Tarleton to host Harvard professor for annual Excellence in Teaching event

STEPHENVILLE (January 28, 2019) — Harvard professor Dr. Eric Mazur will keynote the annual Excellence in Teaching luncheon, which highlights Celebrate Teaching Week on the campus of Tarleton State University. The event begins at noon Friday, Feb. 8, in the ballrooms of the Thompson Student Center.

Mazur also is scheduled to speak to faculty from the College of Science and Technology at 2 p.m. and to faculty from all colleges at 3 p.m., both presentations in Room 117 of the O.A. Grant Building.

Mazur is a prominent physicist known for his contributions in nanophotonics, or nano-optics, the study of the behavior of light. An internationally recognized educational innovator and sought-after speaker, he is the Balkanski Professor of Physics and Applied Physics and dean of applied physics at Harvard University.

His appearance caps a week of activities beginning with Monday’s recognition of past winners of the Jack and Louise Arthur Excellence in Teaching Award, Last Lecture Series Speakers, the O.A. Grant Excellence in Teaching Award, Junior Faculty Award, and Regents Professors at 4 p.m. in Room 125 of the Math Building.

At noon Tuesday, Feb. 5, in Math 125, a panel consisting of Tarleton faculty members Eric Morrow, Tom Falkenberry, Lora Helvie-Mason and Judd Leach and moderated by Jim Gentry will discuss student evaluations and faculty perceptions of them. Pizza and drinks will be served.

The Teaching Trot, a 2K run, highlights Wednesday, Feb. 6. The starting gun sounds at noon at the Rudder Statue on Rudder Way.

The first Tarleton Professional Development Huddle is planned for noon Thursday in Math 125. The Center for Instructional Innovation at Tarleton hosts the event, which profiles the Faculty Fellows program and professional development opportunities provided for all faculty.

The Faculty Fellows will discuss their work leading Course Redesign, the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, and Tarleton’s Professional Development Community. Pizza and drinks will be served.

Sessions for Friday’s Excellence in Teaching seminars begin at 8:30 a.m. and are planned at three venues — the Multipurpose Room in the Dick Smith Library, the Library Training Center and Room 125 in the Math Building.

Mazur’s address is titled “The Tyranny of the Lecture.” His motivational talks on interactive teaching, educational technology and assessment have inspired educators worldwide to change their approach to teaching.

Mazur is widely known in academic circles for his work on peer instruction, an interactive teaching method aimed at engaging students in the classroom and beyond. He is a member of the education faculty at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and past president of the Optical Society. He has widely published in peer-reviewed journals and holds numerous patents.

In 2014 he received the first Minerva Prize for Advancements in Higher Education, one of many awards he has received for his work in physics and in education.

For a list of session topics and speakers, as well as all events for Celebrate Teaching Week, visit https://online.tarleton.edu/Celebrate%20Teaching%20Week%202019.html.

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