Our Leadership

Headshot of Jenn Bellamy

Jenn Bellamy

Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs

Leslie Cramblet Alvarez headshot

 

Leslie Cramblet Alvarez

Assistant Vice Provost,
Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning

I support DU with:

  • Policies and practices to support holistic faculty development at all career stages
  • Strategic vision to improve student learning, practices in teaching, course design, curriculum development, and assessment
  • Initiatives informed by research and promising higher education practices 

My Job: In my roles as Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs and Faculty Director of the OTL, I advance and support campus-wide and unit-based programs that amplify the educational mission of the University; initiate and sustain partnerships with academic units to foster engaged teaching and learning; use innovative strategies to deepen the pedagogical knowledge and teaching effectiveness of DU faculty; and create and facilitate a holistic faculty professional development plan.

My Background: 

When I’m not at work: 

I can help you with:

  • Understanding the mission and strategic direction of the Office of Teaching and Learning
  • Learning more about campus-wide initiatives supported by the OTL including the Teaching Excellence domain of the Advancing Equity in Faculty Workload and Rewards Project
  • Developing strategies or faculty development programming that advance your department or program’s teaching excellence goals

My Job: As Director of the Office of Teaching and Learning, I report to the Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs whose office promotes faculty success and well-being in four key areas: faculty development, teaching and learning, faculty relations, and faculty life cycles.

As OTL director, I provide leadership and strategic guidance for the office and nurture the OTL team’s growth and success. A thriving OTL serves faculty as life-long learners which, ultimately, supports student achievement. Critical to my work is promoting initiatives that advance the university’s educational mission and dedication to inclusive excellence. I represent the OTL at all levels of the university through collaborative relationships and committee service.

My Background: I have a PhD in Educational Psychology, Learning and Instruction from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. I spent 13 years as a faculty member, earning full professor, in the psychology department at Adams State University, a Hispanic-serving Institution in rural southern Colorado. As an Educational Psychologist, my interests generally focus on the confluence of psychology and educational practice. At Adams State this led to a part time administrative appointment in which I served as the founding director of a Center for Teaching and Learning funded by a federal Title V grant.

My early research agenda focused on achievement motivation and goal orientation. Since, my interests have broadened to include impacts of faculty development on student experience, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, and gender and diversity, in particular the representation of women in the psychology curriculum. In my former life as a faculty member, I served as a Faculty Senator, interim department chair, and had a leadership role in a number of campus-wide initiatives including Faculty Handbook policy reform, HLC reaffirmation of accreditation, and general education curriculum redesign.

As an educator and researcher I am passionate about advancing inclusion and equity, open science practices, and interrogating the inclusivity of the psychology curriculum. As the OTL Director, I enthusiastically draw from my identity as a scholar to support faculty growth and development full time.

When I’m not at work, I’m enjoying my husband and son, skiing, playing outside, or planning a trip. I am a lover of yoga and meditation but an inconsistent practitioner and have been a yoga instructor since 2013.

Our Directors

Virginia headshot

 

Virginia Pitts

Director of University Teaching

Phone: 303-871-3291
Email: Virginia.Pitts@du.edu
Portfolio: http://portfolio.du.edu/vpitts

Please email me at Virginia.Pitts@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

 

Stephen Riley

Director of Academic Assessment

Email: Stephen.Riley@du.edu

Please email me at Stephen.Riley@du.edu or book with me here if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

I can help you with:

  • Designing for significant learning
  • Student-faculty partnerships
  • Design thinking/human-centered design
  • Student motivation and engagement
  • Project-based learning

My Job: I support faculty, students and other DU community members in learning and working together to create more engaging, inclusive, learning-rich experiences for DU students. As part of that work, I facilitate DU’s student-faculty partnership program, in which students and faculty members work together to explore student learning and engagement in the classroom.  I also lead DU’s Course Design Institute, which bring faculty members together to learn from and with each other as they design courses to have a lasting, meaningful impact on students’ lives.

My Background: I’ve had an eclectic career-path, but the common thread is learning, motivation, and design. It started with a degree in Industrial Engineering, followed by 11 years as a change management consultant with Accenture, followed by a PhD at Northwestern University in Learning Sciences (which focused on learning and motivation in social contexts and the design of innovative, research-based learning environments). After receiving my PhD, I did a two-year post-doctoral fellowship studying instructional leadership in schools and the ways in which it is shared among members of a school community. I then spent four years working with National Geographic Education Programs as a professional development consultant, and teaching courses at Regis University and CU-Denver for educators pursuing their master’s degrees.  I came to DU in February 2013.  

When I’m not at work, I enjoy spending as much time as I can outdoors – taking long walks with our dog Molly, relaxing in the backyard with a good book, or exploring a mountain trail.  My partner Brian and I also really enjoy exploring the neighborhoods around Denver and discovering new coffee shops, breweries, or restaurants (there’s so much here!). 

Other Links:
My DU Portfolio page

I can help you with:

  • Designing assessment practices that promote your growth as a teacher-scholar.
  • Creating program and course outcomes that help align your assessment process for curricular review.
  • Developing feedback loops to enhance high-impact, inclusive, and accessible pedagogy.
  • Ensuring your assessment practices not only help you meet accreditation but also engage all your community members in the reflection process for growth and realized potential. 
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My Job: I support faculty and students at all levels of program and academic units by listening carefully to how we want to tell our stories of academic success.  Assessment, at its core, is the process of articulating what we want to accomplish and then figuring out ways to learn from our journey toward accomplishing our goals.  As part of my work, I help facilitate the clear stating of outcomes for programs in order to help us align our curriculum with DU’s mission.  Then, I work alongside members of our community to look for points of reflection on our outcomes to learn from our progress.  As we reflect together, we can tell our transformative narrative.  Specifically, I do this through consultations with faculty and program directors, leading collaborative workshops, and publishing the various data and stories that our academic sectors report annually.

My Background: I arrived at DU from a faculty position in Religious Studies at a university in Idaho.  I had served for eleven years as a tenured professor. During my time at my previous institution, I taught in my field as well as the First Year Seminar and the Honors College.  Additionally, I served as the chair of the General Education Council, the assessment director for my college, and a member of the Assessment and Accreditation Committee. I served in these roles for the past six years, assisting our university through the last accreditation cycle with the Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). 

I received my Ph.D. from Southern Methodist University, and my research is primarily focused on ancient Near Eastern linguistics and rhetoric as well as interfaith leadership.  I am a performative extrovert who enjoys conversations about a wide range of topics.  I am interested in how institutions work through conflict and change. 

When I’m not at work, I most enjoy spending time with my family. My hobbies include going to the movies, playing guitar, learning card illusions, and woodworking. 

 

Jasmine Yap

DIRECTOR OF INCLUSIVE TEACHING PRACTICES

 

Email: Jasmine.Yap@du.edu

Please email me at Jasmine.Yap@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

 
Kayoung Kim

 

Kayoung Kim

Director of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning & Faculty Learning Communities

Email: Kayoung.Kim@du.edu 

Please book with me here if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

I can help you with:

  • Inclusive excellence and inclusive pedagogy
  • Culturally responsive and affirming teaching methodologies
  • Supporting multilingual learners
  • Meeting the needs of neurodivergent students

My Job: As the Director of Inclusive Teaching Practices, I aim to empower faculty to meet the learning needs of their students through inclusive, equity-minded, and culturally affirming teaching. I facilitate the Faculty Institute for Inclusive Teaching, the Inclusive Teaching Practices Modules, the Teaching for Inclusion and Equity Micro-credential program, and the Neurodiversity Institute. I also provide real-time confidential teaching and learning support for faculty members and academic departments, and I conduct research-based consultations to promote inclusive pedagogical practices across all disciplines of study and learning environments.

My Background: I was born and raised in Jersey City, NJ. My parents both immigrated from the Philippines, and I was the first in my family to go to college in the U.S. Navigating the higher education space was challenging for me, and it took me a couple of years to develop a sense of belonging and academic identity as an undergraduate student. Thanks to the intervention and support of my academic advisor and a couple of caring and concerned professors, I was able to persist and eventually thrive. I earned my BA in Psychology from Loyola University Maryland and was a postbaccalaureate research fellow at the National Institute on Drug Abuse for 2 years. I developed a deep love of learning and became particularly interested in the neurobiology of drug addiction. I decided to pursue research in this area and earned my MS and Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from Tufts University. A postdoctoral research opportunity at University of Colorado Boulder’s Institute for Behavioral Genetics brought me to Colorado in 2009. While a postdoc, I became an adjunct instructor for DU’s Psychology Department in 2013. I taught high school biology and chemistry for several years in the Denver Metro area and earned my MA in Teaching in Diverse Contexts from University of Colorado Denver in 2017. I returned to higher education as the Lead Inclusive Pedagogy Instructional Specialist at Community College of Aurora (CCA) in 2020. At CCA – a Hispanic-Serving Institution and Minority-Serving Institution – I led teams of faculty in the redesign of gateway courses, created an equity-focused instructor development program, and coached faculty and adjunct instructors in the implementation of culturally responsive teaching and data-driven decision making. I am committed to the advancement of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in higher education, and the work I do in the OTL supports the advancement of DU’s commitment to inclusive excellence and inclusive pedagogy.

When I’m not at work, I enjoy being outdoors, spending time with my family, going to concerts, and trying new restaurants in the area. I regularly train in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and balance it out with a yoga practice.

I can help you with:

  • Promoting a culture of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (a systematic, data-driven, scholarly inquiry into student learning) at DU 
  • Assisting faculty and staff with all phases of SoTL research projects, from the development of project ideas and research design, selection of materials, analysis and interpretation of data, to presentation and publication of findings 
  • Collaborate with faculty partners and OTL staff on planning, delivering, and facilitating Faculty Learning Communities 

My Job: As the Director of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and Faculty Learning Communities, I work to shape a wide variety of programs that promote teaching, learning, and scholarly excellence across academic disciplines. In particular, I lead to inform and promote the culture of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning at DU as a form of scholarly teaching, and support faculty with all phases of their SoTL research process. I also collaborate with faculty partners and OTL staff to deliver and facilitate programs for faculty learning communities in my work to support faculty members at all stages of their professional development.  

My Background: My educational training is in psychological science. I received a BA in psychology from Yonsei University, Ed.M in Human Development and Psychology from Harvard University, and Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology from Texas A&M University. Prior to joining the OTL, I have been a faculty member in the department of psychology and education at the University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac, and in the department of psychology at Tennessee State University.   

My research expertise lies in the field of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, and my work has focused on effective instructional practices, particularly on High Impact Practices (HIP), curriculum development and instructional technology, peer learning, and learning outcomes assessment. Most recently, my research efforts have been focused on trauma-informed teaching practices and best practices in online learning.   

Over the years, I have actively led initiatives to promote inclusive excellence in leadership and support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion matters. As an educator, I am committed to advancing teaching excellence and promoting accessible, inclusive, and effective learning experiences for students. As a SoTL researcher, I am dedicated to continuing data-driven inquiries on equitable teaching and learning in higher education.

When I’m not at work, I enjoy spending time with my husband and two children. We pride ourselves on being eclectic foodies, and we are always doing one of these things – cooking, experimenting with recipes, eating, or watching all the cooking shows. I am also a ski bum and greatly enjoy visiting the snow-covered mountains with my family for some quality downhill skiing.   

 

OUR INSTRUCTIONAL DEVELOPMENT TEAM

Kellie Ferguson


Faculty Developer of Integrative and Experiential Learning


Email: Kellie.Ferguson@du.edu   

Please email me at Kellie.Ferguson@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.
 
Ellen Hogan

Ellen Hogan

Faculty Developer of Instructional Accessibility

Phone: 303-871-6012

Email: Ellen.Hogan@du.edu

Please email me at Ellen.Hogan@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk. You can also request an office hour appointment with me through the OTL online booking system
 
If you are a faculty member needing support with accessible course materials, please submit an OTL Accessibility Request
 
 

I can help you with: 

My Job: As the Faculty Developer for Integrative and Experiential Learning, I facilitate the integration of High Impact Practices (HIPs), integrative learning, and experiential learning programs and initiatives. I work closely with faculty and OTL constituents to support effective adoption of ePorfolios and implementation of HIPs at the curricular level. I lead workshops, offer one-on-one consultations, and develop resources to support teaching-related needs particular to Integrative Learning and HIPs across campus. 

My Background:  I have a BA and an MA in English from San Diego State University and am currently working towards an MA in Learning Design and Technology at the University of Colorado, Denver. I was initially hired with the OTL as an instructional designer, where I facilitated workshops to support faculty in their teaching, worked directly with faculty to design and develop courses, integrate in UDL and inclusive practices, and set up and organize their Canvas course shells. In addition to my instructional design work, I have also been an English Instructor in California and Colorado and spent a year abroad teaching English and American Studies in Romania as a Fulbright ETA recipient. I have experience in designing and teaching both in-person, synchronous courses, and fully online, asynchronous courses, and am currently teaching online English courses with the Community College of Denver.  

When I’m not at work, I enjoy spending time reading, cooking, climbing, hiking with my partner and dog, and enjoying Colorado’s beautiful mountains!   

I can help you with:

  • Digital Accessibility Practices and the UDOIT Accessibility Checker
  • Universal Design for Learning Framework
  • Responding to student requests for accessibility needs (captions, alternate format texts, audio options, etc.)

My Job: As the Faculty Developer of Instructional Accessibility, I collaborate with faculty across the institution focusing on Universal Design for Learning (UDL) as an inclusive teaching framework and accessible course design, both digitally and in person. I can support faculty in accessibility and the remediation of course content and materials, such as document remediation and captioning. This includes participating in one-on-one consultations, facilitating workshops, and developing resources to foster and support accessibility and the Universal Design for Learning (UDL).  

My Background: I earned a BA in Special Education with a focus in Learning and Behavior and a minor in Psychology from Illinois State University. I am receiving a Masters of Higher Education in the Morgridge School of Education here at the University of Denver (Fall 2023). I spent the beginning of my career as a Special Education teacher for students between 6th-12th grade. My time in the classroom was spent teaching a diverse population of students while utilizing low to high tech assistive technologies, disability-related accommodations, and alternate format texts. I am interested in furthering the connection of UDL to accessibility and inclusive practices in order to meet student diverse needs with greater ease.

In my previous role in the Disability Services Program (DSP), I supported students throughout the accommodation process. I have knowledge and experience in implementing student accommodations, utilizing assistive technologies and facilitating production and remediation of Alternate Format Text (AFT). Additionally, I can collaborate with faculty on the implementation of digitally-related accommodations across courses and disciplines. I look forward to continuing to connect with DU faculty, staff, and students all while supporting greater accessibility for all.

When I’m not at work,  I like to enjoy time with family and friends, or cozying up with a good book and coffee.

 

Lexi Schlosser

Faculty Developer of Online Learning

Phone: 303-871-7882

Email: Lexi.Schlosser@du.edu

Please email me at Lexi.Schlosser@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

Aparna Vaidyanathan

Aparna Vaidyanathan

Business Analyst – IT

I can help you with:

My Job: As the Faculty Developer for Online Learning, I provide an array of support around online and remote teaching and learning. I work closely with our team of Instructional Designers to provide quality support for faculty. I share best practices by facilitating online teaching and learning workshops, webinars, and short courses. I am also available for faculty consultations around instructional design, canvas support, and online teaching and learning strategies for engagement and beyond.

My Background: I have a BS in Human Development and Family Sciences and M. E.D. in College Student Services Administration, both from Oregon State University. While at OSU, I worked in student support roles as well as faculty-facing support and organizational roles. These experiences have provided me unique perspectives regarding online teaching and learning. My pedagogical approaches align best with Student-Centered Learning, Universal Design for Learning, and Reflective Practice.

When I’m not at work, I am often outdoors enjoying hiking, camping, rock climbing, snowboarding, or walking my sweet and ever so feisty Yorkie Aspen. Indoors you can find me deeply engaged in a new creative outlet including writing poetry, drawing, painting, or collaging. 

Other Links:
Visit the Canvas Instructor Guide
Check out the OTL Teaching Tool Kit

I can help you with:

  • Canvas
  • Respondus
  • Kaltura
  • DU Assessment
  • DU Portfolio

My Job: Serving as Business Analyst for the Office of Teaching and Learning, I am responsible for primary system administration and configuration of various enterprise-level academic technologies. I also act as liaison between the OTL and Information Technology.  I assist both the OTL and IT by using data analytics to evaluate processes, determine requirements and deliver data-driven recommendations and reports to leadership and stakeholders. 

My Background: 

When I’m not at work, 

Other Links:

OTL Canvas Page

Canvas Community

Respondus Support Page

IT Strategic Goals & Initiatives Page

OUR INSTRUCTIONAL DESIGN TEAM

 

Terri Johnson

Senior Faculty Developer

Phone: 303-871-7884
Email: Terri.Johnson@du.edu

Please email me at Terri.Johnson@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

 

Jeffrey Schwartz

Instructional Designer

Email: Jeff.Schwartz@du.edu

Please email me at Jeff.Schwartz@du.edu if you would like to set up a time to meet/talk.

You can also book a consultation with me through the OTL Instructional Designer consultation booking system

I can help you with:

  • Online teaching and learning 
  • Course design and development
  • Classroom community and engagement

My Job: As a Senior Faculty Developer there are a number of ways I support faculty. I share best practices by facilitating the Teaching Online Short Course several times a year. I also co-teach Teaching@DU: A Short Course for New Faculty, which helps faculty that are new to campus learn about the resources available at DU as well as offering effective teaching strategies. I design our OTL newsletter so that faculty and staff across campus are informed about the variety of events and resources we offer here at the OTL. I am also available to meet with faculty for consultations around designing their courses and improving student outcomes.

My Background: I have a BA from Smith College and a MPS in Organizational Leadership from the University of Denver. I have worked at the University of Denver in a variety of both student- and faculty-focused roles since 2006. My experiences as a student, staff member, and instructional designer have given me a unique and well-rounded perspective on effective teaching practices.

When I’m not at work, I’m often playing with my son and my cat. I also like to discover new restaurants in the Denver area.

Other Links:
View upcoming Teaching Online Short Course sessions
Check out the Course Design Repository

I can help you with:

  • Canvas
  • Pedagogy
  • Course design
  • Educational technology support

My Job: As an Instructional Designer, I work with academic directors, faculty developers, and instructors to provide support for courses in all modalities. I am available for 1:1 training consultations, as well as providing course development and technology assistance for faculty.

My Background: I have a BA from Colorado State University and a MFA from Emerson College.  I have been with the University of Denver since 2016. As Lead Faculty in University College’s Professional Creative Writing Program, I have designed, developed, and taught 23 online and hybrid courses. Before coming to DU, I taught in first year writing programs for five years at universities in Massachusetts. My other experience in higher education includes offering training and support first year faculty, giving conference presentations about research, instructional technology, and creative writing, and serving on First Year Writing Program assessment committees. I also write fiction, and my stories have been published in Mythic: A Quarterly Science Fiction and Fantasy Magazine, Wild Musette, and Beyond Imagination.   

When I’m not at work, I am amusing my son with all manner of silly faces and voices, cooking, writing, and stargazing.

OUR ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT

Elise headshot

 

Elise Rosado Brewer

Web Content Designer 

Michela Schenk

Michela Schenk

Administrative Assistant – Work study

Email: otl@du.edu

My Job: As the Web Content Designer, I generate and maintain web-based content that is used for DU faculty educational and development resources. I also collaborate with the OTL and Vice Provost of Faculty Affairs offices on special projects that require creative problem solving for digital user needs.

My Background: I have a BFA in Design, Technology and Management for Theatre from CU Boulder and a certificate in User Experience and User Interface Design from DU. My intersectional arts and tech background allows me to take an empathetic and human based approach in everything I do. Complex problems require creative solutions, creative solutions require creative people.

When I’m not at work, you can find me in dark theatres playing with stage lighting or spending time with my loud Puerto Rican family.

I can help you with:

  • Quick FAQs
  • Connect you to the correct Office Staff for consultations and questions
  • Navigating the Office of Teaching and Learning Website and Events Page

My job: As the administrative assistant for the Office of teaching and Learning, I support OTL staff on special projects, answering the office email, and scheduling appointments. I also work closely with our staff to help plan and coordinate events.

My background: I’m a first year student at DU. I’m from the Chicagoland area, but live closer to the Wisconsin border than the Bean. My majors are History and Environmental Science, with a minor in Leadership Studies. I am hoping to go into either the realm of education or international relations. 

When I’m not at work: I’m usually partaking in some activity in the great outdoors. I love a good hammock and book date. Hiking, biking and skiing are my favorite mountain activities. If I’m not outside, I’m probably thrifting new coffee cups for my coffee cup collection (56 cups) or doing the Wordle on my couch. 

Colin Early

Colin Early

Administrative Assistant – Work study

Email: otl@du.edu

I can help you with:

  • Quick FAQs
  • Connect you to the correct Office Staff for consultations and questions
  • Navigating the Office of Teaching and Learning Website and Events Page

My job: As the administrative assistant for the Office of teaching and Learning, I support OTL staff on special projects, answering the office email, and scheduling appointments. I also work closely with our staff to help plan and coordinate events.

My background: I am a third-year graduate student studying Geographic Information Science. I hail from the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in Texas, with my original roots being rural in a small town. I am working towards becoming a Nautical Archaeologist and have a secondary professional focus in Geospatial Intelligence. I received my Bachelor’s at Syracuse University where I studied Archaeology, Philosophy, and Geology.   

When I’m not at work: I am a father to a rather large cat. I enjoy being a spectator of live sporting events and playing trivia. I am beginning to snowboard, and I spend a fair amount of time at parks when I recreate outdoors. I enjoy learning and discussing history, culture, and fine dining. 

OUR PARTNERS

Laura Sponsler

 

Laura Sponsler

Faculty Scholar of Teaching and Professional Faculty

silhouette- woman

 

Rashida Banerjee

Faculty Fellow, Professor of Teaching & Learning Sciences

Laura E. Sponsler, Ph.D, is Clinical Assistant Professor of Higher Education at the University of Denver and serves as the Resident-Scholar for Teaching and Professional Faculty.  In her role, Dr. Sponsler integrates teaching, scholarship, and service in service of the institutional mission to be a great private university dedicated to the public good.  Her work broadly examines the role of colleges and universities in creating more democratic practices for all constituents and institutionalizing the civic mission of higher education.  

Previously, Dr. Sponsler served as the founding director for NASPA’s Lead Initiative, a civic learning and democratic engagement network, and as a practitioner in service-learning.  Laura received her Ph.D. in Higher Education and M.S.Ed. in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania, and has a B.S. in biology from Saint Joseph’s University.

Rashida Banerjee, PhD, is a Professor in the Department of Teaching and Learning Sciences, Morgridge College of Education.  Her research areas are supporting culturally responsive pedagogy; early childhood workforce development; assessment of young children; effective inclusive intervention for young children, and effective community, family, and professional partnerships. Dr. Banerjee has published articles, books, book chapters, received federal and foundation grants, and presented at numerous national and international conferences. Her current projects funded by the Department of Education, specifically focus on preparing early childhood and early childhood special educators who are committed to social justice and critical thinking and strive to create a diverse, inclusive, and equitable learning environment for children and families. She has served as editor and associate editor for 3 international journals and served on multiple state, national and international task forces and advisory board to support evidence-based practices and pedagogy.