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Thursday, January 31, 2013



  • Deep Learning recommendation roundup
  • For Stratford, a school within a school
  • Drama production a statement "on love"
  • Thursday's notes


  • Editor:
  • Brandon Sweet
  • Communications and Public Affairs


Deep Learning recommendation roundup

A memo by Geoff McBoyle, in his role as associate vice-president, academic programs & strategic initiatives, is keeping the campus up to date on the implementation of recommendations from the report of the Task Force on Innovative Teaching Practices to Promote Deep Learning.

Released in June 2011, the task force's report (PDF) contained more than 50 examples of innovative teaching practices from Waterloo and elsewhere, and made eight key recommendations in the interest of promoting deep learning. Last January, the task force reported its progress to campus, and it's that time of year again for 2013.

Teaching Fellows are in place in every faculty and "have been working on various initiatives."

The Learning Innovation and Teaching Enhancement (LITE) grants were launched in the spring of 2012, and to date a dozen projects have been funded: 3 full grants and 9 seed grants.

The Centre for Teaching Excellence (CTE) launched programming for new faculty members in Spring 2012, including a new Learning About Teaching plan and four workshops. To date, 42 new faculty members have participated in such events. "Additionally," says the memo, "Applied Health Sciences and Engineering have made this new faculty programming mandatory." An overview of the new faculty programming can be found on CTE's website.

A promotional resource card, produced by CTE, was distributed to all Chairs and Directors last term "which identifies services available from the Centre and who to contact regarding various teaching and learning issues."

The Opportunities and New Directions (OND) conference "expanded its focus to include both research-based and practice-based sessions." In April 2012, 43 sessions were included in the day-long program, and 130 people attended. "A highlight was a new type of plenary session called Igniting Our Practice which involved three talented faculty members demonstrating how they teach a concept from their field."

This year's OND conference is scheduled for April 25, with the theme "Barriers and Breakthroughs: Accounts of Change in Teaching and Learning."

"The Centre for Teaching Excellence and the Teaching Fellows will continue to work together with my office to promote a culture of teaching excellence and innovation at uWaterloo," McBoyle concludes.


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For Stratford, a school within a school

The Avon Maitland District School Board and the University of Waterloo Stratford Campus have launched a new School Within a University (SWAU) program.

The program, hosted at the Stratford Campus, is the latest development in a partnership between the University of Waterloo and Stratford Central Secondary School's digitalCentral Specialist High Skills Major program. Together, the Stratford Campus and the school board have created a variety of educational partnerships in areas such as facility use, training, and equipment.

The digitalCentral program is an Information and Communication Technology (ICT) program that "promotes the creation and production of communications systems and software and digital media."

Grade 12 students, 22 per semester, will be studying at the Waterloo Stratford Campus weekday mornings with a curriculum based on Accelerated International Business and English. The Stratford campus will be providing the students and teachers with physical space, equipment, and enhancement opportunities such as individual workshops, with the school board being responsible for course delivery.

"It's an opportunity for the students to have a taste of the university experience, exposing them to the principles of critical thinking," says Beth Cotter of the Waterloo Stratford Campus.

Specialized High Skills Major (SHSM) programs like digitalCentral at Stratford Central Secondary School offer customized, hands-on, career-focused secondary school learning opportunities in a specific economic sector. Stratford Central also offers artsCentral, which is an Arts and Culture-based SHSM program. The high school has been offering the program since 2009.

Eligible students are selected by school staff and must meet criteria set by the school board and the university to demonstrate that they are academically capable.

The program begins Friday, February 1, 2013.


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Drama production a statement "on love"

A poster advertising the production of On Love, featuring slave binders superimposed over a Canadian flag.The second of three shows in UW Drama's 2012/2013 season will begin its run on Wednesday, February 6. "On Love" was written by Waterloo Drama Department assistant professor Naila Keleta-Mae in 2008 and further developed by drama students in the Performance Creation course offered in the fall. Keleta-Mae is directing the performance with set and props support from Bill Chesney, costumes by Sharon Secord, and lighting design by Kirsten Watt.

The production has been described as "a moving piece about the complexities of race, gender, history, heteronormativity and monogamy told through a cast of multiple characters who explore love’s capacity to be a “fine balance between hope and despair.”"

Cast members include Alan Shonfield, Leeanna Caligagan, Chantaine Green-Leach, Mar Lyons, Bob Stan, Carly Derderian, Robert Motum, and Zach Gungi.

Showtimes are Wednesday, February 6 to Saturday, February 9 at 8:00 p.m., with afternoon matinees on Friday, February 8 and Saturday, February 9 at 2:00 p.m., in Hagey Hall's Studio 180 Theatre. Tickets are available at Hagey Hall Box Office.


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Thursday's notes

Spaces are available for the staff yoga sessions that are held Fridays at noon. For more information or to sign up please email Sandra Gibson.

The Waterloo Warriors football program will be holding their recruiting day on Friday, February 1 at 3:00 p.m. in their locker room located in the Columbia Icefield, where they will announce the first group of commitments as part of the class of 2013 as part of the signing ceremony.

Tickets have gone on sale for an International Women's Day Dinner at the University Club, hosted by the university's Women's Studies program, on Friday, March 8. Professor Wendy Mitchinson, Canada Research Chair in Gender and Medical History, will be the keynote speaker, with a talk entitled "Fighting Fat: Mother-Blaming in Canada, 1920-80."

A deadline, extended: Students who are currently enrolled in university or college programs now have until March 1 to submit their application for the 30 percent off tuition grant program offered by the province of Ontario.

The Federation of Students is inviting undergraduates at the University of Waterloo to share their thoughts on student employment, cooperative education, job prospects after graduation and other issues with the Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) for Kitchener-Waterloo, Catherine Fife. A roundtable is scheduled for January 31 at 2:00 p.m. in SLC 2143.

“This meeting will give her an opportunity to find out what students expect from their MPP,” says Luke McIntosh, who is completing a co-op placement with the vice-president, education for the Federation of Students. “The hope is that she will take any sort of feedback from the meeting back to her party, the NDP, and they would then be able to create policy that addresses the needs identified through the research.”

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LEARN difficulties update

Information Systems & Technology (IST) is continuing to work with Desire2Learn on the ongoing issues with Waterloo LEARN. Keep tabs on the situation by checking the Waterloo LEARN help page and IST's notice board.

Link of the day

Michigan International Auto Show

When and where

History Speaker Series event featuring Devon Elliott, PhD Candidate, University of Western Ontario, “The 3D Historian : Technologies for Experimenting with Form, Matter, and Interaction,” Thursday, January 31, 11:30 a.m., HH 117.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP) presents "Navigating Through the University Registration Process", Thursday, January 31, 12:00 p.m., TC 2218 a/b.

UW Biomedical Seminar Series featuring Dr. Claire Davies, University of Auckland, New Zealand, "Increasing independence: Integrating perception, cognition and physical motor control into therapy strategies," Thursday, January 31, 2:30 p.m., DC 1302.

Department of Religious Studies presents Dr. Prema Kurien, Maxwell School of Syracuse University, "Race, Religion and U.S. Immigration Today - The Political Integration of Indian Americans," Thursday, January 31, 2:30 p.m., EV3 4438.

26th Annual Math Faculty Awards Ceremony, Thursday, January 31 cocktails at 5:30 p.m., dinner at 6:00 p.m., Festival Room, South Campus Hall.

Observations and Free Inquiries seminar featuring Hamid Tizhoosh, Systems Design Engineering, "The Nature of Violence - Why ideas and beliefs cause violence" Thursday, January 31, 5:30 p.m., E5 6004.Details.

Waterloo Engineering presents "Clean, Green, Self-Driving Machines - live webcast," Thursday, January 31, 6:00 p.m. Details.

Arriscraft Lecture featuring Jennifer Keesmaat, "Practices in City Building," Thursday, January 31, 6:45 p.m. Details.

Deadline for Distinguished Teacher Award nominations, Friday, February 1.

Knowledge Integration seminar: KI alumni panel, Friday February 1, 2:30 p.m., Environment 3 room 1408. Details.

Science and Technology in Society Collaboration and the Philosophy Department present Dr. Nancy Tuana, "Coupled Ethical-Epistemic Issues in the Climate Sciences," Friday, February 1, 3:30 p.m., HH 334. Details.

The KW Linux User Group presents "A grassRoots History of the Early Hi-tech Community in KW", Monday, February 4, St. John's Kitchen, 97 Victoria St. North, Kitchener. Details.

Turkish Students Association presents Turkish Classes at UW, Tuesday, February 5, and Tuesdays thereafter, 5:00 p.m., RCH 106. Details.

MDEI Program Information Session, Wednesday, February 6, 12:00 p.m., Stratford Campus, 12:00 p.m. Details.

Noon Hour Concert series featuring the Crusell Trio, "Classical music on original instruments: No valves and not enough keys!" Wednesday, February 6, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel University College Chapel.

UW Drama Department presents On Love, Wednesday, February 6 to Saturday, February 9, Hagey Hall 180.

Kitchener Public Library Ideas and Issues Lecture Series featuring Professor Gary Bruce, Department of History, "Displaying animals…and humans: The Berlin Zoo in German History," Wednesday, February 6, 12:00 p.m., Forest Heights Community Library, Kitchener.

Visiting Humphrey Professor in Feminist Philosophy talk featuring Anita M. Superson, University of Kentucky, “ The Right to Bodily Autonomy
and the Abortion Controversy”, Wednesday, February 6, 12:00 p.m., HH, 373. Details.

Deadline for Amit and Meena Chakma Award for Exceptional Teaching by a Student nominations, Friday, February 8.

FASS presents FASS for President, Thursday, February 7, 8:00 p.m., Friday, February 8, 7:00 p.m., Saturday, February 9, 7:00 p.m. All shows at the Humanities Theatre. Details.

Town Hall Meeting, Tuesday, February 12, 3:00 p.m., Humanities Theatre.


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