Fall 2022

PDFs at McMaster University receive world-class discipline-based training. The aim of the professional development workshops is to provide complementary skills that are necessary to become a complete academic leader of the future, excelling in research, teaching and service. Every 1-2 weeks, Program members will meet for a focused, 2-3 hour workshop led by a McMaster faculty expert or invited facilitators.

Focusing on what really matters: A reset for workplace productivity (Joe Kim, September 28)

During the course of a busy term, we are pulled in multiple directions with increasing demands for our time and attention. Without a game plan, confusion, procrastination and “busy work” dominate over moving toward higher goals. Research from psychology can provide effective strategies to choose priorities that separate signal from noise, focus attention to engage in deep work, and develop habits that invest limited resources on what really matters. In this workshop we will:

      • Explore how understanding the cognitive architecture of the mind leads to developing a working plan to handle daily challenges with optimized solutions.
      • Develop a culture for productivity that promotes deep work and movement towards a goal.
      • Learn about digital tools to integrate into workflows to shift our resources to important tasks like strategic planning which also deserve attention.

The importance of OpEds (Wade Hemsworth, October 5)

This workshop will prepare Program Members on how to write an Op-Ed article on the topic of their choice. Writing an Op-Ed will help members fine-tune their communication skills by writing for a lay-audience about a complex topic. Op-Eds can be published on the McCall-MacBain program website and submitted to other publication outlets (The Sil, The Spec, etc.)

Time Tetris: Making the most of your time (Dr. Teresa Chan, October 19)

Timing is important, there is very little to waste, especially in the life of a busy Postdoc! Planning your time and effectivley being able to allocate your resources is a necessity for success. Dr. Teresa Chan associate professor at McMaster University and Associate Dean, Continuing Professional Development leads the discusison on how to appropriately manage time. She is a world class educator, speaker researcher and Doctor. With conflicting obligations and very little time, Dr. Chan has mastered the art of scheduling and "Time Tetris"

Creating the Perfect Elevator Pitch - (Avis Favaro - CTV News Medical Correspondant, October 26)

CTV News’ Medical Correspondent, Avis Favaro specializes in health stories that can make a difference in the lives of Canadians. Based in Toronto, Favaro is Canada’s longest serving television Medical Correspondent, having started this beat for CTV News in 1992.  There is no better guest speaker to teach you about the art of making a lasting impression! 

Delivering powerful presentations, part 1 (Joe Kim, November 9)

Among the many different teaching strategies to consider, we can impact student learning by improving the organization and design of your presentations. Think about the ineffective lectures you have sat through as a student, researcher and instructor; lectures that lack organization, clarity, and engagement fail to connect with students.  Students stop listening and turn to copying slides verbatim with little critical thinking.  In this workshop, we will explore the cognitive constraints of attention and learning, learn how to organize critical content, and develop a cohesive story structure that connects with an audience.

Delivering powerful presentations Part 2: Apply multimedia learning principles to slide design (Dr. Joe Kim November 23)
Applying findings developed in controlled-lab and classroom-based studies can lead to improved slide design which translates into durable learning that extends from short-term tests to beyond the final exam. Building on the previous workshop in which we learned how to organize the lecture structure, we will next explore the underlying multimedia learning principles that guides good slide design. We will practice as we learn about redundancy, segmentation, signaling, and coherence. Together, these workshops will provide a practical plan for delivering lectures with a cohesive message

Creating a Professional Presence Online (Dr. Brittany Borowiec November 30)

Social media websites such as Twitter are important tools to extend your reach in the online world. Having a presence online can broaden your virtual grasp to enrich your network, enhance your research platform and get you noticed by prospective employers. Join Brittany Borowiec, PHD, (scientist and science writer) to learn more about how to better prepare yourself to make a splash in the online arena.


Winter 2023

Starting your own company (Brandon Aubie, January 25)

Brandon is a mathematician (Undergraduate) turned neuroscientist (PhD) turned entrepreneur with a lifelong obsession with software development and technology. He is the co-founder and CEO of QReserve Inc. a powerful resource management platform in use by thousands of scientists, researchers, and students around the world, with expansion into several other new usergroups. Join us as Brandon discusses important aspects of leadership involved in starting your own company.

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Education (Renata Hall, January 25)

Renata Hall is a McMaster star student, YWCA Women of Distinction Award winner, co-founder of the Learning in Colour platform and the heart and soul of StreetEatzHamOnt. As Manager of Inclusion and Anti-Racism Education, Renata Hall, [RSW, PhD Student, MSW, BSW, BSc] delivers Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) and human rights education, supports EDI strategic planning at McMaster, as well provides consultations around best practices for EDIAD initiatives for departments, programs, and groups at McMaster. Join us as Renata expands your understanding of EDI in education and in the classroom. 

LEAD Chat Series: Leading Your Team (Monique Armstrong, February 1)

Engaging your team. Tips, strategies and key do’s and don’ts for building and leading a high performing team.  Monique is a leadership and management development expert who is a true believer in self-efficacy. A skilled and energetic facilitator, Monique helps leaders and their teams to think, feel, and behave with more impact. Monique has led clients to achieve greater results in the manufacturing, energy and infrastructure, advertising, beverage, automation, software, and pharmaceutical industries throughout North America. A diminutive and effervescent motivator, Monique loves to ski at breakneck speeds and laugh till it hurts. Or maybe that’s the skiing.

Introduction to Public Policy in the Digital Age (Vas Bednar, February 8)

Vass Bednar is a public policy entrepreneur working at the intersection of technology and public policy. She is an interdisciplinary wonk focused on ensuring that we have the regulatory structures we need to embrace the future of work and new ways of living.

Attention and Persuiasion in Teaching Practices (Dr. Will Huggon, February 8)

Dr. Huggon is an award-winning teaching professor (areas including Positive, Forensic, Social, Personality, & Abnormal psychology courses). He uses a number of styles to connect with students and create intrinsic interest in the material. His broad interests in critical thinking, scientific methods, Positive Psychology, and teaching pedagogy are woven into his classes to help students with work/life balance and separating out evidence from pseudoscience in interpreting themselves and the world around them.  Join us as Dr. Huggon investigates the impact of attention and persuasion techniques in the classroom.

Writing Effective Test Questions (Dr, Joe Kim, March 15)

  • The primary goal of testing is to measure the extent to which students have learned the facts, concepts, procedures, and skills that have been taught in the course. In many university courses, instructors use multiple choice questions (MCQs) for some or all of the student assessment. However, many of the questions used by instructors contain critical flaws and most will do no more than test factual recall. Fortunately, writing high-quality MCQs is a learnable skill.
  • In this hands-on workshop, we will:
    1. Learn about how to employ the best practices and avoid common pitfalls of writing measurably effective MCQs.
    2. Explore how theories of learning such as Bloom’s revised taxonomy can help us determine the level at which a question should be written.
    3. Practice writing MCQs and providing valuable feedback to peers.

LEAD Chat Series: Aligning your work to strategic priorities (Alex DeJong, April 5)

Alex is the CEO of Customer Care Services at Tribal Wi-Chi-WayWin Capital Corporation (TWCC). TWCC is a Canadian Indigenous owned and operated company. Alex is passionate about driving stakeholder value through achieving customer and employee success. Alex has held various C-suite roles in operations, technology, risk and portfolio management within leading global Financial and Technology organizations. Alex is a well-respected mentor and modern day renaissance man, who can whip up a mean lobster fettuccini aioli, create stunning floral arrangements, and tell you if that is a load bearing wall. Aligning your work to the organization’s strategic priorities. Understanding what project strategic alignment is and why it matters. 

Introduciton to Public Policy (Alex Lawson, April 19)

Alex Lawson is the Executive Advisor, Public Affair in the Communications and Public Affairs (CAPA) office at McMaster University. Alex will introduce you to public policy and explain why we want to talk to policy makers. At the end of the workshop, you will walk away with a 30 second elevator pitch about your research aimed towards policy makers

LEAD Workshop Series: Developing Relationship Part 2 (Elizabeth Pawluk, April 19)

Developing strategic relationships and personal grit. A look at practical strategies and tips for building the relationships and resilience you need to succeed. Dr. Pawluk completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Ryerson University in 2016 followed by a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical Psychology at the ATRC. She is actively engaged in clinical work, research and clinician supervision and has published work in the area of distress tolerance amongst students. Her main research interest focuses on testing theoretical models of generalized anxiety disorder. Developing strategic relationships and personal grit. A look at practical strategies and tips for building the relationships and resilience you need to succeed.

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