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​Professional Development for Educators​


These mini-courses are aimed at plant pathology educators of all levels of experience and backgrounds who are looking to explore new strategies to make courses more relevant and engaging. 

Each course consists of both independent learning and (usually) two live virtual sessions. With a focus on the practical needs of instructors in the field of Plant Pat​hology, you will walk out of each course with ready-to-use teaching strategies that suit your unique situation.

Perhaps best of all, you'll learn from and make connections with fellow plant pathology educators, creating a support system as you continue to experiment and implement new instructional strategies in your courses.


​​Member​ Type​Rate pe​​r course​
Student Member
Professional Member
​ ​
Multiple Registrations Discount
When you register for a course you will receive an email containing a 10% discount code to be used for another course in this PD for Educators series.​

Professional Development for Educators Cours​e Catalog​​

  • Applying Principles of Learning to Improve Teaching (June 2023​)

    Applying Principles of Learning to Improve Teaching

    Format: Independent learning + 2 live virtual class sessions 
    Dates: June 5 - 28 with live class sessions on June 7 & 21 from 11:00 am- 12:30 pm Central Time.
    Instructor: Dr. Monica Lewandowski, Assistant Professor, The Ohio State University​ ​

    Register Now!

    Join us as we explore ways to leverage ou​r modern understanding of learning to become more effective teachers.  Key principles of learning can help instructors design course materials to help students build learning skills and grasp challenging topics.  The workshop will include practical tips and strat​egies that have been successfully applied by fellow plant pathology educators.  The content is geared towards teaching introductory courses at a college level, but the principles will apply to all levels of learning.  We will refe​r to the book How Lear​ning Works: 7 Research-based Principles for Smart Teaching by Amrbose et al, but the book is not required to participate in the workshop.

    Student Learning Outcomes:
    By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

    • Describe key principles of learning.
    • Explain how principles of learning can impact student comprehension.
    • Apply principles of learning to develop class lectures and assignments.
    • Identify some ways to address gaps in student learning.
  • Canvas Essentials: Tools to Save your Sanity (July 2023​)

    Canvas Essentials: Tools to Save your Sanity

    Format: ​Independent learning + 2 live virtual class sessions 
    Dates:  July 7 - ​28 with live class sessions on July 12 & 26 from 11:00 am- 12:30 pm Cen​t​ral Time.
    Instructor: Brantlee Spakes-Richter​, Assistant Professor, University of Florida

    Register Now!

    ​Most universities today use a Learning Management System (LMS), and as of 2020, Canvas surpassed Blackboard to become the most-used LMS in the US and Canada. This course will help you get the most out of the Canvas LMS; getting these tools set up in your course will save you significant time and sanity in the long run. Participants will be asked to eith​er set up a “mock” ​course in a Canvas scratch box or modify an existing course in Canvas, using the tips provided.

  • ​Classroom Discussions: Strategies for Success! (September/October 2023)

    Classroom Discussions: Strategies for Success!

    Format: Independent learning + 2 live virtual class sessions
    Dates: September 25 - October 14 with live sessions on September 27 & October 11 from 11:00am - 12:00 pm Central Time
    Dr. Lou Hirsc​h, Assistant Profess​or, University of Kentucky

    Register Now!​

    The benefits of discussion as a teaching tool are undeniable. Discussion turns the pa​ssive acquisition of knowledge into active learning, helps students process information and relate it to their own experience and existing knowledge, opens students' minds to new perspectives, and helps students practice vital communication skills. However, leading an effective classroom discussion requires skills different from lecturing that are often not taught in teacher training and can be tricky to practice.​

    Join us to learn and practice strategies that will set up your classroom for lively, authentic student-led discussions.​ Participants will either practice one or more of the discussion strategies in their own classrooms or create a plan for integrating guided discussion into future courses.​

    Student Learning Outcomes:
    By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

    • List examples of ineffective class discussions and analyze key failure points.
    • Model the expected course of​ a new class discussion prompt and identify likely rhetorical dead ends.
    • ​Develop and evaluate open-ended discussion prompts that allow for inquiry-driven discourse.
  • Designing Undergraduate Research (UR​) Experiences​​ (October​/November 2023)

    Designing Undergraduate Research (UR) Experiences

    Format: ​Independent learning + 2 live virtual class sessions
    Dates: ​October 30 - November 17 with live class sessions on 11/1 & 11/15 from 11:00 am-12:30 pm Central Time.​
    Instructor: Dr. Kimberly​ Gwinn​, Associate Professor, University of Tennessee

    Register Now!

    Looking to evaluate and improve your existing undergraduate research (UR) program? Maybe you need guidance as you create a new program from scratch. Either way, this course is for you. You’ll walk away with a plan for a UR program that can yield publishable research and a plan for funding your program.

    UR programs come in many forms and are often instrumental in the development of career pathways for undergraduate students. Although personally rewarding for faculty, postdocs, and students, UR is often not included in annual performance reviews. This course will explore how you can increase the profile of (and get federal funding for) your UR program by creating a formal performance metric.

    Learning Outcomes:

    By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

    1. Explain design principles for building an undergraduate research program
    2. Build a strategic plan for supporting an undergraduate research program in plant pathology
    3. Identify local and national resources for the planning, funding, implementation, and analysis of UR and UR programs
    4. Discuss different types of mentoring and the impact of good mentors on programming

  • Team-Based Learning (January 2024)

    Team-Based Learning - Registration opening soon

    Format: Independent learning + 3 live virtual class sessions​
    Dates: January 8-26 with live sessions on January 10, 18 & 24 from 11:00 am - 12:00 pm Central Time
    Instructor: Dr. Leo​nor Leandro​, Professor, Iowa State University​

    Course Description Coming ​Soon​