Santa Barbara
Join this session to learn how students were engaged to introduce coding concepts in their own words with applications relevant to their lives through video production. The project team first explored students’ self-identified interests and analyzed their responses, paying particular attention to responses from historically marginalized student groups in computing, including women and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) students. Based on these insights, students created instructional videos that are embedded in a proof-of-concept website that integrates an interactive coding environment to enhance learning through coding practice.
These projects highlighted the benefits and challenges of intersegmental collaboration and what it takes to partner effectively in advancing innovation and change.
A Novel Approach to Integrating Liberal Arts into Undergraduate Engineering
Adrienne Lavine, UCLA
Greg Pottie, UCLA
Richard Wesel, UCLA
Pairing liberal arts with engineering – what are the possibilities? Hear from lead investigators of UCLA’s project funded by The Teagle Foundation that will change the way you think about engineering curriculum and highlight what can be achieved through effective intersegmental partnership. The project, in its third of four years, infuses societal impact and ethics components into undergraduate engineering courses at UCLA, partners with seven California Community Colleges to allow their students to engage in this hands-on, socially-contextualized curriculum, and creates coherent tracks of General Education offerings that allow deeper engagement by UCLA engineering students in the liberal arts.
Building the Intersegmental Dream Team to Advance Equity in Discrete Math
Shandy Hauk, San Francisco State University
Tim Hsu, San José State University
Join this session for a reflective activity and overview of what this team has achieved to improve student engagement and belonging in discrete math courses (with the help of a dozen math professors and over 500 of their students). Learn how this work will be sustained with a goal to reform the teaching of discrete mathematics in California, given the high rate of inequitable outcomes in these courses. Fundamental to computation (logic, networks, algorithms), discrete mathematics is a gateway course for mathematics, computer science, and engineering.
Learning Assistants as Partners: Supporting Peer-to-Peer Learning in Community Colleges
Dominic Dal Bello, Allan Hancock College
Laura Ríos, Cal Poly SLO
As one element of a project to improve STEM identity and sense of belonging, this CSU-CCC collaboration embedded Learning Assistants in physics classrooms. The benefits of this effort stretched beyond the initial goals to improve traditional measures of student outcomes to include transfer student support mechanisms, on-ramps for student leaders, and pedagogical training for community college students. Overall, lessons were learned on the unique role of Learning Assistants for instructional change and intersegmental collaboration.
These projects spotlighted unconventional but compelling approaches to consider in reimagining STEM teaching and learning.
Eclectic, or Electric? Neurons, Videos, and What Students Say About Their Own Learning
Shannamar Dewey, Butte Community College
Jill Terra, Butte Community College
Find out how this team of faculty utilized a backward design approach to engage students in the biology of learning to improve their studying strategies. Presenters will share the challenges of becoming film producers without prior training and how their intersegmental teamwork failed, succeeded, and evolved over two years. Included will be the excitement, data and story revealed by the mixed-method research conducted to measure the effectiveness of their video lesson interventions on student learning.
A New Kind of COLLEGE: Implementing a Common Intellectual Experience
and Humanities-Centric Pathways
Dan Edelstein, Stanford University
Parna Sengupta, Stanford University
This session will explore the philosophy and implementation of Stanford University’s new Civic, Liberal and Global Education (COLLEGE) requirement for first-year students, intended to elevate the value of liberal arts and to help students connect the dots between their professional goals and the challenges that face society and humanity. The project is funded by The Teagle Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and is part of The Teagle Foundation’s broader Cornerstone: Learning for Living initiative that supports institutions committed to general education reform to revitalize liberal education.
TEA: Brewing Learning Confidence in STEM Education
Patrick Hong, UC Irvine
Renée Link, UC Irvine
Megan Linos, UC Irvine
Trying new things can be hard without a community of peers and experienced mentors. The Teaching Experiment Academy (TEA) has paved a way for STEM faculty new to mastery learning and specifications grading approaches to apply such concepts to redesign a course. TEA, a professional development program, provides faculty with peer coaching and guidance that leads to a growth mindset for student success. Presenters will share the keys to their success in developing a cohesive faculty learning community with an appeal to faculty from diverse STEM disciplines on behalf of improving student learning.