Plenary Sessions

Opening Plenary Session

Friday, June 1, 2018 | 5:15–6:30 pm

Teaching and Learning: Lost in a Buzzword Wasteland

Stephen L. Chew, professor and chair of psychology, Samford University

Teaching is currently dominated by fads and buzzwords, with the result that teaching practice changes often but rarely makes progress in terms of improving student learning. Chew proposes that the remedy to this situation is a theory of teaching and learning that can both act as a framework for learning research and mediate pedagogical applications for teachers. In this plenary presentation, he will demonstrate key components of such a framework and show how it can be used by both researchers and practitioners.

About the Presenter:

 Stephen L. Chew Stephen L. Chew,
Samford University

Stephen L. Chew, PhD, has been a professor and chair of psychology at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama, since 1993. Trained as a cognitive psychologist, one of his primary research areas is the cognitive basis of effective teaching and learning. His research interests include the use of examples in teaching, the impact of cognitive load on learning, and the tenacious misconceptions that students bring with them into the classroom. He is best known as the creator of a groundbreaking series of YouTube videos for students on how to study effectively in college based on cognitive research ( The videos have received over a million views and are in use at educational institutions worldwide from high schools through professional schools.

Chew was selected as a Carnegie Scholar in 1998 as part of the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. He was awarded the Buchanan Award for Classroom Teaching Excellence from Samford in 1999. In 2005, he received the Robert S. Daniel Teaching Excellence Award from the Society for the Teaching of Psychology as the outstanding teacher of psychology at four-year colleges and universities. He was named the 2011 Outstanding Master’s Universities and Colleges U.S. Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association through the Society for the Teaching of Psychology. He regularly serves as a keynote speaker and workshop leader at conferences on teaching in general and on the teaching of psychology in particular.