“These aren’t just good strategies (and they are!) but, when integrated systematically, they are transformative experiences for both students and instructors.” –Jim Kain, Neumann University, PA

The 2018 conference will be held at the Doubletree Hilton Anaheim-Orange County, CA on April 12-14, 2018.

For the April 13th Pre-Conference schedule please click here.


Friday, April 13
6:45am-8:15am Conference Check-in and Hosted Hot Breakfast Buffet
8:30am-10:00am Session #1: Opening Session (90 Minutes)
10:00am-10:30am Networking and Beverage Break
10:30am-12:00pm Session #2: Breakout Sessions (90 Minutes)
12:00pm-1:15pm Hosted Buffet Lunch
1:30pm-3:00pm Session #3: Breakout Sessions (90 Minutes)
3:00pm-3:30pm Networking and Beverage Break (Poster Sessions)
3:30pm-4:30pm Session #4: Breakout Sessions (60 Minutes)
4:30pm-5:30pm Session #5: Reception to Honor Presenters – Everyone Welcome (snacks and cash bar)
Saturday, April 14
6:45am-8:15am Hosted Hot Buffet Breakfast
8:30am-9:30am Session #6: Breakout Sessions (60 minutes)
9:45am-11:15am Session #7: Breakout Sessions (90 minutes)
11:15am-11:45am Networking and Beverage Break
11:45am-12:45pm Session #8: Closing Session (60 minutes)


Thank you for putting this together and having good presenters with valuable content.– Sylwia Kulczak, Rio Hondo College, CA

Thank you – this was an amazing conference! – Nicole Adsitt, Cayuga Community College, NY

2018 Keynote Session with Dr. Elizabeth F. Barkley

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Dr. Elizabeth F. Barkley, Ph.D. is Professor of Music History at Foothill College, Los Altos, California. With four decades as an innovative and reflective teacher, she has received numerous honors and awards, including being named California’s Higher Education Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, formally recognized by the California state legislature for her contributions to undergraduate education, selected as “Innovator of the Year” in conjunction with the National League for Innovation, presented with the Hayward Award for Educational Excellence, and honored by the Center for Diversity in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Additionally, her Musics of Multicultural America course was selected as “Best Online Course” by the California Virtual Campus. She was also named one of two Carnegie Scholars in the discipline of music by the Carnegie Foundation in conjunction with the Pew Charitable Trusts.

A popular keynote speaker and workshop presenter, her interests include engaging students through active and collaborative learning; transforming F2F and online curriculum to meet the needs of diverse learners; the scholarship of teaching and learning; and connecting learning goals with assessment. Barkley holds a B.A. and M.A. from University of California, Riverside and a Ph.D. from University of California, Berkeley. Her books have been translated into multiple languages and include Learning Assessment Techniques (co-authored with Claire H. Major, Wiley/Jossey-Bass, 2016), Collaborative Learning Techniques (co-authored with Claire H. Major and K. Patricia Cross, Wiley/Jossey-Bass, Second Edition, 2014), Student Engagement Techniques (Wiley/Jossey-Bass, 2010), Crossroads: The Roots of America’s Popular Music (Prentice Hall, 2nd Edition, 2007), and three interactive digital textbooks for Kendall Hunt in conjunction with Great River Learning: Crossroads: The Music of American Cultures (2013), World Music: Roots to Contemporary Global Fusions (2012), and co-author with Robert Hartwell of Great Composers and Music Masterpieces of Western Civilization (Kendall Hunt, 2015). Her most recent book, Interactive Lecturing (co-authored with Claire H. Major, Wiley/Jossey-Bass) will be released in February, 2018.

2018 Program

(Thursday, April 12, 2018 Pre-conference Session descriptions, click here)

Breakout Sessions #2 (90 minutes) 10:30AM-12:00PM Friday

Session 2A: An Introduction to On Course (MS, PC, DS)
Presenter: Deb Poese, Director, School of Education/Faculty, Mathematics, Montgomery College, MD
Summary: New to On Course? Wondering what it’s all about? This session will provide an overview of the On Course approach to student success. Participants will learn 1) the success principles that are the foundation of On Course, 2) how On Course is different from most student success approaches, 3) data demonstrating the success of this method, and 4) On Course resources available to support your students’ academic success and retention.

Session 2B: Don’t Forget Your IOE’s: Using Icebreakers, Openers and Energizers to Revive Classroom Conversation (RF, AE, EQ, IN)
Presenter: Robin Middleton, Faculty Emerita, Student Development, Jamestown Community College, NY
Summary: In her book, Reclaiming Conversation, Sherry Terkle notes, “Face-to-face conversation is the most human — and humanizing — thing we do. It’s where we develop the capacity for empathy.” Yet her research and experience suggests that students are losing the skills and interest in conversation, developing an ‘I’d rather text than talk” attitude. Icebreakers, Openers and Energizers help students overcome their resistance to conversation and discussion by breaking down the “walls” and opening up pathways to communication. Leave the workshop with at least nine IOE strategies to use in the classroom and/or workshops.

Session 2C: Creating Online Learner-Centered Activities (AE, TD)
Presenter: Chris Strouthopoulos, Faculty, Student Success, San Juan College, NM
Summary: One central premise of On Course is that learner-centered activities work. Yet, why is it so difficult to create learner-centered activities online? How do we design online instruction that includes the active engagement and magic of the classroom experience? Inspired by these questions, we’ve started transforming our online courses into experiential environments that incorporate learner- centered activities. After briefly sharing our journey and insights, we’ll work in small groups brainstorming new ways for our online courses to engage students in transformational learning. Please bring your passion, your questions, and your favorite online activities/structures.

Session 2D: Are You a HIP Instructor? Using High Impact Practices to Foster a Learner-Centered Classroom (RM, AE, RW)
Presenter: Ann Brandon, Faculty, Reading/On Course Instigator, Clovis Community College, CA
Summary: Are your students used to passive learning? Do they sit back and let you, the instructor, do the work? Or, do you have a difficult time letting go of the reins in the classroom? A teacher-centered practice requires less work from students. Research indicates that the only way for our students to increase their learning is to actively engage in learning the content and skills we teach. In this session, you will experience high impact practices (HIP) that promote meaningful active-learning opportunities for your students. Let your students take the reins of their learning with a handful of engaging high impact practices you will take back to your classroom.

Session 2E: Study Smarter, Not Just Harder! (BA, PC, SL, IN)
Presenter: Amy Munson, Director of Instructional Design, United States Air Force Academy, CO
Summary: The United States Air Force Academy Science of Teaching and Learning program is conducting a study on how students learn about their own learning. The research team hypothesizes that students learn more from peers than from “outsiders” such as faculty members, and has set out to develop a peer training and messaging program alongside a faculty training and messaging program using the same three highly successful learning/self-management strategies. On Course structures and strategies were implemented for the training components as researchers shared the benefits of practice testing, spaced practice and successive relearning as defined in Dunlosky and Rawson’s meta-analysis of learning strategies. This workshop will give participants an opportunity to learn more about those three strategies while also learning about how to implement a student “train the trainer” program.

Session 2F: Becoming Your Own Hero: Campbell’s Hero’s Journey as a Model for Successful Students (BA, RW, EQ)
Presenter: Jim Kain, Faculty, English, Neumann University, PA
Summary: How do teachers help their students have that change in perspective that allows them to see themselves as creators of their education? One way is to take advantage of our cultural store of films and tales and re-view them through the lens of Joseph Campbell’s model of The Hero’s Journey. Students have no problem recognizing the key features of the journey in many of the films and stories they’ve seen. But when asked to reflect, share, and reflect again on the significance and relevance of these concepts in their own lives, they often startle themselves with a new-found perspective, allowing them to see themselves in the role of hero in their own journeys. This workshop will take you through that process of becoming your own hero.

Session 2G: Student Behavior and Student Success: What’s the Missing Link? (RM, BA, RF)
Presenter: DeRhonda McWaine, Faculty/Student Success Coordinator, San Jacinto College North, TX
Summary: Have you ever wondered why students behave in ways that hinder their success? Are students even aware of those behaviors that negatively affect their progress? As educators, we understand the link between student success and specific student behaviors. However, students are often unaware of those links. We can create opportunities for students to participate in success behaviors and reinforce those behaviors. In this session, the presenter will discuss the ICRE Method, explore specific success strategies, and examine research focused on student behaviors and success. At the conclusion of the session, participants will be equipped with activities and strategies that increase success behaviors. Instructors in any discipline, tutors, and retention specialists can benefit from these strategies.

Session 2H: Brain-Friendly Instruction: Enhancing Lifelong Learning (BA, AE, RW, DS)
Presenter: Eileen Zamora, Faculty Emerita, English & Learning Skills, Southwestern College, CA
Summary: Traditional methods of instruction can leave both students and instructors feeling that they have been swimming against the tide. Why? Current brain research has demonstrated that some traditional instructional methods are not in alignment with the way the brain learns best. Come and learn five principles for brain-friendly instruction and experience structures and strategies that will enable you to awaken and engage the brains in the classroom – both the students’ and yours!

Session 2I: Tutor Training with HEART: Honesty, Empathy, Attentiveness, Respect, & Tools (RM, AE, EQ, IN)
Presenter: Jen Wagner, Success Center Coordinator/Faculty, English, West Valley College, CA
Summary: To improve retention rates, boost success, increase persistence, and achieve equity goals, it is vital that students seeking help from support services know how much they matter—to us, the school, and the community at large. In this session, we will explore training strategies that help tutors recognize how to be present for other humans in need, connect empathetically with tutees, and empower them to succeed in return. Participants should come prepared to engage in discussion, participate in group/partnered activities, share ideas, and leave with resources. This session is well-suited for anyone who trains tutors as well as for instructors, counselors, and support staff who are looking for ways to better connect and empathize with the students they serve.

Session 2J: From Victim to Creator: Change Your Attitude—Transform your Life (RM, BA, EQ)
Presenter: Traci Robichaud-Holler, Faculty, Professional Development and Business Education, Cuesta College, CA
Summary: Olympic Gold Medalist Scott Hamilton wrote, “The only disability in life is a bad attitude.” According to a Stanford University survey, 87.5 percent of a person’s success, performance, and their ability to overcome obstacles are based on attitude and 12.5 percent is centered on a person’s IQ. In this workshop we will explore how a negative attitude perpetuates a victim mindset and cripples a person’s success not only in the classroom but in life. We will identify–and immediately implement–specific strategies to tackle a negative attitude and empower students, family, and colleagues to improve their attitude and increase their success. Whether you are a seasoned professor, retention specialist, or a student success instructor, you’ll be enriched by this workshop. How would you answer? “Attitudes are contagious—is yours worth catching?”

    Breakout Sessions #3 (90 minutes) 1:15PM-2:45PM Friday

    Session 3A: Reducing Test Stress Using Growth Mindset and Self-Awareness (BA, GG)
    Presenters: Amy Munson, Director of Instructional Design; Caitlin Huckfeldt, Graduate Student, United States Air Force Academy, CO
    Summary: Do you suspect testing stress is impacting your students’ ability to be successful on exams? This session will let you try some test stress reduction techniques, including an emphasis on how to leverage growth mindset and self-awareness. Participants will complete a self-assessment on their own testing stress, learn about stress reduction strategies, and hear about how this approach has been used at both the United States Air Force Academy and Pikes Peak Community College in Colorado Springs.

    Session 3B: Emotional Intelligence (EI) and College Success (RM, EQ)
    Presenter: Skip Downing, Author, On Course & Founder, On Course Workshops
    Summary: How many students will your college or university lose this year because they can’t manage their emotions? In this interactive session—a condensed version of the full-day workshop on Emotional Intelligence (EI)—we will focus on what EI is, why it is critical to student success and retention, and how to help students manage test anxiety.

    Session 3C: The Meaning of Happiness (BA, EQ, SL)
    Presenter: Marianne Auten, Faculty, Counseling, Paradise Valley Community College, AZ
    Summary: In a culture constantly shouting about happiness, this workshop will examine what really matters in creating a life of true well-being. Based on cutting-edge research, we will make a case that the key to a good life is finding or creating meaning, and then have you experience strategies proven to increase meaning (and happiness). You’ll apply the strategies to yourself and then we’ll examine how to do this with students. Come experience the power of meaning in creating lives of depth and significance!

    Session 3D: Finding the Balance: Challenge and Support (RM, BA, MS, RF)
    Presenter: Deb Poese, Director, Teacher Education Partnerships/Faculty, Mathematics, Montgomery College, MD
    Summary: Student success and degree completion are critical to our work in higher education.  At the same time, there is no way to get around the fact that, as David Sousa says very simply in his book, How the Brain Learns, “The brain that does the work is the brain that learns.”   How do we find the balance between challenging our students with the “brain work” necessary for learning and providing the support they need to complete the work and achieve success?   Participants in this session will explore ways to motivate persistence and encourage personal responsibility for learning across a variety of disciplines, with an emphasis on mathematics and science.

    Session 3E: Introducing New Faculty to On Course Principles (AE, PC)
    Presenters: Tonya Greene, Faculty/Chair, Student Success; Cheryl Burk, Faculty, Student Success and Developmental Reading and Writing, Wake Technical Community College, NC
    Summary: Participate in the presentation that Wake Tech Community College uses to introduce new faculty to On Course learner-centered principles and strategies. Come and experience effective and proven ways to raise new faculty’s awareness of the need to both effectively profess one’s content area expertise and simultaneously create learning opportunities and environments that empower students to stay in college to achieve academic success. To fully appreciate the experience, session participants will actively engage as “new faculty.” This session will benefit anyone looking for inspiration to create their own new faculty professional development offering or use in a department meeting to engage and empower current faculty who are not yet familiar with On Course principles and strategies.

    Session 3F: Moving from Mandatory to Meaningful: In-Service as an Idea Exchange (AE, IN)
    Presenter: Robin Middleton, Faculty Emerita, Student Development, Jamestown Community College, NY
    Summary: As Maya Angelou so aptly noted, “Nobody, but nobody can make it out here alone.” Educators are surrounded by other professionals who have insights and ideas that can help them ‘make it out here.” Yet, like our students, we are often hesitant to employ interdependence. This session provides the perfect opportunity to share ideas and resources with others who are committed to student success. Using the Chalk Talk game board, you and your teammates will wind your way through the halls of academe, working together as you encounter scenarios demanding effective problem-solving skills. Join us as we master the eight qualities of successful educators. (And yes, we’ll have fun too!)

    Session 3G: Becoming a Culturally Responsive Teacher (DS)
    Presenters: Essie Childers, Faculty, Student Success and Reading, Blinn College, TX
    Summary: Community colleges and universities of the 21st Century continue to offer educational opportunities to students from many different cultures and backgrounds. As educators, we must meet the challenge of the changing landscape of our classrooms. It is imperative that faculty pause and reflect on pedagogy to accommodate teaching diverse student populations. Are we teaching the way we were taught? Can students see themselves in the material you have selected for them to study? Do you offer students a volition in their presentations or research? This interactive session will highlight On Course Timeless Wisdom Diversity quotes and practical strategies to aid all faculty and student support staff in becoming a culturally responsive teacher.

    Session 3H: Building Self-Esteem: My Best Self Portrait (BA, EQ, DS)
    Presenter: LuAnn Wood, Student Success Coordinator/Faculty, Reading, Century College, MN
    Summary: How we see ourselves, how our families and friends see us, and how the world sees us contribute directly to our level of self-esteem. In this session, we will explore several strategies that help students recognize their own strengths and victories. In addition, we will look at effective ways that faculty and student services can work to build students’ self-worth in a culturally responsive way.

    Session 3I: Jump Start 21st Century Instruction with Entrepreneurial Teaching and Learning (AE)
    Presenters: Michelle Francis, Faculty, Reading/Professional Development Chair; Whitney Clay, Faculty, Reading, West Valley College, CA
    Summary: What do 21st Century Learners need to perform in this new ‘Gig Economy’? How can educators transform their classrooms to include the necessary skills? What characteristics differentiate students who approach learning from an Entrepreneurial mindset from those who are taught using more traditional models? Come to this highly interactive session to find out the answers to these questions. Engage in Entrepreneurial Teaching and Learning and discover how you can take the strategies back to your classroom on Monday. Your students will thank you!

    Session 3J: Classroom Strategies to Grow Student Motivation (RM)
    Presenter: Mark McBride, Faculty, Communications/College Success, Eastern Florida State College
    Summary: A lack of student motivation has long been the bane of higher education. It not only disrupts student learning, it kills teacher enthusiasm. According to motivational experts Deci and Wlodkowski, we can’t motivate our students to do anything; however, we can influence them to find their own motivation. In this session, designed for teachers across the curriculum, we will explore why students lack motivation, examine research-based techniques that promote it, and share tools that spark student interest. Participants leave with ready-to-use strategies to help students find their Inner Motivation.

    Breakout Sessions #4 (60 minutes) 3:15PM-4:15PM Friday

    Session 4A: “#OnCourse” (BA, TD, EQ, IN)
    Presenter: Jacob Hutchinson, Lead Faculty, Communications, Arkansas State University, Mid-South
    Summary: Social media platforms, when deliberately designed and facilitated, can serve as an effective pedagogical tool in producing meaningful experiences for students and instructors. By using social media technologies such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, educators can engage with students on their own turf and foster the development of students’ self-awareness, emotional intelligence, reflective practice, and interdependence. In this session, participants will discuss research-based strategies for contextualizing learning experiences in First Year Experience, Humanities, and Social Science courses. Participants will leave with social media engagement strategies that can be implemented for in-person, online, and hybrid courses.

    Session 4B: Culturally Responsive Teaching: Why It Matters! (DS)
    Presenter: LuAnn Wood, Student Success Coordinator/Faculty, Reading, Century College, MN
    Summary: As our student populations become increasingly diverse, it is vital that we, in higher education, explore what it means to be culturally responsive and equity-minded educators. This presentation will focus on ways to foster an equitable and student-centered experience for all students. Participants will leave with a deeper understanding of the difference between equality and equity, the tenets of culturally responsive teaching based on the work of Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings, as well as culturally responsive strategies to enhance one’s teaching and the work we do together with students.

    Session 4C: From Scotts Bluff to Omaha: The Nebraska Faculty Network (RF, PC)
    Presenter: Jill Sand, Dean, Health Sciences/ELE Team Leader, Southeast Community College, NE
    Summary: Are you ready to take student success to the next level in your state or at your community college? Attend this session to learn how the community colleges in Nebraska implemented On Course trainings statewide. See how leaders developed the Nebraska Faculty Network focused on collaboration with On Course strategies to support the success of community college students.

    Session 4D: Infusing On Course into Integrated Reading and Writing (RM, RF, RW, DS, SL, IN)
    Presenters: Teresa Ishigaki, Faculty, English/Coordinator, Distance Education; Ann Brandon, Faculty, Reading/BSSOT Grant Coordinator, Clovis Community College, CA
    Summary: How can we accelerate student learning while still developing the kind of soft skills necessary for success?   The passage of AB 705 in California has encouraged community colleges to move students into college-level coursework as quickly as possible. At our institution, our basic skills courses serve not only to develop content area skills, they also provide students with a safe place to practice being college students while developing the necessary skills to be successful in college. We have bridged this gap by creating an integrated reading and writing course, using the model of acceleration, but also infusing On Course principles. Our goal has been to develop soft skills, while also providing a truly integrated experience between the disciplines of reading and writing. Participants in this session will explore what On Course tools are available to help students develop personal responsibility, interdependence, and self-management.

    Session 4E: On Course: Beyond Student Success (RF, PC)
    Presenters: Christy Kobernick, Development and Retention Manager; Kelley Kepler, Faculty, Communications, Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
    Summary: Are you a higher-education leader who is frustrated with high rates of employee turnover? Have you ever thought about how personnel changes affect current or potential students and the success of your organization? Attend this session for a hands-on experience to understand how turnover affects both staff and students and to explore ways that you can minimize the impact turnover has on your organization. Learn how one college is using the On Course principles in an innovative way in efforts to enhance staff development, increase employee success, and improve employee retention.

    Session 4F: Strategies to Engage Students in the Learning Process (AE, IN)
    Presenter: Kaye Young, Learning Specialist, Jamestown Community College, NY
    Summary: While many faculty have a desire to become more learner centered, it can be overwhelming finding effective strategies that will increase student engagement in the classroom. With the use of the Jigsaw, participants will exchange simple, easy to use strategies that can be implemented before, during, and after class, to invite greater student participation and involvement. Anyone involved with training, presentations, or workshops will also find these techniques valuable. Each participant will leave with multiple ideas for immediate implementation.

    Session 4G: On Course Goes to High School: Choosing a Good Road (RF, PC, DS)
    Presenter: Jonathan Brennan, Faculty, English, Mission College, CA
    Summary: How might we improve the excellent results from using On Course with college students? Introduce high school students to a basic set of success principles so that these students can practice life skills before they arrive at college. This session will explore developing college/career readiness in middle/high school students, the latest research on non-cognitive competencies, and how to develop a success pipeline that improves both high school and college retention, persistence and graduation. Educators from all disciplines are encouraged to attend, especially those that are interested in developing partnerships between high schools and colleges.

    Session 4H: Developmental Math and Student Success: What’s the Link? (BA, MS, RF)
    Presenter: Cindy Adams, Faculty, College Prep Mathematics, San Jacinto College, TX
    Summary: What are the reasons so many students struggle with math? Students are often unaware that their perceptions and specific behaviors from other areas of their lives contribute to how they perform in math class. In this session, the presenter will discuss the benefits of linking a developmental math course with a student success course. At the conclusion of the session, participants will be equipped with several activities that that can be implemented in any course to increase student success in all areas of life. The session has information specific to Developmental Math and Student Success courses but would be applicable for anyone responsible for student success outcomes. Success data and student responses from the implementation of linked Developmental Math and Student Success courses will be provided.

    Panel Session 1: Jump Start College and a Phased Implementation for On Course (RF, PC)
    Presenters: John Kinkella, Dean, Western Nevada College; Patrick Peters, Principal, Silver Stage High School, NV; Doc Arnett, Vice President Academic Affairs; Roxanna James, Director, IMPACT Program (TRIO); Frank Owens, Director/Faculty, Criminal Justice; Stefani Jones, Retention Specialist, Cowley College, KS
    Summary: In this panel presentation, college and high school representatives will first share about the Jump Start College dual-enrollment program, named the “model for the state of Nevada” by Governor Sandoval. By providing a strong set up process and by using the supported cohort model with a college-supplied Cohort Coach, the program has produced extraordinary student success results. Secondly, the team from Cowley College will provide multiple perspectives and a status update on a deliberate implementation of On Course at a small two-year college in southern Kansas. Viewpoints include faculty, support staff, enrollment/advising & executive administration.

    Poster Session & Reception #5 (60 minutes) 4:30PM-5:30PM Friday

    Poster Session: Peer Mentors and Continuous Intervention (RF, DS, IN)
    Presenters: Lisa Weisman-Davlantes, Faculty; Eriko Self, Chair, Psychology, California State University, Fullerton
    Summary: In this poster presentation, hear how psychology faculty addressed the problem of repeatable grades by using a faculty coordinator to intentionally communicate with instructors and peer mentors as they support students enrolled in a high enrollment/high failure rate general education course. You’ll learn how continuous intervention was used to increase student learning, thus meeting goals for student retention and improved graduation rates.

    Breakout Sessions #6 (60 minutes) 8:30AM-9:30AM Saturday

    Session 6A: Don’t Just Dip Your Toe Into On Course–Take the Plunge! (RF, PC, DS)
    Presenters: Kelly Fowler, Vice President of Instruction and Student Services; Ann Brandon, Faculty, Reading/On Course Instigator, Clovis Community College, CA
    Summary: Are you ready to help your college take the next step into the On Course waters? Clovis Community College (CA) dipped its toe in the On Course waters in 2011, took the plunge in 2013, and has been submerged ever since.  Learn about the process we went through (and are still going through) to be an On Course campus with faculty, staff, and administrators excited about active learning and college-wide reform.  In this session, participants will reflect on their own campus cultures and then construct a framework to “dive deep” into creating an On Course campus.

    Session 6B: Time Management and Motivation: Supporting Self-Directed Learners in the Online Learning Environment (RM, RW, TD, DS, SL)
    Presenter: Shernette Dunn-Savery, Director of Reading and Study Skills, United States Air Force Academy Prep School, CO
    Summary: All students want to be successful in college but need to be explicitly taught the strategies of successful students. This presentation will focus on two of the most important strategies: motivation and time management. Research indicates that if students are motivated and know how to manage their time, they are on their way to success. However, there will be other strategies incorporated throughout the presentation that will empower students to become successful both in the online learning environment and the face-to-face classroom. Participants will walk away with ready-to-use reading and study skills strategies that are multi-disciplinary and useful for adult educators and their diverse students, including those who are considered English Language Learners (ELL) or those with learning-related disabilities.

    Session 6C: Growth Mindset and Grit in Developmental Math Classes (MS, GG)
    Presenter: Bill Shamhart, Faculty, Mathematics, Glendale Community College, CA
    Summary: Come learn how growth mindset (GMS) and grit can be incorporated into any class. This interactive session will identify and contrast fixed versus growth mindsets. Numerous tools and activities which have been used in developmental math classes as well as in stand-alone workshops will be shared. Participation in learner-centered activities will demonstrate how you can facilitate GMS and grit with students in their classes and on campus. Teachers, counselors and administrators interested in improving student attitudes and facilitating growth mindset in your classes and on campus are invited to attend.

    Session 6D: Engaging Students from High-Risk Environments (RF, AE, RW, DS)
    Presenter: Victoria Cliett, Faculty, Reading, Writing, and Communication, Glendale Community College, CA
    Summary: What is the mindset of first-generation or high-risk students in their first composition course?  Hear how one composition instructor supports students from high-risk environments with the use of strategic writing practices, engaging them in critical thinking and writing beyond passive reflection about their “other life” outside the classroom. Today’s writing instructors are addressing the needs of high-risk students in the writing classroom by integrating diverse texts, building robust student support systems, and implementing assessments that address student mindset. Yet there is, as W.E.B. DuBois expressed, a “double consciousness” that makes the student from a high-risk background aware that they are embracing an identity as a college student that feels superficial. A worthy goal for writing instructors is not to focus on making them “real” writers but to help students understand the critical spaces they are writing from as a path to developing critical thinking skills and claiming their own authority.  This session will share hands-on instruction, samples of student writing, and teaching strategies that will motivate and inspire students.  Participants will gain examples for models of critical narratives for high-risk students that help them identify obstacles in their academic journey.

    Session 6E: Multi-Function Learning Activities (AE, IN)
    Presenter: Doc Arnett, Vice President of Academic Affairs, Cowley College, KS
    Summary: Like those handy-dandy multi-tools that were so popular several years ago, these experiential activities accomplish more than one purpose. They can help build positive relationships inside the classroom, engage learners, and help increase retention of cognitive information. Participants will “learn by doing” experiential activities and participate in debriefing, a critical component of experiential learning.

    Session 6F: Learning with Legos® – Using Simple Objects to Teach Abstract Concepts (AE, AG, IN)
    Presenter: Liz Jennison, Faculty, Accounting, El Camino College, CA
    Summary: Ever give a lecture and see a sea of blank faces at the end? Students often struggle to understand concepts because they come from an unfamiliar context. As a result, the concepts go right over their heads. We can provide that context by using simple objects such as blocks or candy to simulate real situations. In this session, you will simulate a manufacturing process using Legos®, learn a little business and accounting, and develop creative ideas to teach abstract concepts in your classroom. Simulations with objects are probably most appropriate for business, economics, and STEM disciplines, but can be used in any discipline to make abstract concepts more concrete.

    Session 6G: Identifying and Navigating Obstacles to Graduation: A Case Study (RM, RF, IN)
    Presenters: Alla Petrosyan, Faculty, English, Mission College; Iyun Lazik; Madeline Adamczeski, Faculty, Chemistry; San Jose City College, CA
    Summary: Students need both motivation and the tools to take personal responsibility for creating their desired outcomes and experiences in college and in life. This session frontloads resource information in a non-threatening and interactive manner, and uses a case study to explore a student journey on the path to graduation. Participants explore resources at four stations: Academic Success, Financial Security, Exploring Personal Paths/Options, and Group Support. The station activities help students identify and overcome their obstacles to graduation, engage students to learn about multiple campus resources, and to develop a campus compass armed with questions to ask and places to go. The goal is to motivate and empower students to navigate personal and academic obstacles by using campus resources and thus successfully graduate. Participants will come away with an adaptable learning activity with implementation strategies to share with both students and campus educators.

    Session 6H: Learning to Learn Camp: Shaping Successful Students and Developing Faculty (RM, RF, PC, SL)
    Presenters: Patrick Barlow, Faculty & Emeritus Director, Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, Madison College, WI
    Summary: To promote student success and ensure adequate orientation to Madison College our students are invited to enroll in the pre-semester 3-day Learning to Learn Camp (L2L) and a subsequent College Class for a total of 3 first semester credits. In this interactive session, participants will experience one day of the camp as if they were actually enrolled. The Learning to Learn Camp is structured using Process Education principles which rely on Team-Based Learning and curriculum acceleration as tools to simulate the energy and focus of a typical student’s day at college. The On Course successful student characteristics form the basis of the lessons. Faculty and staff both participate in training and experience an intensive faculty development lab while they staff the camp. The program shapes successful students who are self motivated and focused on learning while developing faculty into strong facilitators, mentors, and assessors.

    Breakout Sessions #7 (90 minutes) 9:45AM-11:15AM Saturday

    Session 7A: Mindfulness and Learning: What’s the Connection? (BA, EQ, SL)
    Presenter: Sally Sharbaugh, Faculty, Human Development/Counselor, South Puget Sound Community College, WA
    Summary: Learn how the “skillful means” of mindfulness can enhance learning. Participants will briefly explore the origins of mindfulness, its modern day expressions in our culture, and its benefits. You will experience three types of guided mindfulness exercises, including a concentration practice and a compassion practice. Learn how to use mindfulness practices in your own classes and how mindful awareness can help your students strengthen their skills in the On Course principles of self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and life-long learning. You will leave with resources for further exploration and practical tools for mindfulness practice in your classroom.

    Session 7B: Social Identity, Stereotypes, and Success: Is There a Link? (RM, BA, DS)
    Presenter: Eileen Zamora, Faculty Emerita, English & Learning Skills, Southwestern College, CA
    Summary: Gender, race, ethnicity, age, religion, and political affiliation are just a handful of ways in which each of us identifies ourselves. What makes these identities important or unimportant to us? What impact do our social identities have on our success, academically and otherwise? In this interactive session, you will determine the various social identities by which you and others may define yourselves, as well as analyzing some of the stereotypes associated with those identities. You will discover that how we define ourselves can create an obstacle to academic success of which many students and educators are unaware: stereotype threat. You will learn the conditions under which stereotype threat exists and its effect on academic performance based on research by Dr. Claude Steele and others. You will leave this session with proven strategies to minimize this threat to your students and yourself. This session is appropriate for all educators, counselors, and administrators. Handouts and links to online resources will be provided.

    Panel Session 7C: No More Procrastinating! Self Management Strategies (SL)
    Presenter: Jonathan Brennan, Faculty, English, Mission College, CA
    Summary: Students often face challenges in achieving their goals because they struggle with managing their time effectively. They may procrastinate, focus on lower priorities, lose important assignments and fail to stay on track. There are numerous apps and tools for self-management, as well as important research on setting and achieving goals and staying focused and organized. This session is designed for educators teaching any discipline, and will present research, resources, and self-management strategies to bring back to the classroom or a student success program.

    Session 7D: Overcoming the Educator’s Limiting Psychological Script
    Presenter: Mark McBride, Faculty, Communications/College Success, Eastern Florida State College
    Summary: What’s your trigger? We all have them. Students’ attitudes and behaviors come at us at light speed, and once our button is pushed, forget about it. In this workshop, we’ll examine the psychological scripts that hinder our relationships with students. We will become aware of scripts that exist, techniques to disengage them, and strategies to erase them altogether. Once free from our auto-pilot reactions, we can stay focused on what we truly value: helping our students grow as successful learners.

    Session 7E: Creating an Engaged, Collaborative, and Transformative Classroom Environment (RM, BA, AE)
    Presenter: Chris Strouthopoulos, Faculty, Student Success, San Juan College, NM
    Summary: You know that sinking feeling when once bright-eyed students now show up underprepared, when they bother to show up at all? Or students fail an assessment, yet when you asked for questions, no hands went up? Or when small groups barely talk to one another? At this session we’ll explore the unmet emotional needs driving these behaviors. You’ll learn about the concept of mental state and its connection to the latest research on psychological safety so you can create an even more engaged, collaborative, and transformative classroom environment. Anyone who seeks to create an energized classroom experience will benefit from attending.

    Session 7F: The Power of Believing You Can Improve (RM, BA, GG)
    Presenter: Marianne Auten, Faculty, Counseling, Paradise Valley Community College, AZ
    Summary: When it comes to achieving success, research shows that believing in your abilities is not near as important as believing that you can improve upon your abilities. The “get better” mindset helps students regard challenges and setbacks as just part of the learning process, and gives them the motivation and persistence to master new skills and achieve their goals. Numerous studies have shown that this mindset can be taught and that it doesn’t have to take very long. Come learn the science and strategies of the mindset that leads to greater success for both our students and ourselves!

    Session 7G: On Course in Every Class: Infusing the Eight Principles into the Content Areas (RM, AE, RW)
    Presenter: Michelle Francis, Faculty, Reading/Professional Development Chair, West Valley College, CA
    Summary: Infusing the Eight On Course Principles in a college success class is seemingly easy, but it is more challenging to infuse them into a content area course. Participants in this session will engage in various strategies and activities that can be used in content area courses to increase student success and completion rates. Participants will also share their own strategies for how they have implemented the On Course Principles in their classrooms. At the completion of this highly interactive session, participants will leave with ideas to immediately implement in their courses.

    Session 7H: What’s in your Backpack? Helping Students Develop Self-Awareness and Self-Confidence (BA, EQ)
    Presenter: Robin Middleton, Faculty Emerita, Student Development, Jamestown Community College, NY
    Summary: Students bring a great deal of emotional luggage with them when they arrive at college. Some are weighed down with past failures and negative academic experiences, making it challenging to stay motivated when encountering life’s inevitable obstacles. In this workshop participants will explore some of the ‘rocks’ that weigh students down, and discover ways to help students fill their backpacks with the confidence and grit that will help them achieve their goals.

    Session 7I: Raising the Bar: Take Your Course to the Next Level (RF, PC)
    Presenter: DeRhonda McWaine, Faculty/Student Success Coordinator, San Jacinto College North, TX
    Summary: Are you ready to take your course to the next level? Are you ready to implement specific success initiatives and programs within your course to raise the bar for student achievement? Having an effective course is the first step; the second step is to enhance the effectiveness of your course by instituting programs that are directly related to an increase in student retention, completion rates, and fostering stronger connections. In this session, specific programs/initiatives (along with supporting data) will be provided to all participants. Participants will be given strategies on how to scale up (implement into an entire college-wide program) or scale down (apply to a single course) the San Jacinto College success initiatives as well. At the conclusion of the session, participants will have the tools needed to implement all or parts of the initiatives within a course and explore and discuss the data that supports the initiative. All individuals who have a vested interest in the success of students within a given course would benefit from this session and they will receive practical information that can be implemented into any course.

    Session 7J: Don’t Limit Your Challenges…Challenge Your Limits: Using MindTap for On Course to Help Students Overcome Obstacles (BA, TD, SL)
    Presenters: Essie Childers, Faculty, Education & Reading, Blinn College, TX
    Summary: Digital tools, when designed and utilized from a learner-centered perspective, can help first-year students overcome many of the learning challenges they face in online, hybrid, and even face-to-face course environments. In this session, participants will explore MindTap, the online learning tool created specifically for the On Course text, and how it addresses student challenges such as poor reading abilities; ineffective self-assessment, self-reflection, or study skills; lack of digital confidence; poor time-management skills; and difficulty understanding real-world applications of the course content. This session will benefit any instructor who is ready to help students move beyond what they may perceive as their personal limits and discover the joy and power of lifelong learning.

    Session 8 (11:45AM-12:45PM, Saturday)

    Session 8: Closing Session with Dr. Skip Downing and Dr. Jonathan Brennan
    Summary: In this closing session you’ll have a chance to learn more about how other educators have been using On Course strategies to transform their campus, hear from students who have been using On Course strategies, and reflect on your own learning. If you implement just one (let alone a handful) of these innovative efforts on your campus, you’ll contribute mightily to improving the outcomes and experiences of both your students and colleagues. All in all, this session will both inspire and provide you with proven approaches for creating a culture of academic success at your campus. Also, as is our tradition, this session will end with a raffle of some great prizes, including one $495 scholarship to the 2018 On Course National Conference and three $500 scholarships to a 2017 On Course I Workshop.

    SKIP DOWNING, Author, On Course: Strategies for Success in College and in Life and founder of On Course Workshops. Dr. Downing has earned degrees from Princeton University, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Santa Monica, and Carnegie Mellon University. He holds advanced degrees in both English and counseling psychology. He was Professor of English at Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) for 32 years. In addition to his role as an academic instructor, Dr. Downing created and coordinated BCCC’s Student Success and Learning Community Programs. These programs teach students how to apply proven strategies of success to achieve their full potential in college and in life. The College Success Program resulted in a significant increase in both student academic success and retention. Skip’s teaching, writing, and consulting are all guided by his belief that the greatest mission of any educational institution is empowering its students to live rich, personally fulfilling lives.

    JONATHAN BRENNAN has facilitated student success workshops for faculty from colleges and universities across North America for the last two decades. Dr. Brennan is a researcher in best practices in student success, holds a BA and an MA in English, an MA in Counseling Psychology, a PhD in Ethnic Studies (UC Berkeley), an EdD in Educational Leadership and Change (Fielding Graduate University), and also consults as an Effectiveness and Leadership Coach. Since 2006, he has served as Chair of the On Course National Conference.
    Dr. Brennan is a faculty member (and former department and division chair) of the English Department at Mission College in Santa Clara, California. He designed and coordinated an On Course Program at Mission College that significantly improved the retention and academic success rate of students in developmental English, Mathematics, Reading, and ESL. He has chaired the Student Success Committee as well as the Accreditation Committee, served as Vice President of the Academic Senate, and teaches composition, African American and Native American literature, and life skills classes. He has served as director of an academic mentoring program for basic skills students, developed the first year seminar Learning Communities project, and directed research grants for the state of California’s Fund for Student Success and Fund for Instructional Improvement programs.
    He was voted Faculty of the Year at Mission College in 1999-2000, and was awarded a NISOD Teaching Excellence Award. In April, 2005, he was awarded the Stanback-Stroud Diversity award from the California State Academic Senate, and in 2008 was awarded the California State Hayward Award for Excellence in Education. His publications include two books on Mixed Race and Black Indian Literature from Stanford Press and University of Illinois Press, and a student success textbook for high school students, Choosing a Good Road.

    2018 On Course National Conference STRANDS:

    RM: Responsibility & Motivation: Pre-Conf 1, Pre-Conf 2, Pre-Conf 3, Pre-Conf 4, 2D, 2G, 2I, 2J, 3B, 3D, 3J, 4D, 6B, 6G, 6H, 7B, 7E, 7F, 7G

    BA: Brain-Based and Self Aware: Pre-Conf 1, 2E, 2F, 2G, 2H, 2J, 3A, 3C, 3D, 3H, 4A, 4H, 7A, 7B, 7D, 7E, 7F, 7H, 7J

    MS: Math & Science: 2A, 3D, 4H, 6C

    RF: Retention and FYE: Pre-Conf 1, 2B, 2G, 3D, PS, 4C, 4D, 4E, 4G, 4H, Panel 1, 6A, 6D, 6G, 6H, 7I

    AE: Active & Engaged Learning: Pre-Conf 1, Pre-Conf 2, 2B, 2C, 2D, 2H, 2I, 3E, 3F, 3I, 4F, 6D, 6E, 6F, 7E, 7G

    RW: Reading, Writing & Communication: 2D, 2F, 2H, 4D, 6B, 6D, 7D, 7G

    TD: Technology, Distance Learning & Social Media: Pre-Conf 4, 2C, 4A, 6B, 7J

    PC: Professional Development & Institutional Change: Pre-Conf 1, 2A, 2E, 3E, 4C, 4E, 4G, Panel 1, 6A, 6H, 7I

    EQ: Emotional Intelligence & Self-Efficacy: 2B, 2F, 2I, 2J, 3B, 3C, 3H, 4A, 7A, 7D, 7H

    DS: Diversity and Equity Strategies: 2A, 2H, 3G, 3H, PS, 4B, 4D, 4G, 6A, 6B, 6D, 7B

    SL: Self Management & Lifelong Learning: Pre-Conf 4, 2E, 3C, 4D, 6B, 7A, 7C, 7J

    AG: Acceleration & Gamification of Learning: 2B, 6F

    IN: Interdependence, Teamwork & Group Learning: Pre-Conf 4, 2B, 2E, 2I, 3F, PS, 4A, 4D, 4F, 6E, 6F, 6G

    GG: Growth Mindset & Grit: 3A, 6C, 7F

    PS: Poster Session = PS