By Bev Makhani, Office of Undergraduate Education
PULLMAN, Wash. – Fourteen Washington State University faculty members from five colleges and three campuses, have been selected to receive funding for nine projects that will enhance undergraduate teaching and learning. The funding comes from the Samuel H. and Patricia W. Smith Teaching and Learning Endowment.
Recipients of the 2018‑19 competitive grants and their projects, by college (in Pullman unless otherwise noted) are:
College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences
Chanmi Hwang and Carol Salusso
Department of Apparel, Merchandising, Design and Textiles
Project: “Innovative Learning Environment: Improving Oral, Written and Visual Communication Skills in Design Disciplines,” which focuses on critique as a cornerstone of design education. Hwang and Salusso will develop innovative digital and multimedia teaching modules that target communication and critical thinking skills needed to produce a competent workforce for industry.
College of Arts and Sciences
Department of English
Project: “Washington State Senate Bill 5433 and English Teacher Education: Redesigning Curriculum for Inclusive Education” will focus on developing a capstone experience for teacher candidates comprising content and pedagogies that address Indigenous history, culture and governmental relations. Partnerships with regional tribes and the Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation will support the creation of culturally responsive materials and approaches.
Department of History
Project: “Engaging Students with Digital Active Learning Resources,” which will build assignments, activities and digital resources, including classroom response systems, Story Maps, Prezi and Google Slides among others, to enhance student engagement and learning.
Janet Peters and Dee Posey
Department of Psychology
Project: “Teaching the Teachers: Developing the Instructional Practicum Course for Psychology,” that will prepare a suite of instructional materials around high-impact practices such as learning communities, experiential learning and capstone experiences to better prepare undergraduate teaching assistants for their roles.
Department of English
Project: “Dialogic and Multimodal Student Engagement with War Literatures,” which will help students engage in difficult dialogues on sensitive subjects through her project. It will include students’ creative multimodal projects on literatures and experiences of war.
Carson College of Business
Jane Cote and Claire Latham
Accounting faculty at WSU Vancouver
Project: “Preparing Students to Respond Effectively to Ethical Challenges in the Workplace,” which will utilize modules to develop students’ abilities to create effective strategies for dealing with stressful ethical dilemmas using the “Giving Voice to Values” framework.
College of Education
Yuliya Ardasheva and Sarah Newcomer
Teaching and Learning at WSU Tri‑Cities
Project: “Infusing Teacher-Preparation Curriculum with Case-Based Instruction Focused on Culturally Responsive Pedagogy.” Based on strong preliminary data, this project will address the changing demographics of K‑12 education through cases applied in a realistic classroom environment.
Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture
Dave Kim and John Lynch
School of Engineering and Computer Science at WSU Vancouver
Project: “Audience-Centered Writing Pedagogy for Lab Course Teaching Assistants to Foster Engineering Undergraduates’ Learning.” This project will approach the lab report as an engineering literacy genre involving audience, purpose and context. The co‑PIs will create diagnostic tools, training materials and assessment instruments that are transferable to other writing-intensive courses such as capstones.
School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
Project: “PEARLS: Power Engineering Adaptive Reinforced Learning Via Scaffolding” will tackle the challenge of high-failure-rate gateway courses. Developing an online intelligent and adaptive tutoring program, Mehrizi‑Sani will focus on formative feedback as a way to address conceptual difficulties and increase self‑efficacy and motivation.
Fund’s far‑reaching impact
The Smith fund was established in 2000 to honor retiring WSU President Smith and his wife. It has since funded dozens of faculty-initiated projects that, in turn, have directly and indirectly impacted the education of thousands of WSU students, university pedagogy and industry knowledge and practices across the world.
Applications and nominations for the next round of Smith grants is expected to be announced in January 2019. For more information, visit WSU’s Undergraduate Education website.