Second Annual Forum

Second Annual LEAP Texas Forum

Focusing Learning Through Well Designed Assignments

August 3-4, 2015
Stephen F. Austin State University
Baker Pattillo Student Center
1936 North Street, Nacogdoches, Texas 75962



KEYNOTE – DR. PAT HUTCHINGS | Senior Scholar, National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment

Abstract: Designing and Using Effective Assignments: A Hot Spot for Institutional Collaboration

For the past two years, the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) has been working with faculty and campuses on the effective design and use of the tasks that faculty regularly assign to students: papers, projects, examinations, case studies, community-based learning, and the like. This work is critical, we believe, because assignments are one of the places where big ideas—like the LEAP Essential Learning Outcomes—are realized on the ground. As such, assignment design is a powerful occasion for collaboration within and across institutions, creating opportunities for more integrative forms of student learning (as assignments are linked to one another across the curriculum), engaging professional development, and forms of assessment that lead to actual improvements in teaching and learning.

hutchingsBiography: Dr. Pat Hutchings is a senior scholar with the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA), and a scholar-in-residence with the Center for Teaching and Advising at Gonzaga University, in Spokane, Washington.  From 1998-2009 she was a senior scholar and vice president at The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.  Her work has focused on strategies for creating a campus culture of teaching and learning.  Currently she is working with NILOA and the Lumina Foundation on the Assignment Library.  See here:

PLENARY SPEAKER- DR. LESLIE REYNARD | Associate Professor of Communication Studies, Washburn University

Leslie_Reynard_photo 2Biography: Leslie Reynard is Associate Professor of Communication Studies at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas. Primary research interests are political communication related to processes of breach and reconciliation, intractable conflict, and public memory. Research in process focuses on virtual communication strategies as these relate to processes of intractable conflict. Another strong interest is the scholarship of teaching and learning, which includes assessment topics. Recent publications include an article in Review of Communication (2014), items in Sage Encyclopedia of Theory (2013), and a chapter about the Shahbagh Square movement in Bangladesh in Social Media and Social Movements (forthcoming 2015 from Peter Lang Publishers). Her interest in teaching/learning assessment focuses on “portability” of skills and assignment design. Teaching interests include Crisis Communication, Intercultural Communication, and Persuasion. She is currently serving her fourth term on the NCA Faculty Board of Lambda Pi Eta, the undergraduate honor society.

Registration is now closed. For information, contact or

When making reservations ask for the LEAP Texas room block.

Comfort Suites
3429 South Street
Nacogdoches, TX, US, 75964
Phone: (936) 560-9900
Room rate: $83.00 per night
Hampton Inn & Suites Nacogdoches
3625 South St.
Nacogdoches, TX 75964
Phone: (936) 560-9901
Room rate: $83.00 per night.
Room block will be available until July 27, 2015.


Free visitor parking is available on Vista Dr., Alumni Dr., East College St., Raguet St., and in the parking garage on Aikman Dr.  Please see the campus parking map at  The Student Center is building 74, located in quadrant 2A on the parking map.  Visitor parking is marked in yellow on the map.  You will be e-mailed a visitor parking pass to be printed and displayed in your vehicle.

Paid parking is available for $8.00 maximum per day in the Student Center parking garage located off Clark Blvd.   Please see the campus parking map at  The Student Center Parking Garage is building 75, located in quadrant 2A on the parking map. Should you chose paid parking, you will need to seek reimbursement from your own institution.


East Texas Regional Airport (GGG):
269 Terminal Circles, Longview, Tx, 75603
Approximately 56.7 miles (1 hour travel time to SFASU)

American Airlines
US Airways

Rental Cars:
Avis 903-643-2292

Tyler Pounds (TYR)
700 Skyway Blvd., Tyler, TX, 75704
Approximately 84.9 miles (1.5 hours travel time to SFASU)

American Eagle/American Airlines (connects to DFW)
United Airlines (connects to IAH)

Rental Cars:
Avis/Budget: 903-592-2613
Hertz/Thrifty: 903-533-8700
National/Enterprise : 903-597-1375

Shreveport Regional Airport (SHV)
5103 Hollywood Ave, Shreveport, LA 71109
Approximately 90.7 (1.5 hours travel time to SFASU)

Allegiant Airlines
American Airlines
Delta Airlines
United Airlines

Rental Cars:
Avis 318-631-1839
Budget 318-636-2846
Enterprise 318-631-8999
Hertz 318-636-1212
National 318-636-2735
Thrifty 318-621-8500

George Bush Houston Intercontinental (IAH)
Houston, TX
Approximately 129 miles (2 hours 15 minutes travel time to SFASU)

Dallas Ft. Worth International Airport (DFW)
Dallas, TX
Approximately 185 miles (3 hours 15 minutes travel time to SFASU)

Registration Cancellations
Cancellation requests must be received by 5:00 PM CST on Friday, July 24, 2015 in order to receive a 100% refund of the registration fee. To request a cancellation, send an email to Tiffany Hearne at and include your Order Number. Any requests received after the date noted above will not be eligible for a refund.