College of Education and Behavioral Sciences News
WKU CITL wins two 2023 Catalyst Awards
- WKU News
- Tuesday, June 27th, 2023
Western Kentucky University’s Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning will be recognized next month with two 2023 Catalyst Awards.
WKU CITL won Catalyst Awards in Teaching & Learning for the development of a criminology course for first-year students and in Training & Professional Development for the Inclusive Teaching Academy.
The Catalyst Awards recognize and honor innovation and excellence within Anthology’s global community, where millions of educators and learners work every day to redefine what is possible when leveraging technology. Winners are recognized across nine categories and selected by a cross-functional team of Anthology experts and represent the very best in their field.
The CRIM 101 Course Development Team of instructor Crystal Bohlander and CITL Instructional Designers Alicia Pennington and Catie Weaver used the Blackboard Ultra learning management system to design a section of Intro to Criminal Justice for first-year students in the Criminology Living Learning Community.
Through the intentional application of tools and features available in Blackboard Learn Ultra, the development team designed a high-quality, hybrid learning experience that actively engaged students in global and experiential learning in both in-person and online environments.
“Leveraging Blackboard as a robust platform for distributing instructional material, administering course assessments, and sharing student feedback, CRIM 101 instructor Crystal Bohlander was empowered to spend her in-class time with students implementing innovative teaching practices that further integrated Criminology LLC students into their college campus and local community through the exploration of diverse and global issues related to the criminal justice system,” Weaver said. “More specifically, because of the flexibility afforded by the technology available within Blackboard, Crystal was able to maximize the impact of her face-to-face class sessions by leading students in more than 10 campus and community-based activities that allowed them to apply what they were learning in real-world settings.”
Dr. Micah Logan, CITL Associate Director, called the Catalyst Award for the Inclusive Teaching Academy (ITA) a wonderful honor. “One of our goals as a center is to help empower faculty with the tools and information they need to be successful in the classroom and when we can partner that with helping students feel seen and valued, as we have through the ITA, we exceed that goal. For that to be recognized by an organization such as Anthology, is truly humbling,” Dr. Logan said.
The Inclusive Teaching Academy is a faculty development program that designed to support faculty in their exploration of inclusive and culturally responsive teaching. The Catalyst Award recognized CITL’s team of Dr. Marko Dumančić, Dr. Micah Logan, Cierra Waller, Hannah Page, Dr. Hannah Digges-Elliott, and Sara Davis as well as the Community of Practice Fellows for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Teaching team of Fabián Álvarez, Dr. Monica Burke, Dr. Nicholas Fortune, Dr. Kimberly Green, Michelle Jones, and Dr. Gayle Mallinger.
“Our team is thrilled to see the hard work of our faculty and staff acknowledged by one of the largest educational technology ecosystems (Anthology) in the world,” Digges-Elliott said. “This award looks not only to the effective use of educational technology, but to how people, units, and institutions leverage the technology in the cross section of theory and practice to meet the needs of our organization and students. Created by faculty fellows and the Center for Innovative Teaching & Learning, this program shows the power that strategic partnerships that leverage our collective expertise can have on enterprise level teaching and learning.”
Faculty members who participated in the Inclusive Teaching Academy said the program benefits the WKU community.
“The Inclusive Teaching Academy opened my eyes to how being intentional about inclusivity is to the benefit for all students,” said Jeffrey Peake, Marketing Executive-in-Residence. “The ITA made me realize that improving inclusivity removes student barriers I didn’t know existed and helps me better achieve class objectives.”
Dr. Dawn M. Winters, Interim Director of CEBS Student Success Center, said: “The ITA provided faculty an opportunity to not only reflect on their own pedagogical philosophies and teaching practices, but also to gather with colleagues from other departments to discuss key issues and collaborate. I learned the multifarious ways inclusivity should be a part of everyday practice both in and out of the classroom, and I’ve incorporated many elements into my own materials and approaches to teaching and learning.”
The 2023 Catalyst Awards will be presented during Anthology Together, Anthology’s annual user conference, July 17-19 in Nashville, Tennessee. This year, 40 winners were chosen among 109 nominees from institutions across 21 countries.
"We’re pleased to honor this year's Catalyst Award winners for their commitment to improving the educational experience for all learners through EdTech and sharing these insights with the broader community," said Jim Milton, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Anthology. "We’re proud to partner with institutions who are innovating to advance student success.”
For more information on the Catalyst Awards, visit https://www.anthology.com/catalyst-awards
Contact: Dr. Marko Dumančić, email@example.com
Western Kentucky University prides itself on positioning its students, faculty and staff for long term success. As a student-centered, applied research university, WKU helps students expand on classroom learning by integrating education with real-world applications in the communities we serve. Our hilltop campus is located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, which was recently named by Reader’s Digest as one of the nicest towns in America, just an hour’s drive from Nashville, Tennessee.