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2015-2016 CTG Recipients

The following faculty members received Creative Teaching Grants in 2015-2016. Scroll down to read summaries of their projects.

  • Kristen Block (Department of History)
  • Lisa Fall (School of Advertising and Public Relations)
  • Hillary Herndon (School of Music)
  • Francine Hollis (Department of Food Science and Technology)
  • Karen Hughes, Michael Gilchrist, and Mehmet Aydeniz (Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education)
  • Jioni Lewis (Department of Psychology)
  • Rachel McCord (Division of Engineering Fundamentals)
  • Malissa Peery (Department of Mathematics)
  • Elizabeth Strand (College of Veterinary Medicine and the College of Social Work)
  • Wenjun Zhou and Melissa Morris (Department of Business Analytics and Statistics)

Kristen Block

Kristen-Block

Kristen Block

Kristen Block, in the Department of History, is designing a new Honors Seminar in American History to give students experience in historical research, interpretation, and writing through storytelling. Storytelling encourages integrating snippets of information into a cohesive narrative that brings attention to historical cause-and-effect, and brings imagination, emotion, critical thinking, and multiple historical voices into conversation. Block hopes to expand this approach to her other courses.

Lisa Fall

Photo of Lisa Fall

Lisa Fall

Lisa Fall, in the School of Advertising and Public Relations, is developing a new service learning course in which students will develop a public relations campaign for the 2016 Dragon Boat Race fundraiser for the Tennessee Clean Water Network. Her students will apply key public relations concepts, principles, and theories while developing a tangible product for an actual client. Students will work collaboratively with project partners and will develop skills in communication, presentation, planning, and negotiation.

Hillary Herndon

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Hillary Herndon

Hillary Herndon, in the School of Music, is redeveloping the year-long String Literature and Pedagogy course sequence to include elements of service learning and international experience for her students. Students in the redesigned course will learn how to teach others from diverse backgrounds, how to break problems into sequential skill sets, and how to improve their own skills as musicians and musical instructors.

Francine Hollis

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Francine Hollis

Francine Hollis, in the Department of Food Science and Technology, is designing a new course entitled Food Unwrapped. Students will integrate and apply basic principles, concepts, and techniques to achieve a richer understanding of contemporary food science and technology. Hollis will use visual, tactile, and olfactory stimulation activities to help students think more critically about the production and presentation of foods and food products.

Karen Hughes, Michael Gilchrist, and Mehment Aydeniz


Karen Hughes and Michael Gilchrist, in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and Mehmet Aydeniz, in the Department of Theory and Practice in Teacher Education, are building on their prior work to develop tools to promote student self-efficacy and guided self-assessment. The focal course for their work is General Genetics. Though this course is required for most biology majors and for pre-medical tracks, the tools and approaches they are developing will have wide applicability in undergraduate education.

Jioni Lewis

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Jioni Lewis

Jioni Lewis, in the Department of Psychology, is designing her African American Psychology course to include a social justice oriented service learning component. Her students will gain a richer understanding of theories and paradigms of African American psychology through service learning projects with community partners serving the needs of East Knoxville generally and the African American community specifically. Student groups will design their service learning research projects in collaboration with community partners, and will present their project summaries and results to the psychology department in a poster session at the end of the semester.

Rachel McCord

Rachel McCord

Rachel McCord

Rachel McCord, in the Division of Engineering Fundamentals, is developing a student success course for beginning engineering students. The focus of the course is to help students develop self-regulated learning skills while building a sense of community among engineering students. Her project is motivated by significant research in education, especially in engineering education, that show that students equipped with self-regulated learning skills perform better and show higher persistence toward a degree.

Malissa Peery

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Malissa Peery

Malissa Peery, in the Department of Mathematics, has been innovating to improve her beginning level courses for several years. After developing and implementing a very successful model for ‘flipping’ her College Algebra course, she will now apply what she has learned to Basic Calculus. Both courses are often major barriers to student progression in the university, and Peery’s innovative approaches have dramatically increased the success rate of her students and their persistence in the university. See Peery’s poster presentation on her project here.

Elizabeth Strand

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Elizabeth Strand

Elizabeth Strand, in the College of Veterinary Medicine and the College of Social Work, is developing a website for conflict resolution education, aimed at veterinary and social work students, and for continuing education, aimed at practicing veterinarians and social workers. The Conflict Resolution Website through Blackboard will offer short, self-paced lectures, reflective journals, peer and self-assessment skill building labs, video-recorded pair shares, small group discussion boards, didactic quizzes, course discussion blogs, and live on-line sessions.

Wenjun Zhou and Melissa Morris

Photo of Wenjun Zhou

Wenjun Zhou

Photo of Melissa Morris

Melissa Morris

Wenjun Zhou and Melissa Morris, in the Department of Business Analytics and Statistics, are beginning the redesign of the large enrollment Statistics 201 course with an analysis of past student work to help them identify obstacles to learning. Using electronic records of student activities, including online homework and clicker data, they want to gain an understanding of student learning behaviors and styles in the digital age. Based on their analysis, Zhou and Morris will design early-stage interventions for students identified as at-risk.

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