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Faculty Development

2017-18 Calendar of Events

This page is updated regularly. Please check back for upcoming events. 


2017-18 faculty development opportunities

Faculty Staff Learning Community (FSLC) Lunch and Learn
Friday, September 15, noon-1 p.m., AU111

Looking for ways to share your experiences and challenges with a cross-disciplinary group of others? If so, please consider facilitating or participating in a Faculty-Staff Learning Community (FSLC) this year. FSLCs bring together small groups of faculty and academic staff from a variety of disciplines to regularly engage in dynamic discussion, reflection, and collaboration on topics of shared interest. The goals of these FSLCs are to build and strengthen the Butler academic community, to share resources and expertise, and to support Butler’s faculty and academic staff in their pursuit of lifelong learning. If you are interested in joining an FSLC or would just like to learn more about them, please plan to attend this session. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


"Not My Saturday Morning Cartoons: Jonny Quest, Wacky Races, and (Zoinks!) Scooby Doo Go from Screen to Page to WTF!"
Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Presented by Rocky Colavito (English)
Tuesday, September 19, noon-1 p.m., AU111 - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.

In winter 2017, DC Comics issued the bound collections of the newest, and wildest versions of comics appropriating favorites from our Saturday mornings of yesteryear. Jonny Quest finds himself adventuring in a mashup universe where Space Ghost, the Herculoids, and even a modern version of Mightor exist and fight a common enemy. The Wacky Racers find themselves racing for keeps in a Road Warrior-esque setting that seems to have been based upon Death Race 2000. Scooby Doo, and Mystery, Inc., now find themselves confronting a zombie-infested dystopia, giving new meaning to the phrase “rotten kids.” While inspiring fond memories, there is also a serious case of WTF when we read these new re-imaginings, but maybe the W tends more to “why” than “what”. Dr. Colavito will offer an historical survey of the evolution from original cartoon to current print versions, along with consideration of the changes wrought, the effects of the changes, and what the changes tell us about not only the comic book/graphic novel industry, but also the culture industry. By looking at the changes as both practice and process, we perhaps glean some insight into the ways in which the past continues to become present, and what this means for future artistic endeavor.


Faculty Food for Thought: Teaching Writing Across Disciplines
Presented by Susan Adams (Education), Greg Shufeldt (Political Science), Tom Paradis (History and Anthropology)
Tuesday, September 26, noon-1 p.m., AU111
If you have ever been frustrated or disappointed by the quality or even the quantity of academic writing you get from your students, please join us! In this session we will share strategies, approaches, and protocols for supporting novice academic writers across a variety of disciplines. The presenters will demonstrate resources, templates, and protocols they have been developing and fine-tuning to provide explicit and systemic processes that will help students better communicate their learning in writing as they develop their scholarly writing voices. Rubrics and approaches to scoring, grading, and assessing academic writing will be included. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


"Data Science, Bioinformatics, and DNA"
Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Presented by Alex Erkine, Pharmaceutical Sciences 
Tuesday, October 3, noon-1 p.m., AU111 - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.
Computers are becoming an indispensable tool in handling huge data sets. That allows us to switch from seeing the trees to seeing the forest, and this view often is very revealing. Currently, looking via computer “lenses” at the sequence of an individual’s DNA isolated from a droplet of blood, allows us to not only predict the hair/eye color, race, and age, but also to fully reconstruct a computer image of an individual’s face. Extrapolation of these developments suggests that in next few years a combination of data science and DNA sequencing technologies will be used to predict and possibly direct (hopefully in positive way) many facets of individuals’ lives including medical aspects, professional development, interpersonal relationships, possible migrations, and more.


Faculty Food for Thought: Bystander Intervention Training
Presented by staff from Counseling and Consultation Services
Monday, October 9, noon-1 p.m., AU111 

How many people feel like they would help someone in trouble? How many people have seen something concerning, not acted, and later wished they had? Please join staff from Counseling and Consultation Services for a discussion on the barriers to intervening and what it means to be a part of Butler’s Community of C.A.R.E. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


Faculty Food for Thought: Navigating Classroom Disruptions
Friday, November 3, noon-1 p.m., AU111 

Managing disruptive student behaviors like texting in class, showing up late, talking when others are speaking, monopolizing classroom discussions, and sleeping in class can drain instructors’ energy and hamper the ability of instructors to teach and students to learn. A panel of faculty from multiple colleges will share their experiences with disruptive classroom behaviors and the strategies they have used for addressing them. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


"Confucius, Socrates, and Asimov Walk into a Bar – and in front of a Driverless Car"

Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Ankur Gupta, Computer Science and James McGrath, Religion
Wednesday, November 8, noon-1 p.m., AU111 - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.

It is a well-worn setting for a joke to have three famous individuals or categories of individuals walk into a bar. But Brown Bag talks can also start this way, and in this case the three protagonists are Confucius, Socrates, and Isaac Asimov. The intention in sending them to a drinking establishment together is not entertainment, but a very serious ethical matter about technology that is in the news all the time. It is necessary, however, as a prelude to this discussion of driverless cars and ethics, that we get our three famous thinkers as drunk as we can. After we have accomplished that aim, they will inevitably stagger out of the bar (despite protestations from the robot bartender) and into the street – where they find themselves in the path of a driverless car. The main focus of this talk will be to explore the more sober thoughts attributed to these individuals, and to apply them to the question of how we might best program driverless cars so as to cope effectively with scenarios like this, in which the safety of passenger(s) could be prioritized at all costs, or avoidance of injury or death to those that get in the way could be the priority, or some balance could be struck between the two. The potential ability for an automated car to apply the ethical principles programmed into it consistently and speedily when an accident becomes imminent may make the use of driverless cars fundamentally superior, with respect to ethical reasoning, than leaving driving in the hands of humans.


Safe Space Training (both faculty and staff invited)
Presented by Counseling and Consultation Services staff
Ford Salon, Robertson Hall
Friday, November 10, Lunch (provided): 12:00-12:30  Presentation: 12:30-3:30 

CCS offers Safe Space training as a part of our outreach and educational programming on campus. The program invites faculty, staff, and students to become active and effective allies to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) community. The goal of the Safe Space program is to provide a more hospitable environment for LGBTQ individuals by establishing an identifiable network of allies who can provide support, information, and serve as allies to LGBTQ individuals within the Butler community.
Safe Space Goals:
- To create campus spaces where LGBTQ persons feel safe, supported, and valued as members of our University or campus community
- To provide information about resources and appropriate referrals for members of the campus community seeking additional support and information in this area
- To expand the network of allies on campus
- To build awareness of the issues affecting LGBTQ persons

 Lunch provided. Space is limited. RSVP to required. 


Student Spirituality Lunch and Learn  
Presented by Chad Bauman, Religion, with collaboration from the Center for Faith and Vocation
Thursday, November 30, 12:00-1:00 (lunch provided), AU111

Would you like to know more about the religious lives of our students, and how their religion (or lack thereof) might affect what they want from us as teachers, advisors, and mentors? If so, please join us for this presentation, where we will discuss recent trends in religion, drawing upon both national data and more specific research on Butler's students. All faculty and staff are invited, but space is limited. RSVP to required.


Cyber-Security Fundamentals
Presented by Eric Schmidt, Information Technology
Ford Salon, Robertson Hall
Tuesday, December 5, Lunch (provided): 12:00-12:30  Presentation: 12:30-1:30 

How should you protect yourself and your information while online? Is it safe to shop or bank online? What protections does Butler have for my online activities? Eric Schmidt, Butler’s Chief Information Security Officer, will discuss these and other issues at this timely lunch and learn opportunity. All faculty and staff are invited, but space is limited.  RSVP to is required. 


"Ukraine: An Introduction to Its Conflicts"
Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Paul Valliere, Religion 
Tuesday, January 30, noon-1 p.m., AU111 - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.

Ukraine today is a country beset by conflicts.  In this Brown Bag presentation, Dr. Valliere will enumerate some basic facts about Ukraine that should be kept in mind by those who want to gain perspective on the Ukrainian situation. Western media coverage of Ukraine is intermittent and focused mainly on the confrontation with Russia.  This lecture will add depth to the picture by summarizing not just the political conflict, but some of the historical, cultural and religious factors that shape Ukrainian life in our day.


Faculty Food for Thought: Flipping the Classroom Using Lightboard Technology
Tuesday, February 6, noon-1 p.m., AU111 
Lightboard is a novel way to record video lectures for courses, allowing the user to write on a board while facing students. Join us for a presentation by Adam Azman (Chemistry) to learn about his experiences with this innovative technology, and how his students responded. Receive guidance on how to get started generating your own Lightboard content, and how to incorporate it into your teaching. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


Founders Day Lunch and Learn
Thursday, February 8, noon-1:30 p.m., Irwin Library Collaborative Learning Space.

Over the last 6 years, the Founder’s Day committee has awarded 30 grants to faculty members to enhance one of their courses by infusing the theme and founding principles into assignments and projects in their syllabi.  Each year all faculty are invited to submit proposals, and five faculty are selected from submissions to receive stipends.  Please join us on February 8th at 12:00 pm in the Irwin Collaborative Space to hear how past and present grant winners have adapted their courses to teach students about our founding values. Lunch will be provided. Faculty and staff welcome. RSVP to required.

Founder’s Day Overview:
One hundred and sixty-three years ago, Butler University was founded on the principles of diversity, equality, and inclusion. Those characteristics are still vital today as we seek to recapture and reclaim the values of Ovid Butler with a celebration of Founder’s Day (February 7).  Campus began celebrating Founder’s Day again in 2012, and each year a new theme has emerged to guide a range of events.  This year’s theme is “Place & Identity”, with most events taking place from February 3 – February 11.  The Founder’s Day website will be updated soon with the full schedule:

Lunch and learn event co-sponsored by the Faculty Development and STEP programs.


"Maoist Politics, Global Narratives, and the Chinese Sixties"
Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Zachary Scarlett, History and Anthropology
Thursday, February 15, noon-1 p.m., AU111 - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.

In the 1960s, China claimed dominion over international revolution. Dr. Scarlett’s lecture will explore how the Chinese Communist Party used the social protests of the 1960s to legitimize mass campaigns at home and reinforce Maoist revolution. Chinese students followed suit, tying the Cultural Revolution to anti-war protests, the civil rights movement, and student uprisings from Paris to Tokyo. Through the process of knowledge production and the crafting of new global categories, the Communist Party merged domestic and international revolution into a single Maoist framework, creating a new type of political discourse in China. 


Faculty Food for Thought: Pursuing Lifelong Learning
Wednesday, February 28, noon-1 p.m., AU111

As faculty, we want to instill a commitment to lifelong learning in our students, but what can we do to be lifelong learners ourselves? In this session, you will receive resources for continued growth, including instructions for how to take courses at Butler, and tips for integrating our own development into our course design. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


"Pernicious Plants: Uncanny Ecocritical Thought in Gustav Meyrink’s “Dr. Cinderella’s Plants"
Brown Bag Series for Faculty Research, Scholarship, and Creative Work
Melissa Etzler, MLLC - Students, staff and faculty welcome. No RSVP required.
Monday, March 5, noon-1 p.m., AU111 

Gustav Meyrink’s “Dr. Cinderella’s Plants” (1905), is a fantastical tale about plant-human hybrids born of experimental human intervention. Dr. Etzler will explore how this short story translates foundational scientific hypotheses from the 19th century into the science fiction and body-horror genre. Because Meyrink was concerned with the sentient nature and agency of objects that many would consider dead matter, she will take an anachronistic leap and bring this short story into dialogue with 21st century ecocritical theories.


Faculty Food for Thought: Music First! Generating Civically Engaged Student Scientists through the Transformative Power of Experiential Learning
Tuesday, March 20, noon-1 p.m., AU111 

Music First! is an interprofessional research project linking faculty and students from Butler’s JCA, COPHS, CCOM, LAS, and Center for Citizenship and Community. Tara Lineweaver (Psychology) will showcase this example of a service-focused, student-centered & experience-based approach that transforms students into student scientists who recognize the importance of science’s role, and, more importantly, their own role in the community.Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


Faculty Advising Workshop: Reflection and Decision-Making Tools for Advising Students on Their Career Development
Friday, March 23, 12:30-2:00 p.m., GH102

Join us for an engaging discussion, led by Jeremy Walthall, to learn tools and techniques to integrate career development into your advising appointments with students. We will explore the theory of self-authorship, reflective advising, and models for decision-making to facilitate personal development for students as they prepare for lives and careers beyond Butler. Learn resources, tips, and advice from both faculty peers and staff in student-advising roles. Lunch provided. RSVP to required.


Faculty Food for Thought: Info Lit Across the (College) Curriculum: The JCA Experience
Thursday, April 12, noon-1 p.m., AU111 

Since 2000, faculty in the Jordan College of the Arts, along with Performing and Fine Arts Librarian, Sheri Stormes, have been working together to promote a tiered program of information literacy for JCA students. While the program has hit its share of potholes and detours along the way, information literacy has become a regular component in targeted courses at varying levels of the JCA curricula. Join us for a presentation by Sheri and her colleagues to learn what they have learned in the process, and how you can create a similar program in your discipline. Lunch tickets provided. RSVP to required.


Celebration of Innovations in Teaching and Learning
Thursday, April 19, 4:00-6:00 p.m., Reilly Room, Atherton Union

Featuring peer-reviewed posters, demonstrations, and displays presented by Butler faculty and academic staff, showcasing what they are doing to foster student learning at Butler, either through a teaching strategy, an instructional approach, a class assignment or project, a method of rubric-making, or other ways of measuring student engagement or learning. CITL is a great opportunity to discover new teaching ideas from your colleagues and to learn about the great work that is occurring across the university to ensure student success. All faculty and staff are welcome. No RSVP required.


Faculty and Staff Lunch and Learn: Sustainability at Butler, and Beyond!
Atherton 111
Thursday, April 26
Lunch (Market Place tickets provided): 12:00-12:30  
Presentation: 12:30-1:30 

Want to learn more about recycling at Butler and in Indianapolis? Join us for an Earth Month lunch and learn presentation where we will discuss how and where to recycle on Butler’s campus, as well as how recycling works in our city – and beyond! Presented by McKenzie Beverage (Butler’s Sustainability Coordinator) and Emily Jackson (Indiana Recycling Coalition). Lunch tickets provided. This session is full. Email to have your name added tot he waitlist.

To request disability-related accommodations or inquire about accessibility at faculty development events, please contact Rebecca DeGrazia at or at 317-940-8558. Please allow two weeks' advance notice in order to allow adequate time to make arrangements. Although attempts will be made to honor accommodation requests with less notice, it cannot be guaranteed that without two weeks notice a reasonable accommodation can be provided.