Launching an Interdisciplinary Network for Understanding Student Engagement (INFUSE)

Timothy W Otteman, Jeffrey J Angera, Mark Deschaine, Allison Arnekrans, Kristina Rouech, Elizabeth Ann VanDeusen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Interdisciplinary Network for Understanding Student Engagement (INFUSE) began in the Spring of 2015 with a request from the dean to put together a team of faculty from each department within the College of Education and Human Services to focus on teaching and learning. Faculty members from five departments (Educational Leadership; Human Environment Studies; Recreation, Parks, and Leisure; Special Education; and Teacher Education and Professional Development) initially met and brainstormed ideas to pursue. A report of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE, 2007) data by the vice-provost spurred the team in a direction to explore student engagement and create a model for recognition of effective practices that are already occurring in the college and examine ways to increase student engagement throughout the college. A focus for the project was identified by the end of the spring semester and the team began exploring the student engagement literature. We spent the 2015-2016 school year examining resources and attending conferences to gain an understanding of the field. Each team member attended a conference, and reported back interesting sessions and speakers to consider using in the future. As the information was coming in, the team began forming a professional development plan to begin in the Fall of 2016. A highlight of the plan was instituting a speaker series with one speaker each semester for the 2016-2017 school year. Each speaker visited for an entire day for a keynote luncheon, two break-out sessions, and engagement with students. Future plans include building a repository of effective strategies that can be utilized across the lifespan of a student speaker events, and follow-up activities in order to engage faculty in prolonged study of student engagement techniques.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-98
JournalStudent Engagement in Higher Education Journal
StatePublished - May 2018


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