Conference seeks to engage KSU students

Abbey Stirgwolt

Kent State is doing everything it can to engage students.

As successive generations become more fast-paced and tech-savvy, the university’s administration is in the process of learning how to ensure an “engaged” learning experience for everyone.

To promote active learning in the classroom, the university will hold its first “student success conference” tomorrow in the Student Center Ballroom. The conference will focus on ways to improve students’ learning experiences at Kent State.

“We’re really interested in learning how to enhance student learning,” said Sally Kandel, associate vice president for Research, Planning and Institutional Effectiveness.

Kandel said the two-part conference will host several guest speakers from other institutions, including George Kuh, professor and director at the Center for Postsecondary Research at Indiana University.

Kuh is the “mastermind” of the DEEP plan, Kandel said. DEEP – Documenting Effective Education Practices – is one of the models Kent State hopes to employ in improving students’ educational experiences.

Kuh will speak about “cultures intently focused on student success,” Kandel said.

A breakout session following Kuh’s address will deal with ways for leaders, both student and administrative, to promote success in the learning environment.

By understanding the strategies of other universities with high student success rates, Kandel said Kent State’s administration hopes to learn about new approaches to the learning process.

Topics will range from leadership strategies to specific learning environment issues, such as technology in the classroom.

Kandel encouraged students to attend the conference and share their views on ways to improve their educational experiences.

“This is an opportunity for us (the administration) to hear the student voice on how to make the learning environment more engaging … through technology and other learning strategies,” she said.

The second part of the conference, to be held on March 23, will feature a student panel and a video on learning environments specific to Kent State. Both conferences are sponsored by the President’s office and are free of charge, Kandel said.

Tomorrow’s conference will last from noon to 5 p.m. and will include lunch. Those interested in attending should register at http://www.kent.edu/rpie.

Contact technology reporter Abbey Stirgwolt at [email protected]