Cape Breton University to Host International Conference on Teaching and Learning

Cape Breton University (CBU) is ramping up to be one of the smallest university's to host the national Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE) conference.  Held for the past 32 years, all is in place at CBU to host 450 post-secondary educators June 19-22, with the pre-conference workshops to be held at the Canadian Coast Guard College.

“We are thrilled to be one of the smallest University's to host this particular national conference,” says conference co-chair, Heather Sparling. “For us it really drives home that CBU’s exceptional faculty is being recognized on a national scale, that the CBU campus has grown and matured into one that can accommodate an event of this size, and that Cape Breton certainly has the capacity to hold large scale events such as this one, and to draw an international delegate list.”

The 2013 conference is inspired by the concept of sustainability and titled Learning to Live, Learning for Life. This theme encompasses living in an economically, physically, and culturally sustainable way and integrating sustained learning throughout all facets of education. CBU is particularly eager to showcase how environmental and educational sustainability link to the Verschuren Centre for Sustainability in Energy and the Environment, one of Canada’s most sustainable university labs.

Two distinguished keynote speakers will take the stage during the conference. Rex Murphy, a CBC personality known for his word-smithing and lifelong passion for teaching, and Richard Gerver, who is inspiring teachers globally with his work on educational transformation will share their perspectives with conference participants.

The 450 delegates,  primarily from Canada, but from as far afield as England, India, Australia and Quatar will gather on campus for more than 180 concurrent speaking sessions, 31 poster sessions, 21 Cracker Barrel sessions (also known as academic speed dating) and 15 roundtable sessions.

Several awards will also be presented during the three day conference including the Christopher Knapper Lifetime Achievement Award, the Alan Blizzard Award for exemplary collaboration in university teaching, and the 3M student fellowship awards.

Dr. David Wheeler, President and Vice-Chancellor of CBU says, “Cape Breton University cares deeply about embedding concepts of sustainability in our curriculum and our research.  It also matters to us that we ‘walk the talk’ on our campus, and I am pleased to say there are many examples of that happening, with many more planned. So it is very exciting for us to be hosting the STLHE conference which this year focuses on the theme of sustainability and to facilitate opportunities for shared learning among academics interested in this very important area.”

Another first for the conference includes the cultural features that are woven into the program, giving delegates an opportunity to experience Cape Breton’s unique traditions. Interactive showcases will include Acadian Storytelling, Cape Breton Stepdancing, Gaelic Language and Mi'kmaw Language components.

Among the conference presenters are 29 of CBU’s own faculty and staff. Registration for this event is ongoing.

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