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Penn State Berks Academic Affairs hosts 60th anniversary events

READING, Pa. — In celebration of Penn State Berks’ 60th anniversary, the Office of Academic Affairs is hosting three events in September which will showcase the college’s land-grant mission of teaching, research and community service.

The focus will be on community service and sustainability at 12:15 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 10, with "60 Plants for 60 years.” During this event, students, faculty and staff volunteers will plant a native pollinator garden in front of Gaige Technology and Business Innovation Building. The garden will be a source of increased quality and quantity of nutrients available for native pollinators. This is a collaborative effort between the college’s Office of Academic Affairs, the Science Division, the Center for Academic Community Engagement and Maintenance and Operations. 

On Wednesday, Sept. 12, the focus will be on teaching. Marie Norman, associate professor and director of the IDEA Lab at the University of Pittsburgh, will give two presentations on education. The first is titled “Four Horsemen of the Teaching Apocalypse and How to Avoid Them,” and will be held at 12:15 p.m. in room 5 of the Luerssen Building. The second is “Three Concepts That Will Make You a More Effective Teacher and Learner,” at 6 p.m. in the Perkins Student Center Multipurpose Room. There also will be a reception at 5 p.m. in the Penn State Room of the Perkins Student Center.  Both lectures and the reception are free and open to the public.

In “Four Horsemen of the Teaching Apocalypse,” Norman will discuss the four common-but-hard-to-detect teaching pitfalls that cause numerous problems with student learning and motivation, making even experienced teachers less effective than they could be. Attendees will learn to recognize and avoid these teaching traps in this interactive session.

During “Three Concepts,” Norman will focus on the science of learning, which has exploded in the past several decades, ushering in an understanding of learning — what it is and how it works. Understanding the science of learning can help educators to teach more effectively and students to manage their learning more successfully.

The week concludes with Rapid Fire Research Talks in the Plaza — "Research Rap" — at 12:15 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 14, in the Perkins Plaza (rain location: Perkins Student Center Multipurpose Room). Faculty will give presentations no longer than five minutes describing their research to the general public. Topics will include engineering, science, humanities and the arts. This event is free and open to the public and light refreshments will be served.

In addition to these events, there will be a special display exhibition in the Thun Library highlighting faculty achievements, awards, publications and much more.

For more information on these Academic Affairs events, contact Tami Mysliwiec at 610-396-6274 or THM2@psu.edu.