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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
April 21, 2014
 
 
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Recruitment & Admissions Office - Waterloo Campus

Laurier to bring local leaders “Back to Class” to showcase teaching

Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing

Feb 6/12| For Immediate Release

Contact:

Pat Rogers, Associate Vice-President, Teaching & Learning
Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 3213 or progers@wlu.ca

or 

Kevin Crowley, Director, Communications & Public Affairs
Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 3070 or kcrowley@wlu.ca

WATERLOO – Wilfrid Laurier University has invited local government, business and community leaders to visit campus for a one-day event showcasing innovative undergraduate teaching and learning practices.

The invitation-only event will be held Thursday, Feb. 9 as part of the Council of Ontario Universities’ “Back to Class” initiative showcasing provincial universities’ commitment to student success. Visitors include Elizabeth Witmer, MPP for Kitchener-Waterloo and Dr. Rob Leone, MPP for Cambridge.

"We're very pleased here at Laurier to be participating in this activity,” said Deborah MacLatchy, the university’s vice-president, academic and provost. “It's great to see how enthusiastic our MPPs are about engaging with our faculty and students around what's happening at Laurier. Students have exceptional learning experiences at Laurier and we're excited to share our approach with others."

The dignitaries will attend a luncheon at Laurier featuring presentations and table talk with professors engaged in innovative teaching practices. Among the several professors on hand, Bob Sharp, from the Department of Geography, will speak about a new program of first-year seminars designed to give students an early taste of small-group learning. Other presentations will focus on blended learning approaches and other collaborations with learning support specialists designed to integrate academic skills development into the curriculum of first year courses.

In addition, David McMurray, the university’s vice-president: student affairs, will give a presentation on Laurier’s “Integrated and Engaged” approach to student learning, which emphasizes strong linkages between in-class teaching and experiential opportunities such as co-op placements, community service-learning and other co-curricular activities.

"Laurier's signature Integrated and Engaged Learning approach to higher education is designed to reflect the ethos and unique experience of our students with the goal of graduating scholars who have a critical understanding of themselves and their potential to make a meaningful contribution to the world," said McMurray.

This year, the Council of Ontario Universities is aiming to place a greater focus on teaching to further enhance Ontario students’ learning experiences. “Back to Class” is one initiative designed to celebrate teaching success. Other activities include the production of an Ontario report on best practices in teaching and a provincial symposium on Assessing Learning Outcomes, as well as conferences on how to improve student engagement and inspire life-long learning.

In addition to the Feb. 9 event, special class visits are available at Laurier earlier in the week. Those interested in attending can contact Pat Rogers, associate vice-president: teaching and learning, at 519-884-0710 ext. 3213 or progers@wlu.ca.

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