New Faculty Orientation Seminar Series to kick off Sept. 18

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs is sponsoring an online seminar series to introduce new faculty members to a wide range of resources and information as they begin their Penn State careers. Several of the sessions are presented in partnership with the Center for Pedagogy in Arts and Design.

The New Faculty Orientation Seminar Series begins Friday, Sept. 18, with a session titled “Rethinking the Syllabus and Assessment,” which will be held via Zoom from noon to 1:30 p.m. For more information, visit The deadline to register is Wednesday, Sept. 16, and attendees will be provided with the Zoom link following the registration deadline.

“Rethinking the Syllabus and Assessment” will focus on providing faculty with practical tools and suggestions for modifying and strengthening course goals and objectives, while taking into consideration the need for academic flexibility and resilience during unknown times. Attention also will be given to Penn State syllabi policies, the creation of meaningful assessments, and ways faculty can effectively evaluate student progress and course outcomes.

The presenters will be:

  • Ann Clements, director, Center for Pedagogy in Arts and Design
  • Erica Fleming, instructional designer, Teaching and Learning with Technology
  • Mary Ann Tobin, assistant research professor, Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence, with Anna Divinsky, Courtney Redding and Christine Shanks

The dates, times and topics for the remaining sessions in the seminar series are as follows:

  • Oct. 7: “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Teaching and Learning at Penn State,” noon to 1:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 14: “Research and Graduate Student Mentoring,” 1 to 2 p.m
  • Oct. 16: “Resources for Faculty: University Libraries, Information Technology, and Student Affairs,” 1 to 2 p.m.
  • Oct. 22: “Academic Freedom and Shared Governance,” 2 to 3 p.m.
  • Nov. 4: “Tips, Tools, and Techniques of Educational Technology,” noon to 1:30 p.m.
  • Jan. 27, 2021: “Innovative Teaching: Faculty Showcase,” noon to 1:30 p.m.

For more information about upcoming sessions and how to register, visit Each session will be offered virtually via Zoom.

In addition, the 2020-21 Promotion and Tenure Workshop will take place from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24, via Zoom. More information about the workshop can be found at

Last Updated September 11, 2020