Professional Development Opportunities

A Matter of Trust

Using Turnitin As A Teaching Tool 

(Photo: Gerd Altmann, Pixabay)

Has a student ever posted a Turnitin assignment in your classes with a high similarity score? Turnitin is used as a plagiarism tool to identify students that may intentionally or unintentionally plagiarize information from original references in-class assignments. Turnitin’s function as a similarity checker can help faculty instruct students on the proper methods of citing sources. Join us for a special session where we will look at best practices for using Turnitin in a meaningful way. Additionally, we will examine trust in the classroom, a topic that strikes at the heart of the one-dimensional use of Turnitin and other similar tools.


  • Wednesday, March 24, 2021, at 8:00 AM and 2:00 PM ET
  • Join via EagleVision Zoom through the Faculty Resources site in Canvas

Virtual Faculty Learning Community

In Full Bloom with Bloom’s Taxonomy  

conference call on Macbook
(Photo: Chris Montgomery, Unsplash)

Taking advantage of professional development opportunities is an excellent strategy for education professionals to develop valuable connections, exchange innovative ideas, share best practices, and learn new skills. This V-FLC experience is your opportunity to discover the origins of Bloom’s Taxonomy, its connection to your course learning outcomes, and how it impacts learning. Through engagement with other faculty, participants will discover and explore:

  • What is Bloom’s Taxonomy? 
  • How appropriate levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy are determined in the development of a course. 
  • How instructors may use Bloom’s Taxonomy in the different course modalities. 


  • Open to ALL Faculty (WW, DB, PC, and Singapore, Full-Time, and Adjunct). 
  • Six-week duration: Monday, April 5th, 2021 – Sunday, May 16th, 2021. 
  • No face-to-face meetings. 
  • Weekly discussion topics. 
  • No participation requirements – engage as much (or as little) as you desire. 
  • Final Project.

Interested? Reserve your spot online or email Registration closes at 4 PM ET on Friday, April 2nd.


The Virtual Communication Lab (VCL) is here to help your students! VCL tutors can assist with any communication project, including essays, discussion board posts, presentations, and more. Students can work with a tutor one-on-one or attend workshops on topics like APA, writing literature reviews, or revising and editing. Encourage your students to visit our site for information about tutoring hours and workshop offerings.

All faculty and staff are invited to attend VECTOR’s March Sound Bytes  workshop. Alex Rister and Debra Bourdeau will share best practices for fostering student collaboration on communication assignments such as research papers and presentations.

The Sound Bytes workshop is Thursday, March 25, 2021 from 12:00 to 12:30 PM ET. Access via Zoom

College of Business Series – RCTLE COB Team

The RCTLE College of Business Support team would like to invite you to participate in the COB series, a new format of professional development opportunities. You will find topics that highlight trends and explore issues impacting and influencing higher education today. Sessions will be interactive with facilitators and will offer opportunities to dialogue with our peers regarding strategies to improve our personal wellness and to utilize concepts to apply to our daily practice, both in and out of the classroom. We are committed to providing topics and training to support and facilitate a well-rounded teaching approach, and we would love to have you join us for any of the sessions. Upcoming sessions include:

Coffee with heart shaped froth plus a pen, and pad.
(Photo: Engin Akyurt, Pixabay)

Coffee & Conversation with RCTLE

14 April 2021 – 11:00 AM ET

Join the RCTLE team for an interactive discussion on instructor burnout and related topics found in this article 8 Strategies to Prevent Teaching Burnout from The Chronicle of Higher Education. We look forward to enjoying an open and meaningful discussion on this relevant and timely topic as well as gaining practical insights from our peers!


You Got This Sign
(Photo: Prateek Katyal, Unsplash)

Motivating Students: Leading the Way to Achievement

20 May 2021 – 8:30 AM ET

Featuring Associate Director of RCTLE, Angie Atwell, who will explore strategies, techniques, and best practices to motivate students in the classroom and enhance their learning experience at ERAU.


One yellow door and four white doors
(Photo: Arek Socha, Pixabay)

Ethical and Equitable Decision Making

16 June 2021 – 2:00 PM ET

A presentation led by Dr. Kadie Mullins, Executive Director of Administrative Assessment for Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. During this session, we will look at the fundamentals of decision-making and strategies that influence the outcome of the choices we make.


All COB sessions are open to all faculty and staff. Sessions can be accessed via EagleVision Zoom in the Faculty Resources site in Canvas. Recordings of all sessions will be available on our website. For more information, email


As we endeavor to continue to be recognized as a top online educational institution, professional development for faculty continues to be a top priority. Thank you all for completing RefreshER early this year. Please remember that this is an annual requirement, and you can expect to complete it again, with fresh content, in 2022.

In recognition of this new requirement, we have randomly selected one faculty member from each college, who completed RefreshER in the first weeks to receive a prize. Check your mailbox soon. Thanks again.

Congratulations to:

  • Carl Heinlein – College of Aeronautics
  • Richard Colarco – College of Arts and Sciences
  • Geoffrey VanderPal – College of Business

Pablo Alvarez Talks Worldwide’s Dean of Students Office

Pablo Alvarez
(Photo: Pablo Alvarez)

Catch up on new happenings at the Worldwide Campus by tuning into The RCTLE’s Podcast Series. These are designed with you in mind and will provide information, talks, and outreach from an array of ERAU faculty as well as experts from outside the ERAU Community. Recently, our very own Kaitlyn Pickus had the opportunity to sit down with Pablo Alvarez, Dean of Students at Embry-Riddle Worldwide.

Pablo discusses the evolution of the Dean of Students office and how faculty members can utilize the resources provided. We also learn about simple ways to integrate the eUnion into our teaching practices and how establishing a Worldwide SGA has ushered in a new sense of community for our online students.


Tip Clip: Missed a Message from A Student In CANVAS?   

Tip clip
(Source: RCTLE)

Have you ever felt confused when you get word of not responding to students’ needs? A quick fix to this is setting up notifications in your CANVAS course. In this month’s Tip Clip, RCTLE provides strategies on how to customize alerts in such a way as not to overwhelm you or keep you out of the communication loop with your students.

Teaching Tip: Transformational Teaching

Most scholars would agree the purpose of pursuing a degree in the Academy is not so much about the destination but more about the journey itself. The journey of transformation. The new and improved version of oneself. Therefore, the question becomes, how can faculty design courses that are truly developmental and transformational? According to Mintz, there are many methods currently available, “…and all require instructors to think of themselves not just as teachers, but as learning architects or engineers (Mintz, 2021).” To uncover tips and action steps you can adapt to influence the learning environment in your course, read the Inside Higher Ed article Transformational Teaching: Creating educationally and developmentally impactful learning experiences.


Mintz, Steven. (2021, March 2). Transformational Teaching: Creating educationally and developmentally impactful learning experiences [Blog post]. Retrieved from

Did Your Feedback Post?

Are all your gradebook assignment comments getting through to students? Have you ever seen a red asterisk appear next to your profile image (as shown in the screen shot) in SpeedGrader? This occurs when feedback is entered but the comment does not go through to the student. The comment will autosave with the date and time you entered it, but the comment may not have posted in the Canvas gradebook.

Assignment Comment
(Image: Canvas)

To ensure your grading feedback posted, find the red asterisk by going into the student’s assignment in SpeedGrader (where the rubric is located). The red asterisk cannot be seen in the gradebook.

Workday: The New Human Resource Management System

Workday is ERAU’s Human Resource System. Workday’s intuitive approach provides enhanced self-service capabilities for employees with features such as mobile-friendly tools to view paychecks, manage personal leave, participate in live and on-demand trainings and webinars, and more. A tool to update contact information is also available. Follow these steps (PDF) to ensure your contact information is correct and current.

Faculty Spotlight

Anna Garcia (College of Business)

Anna Garcia
(Photo: ERAU)


Born in Daytona Beach and have lived here most of my life. I briefly lived in Germany and Texas but came back to FL in 2008.


  • BS in Communications ERAU DB (03)
  • MS Leadership ERAU WW (14)

How long have you taught at ERAU

About a year and a half now. May 2021 will be two years!

Favorite part about working at ERAU Worldwide

Besides the amazing faculty and staff here…being able to meet so many diverse students who are at different points in their careers. It is awesome to have a student find their “aha” moment and to be able to share that with their classmates.

Favorite teaching strategy to engage students

I do a video introduction at the beginning so that my students can get to know me a little better. Something I just started last class is to send out an email before class starts with a package of information for my students to help them be prepared for my class. Each week I start with a video discussion of the topic we will cover with some examples. I have found that my students will reply with a video as well or add their comments to the video, which I feel keeps my students engaged.

Favorite quote

There are so many but one of my favorites is “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” Dalai Lama

Favorite hobby

I have always enjoyed reading but last May I discovered I have a passion for acrylic paint pouring and have become quite addicted! My biggest piece I have done so far is a 24 x 36 that made its way to a friend in CA.

Fun fact

I lived on a farm in KY for two years when I was little.

Michael Peck (College of Aeronautics)

Michael Peck
(Photo: ERAU)


My ancestral home is Plum Branch, South Carolina, but I never lived there. Born into an Army family, I lived in Europe, Asia, and numerous locations in the United States. My birthplace, the Free Territory of Trieste, no longer exists – after WWII it was under the authority of the United Nations Security Council and my father was stationed there as part of the supervising force (mostly British. Americans and a few New Zealanders in one zone and Yugoslavs/Soviets in the other). It later was divided between the adjoining nations – Italy got the city and what was then Yugoslavia received the lands to the south and east of town. I came of age (driver’s license, first date, high school graduation, etc.) in Honolulu, so maybe that is my “hometown”.


  • Master of Laws Degree (LLM) in Air and Space Law from the Graduate Law Faculty of McGill University, Montréal, Canada (2020)
  • Juris Doctorate (JD) from Vanderbilt University School of Law, Nashville, Tennessee (1981)
  • Master of Business Administration Degree (MBA) (concentration in Organizational Behavior) from Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management, Nashville, Tennessee (1981)
  • Master of Arts (Anthropology) Degree (MA) from Duke University, Durham, North Carolina (1974)
  • Bachelor of Arts (Sociology) Degree (BA) from Washington & Lee University, Lexington, Virginia (1971)
  • Fellow, Royal Aeronautical Society (FRAeS)
  • Graduate, Defense Strategy Course, U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania (1995)
  • Graduate, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas (1986)

FAA Certificates

  • Instrument Rated Commercial Pilot (3,600+ hours)
  • Certificated Flight Instructor
  • Certificated Instrument Instructor
  • Certificated Advanced Ground Instructor
  • Certificated Instrument Ground Instructor
  • Remote Pilot Certificate with Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Rating

How long have you taught at ERAU

Gosh, I honestly do not know. I think I started teaching as an adjunct instructor at ERAU Worldwide in 2011.

Favorite part about working at ERAU Worldwide

Since I gravitate toward all things aeronautical, I feel especially lucky to be teaching at an aviation-centric university. But the icing on the cake, if you will, is the non-traditional student body ERAU Worldwide attracts. I learn from the students in my classes; I regard them, in a sense, as colleagues and we work through the material together. Many have unique and highly specialized understandings of various aspects of the aerospace industry, and I very much appreciate them bringing that knowledge into the class discussions.

Favorite teaching strategy to engage students

The Holy Grail of teaching techniques has eluded me over the years, so I have opted for the simple, straightforward approach. I treat my students, as I have wanted to be treated by my teachers – with respect and some acknowledgment of one’s accomplishments in life. I know we live in a time of first-name intimacy, but I have adopted the technique of university lecturers that I admired in the past – each student is addressed as “Mr.” or “Ms.” followed by their surname. It requires a bit more typing in an online environment, but it fosters the kind of professional environment I expect in my classes.

Favorite quote

I don’t believe in taking unnecessary risks, but a life without risk isn’t worth living.

Charles Augustus (‘Slim’) Lindbergh

Favorite hobby

No doubt about it – the pastime I enjoy most is flying my C-182 anytime and anywhere.

Fun fact

I started studying French in college and have continued with it off and on to this day – admittedly without notable success. I periodically enroll in courses at the Alliance Francoise because I admire the language. My lack of progress keeps me humble and potential mastery of the language gives me something to hope for in life.

Benny Jones (College of Arts and Sciences)

Benny Jones
(Photo: ERAU)


I was a military dependent until the age of 23, and we moved every four years, so naming a hometown is always a difficult question. If I had to ‘name’ a hometown, it would be Tampa, as I lived there for brief periods.


  • Jones International University, MBA
  • University of Florida, B.Sc. CompTIA Project+ CompTIA Security+
  • American Marketing Association Professional Certified Digital Marketer (PCM-DM)
  • American Marketing Association Professional Certified Marketing Management (PCM-MM)
  • Certified Digital Marketing Professional (CDMP)

How long have you taught at ERAU

I have been teaching as a Worldwide adjunct for more than ten years now.

Favorite part about working at ERAU Worldwide

My favorite part about teaching CS-109 (Introduction for Computer Applications) for Worldwide is integrating, disseminating, and facilitating discussions based on my real-world business and IT background with the course content.

Favorite teaching strategy to engage students

I teach online-only courses for WW. I like to include audio posts and replies with the discussion questions, which provides an ‘in the classroom’ feel and enhances interactivity and participation.

Favorite quote

Keep moving forward!

Favorite hobby

Learning about Cybersecurity.

Fun fact about yourself

Per the above hometown question, I’ve had the opportunity to live and travel the world attending High School in the Philippines and living in Italy, Germany, and Turkey for short periods. In addition, I traveled to Japan, Korea, Belgium, and Luxembourg during my time as a military dependent.


The mission of the Rothwell Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence is to empower faculty members in their pursuit of professional growth through diverse offerings for the universal goal of student success.

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