Internal Events

The VIU Research and Educational Development Summit

The VIU Research & Educational Development Summit is a bi-annual (January and August) collaborative venture intended to serve as an in-service professional development opportunity.

On August 20, 2016, Virginia International University’s Office of the Faculty Development held the 2nd VIU Research and Educational Development Summit.

While the first part of the day was dedicated to speeches by VIU President Dr. Isa Sarac (Academic Syllabi)VIU Executive VP Dr. Suleyman Bahceci (University Initiatives), and VIU HR’s Ms. Brittany Demes (HR Policy), along with school-specific meetings, the afternoon was split into presentations given by members of the VIU faculty. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet and interact with your faculty colleagues outside of your disciplinary area.

Five plenary speakers addressed the Summit in hopes of supporting the professional development of faculty across all career stages in the areas of teaching, research and work balance.

Dr. Michael Perini (Academic Affairs) discussed about Organizational Obstacles in the Academy: Cultural Perceptions of Academic Librarians. 

Organizational culture often influences the success of professionals working in higher education, and within that culture, librarians and their impact on the academic community are often overlooked. Taking an interdisciplinary approach to the assessment of professional identity and issues impacting professional development, this qualitative case study extends Whitchurch’s (2009) blended professional model to academic librarians. By considering the merging of roles across several spheres of cultural and academic influence, this discussion provides for the exploration of an individual’s dichotomous perceptions of role and identity within an organizational culture.

Dr. Rebecca Sachs (School of Education) talked about Are You Testing What You Think You’re Testing? Building an Internal-Validity Focus into Your Research Design.

Researchers want to ensure valid results. Using examples from my own collaborative research in applied linguistics and language learning, I will present a variety of ways of checking for internal validity within (quasi-)experimental research designs—for example, employing dual-task methods and eye-tracking to verify intended cognitive-load differences, assessing effort in experimental vs. control groups to ensure comparability, triangulating multiple measures of the same construct to increase veridicality, and taking steps to ascertain whether data-collection tools themselves might affect the very phenomena under investigation. I hope the presentation will help attendees imagine innovative ways of enhancing the quality of their research.

Mr. Koorosh Azhandeh (School of Computer Information Systems) leaded a discussion regarding Introduction to Information Centric Networking.

In a relatively short amount of time, the internet has move from a tool we occasionally used to one of the most principal ways we communicate, entertain ourselves, and do work.  The number one reason we use the Internet, however, is to publish or retrieve content in any format, can be text, audio or video.  Unfortunately, regular internet users are usually unaware about how and what the structure of the Internet is made up of. Information-Centric Networking (ICN), or Content-Oriented Networking (CON) has recently attracted researcher attention.  It decouples location, the location of content from identity, and retrieves a content object by its identifier (name) instead of by its storage location (the IP address).  This enables in-networking caching and delivery of information from the best locations to optimize bandwidth usage.  ICN is an alternative approach to the architecture of computer networks.

Mr. Kevin Martin (School of Education) talked about Addressing the Unique Needs of International Students.

International students in higher education are often expected to work within the confines of classroom environments that assume Western teaching methodologies. Because these students do not always have exposure to such methodologies in their formative years, they sometimes struggle to adapt to an environment that looks and feels foreign to them. This interactive presentation encourages faculty to explore some of the difficulties that their international students have through the lens of our deeply embedded expectations about what higher education learning experiences look like as entrenched academics.

Dr. Osama Morad (School of Computer Information Systems) discussed The Four Quadrants of My Responsibilities as an Instructor/Facilitator.

The rapid advances in education research, instructional design, subject matters, and instruction delivery technologies continue to complicate the responsibilities of an instructor or a facilitator in higher education. This presentation introduces a quick and easy to understand model for the responsibilities of an instructor/ Facilitator. The model grew out of the author’s experience and practice over the years as an online instructor/facilitator. The model abstracts four quadrants of the instructor/facilitator’s responsibilities.  These quadrants are: Content Resources Creation, Instruction/Facilitation, Class Management, Social Interaction. The presentation defines and explains each of these quadrant. Examples from a VIU online class are demonstrated to illustrate how each one of these responsibilities could be satisfied in an online class.  We then examine the interplay among these four quadrants.

We would like to thank all of the presenters and staff involved in helping to make the Faculty Summit possible.

For general requests or inquiries about professional development and/or future offerings, please contact Dr. Michael Perini at