Call for Proposals & Session Guidelines

The 2020 VIU Teaching and Learning Conference is seeking proposals for a variety of session types that model, describe and discuss ways to reach more students more deeply. These can include sessions about practices you’ve either actively adopted or strategically UN-adopted—including, but not limited to:

  • Classroom practices to ensure consistent student engagement and deeper learning
  • Strategies for greater student access and inclusion
  • Activities and practices that promote independent, critical thinking
  • Approaches to feedback and/or evaluation of learning
  • Technological or non-technological solutions for increasing learning while decreasing your work
  • Program-level innovations through strategic design and planning
  • Strategies for leveraging the social dimensions of learning (cooperation and collaboration)

Proposal Submissions will be accepted until March 6, 2020.

Session Types and Guidelines

2 hour Learning Circle

A Learning Circle is set up as a listening circle, the aim of which is to slow down, listen respectfully, and find new ways of thinking, being, or valuing around the proposed topic.  Throughout a learning circle, each participant addresses the topic in turn, to begin the discussion.  In discussion, additional questions, solutions, wonderings about the topic, or new connections are made between the ideas the participants brought to the Circle.

Submission Guidelines for a Learning Circle:

Title: Submit an engaging title for the session that reflects what your session is about, and creates excitement about the topic.

Presenters: Include your and any collaborators’ name, department, and University affiliation.

Background information and rationale:

  • Describe the topic and goal of the Learning Circle: what is the main idea to be explored—what is the new way of thinking, being or valuing? 
  • Why do you believe it is important?  What do you hope the participants will carry away with them by the end of the discussion?
  • Please explain why you think a learning circle is the best format for your presentation.

Blurb for conference program: Submit a brief 150 word description of the topic that will attract participants when they read the program.

Submit a Proposal

30 minute activity session

An activity session is a 30 minute session where you can share a teaching idea or activity while engaging participants actively in discussion or problem-solving activities. Participants might actually do an activity that you ask your students to do, so that they can directly experience the kind of learning experience you create for your students and why you do it that way. Or, you can engage them in an activity (whether it is adopted or UN-adopted) with the goal of receiving feedback from the audience on better ways to use the idea . Ideally, participants will be able to leave the workshop with an idea they can use or modify for their own work and/or you will leave the talk with a modified version of your idea for your own class.

Submission Guidelines for 30 minute Activity Session:

Title: Submit an engaging title for the session that reflects what your session is about, and creates excitement about the topic.

Presenters: Include your and any collaborators’ name, department, and University affiliation.

Background information and rationale:

  • Describe the teaching idea or activity that you will be modelling.
  • Submit a brief step-by-step description of how you will use the 30 minutes allotted for the session. 
  • Describe any handouts necessary for participants to carry the idea away with them.

Blurb for conference program: Submit a brief 150 word description of the topic that will attract participants when they read the program.

Submit a Proposal 

50 minute Workshop

A workshop engages participants actively in a variety of ways. This might include having them participate in activities ‘as if’ they were your students, offering opportunities to discuss the experience you have engaged them in so they can adapt it for their own classes, and opportunities for feedback on the activity or activities offered.

Submission Guidelines for a 50 minute Workshop:

Title: Submit an engaging title for the session that reflects what your session is about, and creates excitement about the topic.

Presenters: Include your and any collaborators’ name, department, and University affiliation

Background information and rationale:

  • Describe the rationale for the workshop: what is the topic?  Why is it important? What will the participants get out of it?
  • Submit a brief step-by-step description of the phases of the workshop: what will you do? What will the participants do?
  • Describe any handouts you plan to use to illustrate the topic of the workshop

Blurb for conference program: Submit a brief 150 word description of the topic that will attract participants when they read the program.

Submit a Proposal 

Roundtable Discussions (Options A and B)

  • Roundtable Discussion Option A.
    20 minute discussion of a single question. The discussion leader poses the question and facilitates the discussion, ensuring everyone has a chance to bring their questions and expertise to the table.  The discussion leader stays at the same table while participants move to other tables every 20 minutes. 
  • Roundtable Discussion Option B:  
    1 hour discussion of three related topics/questions, collaboratively proposed and facilitated by three discussion leaders, each contributing to the overall discussion and ensuring everyone has a chance to bring their questions and expertise to the table.

Submission Guidelines for a Roundtable Discussions (Options A and B):

Title: Submit an engaging title for the session that reflects what your session is about, and creates excitement about the topic.

Presenters: Include your and any collaborators’ name, department, and University affiliation

Background information and rationale: Describe the topic(s) of your roundtable discussion(s): what is the importance of this/these questions?

Blurb for conference program: Submit a brief 150 word description of the topic that will attract participants when they read the program.

Submit a Proposal

Teaching Slams 

What have I STOPPED doing? What have I started doing instead?  (7 minutes total)

The best ideas often come in small packages. This miniature and fun presentation format is designed to let you showcase briefly and energetically a teaching idea, tool or technique that you have adopted or UN-adopted, or both!  This could be a particularly effective lesson plan or activity you designed to engage and challenge your students, or one that was good only in theory, but horrific in practice. You’ll have exactly 5 minutes to describe your adopted or UN-adopted idea and 2 minutes to take questions.

Submission Guidelines for Teaching Slams:

Title: Submit an engaging title for the session that reflects what your session is about, and creates excitement about the topic.

Presenters: Include your and any collaborators’ name, department, and University affiliation

Background information and rationale:

  • Describe the teaching idea you will present: why did you use it, how did it work?
  • Submit a handout that gives instructions to others on how to implement this idea in their classrooms

Blurb for conference program: Submit a brief (less than 150 word) description of the topic that will attract participants when they read the program

Submit a Proposal

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