Congratulations to Honors Program students and Chellgren Fellow for authoring scholarly publications with UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center

Stacie Williams

Stacie Williams

On Thursday, April 16th from 3-4:30 p.m. the University of Kentucky Libraries Special Collections Research Center will be celebrating the results of four undergraduate researcher’s projects in their Learning Lab internship program. Stacie Williams, Learning Lab Manager and Honors Program instructor, started up this important program two years ago. It has served as a powerful way to engage students in experiential education as well as to combine their academic work from traditional classroom settings with service-learning projects that will benefit the community for years to come.

We here in UGE are proud to see that two of the four interns are part of our Academy for Undergraduate Excellence programs:

  • Ann Baillie

    Ann Baillie

    Ann Baillie, a rising junior and English major, is a Honors Program student currently enrolled in the HON 395 independent study course taught by Stacie Williams.

    Baillie’s project for the Learning Lab internship was to process the “Cakes & Ale Club” records, a collection from the Club’s founder, the Lexington lawyer Judge Samuel M. Wilson. Wilson was a great supporter of Lexington Public Library and the Kentucky Historical Society. Baillie has written an article about her experiences that has been reviewed and accepted for publication in The Reading Room by summer 2015.

  • Faith vanMeter

    Faith vanMeter

    Faith vanMeter, a rising senior majoring in psychology and piano performance, is an Honors Program student as well as having served as a Chellgren Fellow. Her research project as a Fellow last year was a study on correlations between substance abuse, socio-economic status and child abuse, and she was mentored by Dr. Peggy Keller of the Department of Psychology.

    vanMeter’s work in the Learning Lab was to compile primary sources that document the history of the U.S. Public Health Service Hospital here in Lexington known as the “U.S. Narcotic Farm.” Founded in 1935 to serve “volunteer” patients for experimental treatments for drug and alcohol abuse, the institution became a federal prison in 1974 but kept its “psychiatric hospital” title until 1998. vanMeter’s scholarly product as a result of this work will be a poster presentation at the 2015 Kentucky Library Association Conference in September in Louisville.

This kind of connection between the UGE’s Academy for Undergraduate Excellence, internships in the University’s laboratories (whether for the bench sciences or, as in this case, for the humanities and social sciences), and scholarly publications is an important one for UK student success. Congratulations to the faculty and staff who advised and mentored these students as they contributed to the “wealth” in the knowledge society of our Commonwealth.

See also Whitney Hale’s article in UKNow (April 15, 2015).

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Grant to support research assistant salaries in clinical & basic sciences – hire an undergraduate!

We just got a notice that the application deadline for the FY 14-15 UK Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) Small Grant Funding Program has been extended to May 7, 2015. Here’s a great way for UK faculty to help support undergraduate research – up to $5000 of a total of $10,000 award may be used for research support (including research assistant salaries) critical to completion of a project in the clinical and basic sciences.

If you have any doubts about whether or not undergraduate students can serve as your research assistant, rest assured! There are plenty of great undergraduates who are conducting independent study research with faculty mentors and are looking for new projects now that the semester is coming to an end. Check with UGE’s Office of Undergraduate Research to ask about the students who are registered there and looking for research projects.

The application is online at the CCTS website ( and requires a 2 page, single-spaced summary of the proposal describing the study and expected outcomes in terns of next steps based on the data obtained (they prefer proposals from those who are working to get preliminary data for an extramural grant submission).

Note that the CCTS Small Grants Program is a rolling submission format. Proposals are accepted year-round; submissions are reviewed and awards made on an ongoing basis.


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New Questions for the Teacher and Course Evaluations (TCEs) for the University of Kentucky

At the University Senate meeting on March 9, 2015, the Faculty of the University of Kentucky approved the recommendations of the ad hoc Committee on Teacher-Course Evaluations. The members of the committee were:

  • Dr. Kelly Bradley (Department of Educational Policy Studies & Evaluation, College of Education)
  • Dr. Ben Braun (Department of Mathematics, College of Arts & Sciences)
  • Dr. Alan Brown (Department of Hispanic Studies, College of Arts & Sciences)
  • Ms. Beth Ettensohn (School of Art & Visual Studies, College of Fine Arts)
  • Dr. David Fardo (Department of Biostatistics, College of Public Health)
  • Dr. Jonathan Golding (Department of Psychology, College of Arts & Sciences), Chair
  • Dr. Peter Mirabito (Department of Biology, College of Arts & Sciences)
  • Ms. Tara Rose (Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Director of Assessment)
  • Dr. Roger P. Sugarman (Office of Analytics and Technologies, Director of Institutional Research)

The committee had found that there was a lack of university-wide support for the current Teacher and Course Evaluation (TCE) form. The last time the Senate had reviewed the TCE form was in the early 1990s. Since then many colleges and departments/programs had used their own evaluation measures. The Senate’s ad hoc committee began meeting during the spring of 2014. They had been charged to review and propose a revised evaluation form that would include 18 items evaluating course content (to be approved by Senate) and instructor performance (to be approved by the Provost). In addition, the committee would assess college-specific practices and assure that the form would be universally accepted and/or offers the opportunity for units to customize their own evaluation form more in keeping with their unit’s assessment needs. This model, according to the report,

“allows UK to  have a common instrument that addresses issues related to students’ perceptions of the quality of the course and corresponding instruction. In addition, it ensures that all units and faculty members can assess the quality of the pedagogy within their discipline.” (2)

The committee put forward to the Senate that the new TCE form would include three levels of questions:

  1. limited number of common rating and open-ended questions that can be answered by students in all units;
  2. additional specific questions developed and asked by each unit; and,
  3. additional specific questions developed and asked by individual faculty members.

The committee’s recommended common questions for the new TCEs read as follows (from the report’s Appendix A):

Appendix A of the Ad Hoc Committee ReportIn regards to the reporting out of TCEs, the committee recommended that the new TCE form should include the total enrolled in a course being evaluated. In addition, the report will include the response count, median score, mean score, and bar graphs showing the distribution of ratings across the 5-point scale of the answers.

The University Senate agreed to:

  1. accept the Committee’s report from November 2014 – download the full Report of the UK Senate Teaching Evaluation Ad Hoc Committee (November 2014) here;
  2. endorse the mandate that the questions put forward by the Committee will be the common questions that all programs will use on their Teacher-Course Evaluations (with exceptions made for courses with certain characteristics); and,
  3. the use of the new common questions be made effective as soon as practically possible.

For more information about the new TCEs, contact Dr. Roger Sugarman, Director of Institutional Research in the Office of UK Analytics & Technologies; or Ms. Tara Rose, Director of Assessment in the Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

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Human Rights in China – a panel discussion sponsored by UK International Center

On Thursday, April 16th at 4 p.m. in the auditorium of the W.T.Young Library, the UK International Center is sponsoring a panel discussion on human rights in China. Dr. Susan Carvalho, Associate Provost for Internationalization and Interim Associate Provost and Dean of the Graduate School, will moderate the panel. The panelists are:

Jianjun He, Assistant Professor of Chinese Studies in the College of Arts & Sciences Jianjun He
Douglas Janoff, a senior Canadian Foreign Service officer currently on sabbatical to serve as Diplomat-in-Residence in the Patterson School of Diplomacy
Tom Janoski, Professor of Sociology in the College of Arts & Sciences and Director of the Quantitative Initiative in the Policy and Social Science

Amnesty International has documented many issues regarding China’s human rights violations – freedom of expression, detention without trial, and the death penalty (even for non-violent crimes) – naming China the “leading executioner in the world.”

All faculty teaching UK Core courses in the Global Dynamics content area have been notified so they can invite their students to attend. Please offer your students and colleagues this important opportunity for exploring issues regarding human rights in a global context. You can download a flyer (.pdf file) here.

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Two student leaders coordinating next fall’s K-Week come from eastern Kentucky and UGE

UKPR recently uploaded a video, “UK’s 2015 K Crew Coordinators” featuring two students from eastern Kentucky who are taking a leadership role in coordinating the K-Week 2015 events and the K-Crews: Kaci Smith and Martin Jones.

Smith is from Bell County – she had started out at UK in UGE’s Undergraduate Studies and now is excelling as a major in the College of Education focusing in Secondary Ed – English Education. She is very gifted academically, however as you can hear from her in the interview, she was thinking she wouldn’t return to UK after her first semester. She did come back and got involved. Smith provides a powerful role model for many new students who are not sure if they can make it through to graduation, and she gives us all a valuable insight on what it takes to succeed at UK.

Jones is from Corbin. He came to UK with some college courses (from the Dual Credit program at Eastern KY University) already under his belt and made it through the competitive process to be admitted into the UK Honors Program. He has now found his academic home in the Gatton College of Business & Economics as an Economics major and he is also pursuing an English minor in the College of Arts & Sciences. He states in his interview that it was his K-Crew leader who provided that important first semester’s connection into student life at UK. He’s taking on this leadership role to make sure others new to UK will gain from this important type of social “glue” that helps make UK a good fit for them.

Congratulations to these great students for taking on this leadership role in making K-Week a success ~ and we hope that the UK community will review their contributions to the K-Week 2015 programming with the understanding that this is a crucial time for retaining our new students in the long-term and helping to make sure they graduate on time.


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UK Wildcat Cost Calculator – a new tool to help build our students’ financial literacy skills

See Blue.UDon Witt, Associate Provost for Enrollment Management, recently announced the release of a new open, online tool to help our students, their families and us as their champions for student success at UK.

How much does it cost for any one student to attend UK? This is what the new tool is helping us all to understand in one step – rather than try and combine the information from the different charts of tuition and fees that typically show up on your students’ UK account statements. This first iteration of the new “UK Wildcat Cost Calculator” – – is geared toward the prospective undergraduate who would be identified as first-time attending UK.

First, the prospective student needs to answer the defining questions on the left-hand column of the page:

  • Semester: Which semester would you like to calculate for?
  • Residency: Do you live in or out of state?
  • Credit Hours: Will You Enroll Part-time or Full-time? (Undergraduate students enrolled in 12 credit hours or more per semester are considered full-time.)
  • Housing: Will you be living on campus? (If you will not be living on campus, this calculator will estimate rental housing expenses.) Do you plan on having a roomate? Which hall do you intend on living in?
  • Meals: Do you plan to choose an on-campus Dining Plan? (If you do not choose an on-campus dining plan, estimated food and grocery expenses will be calculated.) Which Meal Plan do you plan to purchase?

Example of a Wildcat Cost Calculator for Prospective StudentsHere’s an example (to the right – click on the image to make it larger) of the Wildcat Cost Calculator results for a student who answered the following: Fall semester, Kentucky residency, Full-time enrollment, On-Campus Housing with a roommate in Blanding, Meal Plan of “Minimum 7.”

There are a few caveats listed underneath the calculator that should be highlighted to students as you walk through it with them. The heavy cost of textbooks and required materials that are chosen by the faculty of each class are not a part of the cost indicated here – even though these costs can be found in the student view of the schedule of classes when they register. The additional program or course fees that colleges and departments charge students above and beyond the University-wide fees will not show up on the course calculator results. So you will need to refer to the 23-page .pdf file chart (yes, that many pages and with tiny font size).

This summer the Office of Enrollment Management will be evaluating the calculator and adding functionality to support the kinds of questions for continuing, transfer, international, graduate, and professional students. If you have questions or if you have new insights about the calculator as you work with your students to use it, you can contact JoLynn Noe, Alex Mackey, or Tyler Gayheart in Enrollment Management.

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Kentucky Travels: Our Top 10 State Parks in Kentucky

This gallery contains 5 photos.

Originally posted on The University Press of Kentucky:
For today’s post we’ve put together a few of our favorite Kentucky state parks from The Complete Guide to Kentucky State Parks. Whether you’re looking for a weekend getaway or something fun…

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Instructor Workshop with UK Libraries on Developing Effective Assignments for Undergraduate Research

Event Title: What Your Students Think They Know About Research and How You Can Help
Date: Friday, March 27
Time: 1:00 – 2:15 p.m.
Location: William T Young Library, room 1-57 (map)
Intended audience: Teaching Faculty, Instructors, and Teaching Assistants

Let’s face it – research is hard for a whole lot of reasons. Now, put yourself in the place of undergraduates facing college-level research assignments. What assumptions about their skills and prior experiences do we as instructors make that get in the way of students’ abilities to succeed?

Come explore some of the common reasons why course research assignments fail and learn some strategies to help scaffold students’ research experiences.

Register online here:  Registration form

For more information, please contact Debbie Sharp ( or Beth Fuchs (

More workshops and classes with UK Libraries:

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SEC-ACC Virtual Career Fair, April 1-2: Encourage Students to Register Online Today

The SEC-ACC Virtual Career Fair is on April 1-2. Twenty-seven SEC and ACC schools are participating in this virtual fair. Students and alumnae/i can connect with a variety of employers for internships and jobs.

It is FREE to participate. Students must RSVP to participate: As of March 20th, 109 UK students have signed up. The following majors are represented:

UK Colleges
(so far)
Majors Identified by UK Students Who Signed Up
No. of Students
Arts & Sciences Biology/Biological Sciences 1
International Studies/Relations 1
Mathematics 1
Political Science 1
Psychology 1
Business & Economics Accounting 9
Business Administration 4
Business Admin: Management 3
Economics 3
Finance 4
Sports Marketing/Management & Communication 1
Communication & Information Advertising 1
Computer & Information Science 1
Management & Information Systems 1
Marketing/Communications 8
Agriculture, Food Environment Agriculture 3
Animal Science, Zoology 2
Biotechnology 1
Nutrition 2
Tourism, Hospitality 2
Engineering Bioengineering 2
Biomedical Engineering 3
Chemical & Biological Engineering 1
Chemical Engineering 10
Civil Engineering 4
Computer Engineering 4
Computer Science 7
Electrical and Computer Engineering (MS level) 1
Electrical Engineering 5
Engineering, Other 2
Materials Science & Engineering 1
Mechanical Engineering 11
Mining Engineering 2
Health Sciences Rehabilitation & Human Services 1
Public Health Public Health 4

Over 100 Employers are registered so far. Review the Employer List here.

Listen to student testimonials about the SEC-ACC Virtual Career Fair and the differences between this one and the traditional Career Fair.

Please help promote this opportunity to our students and alumnae/i. Give me a call if you have any questions about this fair.

Azetta Beatty M.S., CFLE | Senior Assistant Director
James W. Stuckert Career Center | University of Kentucky
408 Rose St. | Lexington, KY 40506-0494 | 859-257-2746 |


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