Past Sessions

Multidimensional Learning through Digital Platforms – September 12, 2018

What can open learning platforms do for your courses? How do these technologies fit with classroom learning environments?  

This workshop will tackle these questions with a panel of four instructors who have used open learning platforms to bring course material to life in new ways for their students. From digital mapping of stories, geo-mapping history and mapping timelines to blogging and content management systems, these instructors have created valuable opportunities for their students to interact multidimensionally with course materials. Participants in this workshop can look forward to learning about the innovative experiences open digital platforms make possible in Arts and Humanities courses.

  • “Imagining St Petersburg: Digital Mapping in the Literature Classroom”  

    In this presentation Dr. Katherine Bowers (CENES) will discuss the application of the digital mapping tool StoryMapJS in the literature classroom. StoryMapJS, produced by Knight Lab, was originally intended to aid journalists in mapping narrative, that is, to tell their stories spatially for more impact. Dr. Bowers will discuss her experience using the tool in the context of the literature classroom, the ups and downs of introducing her students to it and the benefits of imagining literary space in this way. She will also be sharing some of her students’ projects.


  • “Geo-mapping with a Historical Twist”

    Dr. Tristan Grunow (HIST) will be sharing his experience with the new mapping tool he worked with Arts ISIT to build. This geo-mapping application, delivered through UBC Blogs, allowed students to map images of the locations, people and buildings they researched in class. This gave students the opportunity to visualize spatial relationships which they could not have experienced otherwise, and allowed them to draw new historical conclusions.


  • “Representing Peace Negotiations through Interactive Timelines”

    Dr. Jen Peterson (POLI) will discuss her recent collaboration with Arts ISIT which led to the creation of a student-developed academic database. Contributions to the database were made as part of the final assignment for her International Conflict Management course. This assignment saw students completing interactive timelines and compiling comparative data on over a dozen formal peace negotiations, in a format that would be of use to other peace researchers. Dr. Peterson will reflect on the learning outcomes and benefits of the collaboration, barriers to be overcome before its next iteration, and thoughts on the transferability of the model to other courses and disciplines.


  • “The Past, Present and Future of WordPress Use”

    In a sea of social media and its currents of evanescent fashions, blogs have been solid rocky islands. From connections in Web 2.0, to futuristic dreams of a 5.0 symbiotic network, WordPress offers many ways of being and thinking online as intelligent citizens of the past, present, and future. In this workshop, Dr. Juliet O’Brien (FHIS), who works with French language and literature, Medieval Studies and course coordination, will share some of her early 2008 experiences using WordPress and UBC Blogs for research communities, information, courses, and student projects. She will also be looking at what we can do next with WordPress in Arts innovation.

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Key Speakers

Katherine Bowers
Assistant Professor
Department of Central, Eastern and Northern European Studies


Tristan Grunow
Assistant Professor without Review
Department of History


Jenny Peterson
Department of Political Science and Vantage College


Juliet O’Brien
Department of French, Hispanic & Italian Studies


Exploring Digital Interactive Storytelling – September 13, 2018

Come get your hands dirty and try out emerging media for yourself!

This interactive lecture, led by Dr. Jenn Moss (CRWR) will explore the relationship of story to form in the context of digital interactive new media storytelling, from web-based interfaces to VR, AR, and beyond. Participants will have the opportunity to take part in activities that illuminate both the constraints and opportunities inherent in various emerging media. They can also look forward to learning how students in Dr. Moss’ creative writing classes used digital media tools in their storytelling projects. Dr. Moss will be sharing examples of student work and their experiences with using these experimental forms in the classroom.

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Key Speaker

Dr. Jennifer Moss
Adjunct Instructor – Department of Creative Writing
Consulting Faculty – Emerging Media Lab


Canvas in the Arts for Language & Literature Classes – August 16, 2018

Canvas is an intuitive, adaptable and multi-faceted Learning Management Systems (LMS) that provides instructors with the tools to manage their courses and opportunities for enhancing teaching and learning in context-specific ways.

In this workshop, Dr. Orr-Álvarez (FHIS) and Dr. Lieblang (CENES) will share their experiences using Canvas in language and literature courses through a showcasing of four tools that facilitate student collaboration and TA/instructor communication: Discussions, Groups, Quizzes, and Peer-to-peer evaluation.

Participants in this session can also look forward to learning about:

  • how to use Canvas’ self-enroll course feature,
  • creating online training modules and sharing resources,
  • other possible uses for Canvas.

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Key Speakers

Dr. Brianne Orr-Álvarez
Lecturer of Spanish
Department of French, Hispanic & Italian Studies


Dr. Jason Stefan Lieblang
Instructor of German
Department of Central, Eastern and Northern European Studies


The Peer Assessment Training Workshop – May 17, 2018

Writing helps students learn (Gingerich et al., 2014; Nevid, Ambrose, & Pyun, 2017; Nevid, Pastva, & McClelland, 2012). Assessing the written work of peers additionally can help students develop skills such as critical analysis, reflection, and use of criteria (Dochy, Segers, & Sluijsmans, 1999; Nicol, Thomson, & Breslin, 2014), and past research has shown it to be reliable and valid enough for grading purposes (Falchikov & Goldfinch, 2000; Pare & Joordens, 2008; Topping, 1998). Yet students in our large Introductory Psychology classes lacked belief in their own and others’ abilities conduct peer assessments.

We developed a Peer Assessment Training (PAT) workshop that improves students’ confidence in their peers abilities, as well as the quality of their own written work. This session is the first of a two-part series designed to help you prepare to implement the PAT to accompany peer assessment in your course.

In this first part, we will demonstrate the PAT, provide an overview of the evidence of its efficacy, and offer some resources for adapting the PAT for your context. The second part (to be scheduled in August) will be designed as a hands-on workshop to prepare for fall classes.

Note: This presentation recording is CWL protected. Please click on the enrollment button to register your account with our video library before accessing the presentation link.

Video Library Enrollment Watch Presentation! Slides Here!

Key Speakers

Peter Graf Dr. Peter Graf
Department of Psychology


catherine_rawn Dr. Catherine Rawn
Senior Instructor
Department of Psychology