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Four UWRF Faculty Awarded Sabbaticals

DEC. 13, 2007--Four University of Wisconsin-River Falls faculty members have been approved for sabbatical leaves for one semester during the 2008-09 academic year.

The primary purpose of the faculty sabbatical program is to enable recipients to engage in intensive study to become more effective teachers and scholars and to enhance their service to the University. The program also recognizes the recipients' past and continuing academic contributions in keeping with UWRF's mission of teaching, research and service.

To receive approval for sabbatical, proposals from tenured faculty are evaluated on their merit. The University of Wisconsin Board of Regents decides which recommended sabbaticals to approve each December.

Patricia Berg, an associate professor of journalism, will be researching and writing a book on the community press in the rural Midwest. The book will emphasize the role of the rural community press in democracy since the 1930s. Berg's basic premise is that long before the Internet, rural community papers have provided an "ultralocal" voice in which ordinary people's lives were chronicled. However, unlike the Internet, which is actually a universe of aggregated private communication, the local community paper is truly a public forum.

Timothy Buttles, an associate professor in agricultural education, will provide the opportunity to again experience the day-to-day work of a K-12 teacher. The insights gained from working side-by-side with several different agricultural education teachers will allow Buttles to refresh course content and provide experiences that reflect today's K-12 classrooms. The main outcome will be a curriculum that better prepares UWRF agricultural education graduates to become successful teachers.

Chemistry Professor Kevin McLaughlin plans to participate in the National Science Foundation funded "Mathematics and Chemistry" to be held at the University of Minnesota. The activities pursued will involve theoretical and computational research into the applications of chemical graph theory for the prediction of physical properties of molecular mixtures and macromolecules. These activities will serve to improve and update the author's knowledge of chemical thermodynamics and quantum mechanics, thus contributing to the improvement of the author's teaching upon his return to UWRF.

Kenneth Stofferahn, professor of communication studies and theatre arts, will explore new computer design software available for theatrical design and technology. His research will culminate in the selection of software for use in theatrical design and technology classes at UWRF and in the development of teaching methodologies to facilitate student learning of selected software.


Last updated: Thursday, 22-Apr-2010 16:08:43 Central Daylight Time


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