Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Georgia Southern University

SoTL Leadership Team


The SoTL Leadership Team’s primary purpose is to actively collaborate with the Centers for Teaching and Technology in guiding, supporting, and assessing the “SoTL at Georgia Southern” initiative.  The Team’s responsibilities are as follows:

  • Collaborate with the CT2 staff in developing strategies for guiding and supporting existing aspects of the initiative, and in implementing new aspects of the initiative.
  • By various means (personal experience, focus groups, individual contacts, survey, etc.) provide campus-wide, faculty feedback to the CT2 about the initiative.
  • Collaborate with the CT2 staff in developing an assessment plan for the initiative, and in using the assessment results to improve the initiative.
  • Meet at least once each semester with the CT2 staff and participate in electronic discussions as needed.

Olga Amarie Dr. Olga Amarie (Department of Foreign Languages): Olga Amarie is Assistant Professor and Study Abroad director for DFL-France at Georgia Southern University. Her basic research examines the influence of stereotypes on contemporary French short stories. Dr. Amarie is a co-translator for the French novella Twin Tower Lovers. Her research also centers on improving the understanding of the literary group OULIPO and their formal constraints on literature, mainly through the application of connexionism. In 2013, Dr. Amarie was appointed Southeast Vice President for Pi Delta Phi, the French National Honor Society in the United States.
Arrington_Nancy (1) Dr. Nancy McBride Arrington (Department of Teaching and Learning): Dr. Arrington joined the Early Childhood Education (ECED) faculty in the College of Education in 2010. As a result of participating in a SoTL Faculty Learning Community, she has collaborated in research with faculty from other disciplines. Her SoTL research has focused on service-learning and arts-integration with pre-service teachers. She was named a 2014 SoTL Fellow for Georgia Southern University.
Yasar_Bodur Dr. Yasar Bodur (Department of Teaching and Learning):Yasar Bodur’s interest in Scholarship of Teaching and Learning stems from his interest in enriching student learning in both face-to-face and online environments. His research has included integration of online case studies into online multicultural education courses, implementation of peer coaching in clinical experiences of preservice teachers, and use of different group formations in online discussions.He was one of the recipients of SoTL fellowship in 2013. He has mentored his peers in their SoTL inquiries.
Image of Delena Gatch Dr. Delena Bell Gatch (Department of Physics): Since joining the faculty at Georgia Southern University in 2001, Dr. Gatch has developed a strong interest in Physics education research.  Some of her recent ventures include evaluating the implementation of studio physics courses and developing inquiry based laboratories for physics instruction.
Cleveland Dr. Richard E. Cleveland (Department of Leadership, Technology, and Human Development): Dr. Cleveland’s pursuits in Scholarship of Teaching and Learning reflect his interest in student reflection and assessment. Dr. Cleveland has also conducted research on spirituality and mindfulness within counseling.
shainaz Dr. Shainaz Landge (Department of Chemistry): Dr. Landge’s interest in Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) flourished due to its interdisciplinary and diverse nature. Her current research projects include implementing an elaborate visual analogy, assessing the analogy vs non-analogy groups and creating various interactive and effective pedagogical techniques to deliver the information.
Jody Langdon Dr. Jody Langdon (Department of Health and Kinesiology): Dr. Langdon’s research in SoTL involves the investigation of the utility and effectiveness of the Flipped Classroom Model in college classrooms. She also has conducted research on autonomy supportive teaching among graduate teaching assistants, sport coaches, and physical education teachers.
Image of Trent Maurer Dr. Trent Maurer (Hospitality, Tourism and Family & Consumer Sciences): Dr. Maurer’s focus on SoTL is both disciplinary and interdisciplinary. My recent disciplinary projects have included evaluating reading compliance, traditional vs. peer led instruction, and POGIL in Family Science. My recent interdisciplinary projects have explored group work, classroom management, and faculty training programs. I also chair a Faculty Learning Community on SoTL.
Jessica Orvis Jessica Orvis (Department of Chemistry): Jessica Orvis is an Associate Professor of Chemistry and Coordinator of Principles of Chemistry courses. Her interests in chemistry education research include the role of autonomy in student motivation, assessment of student intervention efforts such as supplemental instruction, and the development of technology in teaching and learning..
Chad Pic 3 Dr. Chad Posick (Criminal Justice and Criminology): Assistant professor Chad Posick was attracted to the collaborative and multidisciplinary focus of SoTL. His major interest is examining useful quantitative applications for understanding and evaluating student learning. He is involved with SoTL activities in the social sciences and is looking forward to merging insight from multiple fields to advance a holistic understanding of learning processes.
Song Dr. Xiaomei Song (Institutional Effectiveness/Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading): Dr. Song has been interested in interactions among teaching, learning, and assessment since she started her teaching career in 1990s. Her research interests include validity and fairness of assessment tools, learner characteristics (e.g., strategy use, motivation, bilingualism) on learning outcomes, program assessment, and washback and impact of testing and assessment on teaching and learning. She has also been exploring concrete ways in which quantitative and qualitative methods of inquiry can be used in concert to inform a deep understanding of teaching and learning. 
Diane Sturges
Chair of SoTL Leadership Team

Dr. Diana Sturges (School of Health and Kinesiology). Dr. Sturges has participated in numerous SoTL projects that aimed at better understanding her students and improving student learning. Many projects were collaborative in nature and examined faculty/student differences in perceptions of disruptive classroom behaviors and faculty/student differences in perceptions of post-exam classroom attendance. She also initiated multiple projects in her own classroom and investigated students’ perceptions of class difficulty in Anatomy & Physiology and the effectiveness of a classroom role-play activity in teaching protein synthesis in large Anatomy & Physiology lecture courses. During the last seven year period (2007-2014) Dr. Sturges produced over seventy pieces of scholarship in SoTL: 52 peer reviewed presentations, 10 peer reviewed publications, four peer reviewed conference proceedings and 10 invited presentations.
Dr. Sturges has assumed multiple leadership roles in SoTL, both on the GS campus and in the SoTL community. She is chairing the SoTL Leadership Team and the SoTL Commons Annual Conference since 2013. The Board of Regents recognized Dr. Sturges’ contributions to the field of SoTL with the prestigious Regents’ Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Award (2014).

Please contact Dr. Sturges at with any questions about the SoTL Leadership Team.


Last updated: 11/2/2016

Centers for Teaching and Technology • PO Box 8143 • (912) 478-0049