Our Services

These are just some of the ways that the IDEA Center can help all of us to think critically about our roles as professionals who teach, conduct research,  who write for publication, and who are active in our community. Come on in and enjoy some coffee, and see how we can help each other to succeed in educating our students and in our careers. Some of these groups are offered every semester, others we will try and see if there is interest. Please check the registration link below to see what's offered in any given term.

Not sure if you want to join a group or circle? Come to one first and see what you think! Then if you want to continue, fill out the registration page.


Coaching and Mentoring

Do you have a pre-tenure review coming up? A peer review for promotion or tenure in your future? Would you like to have a “practice run” just to gain confidence? Would you like someone to visit your class to lead a focus group with students and provide you feedback about your teaching and how the students perceive the class is going? One of our Scholars can collaborate with you about what kinds of feedback you would like to receive and then do a classroom visit. The Fellow would follow up with you at the IDEA Center, where you both can talk about how the class went, and come up with strategies to use during the formal visit.

Have you been asked to teach a supersection for the first time and are concerned about how to take your teaching “big”? Or what new kinds of classroom management issues might emerge in a big class?

Struggling with how to balance your teaching, research, service, and a private life? Coaching sessions could help you to clarify your short-term priorities for this semester and help you to think through some time balancing strategies so that you move forward in your research, do well in the classroom, and share time with those who are important to you – and destress some too! Email IDEACenter@valdosta.edu if you want to set up a time to talk about coaching or mentoring.

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Leadership Circles

Are you a new department head, who wants some peer coaching? Are you thinking about applying for an administrative position on campus and want to strengthen your leadership skills? Have you just been given a committee chair position and you want some mentoring on how to be a successful chair? Join with others in parallel situations and share ideas.

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Teaching Circle

This teaching circle is our "general" one for those who want to have a group of people with whom to share the highs and lows of teaching. Do you want to try a particular teaching idea, but want to talk it through with some who have used it, before you try it in class? Have you just been assigned a new course and are unsure about how to construct the syllabus? This teaching circle could help with issues such as these.

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Circle: Solving One Big Problem By Creating Others

Despite our best efforts, students sometimes fail to ses the value and relevance of our courses. Problem-based learning strategies (PBL), which embed key course concepts in real-world problems, may help us address this problem. We'll define PBL, read about it, discuss it, and test it with the goal of each of us creating at least one PBL assignment or exercise for a current or future class.

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Circle: Teaching Honors Students

The Honors teaching circle provides an opportunity for faculty to discuss strategies and ideas for teaching Honors classes. Topics of discussion will include developing engaging and challenging course content for academically advanced students. We will also discuss faculty objectives and ideas about Honors education specifically our focus on inquiry and scholarship.

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Circle: Teaching with Technology

Come learn about some of the latest technologies for classroom instruction and learning. The focus is on embedding technology into the pedagogical process, not "technology for technology's sake."

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Circle: Teaching in Online Environments

Join us for this teaching circle as we will share strategies and tips for teaching in online environments, ranging from hybrid instruction with a combination of face-to-face and online instruction to fully online instruction. Participants will see examples of activities and assignments that work in online environments and techniques for getting students engaged in online learning. Various resources and tools to assist online teaching will also be shared.

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Freshman Common Read Teaching Circle

This circle will focus on reading the book selected for Fall 2016's common read and how to utilize the book in a variety of core courses. All disciplines welcome.

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Writing Circles

Do you have a great research project, but just cannot seem to find the time to write? Do you find yourself procrastinating when you sit down to write? Do you have writer’s block and can’t figure out what to do next? Would you like to be accountable to a group to get some writing done on a regular basis? Then think about joining a writing group.

Or maybe you have so many distractions in your campus office that you just can’t get much writing done there, but you wish you had a quiet place to write on campus. The IDEA Center has a dedicated writing room. Bring a computer or go low-tech and find some pens and a notebook and start writing!

We have several types of writing groups:

1. Meets every week. One week will be to write, the other week will be gentle critique of some members' writing. If you want this type of group, please fill out the comment section below and tell us good times for you to have the group.

2. Meets every other week, and some weeks there will be critique of members' writing and other meetings there will be planned events, such as "how to respond to a "revise and resubmit," etc.

3. Not up to this regular a writing schedule, but want to try an intensive burst instead? Every November, join VSU's AcWriMo (Academic Writing Month). Initially begun as a way to write a novel in a month, scholars have taken up the idea and challenged each other to practice scholarly writing daily during this month. Here's some more information: (http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/november-is-academic-writing-month/43608 and http://www.phd2published.com/2012/10/15/announcing-acwrimo/). If you want to join AcWriMo, send email to IDEA Center@valdosta.edu and put "AcWriMo" in subject line.

For Spring 2016, we will be having SWATs: Sit, Write, and Think time from 9-10 AM every Friday. Come by, find a quiet spot, and get some writing done. The energy in the Center can help you to focus and be productive.

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 New Faculty Group

Stressed? Wondering how to survive the first year at VSU? You are not alone. Come, talk, and share strategies for coping and even thriving!

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Circle: Engaging Students Within the University & Outside the University

In today's tough economy, experience is essential. Have you ever thought about giving your students the opportunity to engage with the community? Come find out how and why practical experience and/or service enrich learning and course content across the curriculum. If you are already doing community engagement or service learning, come join us to share your experiences and results.

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