Engagement & Transformative Learning: Equity where it Matters

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Written by Sunshine Cowan, Ph.D., MPH, MCHES®, Professor, Department of Kinesiology and Health Studies –

I had the good fortune this past summer to join a team from the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) attending the Institute of High Impact Practices and Student Success, sponsored by the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U). The Institute focused on equity in higher education, and our team concentrated on ways that UCO could develop an equity mindset on campus. In the words of Dr. Sharra Hynes, we wanted to lay the groundwork to be a “student-ready” campus. This phrase became a goal: What needed to be accomplished so that we were ready when students arrived? What could we do better to meet the needs of the students who choose UCO (rather than banking on outdated expectations of who our students “should” be)? How could we provide opportunities to engage first-generation, low income, and minority students in order to retain them and serve our state and respective fields with career-ready graduates?picture of colorful raised hands . . .  read more

Celebrating Diversity in Scholarship

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Captured in two of Central’s six tenets, global and cultural competencies and research, scholarly and creative activities are prevalent throughout the UCO campus, in both curricular and extra-curricular settings. However, one student group is celebrating its diversity, while promoting research, scholarship and creativity.

screen-shot-2017-01-09-at-10-55-02-amDiverse Student Scholars (DSS) is a group comprised of both undergraduate and graduate students at Central, who collaborate to conduct, present and share scholarly research to the academic community and beyond. Dr. Jeanetta Sims, assistant dean for Central’s Jackson College of Graduate Studies and a tenured associate professor in the marketing department in Central’s College of Business, began DSS in the fall of 2007, her first semester of teaching at UCO. . . .  read more

Transformative Learning in the Bigger Picture – What, Why, & the Student Transformative Learning Record (STLR)

Camille Kilbourne

If you have been at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) for more than about six months, you have heard the term Transformative Learning. If you have been around for quite some time, you have heard the term on re-run repeatedly. If you are like me, you may have been thinking, “So what, so what now, and why do we keep talking about it?”

In order to answer these questions, let’s stop and consider what Transformative Learning is about at its core. Let’s break it all the way down and then look at the bigger picture. Then, let’s talk about, “So what now?” or what is new about TL at UCO in the form of the Student Transformative Learning Record (STLR). . . .  read more