conference 2024

Conference speakers

From an in-person pre-conference to two days of virtual proceedings, invited speakers will bring diverse remarks related to the conference theme to complement panels, workshops and research talks. 

Pre-Conference | April 24 | Calgary, AB

A Day of Dialogue at the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning will kick off the 2024 Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching, entirely in-person with opportunity for networking! Interspersed with blocks of 90-minute peer-reviewed workshops from conference presenters, be ready to get energized and inspired with a full day of learning and reflection.

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Navigating the Tensions & Possibilities of Brave Work

Dr. Jennifer MacDonald, University of Regina

Dr. Jennifer Markides, University of Calgary

9 a.m. | Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

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What does it mean to do ‘brave work’? Who gets to call their work brave? These are questions we grappled with as co-editors of Brave Work in Indigenous Education (2021). We enter into this closing conversation as two scholars positioned differently within the intricacies of truth, reconciliation, and decolonization, and for nearly 10 years have sustained dialogue around the complexities of these topics in relation to our teaching and learning. In this session, we will recount examples from our journeys that exposed various tensions and possibilities when building trust, practicing deep reflection, honouring differences, and holding ourselves and others to account. This session will also invite participants to share their experiences within a relational process towards hope and healing. Brave work requires both courage and humility, wisdom and action. Through challenging dialogue and ongoing learning, we believe that ethical and equitable change is possible.

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In Dialogue: Intersections, Distinctions & Possibilities

Dr. Shawna Cunningham, University of Calgary 

Dr. Malinda Smith, University of Calgary

Elder Reg Crowshoe, Piikani First Nation 

11:30 a.m. | Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

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In this moderated dialogue, Dr. Shawna Cunningham and Dr. Malinda Smith will explore the intersections, distinctions, and possibilities for Indigenous engagement and equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility (EDIA) in the postsecondary sector. This timely conversation will explore concepts and possibilities to create ethical spaces for meaningful engagement and equitable inclusion through both an EDIA and Indigenous reconciliation lens. Elder Reg Crowshoe will open the session and offer reflections, creating a safe space for attendees to engage, learn, and unlearn together in a good way.

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What is Queer Pedagogy? Or, Stop Teaching Straight!

Dr. Dawn Johnston, University of Calgary
Dr. William Bridel, University of Calgary
Dr. Derritt Mason, University of Calgary
Dr. Safaneh Mohaghegh Neyshabouri, University of Calgary

3 p.m. | Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning

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When we think of queer pedagogy, we are often thinking of the umbrella term that encompasses non-heterosexual, non-cisgender identities, what it means to be “out” in the classroom, and how we talk about queerness in our teaching and learning spaces. But queerness is also about intersectionality, destabilization, disruption, resistance to identity categories, and encouraging students and teachers to consider the limits of their own thinking. In this panel, we bring together scholars and teachers from kinesiology, literature, cultural studies, gender and sexuality studies, and media studies to talk about how they queer their classrooms and curricula. The current sociopolitical climate, with its increasing attacks on 2SLGBTQIA+ rights, identities, and people, make this conversation more timely and more urgent than ever.

Day One | April 25 | Online

Aisha Haque

Aisha Haque

Director at Western University’s Centre for Teaching and Learning

April 25 | 9:30 - 11am MT

Anti-racist approaches to higher education

As universities grapple with their complicity in settler colonialism, educators have a critical role to play in dismantling colonial oppression and ensuring we graduate socially aware citizens. To this end, instructors are being called upon to transform their curricula, include anti-racist perspectives in the curriculum, and cultivate a learning environment which fosters student belonging and thriving across various dimensions of difference. Ethically engaging in antiracist work in our classrooms requires that we understand and confront structural racism within the academy and within our own disciplines. The goal of this session is to introduce participants to a set of approaches and frameworks they will be able to use when transforming the curriculum and teaching across cultures. Participants will be invited to question, unsettle, and re-imagine what it means to be an educator for racial justice and ethical solidarity in our current times. 

Aisha Haque is the Director at Western University’s Centre for Teaching and Learning, and she was previously Professor of Writing and Communication at Fanshawe College (London, ON). Drawing on her background in anti-racist, decolonial, and culturally relevant pedagogies, she supports the development of inclusive teaching practices in higher education. She is a recipient of the Christine A. Stanley Award in Diversity and Inclusion Research in Educational Development for her co-authored publication on intercultural teaching competence. Aisha has presented more than 30 invited keynotes and workshops at universities in Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, and the U.S. 

Gregor Wolbring

Dr. Gregor Wolbring

Professor, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary

April 25 | 1:30-2:45pm MT

The Issue of Anti-Disablism and Attitudinal Accessibility

Participants will be exposed to the Anti-Disablism and attitudinal and other forms of accessibility problems the EDI discourses faces in relation to disabled people. Participants will be exposed to the problems through the ability studies framework, role expectations of educators and the issue of allyship and work, and activist and life burnout due, to systemic discrimination experienced in daily life.

Although the main focus will be on disabled people, participants will also be exposed to intersectionality content between disabled and other marginalized characteristics. Furthermore, problems experienced by disabled people that are also experienced by other marginalized but so called non-disabled people will be provided for so called non-disabled marginalized people.

Gregor Wolbring has been trained as a biochemist in Germany (University of Tuebingen, Max Plank Institute for Biophysics, Frankfurt am Main ) and the UK (University College London and London Biotechnology Ltd) and worked as a benchwork biochemist at UofC from 1992-2008.He took on the disability studies faculty position in 2008 and is now a tenured Full Professor at the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine, Community Health Science, Program in Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies and the academic director (disability and accessibility) at the Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. He is presently also a member of the Institute for Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS), Karlsruhe, Germany and a senior fellow of the Institute for Science, Society and Policy, University of Ottawa, Canada. As to former appointments he was the President of the Canadian Disability Studies Association and a member of the executive committee of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. He sees ability studies including eco-ability studies, disability studies, sustainability studies, science and technology governance studies, sports and equity, diversity and inclusion as his six main research topic areas.

Some of his awards are: Recipient of the University of Calgary 2022 Equity, Diversity and Inclusion award; Faculty and Postdoctoral Scholars category; (one of three finalist) 2020 Sustainability Award University of Calgary category Faculty Sustainability Research Award; Tanis Doe Award of the Canadian Disability Studies Association (2017), Bachelor of Health Sciences Research Mentor Award in recognition of making undergraduate students succeed in research (2014, 2016, 2018), the Faculty of Graduate Studies, “My SupervisorSkills, GREAT Supervisor Award!” (2015) and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal awarded by the government of Canada in recognition of the benefit of his academic work to the greater community (2013), the Faculty of Medicine McLeod award for excellence in teaching (2011) and Council of Canadians with Disabilities, National Award (1998)

Day Two | April 26| Online

Enid Lee

Enid Lee

Leader in Anti-Racist Education

April 26 | 9am - 10:30am MT

Checking and Changing Our Systems and Ourselves For Equity: It Takes Courage!

Courage is required when we attempt to disrupt systems of inequality and replace them with those that contribute to justice, joy and generosity. We also need courage for the inside job of challenging ourselves to do this humanizing work. In this conversation, we will consider questions, conditions and cases that may encourage us to be bolder as we maintain and multiply equity-centered, anti-racist practices in teaching, learning, collaborating, organizing and policymaking across organizational levels.

Enid Lee is an anti-racist professional development specialist, writer and community builder. She consults internationally on equitable education with particular emphasis on race, language and culture and their roles in education. She began her joyful journey as a teacher on the Caribbean island of Antigua five decades ago.

Over the years, she has consulted and collaborated with practitioners, policy-makers and parent activists in educational, cultural, arts and community organizations across Canada and the United States. Some of these have included the former North York Board of Education where she served as the first Supervisor of Race and Ethnic Relations in Toronto Canada, California State University, Long Beach as researcher at the Center of Language Minority Education and Research, Visiting Scholar at the New Teacher Center, Santa Cruz California, school districts and county offices of education from Nova Scotia to New York; from Winnipeg, Manitoba to Washington DC, and cultural organizations such as Harbourfront Center, Toronto and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Enid is the author, co/author or editor of numerous publications. Among those are Letters Marcia: A Teachers’ Guide to Anti-Racist Education; Beyond Heroes and Holiday: A Practical Guide to K-12, Anti-Racist, Multicultural Education and Staff Development; Opening Up! Our Access Plan for Linguistic, Cultural and Racial Diversity; “Anti-Racist Teaching” in the Encyclopedia of Diversity in Education; Checking and Changing My Systems for Equity and “Reclaiming Language! Reclaiming Life! Critical Reflections of an Anti-racist Educator’s Lived Experiences”, in the Cultural and Pedagogical Inquiry, University of Alberta.

She holds an Interdisciplinary Master of Arts in Sociolinguistics and Caribbean Literature from York University. She has been the recipient of several awards including an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Queen’s University, Canada for her path-breaking work in anti-racist education and community building among Black communities and immigrant parents.

Enid is a Virtual Scholar with Teaching for Change in Washington, DC and in real time, lives in Santa Cruz, California and Toronto, Canada. In spare moments, she enjoys sitting outdoors and reading books for children of all ages.