Plenary Sessions

Teaching Professor
Online Conference

Live Access: October 22–24, 2024
On-Demand Access: October 25, 2024–January 31, 2025


Ungrade and Engage: Building on the Human Love of Learning

Humans are astonishing learners “in the wild,” yet it often seems as if the very institutions devoted to learning–schools–produce poor learning, along with disengagement and suffering. In this keynote address, Professor Susan D. Blum builds on her work as an anthropologist and an advocate of ungrading practices to show how to build on learners’ strengths and intrinsic motivations to deepen learning and engagement, while using assessment for the purpose of promoting learning.

Susan D. Blum

University of Notre Dame

Susan D. Blum, PhD is a professor of anthropology at the University of Notre Dame. Her work has roamed around the fields of cultural, linguistic, and psychological anthropology, in the context of China but most recently in the quest to understand the nature of institutional education. She is the editor of the collection Ungrading: Why Rating Students Undermines Learning (and What to Do Instead) (West Virginia University Press, 2020) and has just completed Book 3 of her education trilogy, Schoolishness: Alienated Education and the Quest for Authentic and Joyful Learning. The previous two books were My Word! Plagiarism and College Culture (2009) and “I Love Learning; I Hate School”: An Anthropology of College (2016), all published by Cornell University Press. She has taught at a range of institutions of higher education for thirty-five years.


Practical Strategies for Embedding Metacognition Into Instruction

Research shows that metacognition plays a significant role in student learning and achievement. In this plenary session, we will explore practical strategies that you can use to embed metacognition into your instructional tasks and activities. You will leave the session with techniques you can immediately implement in order to help your students strengthen their metacognitive skills and promote deeper student thinking and learning.

Tolulope Noah

California State University

Tolulope (Tolu) Noah, EdD is the Instructional Learning Spaces coordinator at California State University, Long Beach, where she facilitates faculty development. Previously, she was a senior professional learning specialist at Apple and an associate professor in the undergraduate teacher education program at Azusa Pacific University (APU). In 2019, Noah received APU’s university-wide Teaching Excellence Faculty Award. She is passionate about pedagogy and technology, and she enjoys speaking and consulting with schools and universities. 


Intentional Cultural Response Teaching for Improved Learning

This session will examine the status of equity in today’s college classroom. As instructors struggle to meet the needs of a diverse population and engage all learners, this presentation will offer specific instructional techniques and methods to enhance connections with students. Utilizing intentional decision-making, higher education faculty guide students to view course content and curriculum through a cultural lens. Valuing the student’s lived experiences and knowledge creates a dynamic and inclusive learning environment. Participants will consider specific strategies that can be implemented into course design, classroom activities, and assessment.

Jill Purdy

Cedar Crest College

Jill Purdy, EdD is a professor at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, PA. She has taught in higher education for 17 years. Prior to this, Purdy was a middle school educator. She holds an EdD in reading and language arts instruction from Widener University. As a leader, Purdy has been elected twice to serve as faculty president at her institution. Her research interests include instructional pedagogy, diversity and equity, online instruction, literacy, inclusive practices, and mindfulness. She is dedicated to the success of her students through work in the area of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Purdy speaks both nationally and internationally on these topics and provides professional development trainings at all levels.