Trocaire to Hold Teaching and Learning Conference

Trocaire is sponsoring a Conference on Teaching Innovations and Enhancing Learning (TIEL), to take place Saturday, April 9, 2016.

This inaugural event is open to all educators in the region, with the goal of providing attendees with the latest research and innovations, instructional tools, and best practices available in higher education.

The 2016 TIEL Conference’s theme is “Rebooting Critical Thinking,” an issue conference co-chair Dr. Jennifer Blickwedehl, said has great importance in today’s higher education landscape.

“There is a big difference between updating and rebooting,” said Blickwedehl, who is a professor of biology and Faculty Senate president at Trocaire. “Most instructors update their classes continuously, but these are generally small changes made at the single unit level, while rebooting implies a much more intensive practice. It allows an instructor to look at not only the material they teach, but effectiveness—how well are we reaching our students by what we do in the classroom?”

The conference will feature keynote speaker Dr. Richard Arum, who will speak on “Critical Thinking, College Experiences and Transitions to Adulthood: Lessons from ‘Aspiring Adults Adrift.’” There will also be presentations, roundtable discussions and breakout sessions from dozens of educators from all over New York, Pennsylvania and Canada.

Blickwedehl said the day is focused on bringing together individuals from a variety of disciplines to discuss issues and share ideas.

“Our region is filled with truly remarkable educators who are experiencing great success with innovative classroom techniques,” she said. “We want to initiate meaningful dialogs with other educators that can last well beyond this non-discipline-specific conference. It is our hope that participants will develop a sense of community that will become future friendships and collaborations.”

In addition to the college itself, Trocaire’s Faculty Senate and the Mary Clare Development Center for faculty development are also TIEL Conference sponsors. Mary ClareDevelopment Center Coordinator Sierra Adare-Tasiwoopa ápi is also a conference co-chair.

To register for the TIEL Conference or to access more information—including a schedule overview, presenter abstracts and a summary of the keynote address—please visit