Moving the Needle Podcast

When it comes to education these days, there’s a lot to think about: flipped classrooms, instructional technology, accreditation, authentic assessment, copyright, asynchronous learning, multimedia tools, and hybrid learningMoving the Needle delivers frank conversations with instructors, learners, leaders, and creators about all things teaching and learning. Listen to their stories, learn from hard-won experiences, and let these ideas help you move the needle in your own teaching. Premiered December 2020.

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Moving the Needle is co-hosted by Erin Hagar, a senior instructional designer at the FCTL who has worked in higher education for over 20 years. As a member of the Physician Assistant Leadership and Learning Academy (PALLA) executive board, she helps design the curriculum for PALLA fellows and provides input on faculty development activities for PA educators throughout Maryland. Her passions include helping faculty discover active learning strategies that work for their course and designing authentic assessments that mirror the real-world application of knowledge.

Erin also is an accomplished children's author and the proud mother of two teenagers.



Moving the Needle is co-hosted by Scott Riley. Riley joined the School of Pharmacy in the spring of 2022. He is currently developing courses that aim to marry the fields of data analytics and pharmaceutical sciences, teaching students critical coding and data analysis skills. He also oversees the growth of the Dean’s Teaching Fellowship and MS Co-Op programs in the PSC department. Scott has been teaching in various roles since 2012. Towards the end of his graduate education, Scott took a position as a high school integrated physics and chemistry teacher. After graduating in 2020 he spent a year and a half working for Maryland state public health labs gaining practical experience in a clinical environment. Scott’s teaching philosophy focuses on using novel pedagogies to create research-based education strategies. He is particularly interested in the benefits of developing graduate students' ability to teach and how that affects their research skills. 

The Mentorship Toolbox: Concrete Ways to Support Graduate Student Development

Host Dr. Scott Riley II, discusses graduate student mentorship training with Dr. Tracy Irish, Clinical Assistant Professor in the STEM Master of Arts in Education program at UMBC and Jennifer Aumiller, Director of the Career and Professional Development Office of Postdoctoral Scholars in the School of Medicine at UMB.



Making Learning Accessible to Those of ALL Abilities

Host Erin Hagar, and Deborah Levi, Director of Educational Support and Disabilities Services (ESDS) at UMB,  discuss ways  faculty can best approach students with accommodations, and disabilities in order to best serve all students in the classroom.





Announcing LEAPS, Leaders in Education: Academy of Presidential Scholars

Dr. Donna Parker and Dr. Christina Cestone, co-chairs of LEAPS (Leaders in Education: Academy of Presidential Scholars), discuss this new initiative designed to support current faculty members at UMB by recognizing and rewarding educational scholarship and innovation, as well as help advance the career paths for UMB educators. 



Teaching, Research, and Preparing the Next Generation

In this conversation, Dr. Scott J. Riley from UMB's School of Pharmacy discusses the roles of research and teaching in the education and training of graduate students. 

Research referenced in this episode: 
Feldon, D. F., Peugh, J., Timmerman, B. E., Maher, M. A., Hurst, M., Strickland, D., ... & Stiegelmeyer, C. (2011). Graduate students’ teaching experiences improve their methodological research skills. Science333(6045), 1037-1039.


Creating a Welcoming and Inclusive Syllabus

In this conversation, Dr. Cynthia Cravens, sirector of the Center for Teaching Excellence at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, discusses the ways in which the course syllabus can be an invitation into a relationship with a faculty member, a course, or an entire discipline. 

The article that they discuss can be found here:

Taylor, S. D., Veri, M. J., Eliason, M., Hermoso, J. C. R., Bolter, N. D., & Van Olphen, J. E. (2019). The Social Justice Syllabus Design Tool: A First Step in Doing Social Justice Pedagogy. JCSCORE5(2), 132-166.



Faculty Development Through Coaching

UMB's Dr. Michelle Pearce, a clinical psychologist and professor in the Graduate School, discusses her coaching program for UMB faculty along with a faculty/coach pair who worked together in the program last year. Lara Zauner is a certified professional development coach and Dr. Melissa Motta is a professor in the Department of Neurology and course director for the Neurology Clerkship at the School of Medicine.




Kevin Engler, MS, Eric Belt, EdD, and Becky Menendez, MEd, join host Erin Hagar to discuss the role of the instructional designer in higher education.



Dr. Lori Edwards, assistant professor at UMB's School of Nursing, discusses the evolution of community engagement and service-learning in higher education.



Isabell May, PhD, and James Wright, MFA, from the UMB Writing Center explore the current scholarship in writing studies that addresses linguistic diversity and standards of English.



Dr. Christina Cestone, executive director of UMB's Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning, and Dr. Violet Kulo, associate professor in the Health Professions Education Program, discuss the power of team-based learning.


Beth Budny-Buckley, a faculty member in the Physician Assistant studies program at Frostburg State University, speaks with us about making the transition from practicing medicine to teaching it during a pandemic.


In this episode, Dr. Patel explains the reasons for curriculum redesign at the UMB School of Medicine and some lessons he has learned during its implementation.


In addition to her faculty appointment at the School of Medicine, Dr. Sandra Quezada is the course director for the Medical Spanish elective. Dr. Quezada talks about how her medical Spanish course integrates and reinforces the rest of the medical school curriculum, how teaching language overlaps with culture, and cultural humility and why mistakes are a crucial part of the learning process.



This episode's topics include a discussion about the universal principles of good teaching, how teaching and leadership intersect, and how to recognize and reward good teaching at a Research I institution.




In this episode, we explore teaching and learning from the student perspective. Three graduate students share their experiences in the online classroom, explain what teaching techniques have worked best for them, and offer their insights on the future of online learning.




Dr. Faerron is the co-founder and current director of the InterAmerican Center for Global Health in Costa Rica and a faculty member in UMB's Global Innovation program. In this episode, he shares his thoughts about the importance of a democratic perspective in teaching and ideas he considers when developing on-the-ground training for global health students.



Dr. Corey Shdaimah, is the Daniel Thursz Distinguished Professor for Social Justice from UMB's School of Social Work. We talk to Shdaimah about how the COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity for her to rethink her classes from the inside out as well as the importance of knowing your students and the crucial support a faculty member can receive by participating in a communities of practice.



Ways to Listen



Dr. Corey Shdaimah
Daniel Thursz Distinguished Professor of Social Justice, Academic Coordinator for the MSW/JD & MSW/MPP Dual Degree Programs

December 2020
Dr. Carlos Faerron
Assistant Professor of Global Health at the University of Maryland Baltimore, Graduate School and Director of the Centro Interamericano para la Salud Global (CISG) in Costa Rica
January 2021

Aishwarya Iyer, MD/PhD student in the School of Medicine;  Chris GoodisPhD student in Pharmaceutical Sciences; and Jeffrey Lee, student in the UMB/AACCphysician assistant program.

February 2021
Dr. Roger Ward
Interim Provost, Executive Vice President, and Dean of the Graduate School
March 2021
Dr. Sandra Quezada
Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine
April 2021
Director of Pre-Clerkship Curriculum in the Office of Medial Education; Director, Infectious Diseases Telemedicine & Medical Education
May 2021 
Assistant Faculty, Frostburg State University Physician Assistant Program
June 2021 
Dr. Christina Cestone, Executive Director, Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning; Dr. Violet Kulo, Associate Professor, Health Professions Education Program at the Graduate School

October 2021

Dr. Isabell May, Director, UMB Writing Center; James Wright Associate Director, UMB Writing Center

November 2021

Dr. Lori EdwardsAssistant Professor of Family and Community Health, UMB School of Nursing
December 2021 
FCTL Instructional Designers, Kevin Engler, MDE, Eric Belt, EdD, and Becky Menendez, MEd 
January 2022
Dr. Michelle Pearce, Clinical Psychologist and Professor in the Graduate School, Lara Zauner, Certified Professional Development Coach and Dr. Melissa Motta, Professor,  Dept of Neurology and Course Director for the Neurology Clerkship at the School of Medicine
February 2022
Dr. Cynthia Cravens, Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore  March 2022 
Dr. Scott J. Riley, Instructor, School of Pharmacy April 2022
Dr. Christina Cestone, FCTL; Dr. Donna Parker, Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education, UMB School of Medicine

June 2022 

Deborah Levi, MA, LCSW-C, Director of Educational Support, Office of Educational Support and Disability Services

August 2022

Dr. Tracy Irish PhD, UMBC; Jennifer Aumiller, Director, Pre & Postdoctoral Career Development, School of Medicine, UMB

September 2022

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