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UTHSC’s Teaching and Learning Center Plans Events, Boosts Profile


The Teaching and Learning Center at UTHSC has ambitious aims: To help teachers teach, and students learn. “We will branch into all areas of teaching and learning here at UTHSC,” said Karen Shader, PhD, who joined UTHSC in January as the center’s associate director.

The Teaching and Learning Center will host an open house with coffee and tea from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, April 14, in the Madison Plaza lobby. The TLC Showcase in Teaching and Learning is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., April 28 in the Student Alumni Center. The showcase will highlight successful teaching strategies utilized by UTHSC faculty and include two keynote speakers, as well as concurrent sessions.

Karen Shader, PhD

“We want to keep our fingers on the pulse of how students study and how they learn – what’s the best way to help students remember,” Dr. Shader said. “We want to understand their preferences and communicate that information with the faculty, so that the faculty can incorporate best practices. In turn, we want to help the students manage their time better, to think more critically and to apply their classroom knowledge to professional situations.”

“The Teaching and Learning Center was formed to meet the needs of our faculty as it meets the educational mission of the university,” said Lori Gonzalez, PhD, vice chancellor for Academic, Faculty and Student Affairs.

“The faculty represents our most important resource. By offering services to improve teaching and to incorporate new pedagogies and technologies in the classroom, lab and clinic, we are better able to provide high-quality academic experiences for our students.”

Dr. Shader came to UTHSC from Troy University in Troy, Alabama. Before that, she worked at the University of Alabama at Birmingham – seven years in IT and nine years in nursing staff development.

“Dr. Shader’s academic degrees, technical background, and professional experiences perfectly position her to assume responsibility for the newly formed UTHSC Teaching and Learning Center and our academic technologies,” Dr. Gonzalez said.

TLC Button Final“Her collaborative approach in working with others to identify established areas of excellence, as well as potential domains for improvement fit well with UTHSC’s strategic priority to educate outstanding graduates who meet the needs of the state and its communities. We are fortunate to have someone of Karen’s caliber to lead our newly formed TLC and look forward to her many contributions.”