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Summer Institute

Engaging the Digital Student Initiative Summer Institute 2017: June 12-15

Teaching Students How to Learn in a Technology Enhanced Environment

Many students in our classes don’t know how to learn effectively at the college level. Lots of students focus too much on their grades instead of their learning, as well. If you’ve experienced frustrations in helping your students to really achieve for these reasons, eLearning’s 2017 Engaging the Digital Student Summer Institute (EDSI) is for you.

The goal of EDSI 2017, with the theme "Teaching students how to learn in a technology enhanced environment," is that all our students become both responsible for their own learning and successful in their efforts. Strategic learning doesn’t just happen – but it can be taught. Faculty can teach students how to learn.

EDSI 2017 will discuss:

  • Metacognition as a foundation for identifying and managing one’s learning weaknesses, leveraging strengths and increasing motivation
  • Proven approaches to persist through complex materials
  • Best practices on teaching techniques and assessment to meet the needs of diverse students
  • Effective use of technology to support learning strategies such as the “study cycle,” reading and note-taking techniques that help learning to stick, and problem solving tactics that lead to real understanding

As a result of participating in EDSI 2017, you will get:

  • Research-based knowledge focused on learning
  • Stronger relationships with colleagues with similar interests
  • Detailed ideas for revising your course to support students’ effective learning strategies
  • A workable plan for progressing over the summer (and setting yourself up for semester conversion)
  • Hands-on practice with some major learning tools and technologies
  • Significant support to create accessible learning materials

EDSI Program Features

Monday June 12: Keynote Address and Workshop (Open to Campus Community)*

A special feature of EDSI 2017 is our keynote workshop led by Dr. Saundra McGuire. Dr. McGuire is the author of Teach Students How to Learn: Strategies You Can Incorporate into Any Course to Improve Student Metacognition, Study Skills and Motivation. Her work helps students succeed in challenging quantitative courses by teaching them simple but effective learning strategies which are based in cognitive science principles. Dr. McGuire will engage attendees in testing out strategies that significantly improve performance while transforming student attitudes about the meaning of learning.

All members of the campus community are invited to attend the keynote workshop on Monday, June 12, from 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM, as well as afternoon sessions. For more information about attending our Monday, June 12th events please visit the Keynote Workshop page.

For EDSI 2017 applicants, review further program information below.

Monday Afternoon – Thursday, June 12-15: Program Activities
  • Presentation by Emiliano Ayala of Sonoma State University and Catherine Schmitt-Whitaker, Executive Director of Accessible Technology at Cal Poly Pomona, on Universal Design for Learning, which supports students with diverse needs and challenges to acquire and apply effective learning skills.
  • Presentations and showcases by Cal Poly Pomona faculty to inspire ideas on creating and implementing engaging learning environments
    • Amanda Marsh on supporting students with disabilities in an online course
    • Berit Givens on creating good question banks for use with clickers
    • Don St. Hilaire on faculty perspectives on adopting new technologies
    • Juintow Lin and George Proctor on adopting innovative materials
    • Jill Hargis and Mario Guerrero on online options for high demand courses
    • Joanne Van Boxtel on managing multiple technologies to engage students
    • Jae Min Jung on using real world scenarios in the classroom
    • Kimberley Miller on online course facilitaton
    • Laurie Starkey, Devon Hackleton, and Leonard Vandegrift on using Calibrated Peer Reviews to support students’ writing skills
    • Paul Nissenson on flipping the classroom
    • Teshia Roby on effective use of rubrics
    • Yam Lee on multimedia learning objects
    • And More!
  • Apply universal design principles and accessibility strategies to create learning materials that provide equal learning opportunities to all students
  • Hands-on workshops for Cal Poly Pomona’s major learning tools such as Blackboard, Camtasia, Adobe Presenter, Adobe Connect Meeting, and more.
  • Apply the Quality Matters (QM) framework to build a course that encourages effective learning strategies – and can be easily expanded into the semester format.

Detailed 2017 EDSI Schedule (.DOCX)

Please contact Pauline Muljana ( for questions.


EDSI is open to all faculty members, full- and part-time. We anticipate being able to support approximately 30 participants, based on applications indicating commitment to significantly update a course for 2017-2018. PENDING FUNDING AVAILABILITY, stipends of $500 will be provided for completion of the full 4-day Institute*. While priority will be given to first time participants, faculty who have participated previously and have shared best practices with others in their departments are encouraged to apply.


Please submit your application by Monday April 17, 2017, 11:59 PM (firm deadline!).

For convenience, the application questions are provided below so that you can compose your application offline before submission. To submit, click the "Submit EDSI Application" button at the bottom of the page to copy and paste your answers into the actual application form.

  1. Name, department, and contact information (email and phone).
  2. Course(s) that you will focus on (number and title) and the quarter(s) you plan to teach this course.
  3. Why do you want to update or transform your focus course? In other words, what goal(s) are you trying to accomplish? This could be a learning problem, issue with accessibility, a departmental priority, general course improvement, interest in applying technology effectively, interest in applying the Quality Matters (QM) course template, improving the course for your own satisfaction, etc.
  4. This year’s theme relates to teaching students how to learn. What are the problems you see with your students' learning strategies? (For example, not reading effectively or at all, over-reliance on published solutions, inability to transfer prior learning to your course.) Be as specific as possible.
  5. How might the Summer Institute help you to address the issues you have identified in question 3 and question 4? In other words, what do you want to learn or accomplish at the Summer Institute?
  6. How will you share your work? Have you gained strategies from other faculty (particularly those teaching sections of your course) who previously attended Summer Institute?
  7. Following the week of EDSI, what are your plans for progressing with your course revision?
  8. Is there anything you would like to tell us about your needs or preferences?

You will be notified if you are selected for EDSI 2017 by April 28. If selected, you will be contacted during the spring quarter by eLearning instructional designer Pauline Muljana to ensure that you have access to the tools and software you will need and that you have a basic working knowledge of Blackboard.

* Please note, participants who attend only June 12th are not eligible for a stipend.