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Wednesday, January 10, 2001

  • Advice wanted on choice of provost
  • The 'strategies' of ordinary talk
  • Library books due today; and more

Hagey Lecture tickets

Tickets are now available for the Hagey Lecture to be given by Michael Ignatieff on January 24, says Peter Houston, manager of the Humanities box office.

"Tickets can be reserved by calling 888-4908," he says, and can be picked up when the box office is open -- noon to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday. "If there are any left, they will be available at the door the evening of the lecture. We will open at seven for the eight o'clock lecture."

In what's considered UW's premier lecture of the year, Ignatieff will speak on "Human Rights and the Rights of States: Are They on a Collision Course?"

Advice wanted on choice of provost

"Interested faculty, staff and students" are being invited to comment this month on what kind of person UW needs as its next vice-president (academic) and provost, as the nominating committee moves on with its work.

A "communiqué" that also appears in today's Gazette notes that the committee is "committed to undertaking broad consultation to identify the external and internal issues, challenges and opportunities facing the institution and the critical qualities of the individual who might provide best leadership" in the vice-presidential job.

Jim Kalbfleisch retired as provost December 31, and Alan George, dean of mathematics, is serving as acting VP and provost while the search takes place.

The communiqué announces that "Committee members will consult directly with the Vice-Presidents, Deans and Associate Provosts; the Presidents of the FAUW, Staff Association, CUPE, Federation of Students and the Graduate Student Association; the Heads of the Colleges; members of the Board of Governors; the Chair of the UW Foundation; and Faculty Councils.

"The Committee would encourage Academic Department Chairs and Directors of Schools and of Academic Support Departments, as well as interested regular and non-regular faculty, staff and students to make written submissions expressing views on these matters."

It says such written comments, "along with suggestions of individuals who might be considered for the position", can be sent in confidence to the secretary of the university, Lois Claxton, at her office in Needles Hall, or to any member of the nominating committee. "Any group wishing to make a brief presentation to a member/members of the Committee may contact Lois Claxton. Consultation will be completed by and submissions received up to January 31.

"On the basis of the information generated by this broad consultative process, the Committee will prepare a position profile describing the critical qualities of the individual who might best fill the role."

The communiqué notes that ads for the vice-president's job have appeared, or soon will appear, in the Gazette, University Affairs and the Globe & Mail.

Nominations and applications can be made to President David Johnston, Chair of the Nominating Committee, c/o Lois Claxton, Secretary of the University , Needles Hall, Room 3060, or to Janet Wright & Associates Inc., 21 Bedford Road, Suite 300, Toronto ON M5R 2J9 (fax 416-923-8311; jwassoc@total.net). Documentation should include a curriculum vitae and a brief statement of the qualifications and specific achievements on the basis of which the individual merits consideration for the Vice-Presidency. Nominations, applications and expressions of interest will be treated in strict confidence.
A list of nominating committee members can be found on the university secretariat web site.

The 'strategies' of ordinary talk

Research on "communicative strategies as part of the curriculum", being done by Grit Liebscher of UW's department of Germanic and Slavic languages and literatures, is being supported by an instructional development grant this term, says an announcement from the teaching resources and continuing education office.

Each term TRACE turns the spotlight on one of its grant recipients, and this term it's Liebscher's turn, as she and her work are introduced on the TRACE web site.

It offers a brief explanation of what the work is all about:

What do learners of a second language need to know in order to conduct conversations in the second language at their level of proficiency? While vocabulary and grammar come to mind immediately, there are more subtle resources needed in order to conduct a conversation. Such resources are the means to ask for clarification and repetition, to check understanding and to paraphrase, commonly called "communicative strategies". They are not specific to second language interactions but are used by native speakers alike. How do first and second language speakers use these strategies? Do second language learners employ them naturally or are they language specific? What kind of resources do we have to teach students?
"This project," the web page goes on, "has been supported by TRACE and the Dean of Arts, which allowed her to present a paper on the subject at the CAUTG/APAUC Annual Conference in May.

"The support has also been used to involve graduate students from the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures in the research for the project. They have participated in taping students' oral interviews to be used as database and in transcribing and interpreting the data.

"Initial research has shown that second language learners are better conversationalists if they use communicative strategies, especially if they can make intelligent guesses to check their understanding. Analysis of data has also indicated the importance of teacher modeling, since students adopt strategies that the teacher uses. Further research will provide more insights into the second language learners' needs for communicative strategies.

"The overall goal of the project is a practical concern, namely to suggest which strategies to teach in the second language classroom."

UW teachers who are interested in applying for an Instructional Development Grant to develop their own teaching initiatives can get in touch with TRACE at ext. 3132, e-mail trace@watserv1.

Health behaviour open house

The health behaviour research group will hold an open house today from 2 to 4 p.m. in Math and Computer room 6081. "People are invited to learn about our purpose, our projects, and our people," says Kelly Anne Velle of the HBRG. "Refreshments will be served."

Library books due today; and more

Today is advertised as "Wacky Wednesday" at Brubakers cafeteria in the Student Life Centre. And it may be fairly wacky at the circulation desks in UW's libraries too, as books borrowed on term loan are due today. Be sure to return yours, or renew them -- but if you try to do that, you can expect crowds, as everybody does the last-minute thing.

Also in the libraries, the user education program is picking up steam; there's a session in the Davis Centre today (1:30) with "information for graduate students", and the same session will be repeated tomorrow along with one on the use of Trellis, the on-line catalogue.

International student orientation continues today in Davis Centre room 1302. Sessions will be held on getting involved on campus, using the library, cross-cultural living, health and safety, and more. A reception to welcome international students will be held from 4:30 to 7 p.m. in DC room 1301.

The career development workshop series has resumed in Needles Hall. Today at 1:30 it's "Letter Writing", and at 2:30 "Resume Writing". The career resource centre can provide more information.

The Graduate Student Association continues with its "welcome week". Today brings a "Meet the Executive" day in the Grad House -- from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., graduate students can meet their elected leadership. Then tonight there's a grad student night at The Cove in the Student Life Centre: "Enjoy unlimited games and free limited pizza. Entrance fee is $5 for all grads and guest (children under 10 free)."

And at 6 p.m., in Needles Hall room 3004, the Council of the Graduate Student Association will meet, with the usual reports and other business, including a discussion of graduate student input into the selection process for UW's new provost.

After yesterday's rush, there might be some spaces left in campus recreation instructional programs -- maybe "Tighten 'n' Tone" or "Women on Free Weights". Registration for any available spaces runs from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. today in Physical Activities Complex room 2039.

The basketball Warriors host the Western Mustangs tonight in the PAC -- the women's teams at 6 p.m., the men's teams at 8 p.m.

Cecilia, music columnist for the Gazette, sends word of a Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony concert tonight in the Theatre of the Arts, continuing its "Planet Baroque" series. On the program: "a cornucopia of mostly baroque, including Pachelbel's overplayed Canon (hence the program's hokey title, 'Disarming the Canon'). David Rose, the KWS's excellent principal violist, performs Telemann's Viola Concerto in G. There's also Brandenburg #3, and bits by Purcell, Boyce, Mozart, Gabrieli, and three 20th century things." The concert starts at 8:00.

Tomorrow morning brings a seminar in the computer science department: Michael Wong of the University of Regina will speak on "A Relational Knowledge System" (10:30 a.m., Davis Centre room 1304).

And tomorrow afternoon, from 2 to 4 p.m., people from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council will give a presentation on the "strategic" and "research networks" programs. Faculty members who might be interested in attending should send word to Debbie Collins in UW's research office, phone ext. 2023.

Advance note: the "At Work" program from Weight Watchers will be running on campus again this term. An information session will be held Monday, January 15, at 12 noon in Math and Computer room 5158A.


Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca | (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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