An Exceptional Day at LaSalle College: A Summary of the Winter 2016 Ped Day
LaSalle College, a bilingual private college in the heart of Montreal held their Winter 2016 Pedagogical Day on Thursday, February 25th, 2016. With a morning dedicated to the issue of plagiarism and intellectual honesty, and an afternoon filled with a diverse range of subjects, there was truly something for everyone.
The LaSalle College Atrium
Ped days are a like a return to the source, as teachers take a break from their important responsibilities to engage in new material as learners for the day. Ped days are also an opportunity for introspection, reflecting on one’s own teaching approach while being exposed to other styles of content delivery from the workshop leaders.
Julie Anne Roy, LaSalle College’s Coordinator of Pedagogical Support assembled an interesting program for the day, with presentations both from LaSalle faculty members and a number of guest presenters from other colleges and Ministerial ICT partners. She wouldn’t be on hand to witness the fruit of her labour, however, as she need to tend to her own pending labour. We wish you all the best for your maternity leave Julie Anne!
Julie Anne Roy, LaSalle Colllege’s Coordinator of Pedagogical Support
After checking in at the registration desk early on Thursday morning, the day began with a much-needed dose of caffeine and a perfectly crispy croissant at LaSalle’s second floor cafeteria. My workshop co-presenter Alexandre Enkerli and I discussed the final details for the day and ran into Heather Sorella, who has published articles on Profweb about teaching the use of e-Commerce solutions in class and e-Learning at LaSalle College.
Our light breakfast was followed by an opening plenary presentation by LaSalle College’s Director of Studies, Ms. Marie-France Tassé. Addressing the faculty of the college, she highlighted the importance of sensitizing students to the importance of academic honesty. Ms. Tassé also congratulated multiple teachers whose techno-pedagogical innovations were featured in Profweb.
While the opening plenary was under way, Sebastien Arel, who is replacing Julie Anne as the Coordinator of Pedagogical Support, ensured that all of our needs as presenters were attended to.
Sébastien Arel pinch hitting for Julie Anne Roy, as interim Coordinator of Pedagogical Support
A.M.: The First Act
As mentioned previously the morning was dedicated to issues of plagiarism and intellectual honesty. In the first block of presentations, Nicole Perreault, the Community Leader of the IT Representatives Network, presented the workshop Le plagiat électronique : ce que c’est, le prévenir, le détecter. The conference attendees benefitted from Nicole’s presentation on best practices for prevention and detection of plagiarism. Nicole has a developed a substantial amount of expertise on the topic and has even presented internationally on this subject. In 2007, Nicole penned an In-depth Report on Profweb on the subject. She also provided an update in 2013, stating that plagiarism was still a hot topic.
Nicole was pleased with the result of her presentation:
The workshop that I presented at LaSalle College took place in a positive and friendly atmosphere, where attendees were keen to discover and to share their thoughts. I saw just how much plagiarism is still a topic that preoccupies teachers, and have noted an evolution in the way that prevention strategies are offered in terms of their design and the evaluation of work. It’s truly refreshing. [Translation]
For 2 years running, I’ve had the privilege of running a workshop at LaSalle College. This year Alexandre Enkerli from La Vitrine technolgie-éducation and I (representing Cégep à distance) presented a workshop entitled Encouraging Blended Learning with Creative Commons and Open Educational Resources. The workshop provided an overview of the importance for teachers to respect copyrights. This was followed by a discussion of how Creative Commons licencing and Open Educational Resources provide a means for teachers to safely reuse resources from the Internet, while attributing works that are reused to the original authors. We then asked workshop attendees to start locating resources for reuse on the Internet and to make changes to the content which was licenced under Creative Commons. The task was facilitated by the configuration of our workshop room, which has been dubbed ‘The Collaboration Room (a.k.a. ROOM 2206).
The Collaboration Room at LaSalle College
Alex Enkerli shared some of his impressions about the day:
I was actually quite taken by LaSalle’s Ped Day… Their level of engagement in working through issues related to their work was rather high. It sounded as though they actually cared about improving their work through the various ideas, suggestions, and tools they were getting during the day...
The emphasis on plagiarism clearly stemmed from a need felt by […] teachers. Discussions with members of [the plagiarism] committee were quite revealing. As most people realize, “fighting plagiarism” is largely about encouraging academic integrity.
Alexandre Enkerli in RM2206 (a.k.a. The Collaboration Room)
Continuing with our overview of the presentations, Paulette Cake, a Project Manager from the Collegial Centre for Educational Material Development (CCDMD), was very busy on February 25th, presenting both in the morning and in the afternoon. She demonstrated the Cite It! website which allows students to learn about and practice citing references using multiple citations styles. The website, which was developed by the CCDMD with Anna Woodrow from John Abbott College, was recently featured in an article on Profweb.
Philippe Lavigueur, a Specialist in Teaching Methods and Techniques from the Collège Montmorency in Laval, presented a workshop entitled Conserver et citer ses sources avec Zotero. According to a Digital Tool article published on Profweb by Montmorency teacher Dany Thibault (with the assistance of Philippe Lavigueur), Zotero is a free bibliographic management tool that helps to keep bibliographic data sources in one place and automatically generates footnotes and a bibliography page.
To round out the morning presentations, 2 teachers from LaSalle College, Kate Lecours and Valérie Tremblay presented and hosted a bilingual discussion entitled Repenser l’évaluation sommative : recherche et idéation which allowed attendees to weigh in on their approaches and debate effective strategies for summative evaluation.
The workshop presenters were invited to dine at LaSalle College’s pedagogical restaurant Fuchsia, where students from the Restaurant Services Management and Food Services Management programs can learn their trade. They took care of all aspects of serving us lunch from arrival to departure. And I can assure you that their restaurant gives some the best bonne tables in Montreal a run for the money!
The well-appointed Fuchsia is a pedagogical restaurant located on the lower level of LaSalle College
P.M.: The Second Act
The afternoon saw a range of eclectic programming, from web-based services to special needs, passing by video-based student projects. Paulette Cake presented CCDMD’s Netquiz Web quiz-making application. The tool allows teachers to create multimedia quizzes with a user-friendly interface and no programming. Netquiz Web offers 14 different questions types and the possibility of providing automated feedback based on student responses. Profweb hosts Netquiz Web for teachers in the college network in Quebec. For more information, you can read a Digital Tool article published by Mathieu Brisson from Profweb in 2015.
Paulette was very pleased with her experience presenting two workshops at LaSalle College:
It was a great experience. The room was equipped with everything I asked for, and we were welcomed upon our arrival. The teachers were engaged, asked pertinent questions and appreciated having a ‘hands on’ opportunity for both workshops. The CCDMD is very pleased with the outcome.
Paulette Cake from the CCDMD presenting Netquiz Web
Isabelle de Sève and Catherine Beaulieu from the Cégep St-Laurent were invited to present a talk on a very topical issue in the CEGEP system, namely the level of anxiety that contemporary students feel during their time at college, along with its impact on student success. Given the recent media attention to this issue, their talk, entitled Anxiété et perception négative de ses capacités : un obstacle à la réussite, couldn’t have come at a better time.
Catherine Beaulieu and Isabelle De Sève get ready to present their workshop
Another timely presentation was provided by Jessica Schwarz. Her presentation, entitled Meeting the Needs of Our Special Needs Students in the Classroom, related many important considerations. For example, many children do not receive a diagnosis for a wide range of learning abilities, such as Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia, or a variety of others in a timely fashion. She stresses that early intervention can make a big difference for learners, and that a variety of professionals might be able to help, such as:
- Educational consultants
- Educational therapists
- Learning Disability specialists
- Clinical psychologists
Jessica’s presentation also gave attendees some ideas about what they might do to assist learners with a diverse range of needs.
Jessica Schwarz provides a thoughtful presentation on students with special needs
Last, but not least, Charles Laporte, a Math teacher at LaSalle College presented a talk about the pedagogical potential of ‘Selfie-videos’ for both students and teachers, entitled Les selfie vidéo – outil pédagogique du côté étudiant et enseignant. These selfie-videos feature students who are working out math problems and explaining their logic on the fly. Filming solutions in this way can reduce the anxiety introverted learners face when they have to present a solution in front of their peers. Charles Laporte has previously reported on his experience in Profweb, but if you’d like to hear about his experience in person, he will be presenting his work at the 2016 AQPC Symposium (Presentation #307).
Charles Laporte addressing the attendees with his experiences using ‘Video-selfies.’
All in all, there were 4 Ministerial ICT Partners who were on hand to present workshops: the CCDMD, Cégep à distance, The IT Representatives Network and la Vitrine technologie-éducation. Each made an important contribution to the success of the day. It was also pleasing to see that Profweb has become an important vehicle for LaSalle teachers to share their techno-pedagogical innovations with the college network, but also to learn from their colleagues in other colleges in the public system.
Nicole Perrault, the Community Leader of the IT Representatives Network (Réseau des répondantes et répondants TICs), effectively summed up the importance of the event from her own perspective, but I believe that all of the ICT partners would concur:
Meeting Teachers and Education Advisors is one of the things I enjoy most as Community Leader of the IT Representatives Network. It’s also my opportunity to get a pulse on the people, to be in touch with the reality of the colleges, to share – and this sharing works in both directions! It’s also an opportunity to get a better idea about the impact our work is having on teaching practices, and ultimately on student success. [Translation]
The Ped day at LaSalle College ended with me taking some notes in splendid solitude at a table overlooking the comings and goings of people on Sainte-Catherine Street from the college’s second floor cafeteria. As soft flakes of snow slowly danced toward oblivion on the humid sidewalks, I couldn’t help but reflect on just how fortunate I was to have participated in LaSalle’s professional development activities, but also about what a privilege it is to be a member of such an amazing network of colleges.
A table overlooking the comings and goings of people on Sainte-Catherine Street from the college’s second floor cafeteria.