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December 9th – Nicola Simmons

Partnering across the 4M Levels: Collaboration and Companionship in Teaching and Learning     

There is increasing understanding of the great benefits of partnerships in nature, for example, amongst trees (Wohlleben, 2016). Academics, however, can be self-isolating to their own detriment, especially in times of greater stress. In this talk, I invite you to explore the possibilities that partnerships hold for energizing and augmenting academic work. I offer the 4M levels framework (micro, meso, macro, and mega)(Simmons, 2020; Simmons, 2009; Weston et al., 2008) as a heuristic to consider collaborations at each level.  Some examples of these partnerships include: a chemistry professor working with a faculty developer to develop online learning communities, students working with a social sciences professor on why a teaching approach was so liberating and sharing that with a department, innovations in interdisciplinary course design and process, and colleagues within and across disciplines coming together to write about teaching issues all benefit from partnerships in teaching and learning. Whether your scholarly teaching practices comprise engaged and flexible learning, interdisciplinary courses, technological tools, inclusive approaches, or combinations of these, and regardless of whether you want to see impact in your classroom, department, institution, or beyond, partnerships at various levels can support excellence and innovation in teaching and learning.

Simmons, N. (2020). Scholars of teaching and learning: The 4M framework as analytic lens for SoTL’s impact. Teaching and Learning Inquiry, 8(1). DOI:

Simmons, N. (2009). Playing for SoTL impact: A personal reflection. International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 3(2), Article 30. Retrieved from

Weston, C., Matsushita, K., Berthiaume, D., & Timmermans, J. (2008, October). A faculty development framework to capture the impact of our work. Presentation at the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning annual conference. Edmonton, AB.

Wohlleben, P. (2016). The hidden life of trees: What they feel, how they communicate—discoveries from a secret world. Greystone Books.

Dr. Nicola Simmons is a faculty member in Educational Studies at Brock University. Nicola is a Canadian 3M National Teaching Fellow and holds a Brock Chancellor’s Chair for Teaching Excellence. Past roles include Co-Chair of ISSOTL’s Advocacy and Outreach Committee, VP (Canada) of ISSOTL, VP (SoTL) of STLHE, Founding Chair of both SoTL Canada and SoTL Ontario, and Chair of the Educational Developers Caucus of Canada. Her research interests include the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, inspiring teaching and learning practices, online engaged learning, educator and SoTL scholar identity development and role making, and adult developmental psychology, specifically personal construct theory.


December 10 – Klodiana Kolomitro & Lindsay Brant

Strategies for Inclusive and Equitable Teaching

Partnerships thrive in climates of respect, where differences are valued and celebrated. Klodiana and Lindsay will talk about the foundational principles of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Indigenization (EDII) to bring you a theoretical understanding of how to teach and lead with inclusive and equitable teaching practices. They will also share with you some best practices that are tried and tested so that you can adapt and adopt them for implementation in a variety of remote or blended learning environments.

Collectively, we will imagine and explore innovative educational leadership and teaching practices that will help us to build a pedagogy of peace, and a community of care, with and for all learners in our classroom communities. Teaching practices that once might have been considered ‘radical’ have now become critical for educators and learners alike.

Dr. Klodiana Kolomitro is the Associate Vice-Principal (Teaching and Learning) and cross-appointed to the Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences at Queen’s University. In her role, she facilitates academic program development and review, develops and implements policies that promote academic excellence, and provides leadership on teaching and learning initiatives that are based on inclusive approaches and evidence-informed principles. Her areas of interest and research include inclusive pedagogies, anatomical education, well-being, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. She has a PhD in Curriculum and Pedagogy from OISE/University of Toronto, and a MSc in Anatomy and Cell Biology from Queen’s University. Klodiana is the recipient of the 2019 Educational Developers Leadership Award from the Educational Developers Caucus in Canada, and the recipient of the 2021 Principal’s Technology Team Award from Queen’s University.

Lindsay Brant is from Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory.  Lindsay has a Master of Education degree from Athabasca University, and an Honours degree in English Literature and Indigenous Studies from Trent University. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Cultural Studies part-time at Queen’s University. She works as an Educational Developer, Indigenous Pedagogies and Ways of Knowing at the Centre for Teaching and Learning at Queen’s. She is also an Adjunct Lecturer in the Smith School of Business. Lindsay and her colleague Kate Rowbotham won a 2021 Idea’s Worth Teaching Award for their course in the Commerce program called Relationships and Reconciliation in Business and Beyond. Lindsay is also an accomplished creative writer and poet.