Fall 2017 Resources

Fall Faculty Development Day Agendas/Presenter Resources

August 24, 2017 

SESSION 1     10:45 am – 11:45 am

What’s In A Name? Embracing Our Identity as a Hispanic-Serving Institution

Presenters:   Nancy Velázquez-Torres, María Julia Rossi  

Many questions arise when considering John Jay College as an HSI. What does this label actually mean? How is being a Hispanic serving institution impacting our practices? Does this affect us as a college, as departments or as professors? Is there anything that can be done differently in the classroom? This workshop consists of three sections: first, a presentation on data about Hispanic students in the US, John Jay College statistics and other colleges’ practices; second, a participative workshop on ideas and suggestions on how to approach being an HSI and what practical steps can we take on that direction; third, a presentation of best practices in the field, with a theoretical approach and some practical examples of successful institutions. The goal of this workshop is twofold: to present colleagues with relevant information (demographic data both about Hispanic students in general and at John Jay College, as well as useful resources and best practices) and to collaborate in reflecting on what it means to us to belong to a Hispanic Serving Institution and creating our own ways to approach this in the Strategic Plan.

Click Whats in a Name_HSI for presenter resources.

Research Papers Step 1: Guiding Students to Meaningful Inquiry

Presenter:   Christen Madrazo

How can we get our students excited to truly design their own projects without spoon-feeding them? How can we limit the boredom we face when we’re slapped with a stack of high school level reports or pro/con papers sprinkled with quotes? How can we get rid of data-dumps or didactic “pick-a-side” papers altogether and establish a culture of college-level inquiry, research, and writing with purpose that’s still within our students’ reach? Based on the very basic and cross-discipline concept of “story,” this session will provide ready-to-use, tried-and-true methods for helping students of any level in any discipline design their own projects and, at the same time, get more involved with experiential and active learning opportunities at the college and beyond. Get better papers and more engaged students! All are welcome, and no need to bring anything.

Managing Students in Distress: Help I Didn’t Sign Up for This Job!

Presenter:   Gerard Bryant

Much more so than was the case with previous generations, students are arriving on our college campuses today with a lot of emotional and psychological baggage, which may manifest itself in disruptive classroom behavior and obviously affects their potential for success . It is imperative that everyone in the campus community know how to effectively recognize, and respond to, the needs of these students – not only for their benefit, but for the sake of the institution as a whole and society in general. Participants will also be able to learn how to differentiate between emotional issues and mental illness; identify basic symptoms associated with anxiety and adjustment disorders, depression, eating disorders, substance abuse, antisocial behavior, and other conditions common among the college population; how to recognize the warning signs that a student may become violent, how to respond appropriately, if necessary, and the role of the ‘Behavioral Intervention Team” in dealing with students who are behaving erratically.

The New Zero-Cost Curated Course Pack: Interactive Databases, Videos and Other Library Gems to Enrich Your Teaching

Presenters:   Ellen SextonRobin Davis

Go beyond pricey textbooks and static PDFs with these interactive learning materials, available at zero cost to students and faculty through the library. Two John Jay librarians will take you on a hands-on tour of the library’s “hidden gems.” We will showcase three online resources that offer students new ways to engage with curricular materials, the library’s extensive streaming holdings, and finally we will lead a discussion on how the resources we covered can be used to promote student learning.

Click The New Zero-Cost Curated Course Pack & Handout for presenter resources.

ePortfolio for Quantitative and Visual Literacies

Presenters:   Daniel Auld, Jessica Stevens, Wynne Ferdinand

ePortfolios afford instructors and students the opportunity to effectively incorporate multimedia into course content across all disciplines. When students incorporate images, data, videos or multimedia content into a project, they use quantitative and visual literacies to interpret and synthesize the information they have collected. In this interactive workshop, we will explore definitions for quantitative and visual literacies, identify the benefits of developing skills related to these domains, and examine potential applications of these skills in varied learning contexts. Participants will analyze media from student and course ePortfolios at John Jay College to identify assignments and ePortfolio tools that support ongoing development of students’ quantitative and visual literacies.

Increase the Impact of Your Scholarship Using Twitter

Presenter:   Jennifer Chang, Growth Editor at Quartz

During this session we will focus on Twitter as an underused tool in the academic world and focus on how Twitter can be used in and out of the classroom, best practices to get started with Twitter, expanding your network, and dealing with trolls.  This will be a hands-on session so please come prepared with a Twitter account (register here) and real-world questions or problems you’d like to discuss.

SESSION 2     1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

OERientation: Open Alternatives to Textbooks at John Jay

Presenters:   Anthony Carpi, Catherine Kemp, Raymond Patton, Ellen Sexton, Edward Snajdr

This panel will introduce John Jay faculty to Open Educational Resources (OER) and other alternative resources that can be used to supplement or replace textbooks in the college classroom. Participants will learn about the principles behind Open and Alternative Resources, their benefits for student learning, student success, course design and pedagogy, some of the challenges involved, how John Jay faculty members are already using alternative materials, and about initiatives and opportunities at John Jay in the coming year.

Click OER for presenter resources.

Integrating Statistics into Liberal Arts Courses Using Web-Based Sources

Presenters:   Sandra Swenson, Dante Tawfeeq

Statistics is a part of our everyday lives, but many students shy away from tackling statistics unless it is in a required course that they need to graduate, and then it may be difficult for students to transfer knowledge from a statistics course to another liberal arts course as the application of one may not be relevant to the other. In this workshop we’ll look at ways to use student collected data and real-time, or near real-time data taken from the World Wide Web to create graphs for data analysis and interpretation in the classroom. We’ll also examine scaffolding strategies to build case studies to contextualize the data so that students may ask questions pertinent to their lives.

Click UBD Guide, UBD Template, & UBD Worksheet for presenter resources.

Research Papers Step 2: The Research Paper Assignment, or How to Begin at the Beginning

Presenters:   Andrea Balis, Kathleen Collins

This presentation will address a challenge common to all faculty and students when assigning a research paper: how to get started. Too often, when students set out to find information on their topic or research question, they have no idea where or how to begin. They may know they are supposed to use library databases, but diving into the scholarly literature can be daunting and inefficient. By using sample research assignments, we will suggest ways to help faculty help students go about their initial inquiries in a more effective manner. Being able to grasp the concepts surrounding a given topic will help students formulate more workable research questions which will in turn help them write better papers. We will champion the use of tertiary sources and challenge assumptions and resistance to their use. We will ask attendees to reflect on how they begin the research process in their own work and how that relates to what they ask of their students. After attending this session, faculty will be able to understand how to help students begin the research process; know how to develop assignments that focus on student research skills; and will be able to articulate how they themselves begin research projects.

Supporting A Survivor

Presenters:   Jeenie Yoon, Staff at the NYC Alliance Against Sexual Assault

The statistics are harrowing—1 in 4 college-aged women will have experienced an attempted or completed sexual assault by the time they graduate from college. With numbers like this, you will almost undoubtedly work with a student who is a survivor of sexual violence. Many of us form bonds and relationships with our students. When we consider this plus the fact that survivors/victims of assault are most likely to disclose to someone they feel close to, there is a decent chance that at some point you may receive a disclosure of sexual violence. This workshop will examine the best, trauma-informed ways on how to support a student. It will cover basic “dos and don’ts” as well as provide resources for you to give to your students. This workshop is ideal for all responsible employees, including Deans, Administrators, Staff Members, Faculty Members, RAs, RDs, Student Affairs Leaders, and so on.

Click Disclosure DOs and DON’Ts & Sexual Violence 101 Resource List for presenter resources.

Best Practices for Writing Letters of Recommendation for Graduate/Medical/Law School

Presenters:   Bill Gottdiener, Edgardo Sanabria-Valentin, Elizabeth Broccoli

Writing a strong recommendation letter for a great, deserving student can be one of the best parts of working in Academia, and is part of our duty as educators and mentors. It gives us the chance to pass along the torch and help our students and mentees continue their academic path and become experts in their disciplines. Not all letters of recommendations are created equally, and different types of post-graduate programs (like medical or law school) expect recommenders to provide particular information about each applicant. In this panel we will discuss best practices of writing a strong and fair letter of recommendation and the particularities of letters of recommendations for different disciplines. We aim to discuss what constitutes a strong letter of recommendation, what information will be most useful to admission committees, and how to determine if you are the right person to write a letter of recommendation for a particular student.

Click Writing Letters of Recommendation & Letters for presenter resources.

Best Practices for Recruiting and Retaining a Diverse Faculty

Presenter:   Cheryl L. Franks

Research has shown people of Color are judged more fairly when they are at least 30% of the applicant pool. This is only one of the strategies for recruiting a diverse faculty that will be covered in this FDD session. The presentation will review John Jay’s commitment to faculty diversity and strategies for realizing this commitment. Best practices for both recruiting and retaining a diverse faculty will be covered including an understanding of the mind sciences (implicit/unconscious bias, stereotype threat and racial anxiety) as a critical dimension of this work. The presentation will also review the concepts of microaggressions and historical trauma and how awareness of all these concepts helps in ensuring an environment where not just some, but where all can thrive. Participants will leave with a greater understanding of what it takes to build and nurture a College community where faculty is better representative of the students we serve. A robust discussion focusing on application will follow the presentation.

Click Microaggressions and Historical Trauma & Best Practices for the Recruitment and Retention of a Diverse Faculty for presenter resources.

SESSION 3     2:15 pm – 3:15 pm

What’s Math Got to Do with It? A Social Justice Approach to Learning Communities

Presenters:   Erica King-Toler, Mark Francis

This presentation will share with participants strategies and techniques used in a specialized learning community designed to examine the links between social justice, education, and mastery of mathematics. For some of today’s college students, the study of mathematics can create a perceived barrier to academic success. Students find it challenging to identify the connections between the study of mathematics and its applicability to “real world” social justice and educational problems that impact their overall well-being, mental and physical health, and socioeconomic status. Our learning community created to link the seemingly unrelated disciplines of social justice, education and mathematics helped students increase their individual, social and global awareness as well as their math proficiency.  This panel will help participants consider how learning communities can improve student persistence, performance, and engagement.

Changing the Narrative about Our Students: Disrupting Implicit Bias

Presenters:   Charles Davidson, Nathan Lents, Allison Pease, Monika Son

How do you describe John Jay students, to others and to yourself? Language affects thought.  How we talk to and about our students affects how we teach and how students learn. What effect, for instance, does using deficit-based language to describe student abilities have on how we shape assignments?  This hands-on session will (a) recount the language John Jay students have heard from their professors (b) explore the language students use to describe themselves, and (c) work in small groups to “change the narrative” by creating phrases and narratives about our students that reflects what we know, avoids bias or stereotypes, and helps create a pedagogically effective campus climate. By confronting the bias inherent in the language we use and then consciously constructing alternative narratives we are choosing to re-frame the story of our students and our roles in their lives.


Supporting Undocumented Immigrant Students and Families at John Jay

Presenters:   Isabel Martinez, Nancy Yang

We have approximately 300 undocumented students and an indeterminate amount of students from mixed status families at John Jay. Especially in the past few months, these students have been particularly vulnerable to external actions that threaten their learning and success and John Jay. This session will provide information about what the College is doing as well as additional strategies and resources so that faculty are informed and can assist students in these categories.

Click here for John Jay’s  Resources for Undocumented Students website

New York Slavery Records Index: A Resource for Classroom Instruction

Presenters:   Judy-Lynne Peters, Ned Benton

Panelists will present their database, New York Slavery Records Index, nyslavery.commons.gc.cuny.edu (general password “freedom”) and explain how the original slavery records can be integrated into teaching, with examples for policy analysis, literature, human services, political science and other disciplines.

Click below for the resources:


Yale Renaming Principles

Study Abroad & Off-Campus Faculty-Led Development

Presenter:   Ken Yanes

Faculty-led programs off-campus give students the opportunity to learn both in and outside the classroom and to work closely with faculty in a new context. Students typically find that their academic experiences abroad/off-campus are some of the most transformative of their undergraduate career. Similarly, faculty report that teaching abroad allows them a different kind of pedagogical experience and one that they have found particularly rewarding. This presentation is intended to provide faculty who would like to teach abroad or off-campus with information concerning the program design and administration along with the responsibilities that both faculty and students assume in participating in these programs. The faculty director’s role is critical in programs abroad/off-campus. This presentation will cover the many roles a faculty director takes on with the help and guide of JJC study-abroad deputy director, Office of Student Affairs, the Health and Counseling Centers, Title IX Coordinator, General Counsel, and CUNY Risk Management — from designing the academic content, to assisting with logistics and managing the risks involved in programs abroad/off-campus. Designing and leading a study-abroad program will be a unique and exciting contribution to the internationalization of the College’s curricula, your academic department, and to our students on campus. A study-abroad program is the first step toward a global and interculturally-competent student body that will be prepared for graduate school, law school, and the interconnected workforce of the US and the world.

Click Faculty Guidelines for Study Abroad Proposals for presenter resources.

News Literacy and Critical Thinking

Presenters:   Kathleen Collins, Greg Donaldson

Fake news. Alternative facts. Post-truth. We are living in a world where facts are easier than ever to find yet seem to matter less than ever before. This has critical implications for students in their academic, professional and personal lives and is relevant in almost every course they might take in their college careers. The first half of the session will focus on teaching news and information literacy in the digital age by providing context and case studies curated by Professor Alexa Capeloto (English). We will also introduce tools, resources and activities designed for easy inclusion in your courses (they will be shared via Google Docs for access throughout the semester).

The second half of the session will focus on Times Talk, a weekly discussion session based on the New York Times of the day, which has been running successfully for five years. The program, run by veteran professor of Communications Greg Donaldson, is based on the belief that John Jay students are starved for reliable information on a range of subjects. Professor Donaldson will discuss strategies for drawing students to the sessions and keeping them coming. Some students have attended regularly for four years. A few, who have graduated or transferred, travel from their new schools to John Jay to attend. Donaldson will describe techniques he uses to enhance critical thinking skills and ways to keep debates over hot button issues lively yet collegial.

Click News Literacy Session for presenter resources.