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CTOL: Professional Development



Building 22, Room 181


Monday - Friday

8:00am - 4:00pm



(360) 596-5260

Professional Development

Our work as educators involves helping each other to grow and gain expertise not only in our diverse subject areas, but in shared knowledge and technical abilities. Equally important to our mission is the shared space we can create for collaborative and inquisitive thinking about teaching and how students learn from us and from each other.

The Center for Teaching and Online Learning hosts a number of professional development opportunities for all faculty. Explore the menus below for more information on our programming.


Communities of Practice (2022-2023)

Communities of Practice are faculty groups that meet quarterly to explore an area of shared interest. The goals of the C.o.P. program are to build community, encourage interdisciplinary collaboration, and to facilitate professional development.

Developing Assessments and Educational Resources with Technology led by Julia Trude

This community of practice will explore the different forms of technology available to support students learning as well as evaluating through assessments. Participants can present resources that they are using already or want to learn more about with discussions of applications across different content and disciplines. Yearlong, 2-3 meetings per quarter

Growing Leadership led by Heather Maye

This Community of Practice will focus on leadership concepts to strengthen our own leadership abilities and can also be focused on teaching others (students) how to become leaders. We will read the book Dare to Lead by Brené Brown and choose a second book to read together later in the year. The discussions will include reflection and analysis on the leadership concepts covered and will focus on how the topics fit with consideration of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Yearlong, 2 meetings per quarter. First session on Zoom with the option to meet in-person if the group unanimously decides.

Crossing the Political Divide led by Michael Haensel

As America becomes more politically polarized, universities and faculty have a place in fostering understanding. We'll read and discuss John Haidt's "The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion." Outlines with a little additional analysis are available to reduce the reading load. John Haidt’s moral foundations theory explains why liberals and conservatives argue past each other much of the time. It also explains blind spots for both groups. Let’s discuss and reflect on how this applies to our lives, our students, our campus, and our community. Yearlong, 1-2 Zoom meetings per quarter

Latest Research in STEM Pedagogy led by James Chen

Focusing on current science pedagogy and open to all faculty interested in this conversation. Will include search and review of recent science-focused peer-reviewed educational literature and related media, with discussion of evidence promoting ongoing science educational and collaborative efforts. Yearlong, 5 meetings total, virtual and / or in-person depending on the needs of the group

Principles of the Trauma-Informed Classroom led by Chandra Miller-Starks

This Community of Practice will explore the principles of Trauma Informed Classrooms. Faculty will learn about these principles, evaluate their classrooms, implement trauma informed practices, and share experiences. Yearlong, 2 meetings per quarter, flexible format (virtual and in-person)

Psychology of Diversity led by James Chen

Based on a Harvard course, this community of practice explores issues of diversity from a psychological perspective. Through selected audiovisual and written media, we will reflect upon the impacts and perceptions of diversity issues within/across/because of various group distinctions. We will study diversity in a non-binary manner, and create a safe space for a variety of thoughts on diversity to be expressed Yearlong, 5 meetings total, virtual and / or in-person depending on the needs of the group

Teaching and Learning in a Post-COVID World led by Kathleen Byrd and Jenn Berney

2020 turned our world and our classrooms upside down. In addition to the challenges, we continue to face around living through pandemic, we are also daunted by the harsh realities of climate change, injustice, and threats to democracy. In this community, we'll consider questions such as the following: How has COVID changed our teaching practices? How is the classroom evolving in the wake of those changes? How have students' needs and expectations changed? What do we imagine relinquishing or reviving in the wake of these changes? How might anti-racist and decolonizing pedagogies help us meet this moment? Yearlong, 2 meetings per quarter in-person, both indoors and outdoors.

Write Club – How Our Own Writing Can Heal and Inform Our Teaching Experience led by Jen Evans

This CoP allows us an opportunity to explore and share our own writing, while we reflect and share how our writing can and does inform our teaching experience. Whether you’re a budding novelist, a scholastic writer, a prolific or aspiring poet or songwriter, a daily journalist, an educator who expresses themselves through their assignments and yearly reflections, or some combination of all of these, this may be the CoP for you. Participants should be prepared to share what they’ve been writing either to seek out critique and assistance, or as a means to heal and come to a place of peace for the benefit of the classroom. No judgements, just assistance, collaboration and a supportive place to share writing and how it has been a reflection for and of our teaching experience. Yearlong, 1 – 2 meetings per quarter, primarily on Zoom with the possibility of an in-person gathering.


Presentation Series(2022-2023)

The series below are discussions, events, and workshops sponsored by the CTOL and available to all faculty; drop in on the ones that meet your needs, interests and schedule. Specific times will appear on the CTOL calendar each quarter.

Canvas Series

In this series, you’ll learn practical tips for getting the most out of Canvas. We’ll explore topics such as organizing for student success and engagement, time-saving techniques for faculty, Canvas tools, and avoiding common frustrations. Participants will be able to choose from a menu of topics to make sure this training is relevant to their current needs. Led by Caroline Hobbs. (Offered at the beginning and end of each quarter)

Course Access(ibility) Series

In this series of workshops, facilitator Kyle Gonzalez will work with instructors to create a learning environment in which all students can learn to their full potential. This series will include:

  • 101 Basics
  • 102 Document Access(ibility)
  • Course Content Immersive Workshop
  • Workshop Wednesdays (drop-in time)

Digital Humanities Lab

This series of drop-in workshops will provide hands-on exploratory support for faculty, staff, and students, using the following open-source programs and audio-visual applications: GIMP, Blender, and Audacity. Led by Joe Batt and Michael Gray.

Get Outside Gatherings

Once a month, all faculty are invited to meet for some off-campus movement and conversation. Possibilities include: walks at Woodard Bay, Squaxin Park, McClane Nature Trail. The goal is to promote community, health, and connection to our surroundings.

Making Students’ Thinking Visible: Finding effective and efficient ways to assess CWAs

In this series, we will focus on one new or revised CWA each quarter with the goal of thinking about how to assess it effectively and efficiently (essentially, how do we make students’ thinking visible?). Sessions will include example assessments, conversation about the CWAs, and time to begin crafting an assessment you can use. All sessions are open to all faculty, whether or not they’ve attended any of the other sessions. Led by Heather Ryan. (1.5 hours, twice a quarter, offered Fall, Winter, Spring)

Mindfulness Series

This series of workshops, led by a variety of facilitators from around campus, will explore the use of tools like yoga and meditation in our teaching practices.

Troubleshoot with the Counselors

Facilitated by SPSCC Counseling Faculty, meets on alternate Thursdays from 2:30pm - 3:30pm. This is the place to get support, ideas, and insight for managing challenging student behaviors.

Other One-off Workshops & Discussions

We will be offering workshops on the following topics:

  • Trauma-Informed Pedagogy
  • Grading Contracts and Un-Grading
  • Book Group: True Biz by Sarah Norvic
  • Effective Zoom Instruction
  • Transparency in Teaching and Learning (Backwards Design)
  • Linguistic Diversity
  • Compassion Fatigue
  • Information Literacy
  • Open Pedagogy & Reducing Textbook Costs
  • Managing Microaggressions
  • Enhancing Student Engagement through Assignment Design
SBCTC Training Opportunities

The State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) hosts meetings and workshops throughout the year.Check out SBCTC's Educational Technology Professional Development series for courses such as:

Check the SBCTC's training calendar for more!



Calendar of Events

Upcoming SBCTC Events:

Click on the Information Icon to see an overview of the event. Click on the link title to go to the webpage for registratoin.

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