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Todd Zakrajsek

Teaching Excellence Workshop: Overcoming Apathy and Creating Excitement in the Classroom

Todd Zakrajsek, Executive Director of the Center for Faculty Excellence, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
February 28, 2011


What can instructors do to facilitate learning when they encounter students who seem uninterested and even apathetic toward course content and assignments?  Part of the responsibility for learning belongs to students, but as faculty, we can find new ways to motivate, inspire, and maybe even cajole students to learn. This workshop demonstrates and explains how instructors can make classroom learning, perhaps one of the most artificial learning settings, a more meaningful experience for students.  The presenter uses theories of learning and motivation as a basis for creating strategies to increase student engagement in course content and class sessions.

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About the Facilitator

Todd Zakrajsek is the Executive Director of the Center for Faculty Excellence at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  He was previously the Inaugural Director of the Faculty Center for Innovative Teaching at Central Michigan University and the founding Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Southern Oregon University, where he also taught in the psychology department as a tenured associate professor. He also directs the Lilly Conference on Teaching and Learning at Traverse City, Michigan, and the International Conference on Improving University Teaching. Dr. Zakrajsek received his Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Ohio University. He has published and presented widely on the topic of student learning, including workshops and conference keynote addresses in 36 states and 4 countries in the past several years.

This workshop was sponsored by the Center for Teaching Excellence. For more information, please e-mail or call 803-777-8322.

Other important links:

Columbia, SC 29208 • 803-777-8322 •