Image of Heidi Hendrickson, SoTL Scholar with a quote "The information I learn from my SoTL Research enables me to improve my chemistry courses in a way that promotes student learning."During the 2022 – 23 academic year CITLS has been pleased to offer the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Scholar program through a brief application process. The scholarship of teaching and learning involves performing research on teaching and disseminating the findings more broadly through publication or presentation. This one-year initiative currently provides support for Professor Heidi Hendrickson from the Department of Chemistry, one of several leaders in SoTL at Lafayette, to conduct research in her chemistry courses. 

Professor Hendrickson is using her fellowship opportunistically to expand her work on Compute-to-Learn Pedagogy (C2L) while conducting her disciplinary chemistry research. C2L involves students learning and using programming skills to create demonstrations that address various chemistry concepts. This semester Prof. Hendrickson incorporated student-created demonstrations developed in previously taught upper-level courses, into her current general chemistry courses. The demos are published on the Wolfram Demonstrations Project. Prof. Hendrickson’s SoTL project during the fall semester involves examining how the student-generated demonstrations can be used to engage students and enhance their learning of course material. Her research team includes Theresa Chua (‘23) and Vedit Venkatesh (‘26).

In addition to conducting SoTL, Prof. Hendrickson continues to actively publish and present on Compute-to-Learn Pedagogy.  Last year she co-authored a book chapter on this teaching area. She actively participates in the Molecular Computation and Visualization in Undergraduate Education (MoleCVUE) group, for which she has developed computational activities for general chemistry courses. She was an invited speaker for a symposium at the Biennial Conference on Chemical Education in July and presented the talk “Using the Compute-to-Learn Pedagogy in Physical and General Chemistry Courses.”

Prof. Hendrickson also helped facilitate the workshop “Computational Chemistry in the Classroom” last August. She will organize another smaller workshop for the Lehigh Valley American Chemical Society local chapter that will be hosted at Moravian University in January 2023. Her presentations do not stop there. This November, she presented the talk “Using the Compute-to-Learn Pedagogy in Physical Chemistry” at a community-wide, open meeting for the Lowering Activation Barriers to Success in PChem initiative (LABSIP). In 2023, Professor Hendrickson will also present the invited talk “Utilizing Student-Generated Mathematica Demonstrations in Physical and General Chemistry Courses” at the Spring National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to save-the-date to support Professor Hendrickson when she shares her research with the Lafayette community on Monday, April 17, 2023. Additionally, all faculty and staff members interested in SoTL are also welcome to contact CITLS about being part of the SoTL Community of Practice