Pre-Conference Sessions

Pre-conference workshops are three hours in length (Thursday, April 25 from 8:30am to 11:30am). They are both highly participatory and lecture oriented. Additionally, participants should receive specific, hands-on material that they can apply at their individual colleges. Pre-conferences are $50.00 if paid before 4/1/2019 and $60.00 if paid after this date.


Pre-Conference A

It Takes a Village: Creating, Developing and Sustaining a Peer-Embedded Tutoring Culture on your Campus

Course embedded tutoring is a widely utilized approach for a wide variety of historically challenging gateway courses. While its continuing relevance to “how students learn” is universally supported by administrators, grant directors, faculty, tutors, and students, implementation across disciplines and on-going collaboration with administrators, faculty, and tutors presents both great opportunities and challenges for coordinators, faculty and tutoring practice. This interactive pre-conference workshop is focused on approaches, and best practices that develop and sustain effective peer embedded programs. Topics covered and materials shared include building faculty collaboration, high impact practices in tutor training , responsive data development, and the nuts and bolts approach to the day-to-day administration of a variety of peer embedded tutoring programs. In addition to shared materials, participants will develop logic models relevant to their programs with the intention of building ongoing collaboration among ACTLA members.


Dr. Vandana Gavaskar

Faculty Director, Learning Support Services, Santa Barbara City College  


Pre-Conference B

Building an Inclusive Learning Center Using the Culturally Engaging Campus Environments (CECE) Model


Contemporary college students are more diverse than ever. More students of color, first-generation college students, and low-income students are accessing our higher education institutions. Consequently, colleges and universities have an obligation to ensure that all students who step on campus have the opportunity to become successful in their educational endeavors.This pre-conference session will use Museus's (2014) Culturally Engaging Campus Environments (CECE) Model to link research with practice to discuss how learning centers can use culturally relevant and engaging strategies to foster a stronger sense of belonging, increase academic dispositions, and ultimately, produce academic and college success outcomes.


Dr. Charles Lu

Director of Academic Support & Instructional Services, University of California-San Diego


Vanessa S. Na

Research Associate, National Institute for Transformation and Equity (NITE)


Pre-Conference C

Rethinking Academic Support for AB 705


By fall 2019, all California Community Colleges will need to maximize the probability that a student will enter and complete transfer-level coursework in English and math with a one year timeframe.  For most colleges, this will require educators to re-think how they teach and support students who will now be placed much higher, much earlier. Many English and math departments across Los Angeles are responding to this policy, known as “AB 705,” by teaming up with their academic success centers to reimagine what support could look like both inside and outside the classroom. In this interactive breakout session, participants will hear from presenters and from each other about how English and math faculty are partnering with peer educators and learning assistance professionals to support students both inside and outside the classroom.


Dr. Crystal Kiekel

Center for Academic Success Director, Los Angeles Pierce College; Learning Assistance Project Coordinator for the California Community College’s Success Network (3CSN)


Rodaba Ghaussi

English Tutor Leader, Los Angeles Pierce College


Brad Saenz

English Department Chair, Los Angeles Pierce College


Eddie Tchertchian

Mathematics Department Chair, Los Angeles Pierce College


Linh Tran

Math Tutor Leader, Los Angeles Pierce College

Pre-Conference D

The Learning Commons: A Creative Redesign of Tutoring Services

Tutoring professionals are responsible for meeting the needs of our college communities while prioritizing resources and maintaining a quality academic service. While we must show commitment to the institution’s mission and goals by developing and implementing programs known as effective practices, we each have our own unique stakeholder interests to consider in this process. This interactive pre-conference workshop is focused on how to maintain a students first approach in program design that incorporates institutional voices and priorities. Presenters will share the narrative of how aligning the needs of our students, staff, faculty, and tutors with the needs of the institution led to a substantial redesign of our learning spaces and services over time. Expect great takeaways, such as collaborative ways to engage in continuous improvement, innovative ideas for redesign of learning spaces, methods for both collaborating with colleagues and establishing buy-in for change, and strategies for improving student engagement and learning.

Dr. Shellie Keller

Director, Centers for Academic Success, College of Southern Nevada

Robyn Rohde

Faculty, Department of English, College of Southern Nevada

Joe Hick

Coordinator, Centers for Academic Success, College of Southern Nevada

Dr. Peter Legner

Coordinator, Centers for Academic Success, College of Southern Nevada

Shannon Prestridge

Coordinator, Centers for Academic Success, College of Southern Nevada


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