Announcement Archives
Announcement Archives
 
Program Chair Update
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July 14, 2017

Systems Thinking SIG Members, hello!  
 
I hope all is well with you! In June I sent out a call for proposals and reviewers and have received some communication but we still need more robust participation.   
 
With this in mind, I’m writing to remind you of a few items --
 
1) VOLUNTEER - Please volunteer to be a reviewer for ST-SIG by going to My AERA page and scroll down to the 2018 AERA Annual Meeting - online program portal. You can volunteer there. Please do this today!
 
2) SUBMIT A PROPOSAL  -  Work on your proposals now! The call for submissions is linked here. With the theme of “The Dreams, Possibilities, and Necessity of Public Education” we need lots of great research proposals which connect with the conference theme and the SIG's purpose ' . . . to focus on applications of systems thinking principles to address various issues in education'.

While the deadline is July 24,10 days away, please work on your proposals now.
 
On behalf of the ST-SIG leadership team -- we look forward to another great conference!

As always -- please feel free to reach out if you have questions or concerns.
 
Best wishes always,
Miriam

 
 
Chair Update
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May 25, 2017

Greetings AERA Systems Thinking in Education SIG members!

First, I wanted to thank all of our members who helped make the annual meeting a success. I wanted to update all of you on our business meeting and other pending business. But first of all, I wanted to put forth a final request for members willing to be nominated for our open officer positions:

We are seeking nominations (please also feel free to nominate yourself) for the following positions (each is a two year term, with the first year as an elect position, mentored under the current officer): 

1. Chair
2. Program chair
3. Secretary/Treasurer

In order to nominate yourself or someone else, please email me at brwatson@purdue.edu no later than noon Eastern Time on Monday, May 29th. The SIG would very much appreciate your service as an officer.

I also wanted to let you know that our planned bylaws changes (which will need to be approved via vote) include these updated term lengths for each of these positions. They also will place several awards into our bylaws to allow our SIG to better recognize our members’ contributions. Here are the awards we decided to put forward at our business meeting last month:

1. Refereed Publication of the Year (yearly) - Oct. 1 submission deadline
2. Best SIG Paper (yearly)
3. Practitioner Award
4. Recognition of Scholar
5. Dissertation Award (20 page submission) (yearly)
6. SIG Service Award

Finally, we will seek to send out short newsletters that highlight some of our membership and their current work, so please keep an eye out for that, as well as our election and bylaw vote emails over the next month. Thanks again for considering running for an officer position – the SIG needs our members to step forward and provide service to the SIG, and we appreciate your help in keeping the SIG vibrant and helping us grow!

- Bill

 
 
Chair Update
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April 25, 2017

Greetings, SIG members!

I wanted to reach out to you to request your help and provide you with some information regarding the upcoming conference.

First of all, I wanted to remind you that the SIG business meeting this Saturday:
Sat, April 29, 6:30 to 8:00pm, Grand Hyatt San Antonio, Fourth Floor, Crockett D


We have held off on running our officer election for the upcoming year as we are seeking additional SIG members willing to serve the SIG. Therefore, in having a nice snack and drinks, getting to know your fellow SIG members, and discussing future plans for the SIG, it is of utmost importance to the continued viability of the SIG that we start to develop future leaders for the SIG. We will be recruiting as well as taking nominations for those willing to provide service. So please be sure to join us for the business meeting.

Secondly, I wanted to provide an overview of the SIG sessions:

Revisiting the Early Intervention Coaching Model: Are We Fully Empowering Caregivers?
Fri, April 28, 10:35am to 12:05pm, Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, Street Level, Stars at Night Ballroom 4

The Application of Systems Thinking in Education
Sun, April 30, 2:15 to 3:45pm, Grand Hyatt San Antonio, Third Floor, Bonham B
-Elementary Students Using Systems Thinking to Interrupt Modern-Day Slavery
-Gatekeeping Roles of District and School Leaders in Implementing Common Core System-Wide
-Principles for Personalized Instruction: Instructional Design Theory for a New Paradigm System of Education

Thank you for your support of the Systems Thinking in Education SIG, and we look forward to seeing all of you in San Antonio!

- Bill

 
 
Chair Update
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March 15, 2017

Hello, all. Just a reminder that there are only a few days left to nominate someone (including yourself) to run for an officer position with the AERA Systems Thinking in Education SIG. We are in need of people willing to serve the SIG.

We are seeking nominations for the following positions (each is a two year position):

  1. Chair-elect (serve as chair in second year)
  2. Program chair (serve as chair in second year)
  3. Secretary/Treasurer

In order to nominate yourself or someone else, please email me at brwatson@purdue.edu no later than noon Eastern Time on Friday, March 17th.

Thanks!

- Bill

 
 
Program Chair Update
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July 20, 2016

Dear Members of the AERA Systems Thinking SIG,

The deadline for AERA 2017 is looming. On behalf of the Systems Thinking in Education SIG, we invite you to send your proposals. The window closes this Friday, July 22nd.  

The AERA 2017 conference will be held in San Antonio, Texas (April 27-May 1). Please access the below link for the call: http://www.aera.net/SIG124/Annual-Meeting

We look forward to receiving your submissions.

Best wishes,
Miriam Ezzani on behalf of the SIG's Leadership Team

 
 
Program Chair Update
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June 24, 2016

Dear Systems Thinking in Education SIG Members,

Greetings!  Hope you're enjoying your summer.  

The AERA submission portal is now open and closes July 22nd before midnight.

We welcome you to submit a proposal to the Systems Thinking in Education SIG. Attached is the call for your review.  Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Best wishes always,

Miriam Ezzani on behalf of the 
Leadership Team of Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Webinar Opportunity
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February 3, 2016

AERA Systems Thinking SIG members,

The AECT Systems Thinking and Change Division would like to invite you to an upcoming free webinar on Thursday, February 11th, 1pm EST/10am PST, titled "Digital badging: Transforming education through personalized instruction."

Dr. William Watson will will examine the problems of education through a systems thinking lens and discuss how digital badges can play an important part in transforming education to a personalized, learning-focused paradigm. Access is not limited to AECT members. Please share with interested parties and register ahead of time. 

Register now at: https://cc.readytalk.com/cc/s/registrations/new?cid=yw7wlpiqgv83

Also, Dr. Watson will be continuing the discussion in the LinkedIn group that the AECT division and AERA SIG share. If you have not yet joined, please request to join now

An American Educational Research Association List If you need assistance with this list, please send an email to listadmin@aera.net

 
 
Chair Update
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January 4, 2016

This is a second notice for nominations for two SIG officer positions. Your service to the SIG is valued and needed! Please read the message below and consider volunteering to run for the SIG’s officer elections this year. 

The AERA Systems Thinking SIG is running an election for two positions: the SIG chair position, and the program Co-chair position, both of which have a two-year term. Please consider nominating yourself or another individual who would be good for these positions. 

To nominate yourself, please send an email to brwatson@purdue.edu with your:

  • Name
  • Office for which the nominee is running
  • Institutional Affiliation
  • Contact information (for our purposes only, not for inclusion on the ballot)
  • Biographical statement (250 words max)

Descriptions for each position are below:

The Chairs shall (a) serve as the responsible party for the general administration of the SIG, (b) ensure that the SIG Bylaws are followed, (c) act as liaison between the SIG and AERA and the SIG and the SIG Executive Committee, (d) delegate SIG duties among the appropriate officers, (e) advise the other officers in completing their duties, (f)  preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee and at the Annual Business Meeting, and (g) act as parliamentarian or shall appoint a SIG member to serve in that role for each meeting.  The Chair may appoint ad hoc committees as needed.  Unless otherwise specified in these Bylaws, the Chair of the SIG may appoint persons to assist officers, to chair committees, or to carry out other work of the SIG. 

The Program Co-Chairs shall be responsible for (a) promoting submissions to the SIG for the annual conference, (b) coordinating the peer review process of proposals, (c) communicating the SIG annual conference program to the SIG membership and to the greater AERA community, (d) publicizing and managing the annual awards competition, (e) determining and securing awards, (f) determining attendance at the Annual Meeting, (g) securing appropriate food in coordination with the SIG Executive Committee for the SIG’s Annual Business Meeting,  (h) training and integrating  the newly elected Program Co-Chair in the office’s duties, and (i) overseeing and enacting all other duties associated with the annual conference.

Nominations are due by January 8th (this week!). 

Thank you for considering this important service to the SIG!

Bill Watson
Co-Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Chair Update
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December 11, 2015

The AERA Systems Thinking SIG is running an election for the program Co-chair position, which has a two-year term. Please consider nominating yourself or another individual who would be good for the position. 

The Program Co-Chairs shall be responsible for (a) promoting submissions to the SIG for the annual conference, (b) coordinating the peer review process of proposals, (c) communicating the SIG annual conference program to the SIG membership and to the greater AERA community, (d) publicizing and managing the annual awards competition, (e) determining and securing awards, (f) determining attendance at the Annual Meeting, (g) securing appropriate food in coordination with the SIG Executive Committee for the SIG’s Annual Business Meeting,  (h) training and integrating  the newly elected Program Co-Chair in the office’s duties, and (i) overseeing and enacting all other duties associated with the annual conference.

Nominations are due by December 15th (this week!). Please send nominations to brwatson@purdue.edu.

Thank you for considering this important service to the SIG!

Bill Watson
Co-Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Networking Opportunity
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October 1, 2015

The organizers of this free event are primarily program evaluators, but the topic, systems thinking in evaluation, might be of interest to members, so I’m sharing this with the list:

The Systems in Evaluation Topical Interest Group of the American Evaluation Association will be hosting a Systems in Evaluation (Un)conference in October. This will be a virtual event held across 3 consecutive days, Oct. 13-15, from 3-4:30 pm Eastern time on each day.

What is an Unconference?

An unconference is a loosely structured meeting that emphasizes the informal, emergent exchange of ideas between participants rather than following a conventionally structured program of speakers and presenters. Join us online daily October 13-15, 2015 from 3-4:30 pm Eastern US time to learn and share with your colleagues in an informal virtual environment (MIT’s UnHangout). Build your knowledge and skills in systems evaluation without ever leaving the office!

How will the Unconference Work?

Participants will log on at the indicated time each day and, following a short welcome and orientation, either join a specific discussion topic in a virtual breakout room or create their own discussion topic and breakout group. Each breakout room is limited to 10 people total and include a facilitator to enhance discussion and engage learning.  If participants are not able to enter the breakout room of their choice they are encouraged to try another room or start a new breakout room topic.  Participants must have a Google account plus a reliable Internet connection and microphone; a webcam is also strongly suggested.   

What are the Discussion Topics? 

The current facilitated discussion topics include:
Incorporating a Systems Approach into Evaluation: Challenges and Strategies
Using a Soft Systems Approach in Systems Evaluation: Real-life Examples
Using a Developmental Evaluation Approach in Systems Evaluation: Real-life Examples
Using a Complex Adaptive Systems Approach in Systems Evaluation: Real-life Examples
Support for a Systems Approach in Systems Evaluation: Strategies for Promoting Buy-in
Defining and Distinguishing Systems Evaluation in Systems Evaluation: Where are the Boundaries?
Visualizing Complex Systems: Tools and Strategies
Approaches for Capturing High-level Systems Patterns and Outcomes
Identifying System Leverage Points: Helpful Approaches
Defining System Boundaries: Building Stakeholder Consensus
Addressing Causation in Systems Evaluation
The Role of Accountability in Systems Evaluation
The Link between Culturally Responsive Evaluation (CRE) and Systems-Oriented Evaluation (SOE)
PLUS emergent, participant-proposed sessions (participants will volunteer to facilitate these for themselves)

Not every topic will be offered every day; the final schedule will be determined by session popularity and facilitator availability.  If a particular breakout room is full participants are encouraged to try another room or start a new breakout room topic. Participants have the option of attending one, two, or all three days.

What if I’m Interested in a Topic Not on this List? 

The unconference format is unique in that it fosters the exchange of ideas between participants rather than following a conventionally structured program of speakers and presenters.  If you have a topic that you don’t see on the list above, we encourage you to form your own breakout group at the appropriate time.  All participants will receive instructions on how to do this during the Welcome and Orientation at the beginning of each day. 

How Do I Register? 

Registration is free but space will be limited. Go to http://www.systemsinevaluation.com/systems-unconference/systems-unconference-details/ for links and full details. To register, go to http://www.systemsinevaluation.com/systems-unconference-registration/ for a link to the registration site.

Jan Noga
Co-Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Leadership Team Update
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July 20, 2015

Hello, Systems Thinking in Education SIG members,

Just a quick reminder that submissions for the 2016 annual meeting are due this Wednesday, July 22nd, by 11:59 pm Pacific time. You must use the All Academic online system to submit. Go to the AERA website (http://www.aera.net/), log in, and then go to the Annual Meeting portal to submit your proposal. The system can get slow during the last 2 hours before the deadline, so don't wait until the last minute to upload your proposals. 

Thanks! We're looking forward to seeing you in Washington DC next spring!

Your SIG Leadership team

Bill Watson and Jan Noga, Co-Chairs
Miriam Ezzani, Program Chair
Sunny Lee Watson, Secretary-Treasurer
Chad Green, Webmaster

 
 
Chair Update
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July 13, 2015

Hello, Systems Thinking in Education SIG members!

Miriam is on vacation, so I'm covering program chair duties for the next two weeks.

This is just a quick reminder that the deadline for submitting proposals for the 2015 AERA Annual Meeting is only 10 days away. Proposals must be uploaded through the All Academic System by 11:59 pm Pacific time on Wednesday, July 22nd. Until then, any proposals already uploaded may still be edited. 

If you have already submitted a proposal - great! If you're on the fence, please do consider submitting. The SIG's conference allocation of sessions is determined by how many submissions we receive as a proportion of overall submissions across AERA, so more submissions gets us a larger allocation of sessions.

Regardless, we look forward to seeing you in Washington, DC next spring! If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me (jan.noga@alumni.stanford.edu) or any of our other officers.

Jan Noga
Co-Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Program Chair Update
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July 8, 2015

Dear Systems Thinking SIG Members,

Time is drawing near.  Attached please find the call to submit a proposal for the 2016 Annual AERA Meeting in Washington DC (April 8 - 12). 

The theme for the conference is Public Scholarship to Educate Diverse Democracies. Next year is AERA's centennial, and the theme has been developed to stimulate thinking about the role of public education in today's society as well as the role of research in strengthening public education. 

Please remember to calendar the following dates: 

July 22: Proposal deadline closes at 11:59 PM (Pacific Time)

Early November: acceptance/rejection emails go out from AERA
 
We'll continue to send updates and reminders. 
 
Best wishes always,

Miriam Ezzani, Program Chair 
Systems Thinking in Education SIG 
 
 
Leadership Team Update
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May 7, 2015

Hello, Systems Thinking SIG members,

We have several items to share with you in this message:

  1. Announcing the 2015-2016 leadership team
  2. Deadline reminder for volunteers to review proposals 
  3. 2016 Annual Meeting and critical dates related to the conference submission process

2015-2016 SIG LEADERSHIP TEAM

Our 2015-2016 leadership team has not changed much from last year with the exception of adding Miriam Ezzani as our second program co-chair. Here is our team for the coming year:

  • Lead SIG Chair: Bill Watson, Purdue University (term ends 2017)
  • SIG Co-Chair: Jan Noga, Pathfinder Evaluation and Consulting (term ends 2016)
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Sunnie Lee Watson (term ends 2017)
  • Lead Program Co-Chair: Miriam Ezzani, University of North Texas (term ends 2017)
  • Program Co-Chair: Anthony Chow, University of North Carolina-Greensboro (term ends 2016)
  • Webmaster: Chad Green (term ends 2016)

Later this summer, we will be putting out a call for nominations to fill three positions with terms ending in 2016: SIG Co-Chair, Program Co-Chair, and Webmaster. Our slate of nominees goes to AERA in the early fall with elections in winter of 2016. Terms of office start the day after that year's annual meeting and run for 2 years. Watch for further details from Sunnie Watson about volunteering to run for one of these positions later this summer. 

DEADLINE REMINDER: VOLUNTEER REVIEWERS

We also wanted to send out a reminder to those of you who are interested in reviewing proposals for the 2016 annual meeting. If you have not yet signed up, you can do so through the AERA website. The deadline to sign up for proposal review is this coming Monday, May 11th. 

2016 ANNUAL MEETING AND RELATED CRITICAL DATES

And, finally, we wanted to encourage you to submit a proposal for the 2016 Annual Meeting in Washington DC next April. The theme for the conference is Public Scholarship to Educate Diverse Democracies. Next year is AERA's centennial, and the theme has been developed to stimulate thinking about the role of public education in today's society as well as the role of research in strengthening public education. Session allocations are based on the number of proposals we receive as a proportion of overall submissions, so the more submissions, the more sessions we receive for our conference allocation.

Critical dates for the annual meeting:

  • Late May/early June: AERA call for proposals issued
  • Mid July: proposals due
  • Early November: acceptance/rejection emails go out from AERA

Watch for updates and reminders over the coming months from Miriam Ezzani, lead program co-chair.

Thanks!

Your Systems Thinking in Education SIG leadership team

Bill Watson and Jan Noga, Co-chairs
Sunnie Lee Watson, Secretary/Treasurer
Miriam Ezzani and Anthony Chow, Program co-chairs
Chad Green, Webmaster

 
 
Chair Update
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March 14, 2015

Greetings, Systems Thinking SIG members! 

I wanted to remind you all of our upcoming meetings at this year’s conference. Our business meeting will take place on Saturday, April 18th at 6:30pm in the Marriott on the 4th level in the Sheffield room. Please be sure to attend so that we can meet all of you and work together to continue to grow our SIG. I look forward to speaking with you then. 

This year we have a roundtable session on Sat, April 18, 2:45 to 4:15pm, Hyatt, East Tower - Purple Level, Riverside West with three different papers. 

On Sunday, we have a symposium of four papers: Unpacking Systems Capacity Through SWIFT Schools: Building Coherence, Sun, April 19, 8:15 to 9:45am, Marriott, Fourth Level, Addison.

We also have a paper session with four papers: Systems Thinking in Individual-, School-, and District-Level Change, Innovation, and Policy, Sun, April 19, 4:05 to 6:05pm, Marriott, Fourth Level, Clark

We are a little more than a month away. I look forward to seeing all of you at the business meeting!

Bill Watson, Co-Chair 
Systems Thinking in Education SIG 

 
 
Chair Update
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October 15, 2014

Hello, Systems Thinking SIG members - 

I hope you are all doing well! 

Annual elections for AERA governance, divisions, and SIGs will start in January, 2015. The Systems Thinking in Education SIG is soliciting nominations for the following leadership positions:

  • SIG co-chair
  • Program co-chair 
  • Secretary/Treasurer 

If you are interested in running for one of these positions, or wish to nominate someone to run, please submit your nominations NO LATER THAN NOVEMBER 10th to me by email (sunnieleewatson@purdue.edu). Nominations must include the following information:

  • Name
  • Office for which the nominee is running
  • Institutional Affiliation
  • Contact information (for our purposes only, not for inclusion on the ballot)
  • Biographical statement (250 words max)

AERA election guidelines require a minimum of two nominees for each position on the ballot. Please consider throwing your hat in the ring.

Thanks! 

Sunnie Lee Watson, Co-Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

 
 
Leadership Team Update
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July 22, 2014

Hello Systems Thinking SIG members,

Just a reminder that today is the last day to submit proposals for the 2015 Annual Meeting in Chicago. Please do consider submitting your work to the Systems Thinking in Education SIG. We'd love to be able to offer a full program of sessions next spring but our allocation will depend on how many submissions we receive. We are interested in exploring the boundaries of theory, research, and practice in the field of systems thinking in education and encourage a range of submissions. Don't have a completed research project to share but have been thinking about how to integrate systems thinking into educational change efforts? We're interested! Have an implementation conundrum and want an opportunity to lay it out and explore possible solutions with an informed audience? We're interested in that as well! As a SIG, we are working to encourage submissions that do not just focus on research successes but that also pose questions, share problematic issues, and encourage us all to stretch our minds and think.

So, please consider submitting those proposals of yours to the Systems Thinking SIG. The submission system closes at 11:59 pm Pacific Daylight Time. Looking forward to an interesting program next spring!

Sincerely,

Bill Watson, Jan Noga, Sunnie Watson, Anthony Chow, Chad Green, Eugene Kowch, and Beth Rajan Sockman

Your Systems Thinking in Education SIG leadership team

 
 
Program Chair Update
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June 3, 2014

Dear colleagues,

Hard to believe it is that time again. 

We need your voices, your ideas, your research, your leadership and vision to help make this year's AERA 2015 conference in Chicago (Thursday, April 16 - Monday, April 20, 2015) a success.

Does systems thinking have a role to play in the continuous improvement of American schools? 

What are the end goals schools are trying to accomplish? Is it really high test scores? Does systems thinking have a role to play in effective technology integration for quality 21st century education? 

If you find these questions intriguing then please consider helping us ponder them by submitting a proposal to our SIG.

Attached please find our SIG's call for proposals and AERA's 2015 submission guidelines.

The submission deadline is July 22 at 11:59 p.m. PST or 2:59 a.m. EST. We will be conducting triple blind reviews for each proposal.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thank you.

Anthony Chow, Program Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG

p.s. I will be submitting a theoretical proposal and comprehensive literature review on the use of systems thinking and the prevention of bullying in US schools. Let me know if anyone is interested in collaborating with me. Isn't healthy human development in adolescence on par with or even more important than academic success? What do you do with bullies?

p.s.s. Systemic Change division's website on the role of systems thinking in education (an AECT division).

 
 
Leadership Team Update
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April 1, 2014

Dear Systems Thinking in Education SIG Members,

AERA is almost upon us! For those of you joining us in Philadelphia, please do plan to join us for the SIG events we’ve planned for this year’s annual meeting. But, first, we’d like to share our work priority for the SIG in this coming year:

SIG Priority for 2014-2015: Creating a Community of Practice in Systems Thinking

A priority for the Systems Thinking in Education SIG for 2014 is the promotion of opportunities for shared learning and professional connection among SIG members to advance knowledge of systems theory and the application of systems thinking and systems approaches to educational research, design, and practice.

To that end, we have specifically developed this year’s SIG program to provide opportunities for members to engage in thinking and discussion around issues pertaining to the development and use of methodological frameworks based on systems thinking that can enable researchers and practitioners to study educational change and reform efforts across time and multiple contexts.

In particular, we have structured our Saturday invited session, as well as the business meeting, as facilitated discussions focused on eliciting your thoughts and ideas about the role of systems thinking in shaping educational research and practice in the 21st century and the role of the SIG in supporting your work. Our goal is to use the expressed ideas and concerns shared during the conference as a basis for developing targeted opportunities that will be sponsored by the SIG and that will provide opportunities for SIG members to connect and work together between annual meetings.

Here are the sessions we’ve planned for you this year:

Saturday, April 5th

Session 49.090
Special Invited Session: "When Evidence-Based Meets Reality: The Role of Systems Thinking in Educational Research and Practice in the 21st Century"
2:45-4:15 pm, Marriott, Fourth Level, Franklin 7
http://tinyurl.com/lznodwp

Featuring: Royce Holladay of the Human Systems Dynamics Institute and Leslie Patterson from the University of North Texas

Join us for a lively discussion using Adaptive Action techniques to explore the role of systems thinking in educational change and reform initiatives (see link to attached handout at the end of this message). Using the move to Common Core as a starting point, Dr. Holladay and Dr. Patterson will challenge participants to explore how systems thinking can be integrated into research and practice to better understand complex relationships, explore interconnections, seek out influential points of influence for leveraging change, and surface the multiple perspectives that shape the systems we work in. View the handout for this session.

Session 51.055
Systems Thinking in Education SIG Business Meeting: “What Now? Exploring Future Directions for Systems Thinking in Educational Research and Practice”
6:30 to 8:00pm, Marriott, Fourth Level, Franklin 11
http://tinyurl.com/kmouryx

Featuring: Royce Holladay of the Human Systems Dynamics Institute and Leslie Patterson from the University of North Texas

During last year’s business meeting, we discussed the SIG – what is our focus, who are our members, what is our fight? Facilitated by Dr. Holladay and Dr. Patterson, we’ll continue this conversation exploring how the SIG and its members can engage in promoting systems thinking as a critical paradigm for engaging in research and program design in education and what the SIG can do to provide opportunities for shared learning and professional connection among SIG members outside the annual meeting. One possibility: designing a SIG-sponsored research conference to be held during 2015.

Sunday, April 6th

Session 59.082
Paper Session: “Systems Thinking as a Paradigm for Understanding Teaching and Learning”
12:25 to 1:55pm, Marriott, Fourth Level, 415
http://tinyurl.com/k9y7jkg

The three papers being presented apply the lens of systems thinking to understanding the dynamics of teaching and learning in three diverse contexts: clinical reasoning in therapeutic practice, STEM workforce development, and cognitive processes of classroom teaching.

Thank you for your support over this past year. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible in Philadelphia!

Sincerely,

Your Systems Thinking in Education SIG leadership team 

Bill Watson, Co-Chair
Purdue University

Jan Noga, Co-Chair
Pathfinder Evaluation and Consulting

Sunny Watson, Secretary
Purdue University

Kathleen Crowley, Program Chair
George Washington University

Chad Green, Webmaster
Loudon County (VA) Public Schools

 
 
Leadership Team Update
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December 5, 2013

Greetings SIG members!

It's a busy time for all of us - holidays of all sorts, end of term exams for those of you in higher ed, end of year reports for some, and, last but not least, the slowly waning daylight as we get closer to the end of the year. In the midst of all this excitement, we do want to encourage those of you interested in running for SIG office to get your nominations to Sunnie Watson by the end of this coming weekend (December 8th). We need to have nominations in to AERA by December 15th if we are going to be able to make the general AERA election ballot that goes out in early 2014. 

To recap, here are the officer positions that are open:

  • SIG co-chair
  • Program co-chair (full term)
  • Program co-chair (partial term, to fill vacancy)

Terms are for two years with the exception of the program co-chair partial term which is one year. 

If you are interested in running for one of these positions, or wish to nominate someone to run, please submit your nominations NO LATER THAN DECEMBER 8 to Sunnie Watson, SIG secretary by email (watson82@purdue.edu). Nominations must include the following information:

  • Name
  • Office for which the nominee is running
  • Institutional Affiliation
  • Contact information (for our purposes only, not for inclusion on the ballot)
  • Biographical statement (250 words max)

AERA election guidelines require a minimum of two nominees for each position on the ballot. Please do consider throwing your hat in the ring!

Sincerely,

Your SIG leadership team

Bill Watson, SIG co-chair (brwatson@purdue.edu)
Jan Noga, SIG co-chair (jan.noga@alumni.stanford.edu)
Sunnie Watson, SIG secretary (watson82@purdue.edu)

Kathleen Crowley, SIG program chair (kmc67@gwmail.gwu.edu)
Chad Green, SIG webmaster (chad.green@lcps.org)

 
 
Leadership Team Update
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November 14, 2013

Greetings SIG members!


Welcome to the first of what we is planned to become a series of regular monthly updates on events and other matters of interest to SIG members. There's no set format as of yet, so we encourage suggestions for content and, most definitely, contributions. These could come in the form of: (a) interesting/useful information, resources, or articles for sharing with members, (b) position listings or other opportunities you are aware of, (c) thought questions to pose to members (we'll even publish responses in succeeding updates), and (d) events, conferences, or other interesting activities that are coming up. This isn't an exhaustive list - we're very open to suggestions and contributions from any of our SIG members. 


You can send your comments, suggestions, and contributions to Jan Noga (Jan.Noga@alumni.stanford.edu), one of our SIG's current co-chairs.

We have two main items of interest for this inaugural update:

  1. Program update for SIG-sponsored sessions for the upcoming Annual Meeting
  2. Call for nominations for officers
  3. SIG initiatives in the works

PROGRAM UPDATE FOR 2014 ANNUAL MEETING

The 2014 Annual Meeting will be held in Philadelphia from April 3-7, 2014. The theme is "The Power of Education Research for Innovation in Practice and Policy". The primary site of the Annual Meeting is the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The headquarter hotels where sessions will be held are the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Courtyard Philadelphia Downtown, and Loews Philadelphia. 

AERA sent out notices of submission acceptance/rejection earlier this month. If you submitted a proposal to our SIG, or to any other division or SIG, and have not received official notification, you may want to contact AERA (annualmtg@AERA.net) to find out the status of your submission.

Submissions were down across the board this year, and our SIG was no exception. We received a record low in terms of number of submissions, so few that we were not able to fill our entire allocation. Although specific schedule details won't be known until the release of the program in early February, we can tell you the SIG will be sponsoring 2 full sessions plus our business meeting in Philadelphia.

Our paper session is titled "Systems Thinking as a Paradigm for Understanding Teaching and Learning". It's focus is on the use of systems thinking as a means to better understand processes of teaching and learning across different perspectives and learning contexts and will feature 3 papers plus a discussant.

Our invited session was created to reflect the conference theme with specific application for the role of systems thinking in educational research, practice, and policy. The session is titled "When Evidence-Based Meets Reality: The Role of Systems Thinking in Educational Research and Practice in the 21st Century". The intent of this session is to provide an opportunity for SIG members and other interested attendees to engage in a facilitated discussion around the the role of systems thinking for promoting innovation in educational research, practice, and policy. The session will be facilitated by Royce Holladay of the Human Systems Dynamics Institute in Minnesota and Leslie Patterson from the College of Education at the University of North Texas. Our goal for this session is to explore and articulate the role of systems thinking in the field and to identify steps that the SIG and that we, as individual systems thinkers, can take to move forward. Two ideas that we would like the SIG to explore include: (1) how to begin building a community of practice focused on systems thinking, and (2) developing a proposal for a SIG-sponsored research/working conference.

The business meeting will continue the work started in the invited session (we hope - the scheduling request has been made). The meeting will include a facilitated discussion to build from the discussions during last year's business meeting as well as those from the invited session. Using principles drawn from Adaptive Action, Royce Holladay of the HSD Institute and Leslie Patterson of the University of North Texas will lead us in exploring how the SIG and its members can engage in promoting systems thinking as a critical paradigm for engaging in research and program design in education. We would like to use the results of this discussion as a basis for designing a SIG-sponsored research conference and for building a community of practice around systems thinking.

CALL FOR NOMINATIONS FOR OFFICERS: NOMINATIONS DUE NOVEMBER 30, 2013

Annual elections for AERA governance, divisions, and SIGs will start January 15, 2014. The Systems Thinking in Education SIG is soliciting nominations for the following leadership positions:

  • SIG co-chair
  • Program co-chair (full term)
  • Program co-chair (partial term, to fill vacancy)

We have recently amended the SIG by-laws to expand officer terms to two years, with co-chairs being elected in alternate years. This will help to ensure greater continuity from year to year. Due to an unfilled vacancy from last year, we currently have two program positions open - one for the full term of two years and one for a partial term of one year. New leadership team members take office immediately following the annual meeting.

If you are interested in running for one of these positions, or wish to nominate someone to run, please submit your nominations NO LATER THAN NOVEMBER 30 to Sunnie Watson, SIG secretary by email (watson82@purdue.edu). Nominations must include the following information:

  • Name
  • Office for which the nominee is running
  • Institutional Affiliation
  • Contact information (for our purposes only, not for inclusion on the ballot)
  • Biographical statement (250 words max)

AERA election guidelines require a minimum of two nominees for each position on the ballot. Please do consider throwing your hat in the ring!

SIG INITIATIVES IN THE WORKS

The SIG is at a crossroads. By last April, membership had fallen to a low of 89, although we've seen an uptick during the fall membership renewal season. Currently, the SIG has 127 members. But, we need to begin to strategize how to continue that growth and how to bring new researchers and practitioners into the systems thinking fold. In the December update, we'll include a report on the discussion that occurred during the 2013 SIG business meeting in San Francisco.

A critical priority this year is to provide opportunities for member input and participation as we plan ways for the SIG to serve as both a community hub and a support for our members. We hope you will plan to attend the annual meeting in Philadelphia and participate in our discussions. But, we also understand that conference travel is getting more difficult as budgets tighten. Over the next month or so, the leadership team will begin to explore avenues for participation and continuing discussion that do  not rely on being present at the conference each year. We want to make sure member voices are heard as we strategize how to move the SIG forward. And, please, feel free to share your reactions, ideas, and suggestions any time. For now, send your thoughts via email to Jan Noga (jan.noga@alumni.stanford.edu). Soon, we'll begin providing more ways to interact as a community starting with a LinkedIn group - watch for the invitation and link to the group coming soon.

That's our update for this month. We'll be back with more in December. Until then, please, don't hesitate to contact any of us with ideas, thoughts, comments, questions, or offers of assistance. We'd love to hear from you.

Your SIG leadership team

Bill Watson, SIG co-chair (brwatson@purdue.edu)
Jan Noga, SIG co-chair (jan.noga@alumni.stanford.edu)
Sunnie Watson, SIG secretary (watson82@purdue.edu)

Kathleen Crowley, SIG program chair (kmc67@gwmail.gwu.edu)
Chad Green, SIG webmaster (chad.green@lcps.org)

Coming in December:

  • Report on 2013 SIG business meeting in San Francisco
  • SIG by-laws for review and comment
  • Slate of nominees for 2014 elections
 
 
Chair Update
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July 24, 2012

The election results have been finalized and you can see the results under “Who We Are” (to the left). The new team is already busily preparing for the 2013 meeting in San Francisco, open to ideas and moving along with incremental steps to change the site and whatever else needs tweaking. Our intent is to provide useful content and ideas here including useful resources and links related to systemic thinking and its applications. Check back often and contact any of the team with your suggestions, ideas, donations...

Blane Després, Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG
 
 
Program Chair Update
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June 27, 2012

First, apologies for the silence. We ran into some transition issues between the old team and the new team you just elected that resulted in no one having access to the list serve after the Annual Meeting. We've fixed that and I will be the transition contact for the next couple of weeks until the new leadership team is in place and set up for managing the SIG. So, some updates:

SIG Elections

May as well go with the big one first. As you are probably aware, our elections occurred very late in the process. AERA is very insistent that we have two individuals nominated for each open position. That did not happen, so we were required to go through additional steps in the process to receive approval to have a write-in option as second candidate for chair and secretary before AERA would run our election. Voting closed last Friday, June 22nd. It will take a week or two for AERA to certify the new officers, so I will be serving a transition role until then.

2012 Vancouver Meeting

We had a great slate of sessions this year. We were allotted two full sessions, two roundtable sessions, a poster session, and our business meeting. The two sessions were both symposia: one featuring the efforts by the Waters Foundation to create systems-based schools with systems thinking integrated into both school organization as well as the learning curriculum; the other a coordinated set of presentations on the use of game theory and its integration into instructional design models, including Quest to Learn in New York City. The two roundtable sessions were lively and engaging with one focused on practical applications of systems thinking to classroom learning and the other focused on systems thinking frameworks for thinking about education. Lance Vikaros delivered the keynote for the business meeting, presenting his paper on using knowledge visualization to better understand how students engage in systems thinking. I've attached a brief program report to this message is you're interested in the specific stats for this year.

2013 San Francisco Meeting

By now you should have received a reminder from us to consider submitting a proposal for the 2013 meeting in San Francisco. The theme for 2013 is Education and Poverty: Theory, Research, Policy, and Praxis. This is an ideal theme for those of us engaged in systems and systems thinking. The interaction between poverty and educational achievement as well as attainment has critical implications for children and for our future. Those of you engaged in school improvement efforts are well aware of the importance of context in implementing turnaround, transformation, or improvement efforts. We'd love to see some submissions that address the role of a systems perspective in addressing school improvement, student achievement, and educational attainment. Submissions are due July 22. Midnight, Pacific Time, is the witching hour, so get your laptops revved up and get those submissions coming in. Conference sessions are allocated based on the number of submission each unit receives as a proportion of the overall number of submissions that come into AERA. Over the past three years, we've been able to increase our allotment each year - thank you all! So, let's keep growing our presence on the program.

Membership

For the past two years, membership has hovered between 108 and 130. That is down from three years ago when we had 215 members. A large part of the drop is linked to people letting their AERA membership lapse. Let's see what we can do to build our membership back up. Spread the word about the SIG, encourage people to go to San Francisco and to go to SIG sessions as well as the business meeting. Get people involved in systems thinking. It's a much bigger field than just examining systems - there's a wealth of possibilities for using systems paradigms in research, evaluation, and practice. So, let's work to grow this year, both in level of submissions as well as membership. And, please, if you attend AERA in 2013, do make a commitment to attend the business meeting and SIG sessions. Some great networking conversations came out of all our sessions this past year - we'd love to see you involved in those conversations next year.

That's our update for now. As your outgoing program chairs, we have enjoyed working to build the SIG and look forward to supporting the new leadership team as they come on board.

Jan Noga and Gary Skolits
Program Co-Chairs
Systems Thinking in Education SIG
 
 
Chair Update
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April 9, 2012

I trust this message finds each of you well and ready for AERA 2012 in Vancouver. In preparation for the conference please remember that you will need a passport to enter Canada and return to your home country, and if you haven't already done so you will need to check with your cell phone provider to negotiate a short term contract for use of your cell phone out of country. Check the weather for conditions. For those of us living in more temperate climates the weather in Vancouver may be a bit cooler, don't forget to pack warm clothes.

Our SIG Business meeting is scheduled for Sunday, April 15, 6:15-7:45 p.m. in the Sheraton Wall Centre, Fourth Level - South Galiano. Please plan to attend. In addition to a short business meeting Lance Steven Vikaros (Teachers College, Columbia University) will present "Using Knowledge Visualization to Understand and Assess Systems Thinking." This should be a very important and timely topic for the SIG membership.

As an update on the SIG election, I have worked with AERA Membership, Constituent Relations, and Governance office concerning our SIG ballot. We had only one candidate each for the SIG Chair and Secretary/Treasurer offices. I was instructed to secure additional candidates, rather having our elections in the first round. As you know, the SIG was contacted asking for additional candidates late fall 2011 with the advice of AERA Membership, Constituent Relations, and Governance office that we would participate in the March 2012 special election. Unfortunately we did not secure additional candidates for either position in time for the March special election. I have since uploaded our SIG ballot for a second special election in May 2012. We currently have three for the Program Co-chair position. I would ask that SIG members consider nominating additional candidates for the SIG Chair and Secretary/Treasurer offices.

As well, I have worked with an attorney on retainer for AERA, who is responsible for reviewing all SIG bylaws for AERA. I have worked with the attorney for the past seven months, reviewing his edits and responding to his queries, and the bylaws are now awaiting approval by AERA. This has been a long process and my understanding is that once approved, then the SIG can move forward with revisions/additions to the bylaws as need arises. Upon my query concerning changing bylaws at this time, I was informed that it would be problematic and that waiting until the SIG bylaws were approved was the recommendation at this time.

I look forward to seeing each of you at AERA. Safe travels to Vancouver.

Take care and be well,

Patrick Jenlink, Chair
Systems Thinking in Education SIG
 
 
Program Chair Update
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April 9, 2012

As you prepare to travel to Vancouver, we wanted to share the schedule of SIG-sponsored sessions happening this year. Symposia, roundtables, and the business meeting will take place at the Sheraton Wall Centre. Poster sessions take place at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

Temperatures are expected to be in the low to mid 50s each day with nightime temps in the low to mid 40s, so you'll want to bring something to keep you warm. There is a 20-50% of showers most day - might want to include an umbrella or raincoat on your packing list.

I know you've all seen the reminders for US citizens to bring their passports. But, did you know that you also need to allow enough time prior to your return flight home to go through customs? Most airlines flying into the US will have you go through customs in the Vancouver airport rather than your destination airport, so be sure to leave adequate time when heading out to the airport after the conference (15-20 minutes for customs is usually adequate).

We also want to encourage you to attend our SIG business meeting on Sunday, April 15th, from 6:15-7:45 in South Galiano, on the Fourth Level of the Sheraton Wall Centre. We will have veggies, dip, tea sandwiches, plus wine, coffee, and water, available during the meeting. Following a short business meeting and update by our chair, Patrick Jenlink, we will have a keynote presentation by Lance Vikaros of Teachers College. His presentation is titled "Using Knowledge Visualization to Understand and Assess Systems Thinking."

We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible in Vancouver. For those of you not making the trip this year, we will miss you and hope to see you next year in San Francisco!

Cheers!

Jan Noga and Gary Skolits
Program Co-Chairs
AERA Systems Thinking in Education SIG
 
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