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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

IPESL Grants

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Initiative to Promote Excellence in Student Learning (IPESL) Grant Opportunity

The University is pleased to announce an opportunity for MSU full-time faculty members. Our IPESL prospectus has been approved by Minnesota State and we invited faculty who will be returning for the 2007-2008 academic year to engage in a competitive proposal process.

Grants were awarded December 15, 2006 to 38 faculty working on 28 IPESL projects.

In summary, IPESL is a grant opportunity for faculty to improve students’ critical thinking through one or more of the following areas:

  • new instructional or curriculum materials to improve critical thinking (development, implementation, and assessment)
  • new support mechanisms to improve critical thinking (development, implementation, and assessment)
  • new assessments of critical thinking (development and implementation)

MSU IPESL Proposal Document for Minnesota State

IPESL Documents Utilized:

IPESL Grant In-Progress Support Information

For more information on the current progress & communications for the IPESL Grant, check the following:

IPESL Events & Guest Speakers

Minutes IPESL Leadership Meeting Februrary 2, 2007.

Minutes IPESL Leadership Meeting September 5, 2007.

February 28, 9:00-10:30 am CSU 253-4-5, "Talking About Teaching & Learning: Developing Critical Thinking Skills for Our Students" Featured Keynote Speaker Stephen Brookfield.

A Celebration of the IPESL Initiative. Featuring Dr. Barbara Millis

September 10, 2007, CSU284

  • 9-12pm "Using Cooperative Activities to Promote Critical Thinking and Student Learning" Video
  • 1:30-4:30pm "Promoting Critical Thinking and Deep Learning Through Writing and Other Activities" Video

September 11, 2007, CSU 284

  • 9-10:30am "IPESL Breakfast Celebration & Keynote" featuring:
    • Provost Scott Olson & Dr. Barbara Millis Video
  • 1:30-4:30pm "Promoting Critical Thinking through Complex Cooperative Activities" Video

Full Brochure (pdf)

Critical Thinking CoP - Announcement September 6, 2007

This Community of Practice idea comes from the IPESL initiative during the 2006-2007 academic year where 39 MSU professors received grants to integrate critical thinking for their students into courses. The CoP is open to all MSU faculty interested in learning more about how to incorporate critical thinking skills in their courses. CoP days and times will be determined by schedules of participants but will meet at least once per month. Meeting days and times to be determined by schedules. The facilitators from the original IPESL program have all volunteered to return this year. One goal of the CoP will be for faculty to share with one another the work they have done in this area and track how courses are changed by this work.

To join up just send an email to CETL:

Join US for an ITV Workshop on "Critical Thinking", The CASTL Leadership Project

When: November 14, 2007, from 2-4pm
Where: TnT lab, ML094, Lower Level of Library

Why: To Learn more about ways to increase critical thinking skills for undergraduate students
What: The ITV presentations will consist of four IPESL grant recipients:

  1. Dr. Charles Lewis: "Turning It Off: Teaching Media Criticism Through Ethnography."
  2. Dr. Steven Kipp: "Did we learn anything? Evaluating the effectiveness of physics, psychology and philosophy courses designed to improve critical thinking in the sciences."
  3. Dr. Marie Pomije & Dr John Thoemke: "The redesign of general Chemistry II to promote critical thinking & long term learning."
  4. Dr. Cathryn Bailey: "Incorporating critical thinking through media literacy in global perspectives on women and change."

More Details (PDF)

Technology Support:

Technology Training Opportunities - held in the Technology & Training Lab ML094.  (more Info).
Technology Support Questionnaire - distributed to all IPESL recipients (pdf)


We look forward to your successful projects.
Please direct questions to any member of the IPESL Steering Committee.