End With a Bang!

You don’t have to face those end-of-semester tasks alone! Join us for a writing and grading retreat here in the Faculty Hub on Tuesday, December 12. We’ll provide all participants with lunch, seasonal goodies, and beverages (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and more) all day long. Come on by and get cozy. Stay for any amount of time that works for you between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Please also note that the Pedagogy and Generative AI Faculty Exchange date was incorrect in this newsletter. It is on Wednesday, January 10. 

Upcoming Generative AI Programs

As we approach the end of the semester, a time when our students start turning in final projects and we begin to plan for the spring, I’d like to share a few opportunities for you to learn more about generative AI tools like ChatGPT and how they might affect your teaching and scholarship. I invite you to make an appointment with me to chat about your immediate needs and concerns relating to generative AI.

We are also offering several programs on December 14 and January 10. The programs are designed to provide flexibility for your schedule. Attend the half-day professional development opportunity or come to one or two events. Hopefully, you’ll find something that will help you navigate this new generative AI wave. To register for the events below visit this site and let us know which event(s) you’d like to attend. 

Introduction to Generative AI (Two Offerings)

This 90-minute workshop (December 14, 9 to 10:30 a.m. or January 10, 10 to 11:30 a.m.) is a dive into the world of generative AI designed for both beginners and those seeking a refresher. Understand the basics of AI tools (like ChatGPT) and their emerging role in the academic landscape.

Generative AI as a Tool for Scholarship (December 14) 

Finding a Role for Generative AI in Your Writing Workflow – December 14, 10:30 to 11:20 a.m.

Explore how generative AI can become a pivotal part of your writing process, enhancing creativity and efficiency. Learn to leverage AI for drafting, editing, and refining your academic manuscripts.

Supercharge Your Research with a Hundred Research Assistants (Lunch Provided) – December 14, 11:30 a.m. to 12:20 p.m.

Experience the efficiency of employing generative AI as if you had an army of research assistants at your disposal. This session, co-hosted with Social Science Librarian, Kyle Jenkins, will show you how to accelerate literature reviews and data analysis, complete with a lunch break to network and discuss insights.

Hands-On Workshop for Using Generative AI Tools (Scholarship Focus) – December 14, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Conclude the workshop with a practical hands-on workshop to help you identify the right AI tools that fit your unique research needs. Personalize your academic toolkit with AI technologies that can elevate your research productivity to new levels.

Pedagogy and Generative AI Faculty Exchange (January 10)  

Faculty Panel Lunch – January 10, 11:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Join fellow faculty members, Stephen Brauer, Visiting Associate Professor of English (A&S), Megan Driscoll, Assistant Professor of Art History (A&S), Sara Hanson, Associate Professor of Marketing (RSB), Saif Mehkari, Associate Professor of Economics (RSB) and Lionel Mew, Assistant Professor of Information Systems (SPCS), in this interactive panel discussion over lunch facilitated by Linda Boland, Associate Provost for Faculty and Professor of Biology. Hear firsthand experiences from colleagues who have been intentionally integrating generative AI tools into their curriculum. This is a great opportunity to gain insights into the challenges, success stories, and institutional policies surrounding generative AI in education. Plus, it’s a chance to network and share your thoughts in an open forum.

Hands-On Workshop for Using Generative AI Tools (Pedagogy Focus) – January 10, 1:30 to 3:00 p.m.

This session, co-hosted with Andrew Ilnicki, Director of Experiential Education & Emerging Technology, promises to be both enlightening and interactive. Attendees will get the opportunity to work directly with some of the most advanced generative AI tools available in the market. Under the guidance of expert trainers, explore the functionalities of ChatGPT (based on the GPT-4 architecture), the innovative capabilities of Claude.AI, and the design potential of Adobe’s Firefly. Whether you’re planning to integrate these tools into your teaching methods or just curious about their capabilities, this session is tailored to provide a rich, hands-on experience.

Thankful for the Little Things

We here at the Faculty Hub are grateful to be working with so many engaged and committed faculty, staff, and administration members here at UR. We’re sending you best wishes as we head into the last part of the semester and the end of the calendar year.

Little things we are grateful for…
Kitty: Midday walks around Westhampton Lake
Jane: Jersey dirt
Kylie: Fall field trips to the eco-corridor with my FYS students
Andrew: The Cuban sandwich at Passport

Welcoming Michael Reder

Greetings, everyone! We hope you had a restful Fall Break. We’re excited to co-host a campus visit (October 25-27) by Michael Reder, Director of the Joy Shechtman Mankoff Center for Teaching & Learning at Connecticut College, an expert in using writing and active teaching to support student learning. Michael’s visit will allow faculty and instructional staff to reflect on the upcoming launch of the new General Education curriculum in Fall 2024. If you’ve been part of the FYS program for the past few years, you likely already know Michael as a longstanding collaborator and partner with the University of Richmond. If you haven’t yet met Michael, we hope you will make the most of his time on campus by attending an event or scheduling a one-on-one consultation with him. We’d especially like to call your attention to Michael’s keynote on October 26 from 3 to 4:30 p.m., entitled Reinventing Your Courses — and Reanimating Your Teaching — in Richmond’s New GE Program, a talk intended to bring us all together to consider the importance of this moment. Many of the events surrounding Michael’s visit will count for the required professional development under the new General Education curriculum. Read on to learn more!

10 Things Worth Sharing This October


I’m Andrew Bell, the Technology Consultant at the Faculty Hub. I’m excited to kick off a new monthly series around digital tools. I’m going to share information, links, videos, papers… some related to pedagogy and scholarship, some might not be… All of it will be related to concepts, tools, and ideas that have helped me better understand the ever changing digital landscape. I hope you find it worth your time!

10 things worth sharing this October:

1. Someone something to talk to… You can now talk with chatGPT. ChatGPT can now see, hear, and speak

2. Ben Thompson on how the emergence of generative AI is redefining the meaning of ‘virtual reality’

3. Ezra Klein suggests the Internet both enhances and distracts the mind. In this NYTimes article, Erza speculates on the impact AI will have on the mind.

4. Will Generative AI make us more productive? This paper suggests it might (for some of us)…

5. “When the people at the New Yorker can’t concentrate long enough to listen to a song all the way through, how are books to survive?” Why can’t we read anymore?

6. Walking around campus, it’s hard not to wonder: what did we do before smartphones? Ian Bogost, a columnist for The Atlantic, explores leisure time, boredom, and what we used to do to pass time.

7. Remember, even the widely-used digital pedagogy tool, Powerpoint, hasn’t been around forever.  A (brief) History of Powerpoint from the MIT Technology Review.

8. Developing concept maps as an exam review is one of my favorite learning activities for students. They also have a long history in storytelling. Walt Disney was famous for distributing corporate strategy in the form a a concept map.

9. I once gave my UR job talk using the note-taking app, Evernote 😬, so this topic resonates with me. Why note-taking apps don’t make us smarter

10. While note taking apps may not make us smarter, notebooks can be a great tool for capturing ideas… The Notebooks of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Notebooks

Thanks for reading!





Prepare for Fall 2023 With Our Pre-Semester Events!

We hope that you’re having a good summer. Here at the Faculty Hub, we’ve been getting ready for the fall, and we’ve put together some events to help you ease into the new semester. In addition to the events below, if it would help to talk through any teaching and scholarship challenges with us directly, we invite you to schedule a one-on-one consultation anytime. You can find additional events on our Events Page.

We’re looking forward to seeing you this fall!

Read more here!

Support for Faculty in the Age of Generative AI

(Another) Digital Pedagogical Challenge 

The 2020 pandemic forced most of us educators to become literate in digital pedagogy tools that facilitated online and/or hybrid learning. That work was challenging and exhausting but our students greatly benefited from our efforts. The spring 2023 semester was the first semester where I felt like we were ‘returning to normal’ – the Huddlecam started to feel like a relic of the past. It also happened to be the first semester in which generative AI tools like ChatGPT began to greatly influence our work as educators. Once again, we educators are facing the task of modifying our pedagogy to a changing world.   

The Faculty Hub is here to support your journey to learn more about generative AI and the ways it affects your pedagogy. Below are a number of opportunities that we’ve created to support your AI literacy this coming semester but we are open to your ideas – we’d love to hear from you (find time on my calendar or shoot me an email).  

One-on-one consultations 

We are providing one-on-one consultations focused on understanding and implementing generative AI models in the academic realm. These sessions will offer individualized guidance tailored to your specific interests and needs, helping to demystify generative AI and assist in the integration of this technology into your teaching methods or research projects. 

Upcoming Workshops / Panels 

A Role for Generative AI in Teaching and Scholarship (hosted by Andrew Bell) (8/16 Virtual Session Registration and 8/24 Faculty Hub Session Registration). 

We are offering a comprehensive pre-semester workshop twice before the semester (one virtual the other in the Faculty Hub). The workshop aims to provide an overview of the current landscape of generative AI technologies. These workshops are designed to be approachable and engaging for anyone intrigued by AI, regardless of their prior knowledge or expertise. By focusing on the implications of these tools in an educational setting, we aim to equip participants with a foundational understanding of how AI can augment teaching methodologies, enhance student interaction, and catalyze innovation in curricular design. Not only will you get a thorough walkthrough of the current AI tools, but you will also gain insights into the potential future trends in AI and how they could transform the academic world.  


Conversation about the Implications of Generative AI on Composition-intensive courses (co-hosted by Joe Essid and Andrew Bell)  (8/23 Faculty Hub – Registration)

We will co-host a conversation with Writing Center Director, Joe Essid, on the impact of generative AI on composition-intensive courses. This conversation aims to shed light on how AI technologies, particularly generative models, can (potentially) revolutionize the way we approach writing and composition. Joe and I will share insights based on their extensive experience in their fields and explore potential benefits, challenges, and strategies to effectively integrate these advanced tools into writing courses. This dialogue offers a unique opportunity to explore the intersection of AI and composition, fostering a deeper understanding of how these innovative technologies can enhance writing pedagogy and student outcomes. 

Custom Departmental / Program Workshops  

In addition to our regular workshops, we also offer custom workshops designed to cater to the discipline-specific needs of various departments. Department chairs are encouraged to reach out to abell4@richmond.edu to request a tailored workshop for their team. To illustrate the potential applications of generative AI across various disciplines, a departmental workshop could consider the following examples: 

      1. Using generative AI to help students develop more complex and interesting ways to compare and contrast themes from a reading.  
      2. Using generative AI to quickly create multiple versions of product photos for a marketing course.  
      3. Using generative AI to create tutor bots to support student learning new programming languages.  

These are just a few examples of the potential applications of generative AI, and we look forward to exploring more possibilities in our custom workshops. 

 Other Opportunities  

Special generative AI call for applications to our Digital Pedagogy Grants 

We are excited to announce a special call for applications for our Digital Pedagogy Grants for any educators keen to explore and implement AI tools in their pedagogy. All Digital Pedagogy grants aim to support and encourage innovation in digital teaching and learning; for this coming academic year, we are looking specifically for innovations in the realm of artificial intelligence. This is a wonderful opportunity to receive funding and support for projects that enhance student learning experiences, promote active engagement, and push the boundaries of traditional teaching methods through AI. Whether you’re looking to develop AI-powered lesson plans, create interactive AI-based student assignments, or explore the implications of AI in your specific field, these grants can help you achieve your goals. For more information on grant details, application process, and deadlines, please visit our website

Light at the End of the Tunnel

All of us here at the Faculty Hub are sending you our best wishes for this busy time of year. Please know that we’re here for one-on-one consultations if you’re looking for support with assessments, the last days of class, summer planning, and more. We’re also offering a series of events in early May–our Faculty Hub May Days–as a chance to reflect and take stock of the academic year and to think about what’s next.

Please note that the Faculty Hub staff will not be available the afternoon of May 2 so that we can attend Speaking Up in the Academic Workplace–details on the event below.

Read more about May events here.