I’ve worked in many education contexts where the needs of a particular student group were not being addressed because programs and curriculum were either inappropriate or non-existent.
It was always fun to do a needs assessment in conjunction with the students, other instructors, subject matter experts, and administrators; draft a program and/ or curriculum; try it out and get feedback from all the stakeholders; and make adjustments as needed.
Here are a few examples of my program and curriculum development work:
Advanced Professional Program in English-medium Instruction (APPEMI):
I designed an eight-course program at the University of Alberta to help university professors whose first language was other than English to use English in teaching their subject content. I taught in the program both locally and in China, Japan, and Uruguay, and mentored other program instructors. In 2016, APPEMI received a national program award for its innovative approaches to addressing the needs of diverse learners from the Canadian Association of University Continuing Education.
Strengthening the School-Community Connection with Immigrant Communities
In partnership with the Alberta Teachers’ Association and the Canadian Multicultural Education Foundation, I facilitated a project to foster understanding between Somali and South Sudanese community members and teachers of Somali and South Sudanese youth. To cooperatively address the youths’ learning needs, the group wrote two teacher manuals, published by the Alberta Teachers’ Association: Teaching Somali immigrant children: Resources for student success and Working with South Sudanese immigrant students: Teacher resources.
Applied Research Program for College Instructors
I established and supervised all aspects of NorQuest College’s inaugural applied research program. I developed policies and processes; engaged in strategic planning and problem solving; designed and taught faculty seminars; assisted faculty with research projects; and facilitated internal and external research partnerships and networks
Learning Strategies for High School English
Many of the students I taught at NorQuest College had few strategies for addressing their learning challenges. I designed and taught this course which helped them to take a strategic approach to reading and writing assignments across the curriculum.