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Power Up Your Pedagogy Conference

The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL), in partnership with the Office of Academic and Student Support Services and the Office of Institutional Effectiveness is proud to announce the 12th Annual Power Up Your Pedagogy (PUP) conference scheduled for Tuesday, January 3, 2017.

This year’s theme is Reflect, Renew and Recharge: Creating a Lasting Impact for Our Students.

Important Dates

Proposals Open: October 6, 2016
Proposals Close: November 2, 2016
Notifications Sent: Mid-November 2016

Registration: Open NOW!


2017 Power Up Your Pedagogy Call for Proposals
Reflect, Renew and Recharge: Creating a Lasting Impact for Our Students

You are cordially invited to submit a presentation proposal for the conference!

Based on the conference goals, sessions may address a range of topics related to active and high impact practices in teaching and learning. Proposals should address methods and strategies that are used inside or outside the classroom environment. Use of data is highly encouraged in all sessions.

Conference session strands include but are not limited to:

  • Developing Students' Critical Thinking Skills -- Critical thinking is the ability for students to engage in higher-order thinking skills to analyze, synthesize, evaluate and apply their learning to their lives. Proposals in this strand should address active learning strategies to promote critical thinking.
  • Collaborative Approaches to Learning -- Collaborative learning combines two key goals: 1.) learning to work and solve problems in the company of others, and 2.) sharpening one's own understanding by listening seriously to the insights of others, especially those with different backgrounds and life experiences. Approaches range from study groups within a course, to team-based assignments and writing, cooperative projects etc.
  • The Impact of Learning and Teaching on the Brain and Body -- We often focus solely on the content of our subject matter and leave the quality of our presentations to chance. How do our teaching and learning strategies affect our student's body and brain? We encourage presenters to share ways in which an awareness of the body and the physical space of the classroom can influence teaching and learning. To what extent can the relationship between body and brain help us engage students in person or online?
  • Innovations in Instructional Technology -- Technology is an essential part of teaching and learning and keeping up with the many emerging technologies can be a challenge. Proposals in this strand should speak to the use of instructional tech tools to enhance engagement and retention inside and outside the classroom environment.
  • Teaching and Learning Through Community Engagement -- Community engagement pedagogies, often called "service learning," are ones that combine learning goals and community service in ways that can enhance student growth and the common good. In the words of the National Service Learning Clearinghouse, it is a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities. Proposals in this strand should speak to opportunities and experiences for student and the NOVA community.
  • Distance Learning/Blended Learning -- Online and blended learning environments provide challenges and unique opportunities to create active and lasting student learning. Proposals for this strand should address tools and strategies for increasing retention and completion in an online or hybrid classroom environment.
  • Creating Coherent Pathways -- NOVA is fundamentally rethinking and restructuring how students connect to, enroll in, progress through, and successfully complete their goals, with a focus on the partnerships, advising and pathways that support strong transitions throughout students' educational journeys; includes providing continuity between departments and divisions, across educational institutions, and among community organizations and employers. Proposals in this strand should focus on opportunities for partnerships and pathways that support strong transitions as students move through their educational journey.
  • Integrating Student Support and Instruction -- Building linkages between student support and instruction to address learner needs at all stages of the educational experience; includes delivering "front door" services, completing meaningful education plans and providing ongoing support. Proposals in this strand should address linkages between student support, advising, instruction that enhances students' learning experiences and help to increase retention and completion.
  • Career Readiness: Making a Connection With Academics and Workforce -- College and career readiness and success have become key priorities for the PK–20 education and workforce communities and the nation at large. Recent projections indicate that within the next decade, 63 percent of all jobs in the United States and 90 percent of new jobs in growing industries with high wages will require some form of postsecondary education. What does college and career readiness look like? What are you doing in your class to prepare more students to graduate college and be career ready? How can our services support college and career readiness at NOVA? Proposals in this strand should speak to teaching and learning strategies that address career readiness and preparation for the workforce environment.
  • Equity in Learning and Teaching -- At a time of impending demographic shifts, educators are becoming aware of the need to address the systemic practices and barriers that contribute to inequitable educational outcomes of our diverse student populations. Focusing on learning environment, proposals in this strand should demonstrate how teaching applications can transform the teaching and learning process and promote more equitable educational outcomes among all students. For example, the importance of creating identity affirming learning environments that foster high expectations; recognizing the value of the cultural and national differences that learners bring to the educational experience; and engaging the "whole" student in the teaching and learning process.

This year PUP will offer four kinds of sessions:

  1. Practical Peer Sessions (45 minutes) Sessions that share resources relevant to tips, tricks and best practices in higher education. These sessions will allow for interaction with and among session participants and include both the "how" and the "why" of the shared practice and its relevance to either general teaching or a particular discipline.
  2. Spotlight Projects Sessions (60 minutes) Participants will be informed of the design, implementation and results of empirical research focused on teaching and learning. These session may be combined with Practical Peer sessions if the implementation of a particular teaching technique has resulted from such research. Multi-presenter panel encouraged.
  3. Training Sessions (45 minutes) Training for college programs is provided. Examples include: Starfish, Understanding MOU from disability counselors, Utilizing the Office of ____ (fill in the blank), Specific Blackboard, software topics and more.
  4. Poster Sessions Participants will be given a standard poster template to construct a poster. The PUP Committee will provide printing services. Topics can include the results of grants awarded to adjunct or full-time faculty and other learning projects appropriate to higher education. The posters will be available during the conference for viewing.

Proposals are due by Nov 2. They will be reviewed based on the clear and concise description of the presentation, a broadly considered relevance to the areas of concentration listed, relevance to a mission of the conference, and the overall balance of the conference program. The specific review criteria are:

  • The session is likely to accomplish the outcomes stated in the proposal.
  • The session will be conducted in an appropriate way for the chosen session format.
  • The session is likely to be a model of exemplary teaching practices.
  • The session will offer fresh information and/or describe innovative or creative practices.
  • The session supports the mission of NOVA.

The committee may ask you to change your session type or present a session more than once. You will be notified by mid-November about the review committee's decision.

The following are recommendations (not requirements) for a good proposal:

  • Use descriptive words in your title rather than catchy phrases.
  • Stay within the allowed word limits. If your proposal is accepted, your description will be used in the Program. Be sure to check your spelling and grammar.
  • Describe how you will use active learning strategies to involve your audience.
  • Briefly show that your proposal is grounded in the literature of your field or of general pedagogy.

Submit a Proposal


The 12th Annual Power Up Your Pedagogy (PUP) is OPEN for REGISTRATION!

Reflect, Renew and Recharge: Creating a Lasting Impact for our Students is the theme for PUP 2017 and will be held at the Annandale Campus, January 3, 2017.

PUP is YOUR conference presented by YOUR colleagues. PUP is FREE to NOVA faculty and staff. All faculty and staff are cordially invited to attend. PUP is an exciting, award-winning, professional development conference.

Register for PUP 2017 now! Online registration provides us with an accurate count for planning and catering purposes.

Registration closes on December 10, 2016.

Register for PUP in 2017


The 2017 Power Up Your Pedagogy Conference needs your assistance. PUP conferences are successful because of the dedication of our volunteers. To sign up to be a PUP volunteer, please click on the Volunteer button. Your help with PUP is VERY appreciated!


Program and Planner

PUP Program

More PUP 2017 information coming soon.


If you have any questions, contact CETL.