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Spotlight on Innovations in Teaching and Learning

ITL-google-drive-spotlightFaculty members across campus use a variety of electronic tools to aid in their teaching. One common tool is Google Drive, which allows the sharing of files among different faculty members, among students or between faculty and students.

In the biology department, faculty use Google Drive to share drafts of homework assignments and quizzes that are used in multiple sections of a course. They also use it as an archive to store common files like lecture materials, course handouts, quizzes and homework assignments. In Dr. Jon O’Brien’s Freshwater Biology class (BIO377), students use Google Sheets (a spreadsheet similar to MS Excel) to share data on class projects and Google Slides (a presentation tool) to collaborate on group presentations to the class.

In Dr. Richard Reitsma’s Spanish composition course (SPA217), students work during class to translate passages from English into Spanish or vice versa. Dr. Reitsma can highlight mistakes, allowing students to determine the mistake and make additional edits. The class also can work on translations or edits as a group.

ITL-google drive 2Students in EDU122 (Technology in Education) are utilizing Google Drive to turn in and share assignments with their peers and their instructor. At the beginning of the term, students are taught how to organize their Google Drive space and create a folder for their class. They share this class folder with their instructor, Leah MacVie, who is then able to organize individual class folders in her own Google Drive space. Most assignments are created right in these folders using Google Tools, so there is very little “manual uploading” that takes place on the students’ parts.

Google Drive is an important tool for our future teachers to master since many K-12 districts are becoming Google districts themselves. Google Apps for Education provide many benefits for all students at Canisius, as well. If you are interested in using Google in your own class, please contact Leah MacVie or Mark Gallimore.

Submitted by: Sara Morris, PhD, associate vice president, academic affairs

Griffs Host Niagara Thursday Night

Bleeker_BGSU_CITIt’s a double-dip of college hoops at the Koessler Athletic Center on Thursday night as your Golden Griffin men’s and women’s basketball teams host Niagara in their annual Battle of the Bridge bash. Both games are presented by UNYTS with the women’s game starting at 5:00 p.m. and the men’s game starting at 8:00 p.m. Just Pizza will provide free food for students with IDs in between games.

It’s also senior night for the men as 1000-point scorer Malcolm McMillan will be honored alongside Jamal Reynolds and Kevin Bleeker. The senior cheerleaders will also be recognized at halftime of the women’s game.

For additional information, visit Tickets can be purchased in advance by calling 888-TIXX. Both games will be televised live on ESPN3.

Don’t forget to donate blood on Wednesday or Thursday at Palisano Pavilion for Battle of the Bridge points!

Submitted by: John Maddock, associate athletic director, external affairs

Meet-the-Faculty Recital this Friday


The Meet-the-Faculty Recital Series moves to Friday, February 26 at 12:00 p.m. in the Montante Cultural Center for this week only!  The performance features clarinet professor, Elizabeth Widzinski, along with guest pianist, James Welch, in a performance of music from Brahms to Gershwin.  This recital is free and open to the public.

Submitted by: Ellen Barnum, director, Fine Arts

Canisius at the Buffalo Humanities Festival

FestivalThe third annual Buffalo Humanities Festival will be held from September 22-24, 2016 and will feature a series of events on the themes of rebirth and renaissance. The keynote speaker will be Dava Sobel, a science writer and author of, among other books, Galileo’s Daughter and Longitude.  For more information on her work, go to

Sobel will speak at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery on Friday, September 23, and the full-day festival will be held on Saturday, September 24.   As a participating institution, Canisius will have two, one-hour slots in the Saturday program, which will feature a variety of presentations.  The festival aims to be a lively community event, not a conventional conference so a range of formats is encouraged from single speakers to debates to informal conversations and creative performances.   If your interests and work include a consideration of rebirth and renaissance in all its varied formations, please think about presenting. The festival offers an opportunity to speak to a lively audience and will provide an honorarium.

If you are interested, please send your idea by March 4 to Jen Desiderio at or Julie Gibert at, who are representing Canisius on the Festival Steering Committee.  We do not need a formal proposal right now, just a sentence or two describing your topic and format ideas.  We will pass them on to the program committee, which will then select the speakers. Thank you for considering.

Submitted by: Julie Gibert, associate professor, history

Are You Prepared for Retirement?

Have you been contemplating retiring in the next three to five years but have questions? Then consider attending the Retirement Fair on Friday, March 11 from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. in Grupp Fireside Lounge.

Presenters will be Greg Tedone, Financial Consultant, TIAA-CREF; Ben Stump from the Social Security Administration; and Laryssa Domagala from Independent Health.

Submitted by: Dawn Rotterman, benefits specialist, human resources