3-Week Intro to Canvas Courses for Faculty Now Available!

canvaslogoNeed an alternative to our Pierce Canvas Essentials course?
The State Board of Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) is sponsoring a three week online, asynchronous course designed for instructors who have never used the Canvas learning management system or who are just getting started. By the end of the course, you should have a basic understanding of the main features of Canvas, and be ready to begin using Canvas with your classes – regardless of whether you intend to teach online fully or simply move a portion of your activities and lectures online.
This course is accepted as Canvas training by the Pierce eLearning department and fulfills the requirement for Canvas training for teaching online or hybrid courses.
Expect this course to take 10-15 hours over the three weeks, for those new to online teaching.
The first session available begins Oct 12 and runs through November 2, 2015.
Registration is open to any full or part-time faculty, but seats are limited to the first 25 who register.
Follow the link below to register online:
Questions? Contact Mary Davis or James Johnson in the Pierce College eLearning department for more information.

I need Tech Support – STAT!

STAT Pierce college logoStudents need technical support and there isn’t always the time or resources to help, until now! The STAT team at Pierce Community College is a great collaboration of minds and talent that you can offer to students in need of assistance. STAT was initiated successfully at the beginning of Fall Quarter 2015. It ran for two weeks at the FS and PUY campuses and was a wonderful help to students. The program will be available during midterms and again during finals.

STAT stands for Student Technology Assistance Team. The idea of STAT was developed by Edmonds Community College — they saw the students’ need and found a way to fill it. At Pierce, the aim is to bring together students that have questions about using technology as well as students of technology courses needing to apply those skills to create a win-win situation. For now, we are narrowing the help we give to the most frequently asked questions about Wi-Fi, Canvas, Email and basic operations to provide a unique and valued service to students. Later on, we may decide to expand on those services.

Typically, students will either wander into the computer labs themselves to ask questions or they have been directed there by other departments, such as the library or an instructor. Most of the time, the Lab Assistants can help them gain access to Wi-Fi, Canvas or Email, but what happens when students start bringing their various devices like laptops, phones, tablets and phablets — OH MY!? Students often want personal and quick assistance with all the devices that they are using to achieve their academic goals and we would like to help them; if STAT cannot assist them quickly, they can ask IT for assistance or direct the student to a resource that can.

Huy phones    laura shows bekah    students helping on the computer

What STAT is NOT. STAT is not a tutoring service that provides focused coursework assistance. STAT is not IT staff who support instructional and staff computers and services. STAT is not librarians who support successful teaching and learning. STAT is not part of Advising who help students determine what classes to take and when.


  1. To provide students with help to access their email and Pierce’s Wi-Fi, Learning Management System (Canvas) assistance, and basic PC support. To provide demonstrations of basic features and advanced capabilities to help prepare them for classes and show them how these can provide time-saving and collaboration opportunities.
  2. To provide advice through drop-in assistance, online support, phone support, workshops, and tutorials. To increase awareness of the digital community by educating students on safe ways to develop and share, and to find out how/where to find quality information online.
  3. To demonstrate that student volunteers and interns can design and carry out a help desk and technology resource that supports a growing technology need for higher education students.

Watch the video below to learn more about other student tech support offered at Pierce College. STAT will be available during midterms and finals.


Universal Design for Learning FLC at Pierce – First meeting Oct. 16

In July Pierce College was awarded a state sponsored grant for creating a Faculty Learning Community (FLC) around the topic of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) for the 2015-2016 academic year. Many faculty expressed interest in taking part in an FLC of this type and we are now in the process of forming and meeting as a group for Fall quarter.
The first gathering of the FLC is planned for Friday, October 16 from 12:30PM – 2:30PM at Fort Steilacoom campus. We will meet in Cascade 523.
The main purpose of this first meeting will be to talk about:
  • how we can work together within the guidelines of the FLC grant
  • resources available through CEAL and the college for FLC members
  • how faculty can participate as individuals and as a group,
  • any thoughts, ideas, or questions you may have about UDL and the FLC in general.
The purpose of the FLC is to provide a community of inquiry for anyone interested in exploring how to implement UDL strategies into their teaching. The FLC can provide resources, information, collaboration and support for a variety of projects and activities and is a faculty-driven entity. How the FLC will function and what we will do as individuals and as a group is, in part, decided by the members of the FLC. We need your ideas and participation to make it a great experience.
UDL expert, Candyce Rennegarbe, will be on hand at our first meeting to introduce the guiding principles and framework of UDL and give some practical advice about using UDL in our teaching practices.
Curious? Committed? Please consider joining us on October 16 in Cascade 523 for this first meeting. (Healthy & delicious snacks will be provided! ).
Additional dates and times for FLC gatherings for Fall Quarter are also planned:
Friday October 23, 2015;   12:30 – 2:30  Location: TBD
Rescheduled to Nov 6 : 12:30 –  2:30 Location: FS Lava Java Lab and Online
Friday November 20, 2015;  12:30 – 2:30  Location TBD
Questions? Please email Renee Phoenix at rphoenix@pierce.ctc.edu

PAVE the Way 2015: Advancing Equity, Access, Readiness and Support

Register by September 25 and SAVE!pave the way


Join colleagues on October 5 and 6, 2015 at the Tacoma Convention and Trade Center for PAVE the Way 2015 conference.  This two-day event will feature interactive group sessions and more than 40 breakouts focused on skill development, best practices, policy discussions, cross-sector alignment, community partnerships and much more.  Breakout session discussions will include:

  • Cross-sector alignment and collective impact
  • Diversity
  • Access and student readiness
  • Outreach and support
  • Policy
  • Serving non-traditional and at-risk students
  • Parent and family engagement
  • Culturally responsive teaching and learning
  • Using data and technology

Registration is $95, which includes lunch for both days.  There is no discount for partial attendance.  Register by this Friday, September 25 to receive this reduced rate.  Registrations received on or after September 26, 2015 will be increase to $125.

View the conference website for the most up-to-date information.

Registration & Payment
Peter Schmidt , Edmonds Community College Center for Learning, 425-640-1463

Keynote Announced for WA Campus Compact 2015 Faculty Institute

WA campus compact

Michael BenitezMichael Benitez has been announced as the keynote speaker for the 2015 Faculty Institute and Annual Networking Meeting which will be held on November 5 – 6, 2015 at Central Washington University.  Mr. Benitez is a leading national social justice educator, and activist-scholar with extensive experience in education and diversity issues.  His keynote presentation, titled “A Social Justice Understanding to Academe’s role in serving the public good: Who learns, who benefits, and why it matters to sustainable community cultivation and student learning” will examine existing frameworks and methodologies for a deeper understanding to cultivate sustainable and equitable practice in higher education.

In addition to Mr. Benitez, the 2015 Faculty Institute will feature a panel of faculty and students.  This two-day training will allow participants to choose from three available tracks of Diversity and Social Justice, Sustainability, and Economic Development-Social Entrepreneurship.  Opportunities to network with other faculty and administrators from across the State and a focus on student volunteerism as engagement strategies will also be featured.

Registration for the 2015 Faculty Institute is open to all interested faculty, staff, and students.  The cost of registration is $125 (member institution) faculty/staff and $75 for student. Overnight accommodations will be available at Central Washington University for a nominal fee.

To register or gain additional information on this opportunity check out the website here.

Free Teaching and Learning Conference at Bellevue College on May 30, 2015

Don’t miss a great professional development opportunity hosted by one of our neighbors to the north.

Faculty Commons @ Bellevue College Invites ALL faculty, staff, and students to attend the FREE 1st Annual Teaching & Learning Conference

May 30th, 2015, 9:00am – 3:30pm
Bellevue College, room D104

Click here to Register Now!

Conference includes a dynamic group of guest speakers, workshops, and the opportunity to  discuss teaching and learning. Our workshops and discussion include some of today’s key topics in education:

  • Inclusive teaching
  • Curriculum development
  • Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

FREE breakfast and lunch will be provided!

Follow this link to learn more


Questions?  Please Contact

Sayumi Irey, Ph.D.
Director, Faculty Commons
Tel (425)564-2354


IGNIS Webinar Series – Two Sessions on Accessibility

Don’t Miss These IGNIS Webinars in May 2015

You are invited to join Alissa Sells and Jen Whetham from SBCTC as they host two upcoming IGNIS webinars on accessibility.  All IGNIS webinars are delivered on Collaborate and sessions are recorded and posted on the ATL blog.

Follow this link to join IGNIS Webinars via Collaborate

Live Sessions Coming Up:

May 21, 2015 IGNIS webinar promotional image of Terrill ThompsonThursday, May 21st, 2015 at 2 pm
Making Accessibility Accessible
Terrill Thompson
Technology Accessibility Specialist, University of Washington

  • Join us in celebrating Global Accessibility Awareness Day.  Terrill will talk about how to make the process of accessibility more accessible to faculty.  Come learn some tips on making your course more accessible and much more!

Thursday, May 28th, 2015 at 2 pm
5 Steps to an Accessible Syllabus
A Faculty Learning Community Presentation by Shoreline Community College

  • As a follow-up to “Making Accessibility Accessible”, please join us for this special hands-on webinar where you’ll learn how to make the various features of a Word document accessible using your course syllabus as an example.  It’s BYOS…bring your own syllabus!  Participants will be given work time during the webinar to start making changes to their documents.  If you missed Shoreline’s Accessibility retreat in February, you won’t want to miss this session!”

If you can’t make it to a webinar, no worries – they are recorded!

Follow this link to view past IGNIS webinars on the ATL blog site

CEAL Takes Up the GAAD Challenge!

Do you know what day it is?

May 21 is Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD). The purpose of the day to get people talking, thinking and learning about digital accessibility and users with different disabilities. You can read more about GAAD on their website:


Don’t think digital accessibility is important to you? Do you use a computer for work? Do your students or staff use a computer or digital device to stay connected to the college, the office, your classes?  Yeah, we thought so.

In the spirit of engagement and learning, CEAL is challenging you, dear readers, to level up your awareness of digital accessibility today by taking 30 minutes out of your day and learn more about digital accessibility (or the lack of) first hand. How can you do that?  Here are a few ideas ( you can probably think of many more).

  • Try going “mouse-less” for 30 minutes. Go ahead and put your mouse out of reach and only use your keyboard alone (tab/shift tab, arrow keys, enter and spacebar) to navigate and interact with your favorite websites and applications.
  • Watch a favorite YouTube or TED video with the audio turned off and captioning on (if there is captioning…).
  • Watch this 13 min. YouTube video to learn how a user who is visually impaired uses a screenreader to navigate a website.


  • Take a field trip to stop in and say hello to the Access and Disabilities Services staff on your campus. Pick up some information from them about the work they do and the resources available for students.

For more information visit the GAAD site and learn more about this event and other issues and resources related to digital accessibility.


And don’t forget to take our challenge! 

Just enter your comments below – tell us how you met the challenge and share any additional resources, links or information you found here on our blog.

Applying the QM Rubric – Online and F2F Training Still Available

The Center for Engagement and Learning is reminding all online and hybrid instructors of upcoming dates for  “Applying the Quality Matters Rubric” (APPQMR) workshops through Pierce College. These workshops are free to all Pierce College faculty and meet the QM training requirements for teaching online or hybrid courses.

Total training time for F2F courses is 7.5 hours; online total training time is approx. 22 hours.

New! 3 Week Online Workshop Option:

This special online session is offered in cooperation with Tacoma Community College. This extended session covers the same APPQMR content found in the two week online workshop while allowing participants more time to complete activities and discussions. 10 spaces in the workshop are available for Pierce faculty who want to complete the APPQMR training. Two certified QM online facilitators will conduct the workshop activities.

May 19 through June 9, 2015
3 week facilitated online workshop.
Space is Limited to 10 Pierce participants! Register by May 13, 2015

Follow the link below to register:

3-Week ONLINE Session Registration Form

 Face -to-Face Training Coming Up:


Monday, June 22 and Tuesday, June 23, 2015
1:00 PM – 4:30PM (each day)
Pierce College Puyallup
Room TBA

Space is limited to 25 in this workshop! 

2-Half Day Workshop Format Registration Form.  Follow this link to register.

 Other Training Options:

Quality Matters offers the APPQMR training online several times a month.

  • Each course is 2 weeks in length, facilitated by a certified QM trainer.
  • Includes discussion forums, quizzes, and exploratory assignments; participants can expect to spend about 10-11 hours per week in the workshop – approx. 20 hours total
  • Satisfies the requirement for Pierce College instructors who teach online or hybrid courses.*

The State Board has a limited number of free seats for each college to offer to faculty. You must sign up through Pierce College to attend these trainings. Please contact the Pierce College eLearning department for more information or to get signed up for one of these 2-week online courses. 

Available 2-week Online Training Dates through July 2015:

Start Date End Date Open Seats
2015-05-05 2015-05-19 19
2015-05-12 2015-05-26 17
2015-05-19 2015-06-02 6
2015-05-19 2015-06-02 13
2015-05-26 2015-06-09 12
2015-05-26 2015-06-09 20
2015-06-02 2015-06-16 11
2015-06-02 2015-06-16 14
2015-06-09 2015-06-23 10
2015-07-07 2015-07-21 19
2015-07-14 2015-07-28 20
2015-07-21 2015-08-04 19
2015-07-21 2015-08-04 20
2015-07-28 2015-08-11 20
2015-07-28 2015-08-11 20


Argh, I needed that!

If you’re like me, your browser is usually stuffed full of tabs. Something interesting I want to read later, supplemental material to my current activity, music, media, nonsense, etc.
firefox-tabs                                                                (hopefully not this many)

When it’s time to thin the herd and get to the tab you actually need, it can be a hazardous activity closing all those windows. Click, click, click, cli… uh oh. There goes that important page you actually needed, and you haven’t a clue what the address was or how to find it again!


Fortunately there’s an easy solution! Ctrl/Cmd+Shift+T

This handy keyboard shortcut will open up your recently closed tabs, and it can go back more than one tab closure in case you went a little click-happy and what you need is far gone.

So when you’re annoyed at your desk from accidentally closing that page you spent minutes (or hours) looking for;


Spring Adjunct Faculty Day – “Equity and Diversity: Moving Beyond the Data”

Join the Center for Engagement and Learning and your fellow Pierce colleagues for a day of teaching and learning at the Spring Adjunct Faculty Day – “Equity and Diversity: Moving Beyond the Data.”

This event will be held on Saturday, April 18, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Pierce College Puyallup.

Download a Spring 2015 Adjunct Faculty Day Agenda (pdf format)

Session offerings will include:

  • The Effects of Poverty and Class on the Student Experience
  • Open Education
  • Creative Approaches to the Syllabus
  • Digital Inequality and How it Impacts the Classroom
  • Diversity in Assignments
  • Inquiry Method of Teaching
  • Participation Building
  • Responsive Teaching

Coffee and a catered lunch will be provided.  All adjunct faculty members will be compensated $100 for participation in the entire day of training and for successful completion of a reflection form regarding the event.  This required reflection form will be made available to you electronically following the training.

Follow this link to register for Spring 2015 Adjunct Faculty Day .  Registration will close on April 13, 2015 to allow us for an accurate count of catering and workshop materials.

Questions?  Contact CEAL at ceal@pierce.ctc.edu.