Norah Kerr-McCurry has served as director of the TLC since 2008 and started at Brookdale more than 25 years ago as a secretary. She has worked in several roles over the years and is grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow in each respective assignment. Her connection with Brookdale extends back even further to her student days. Kerr-McCurry earned her associate’s degree from Brookdale and undergraduate and graduate degrees from Rutgers University. She is a student once more, pursuing a doctorate in Northeastern University’s Organizational Leadership program.
Can you describe the Teaching and Learning Center’s (TLC) responsibilities?
The TLC’s mission is to promote interdisciplinary interaction, pedagogical innovation and the implementation of best practices for the design and delivery of instructional content. The TLC administers the Canvas Learning Management System and oversees the operations for online courses, including faculty certification and student orientation.
How has TLC’s role evolved?
The TLC was established in 2008 to lead efforts in developing fully online courses and degree programs and to provide faculty professional development. Our online offerings are growing, with eight fully online degree programs, one certificate program, more than 150 sections per term, and approximately 3,000 students per term enrolled in fully online courses. We’re pleased that course completion rates are close to traditional, in-person courses. That’s a credit to our staff’s expertise and our faculty engagement through professional development.
“We’re pleased that course completion rates are close to traditional, in-person courses. That’s a credit to our staff’s expertise and our faculty engagement through professional development.”
What are some recent or upcoming initiatives?
The TLC is working with academic departments to bring additional courses and degrees online. We’re particularly pleased to be working at this time with faculty in ESL, Cybersecurity, Criminal Justice, and Hospitality Management. Brookdale faculty are looking toward the future to support students with technological and pedagogical innovations to help students meet educational goals. We’re also an integral part of the Title III grant working toward improvements in student persistence, retention and completion rates.
What are some things that the average Brookdale employee or faculty member may not know about the TLC?
We are the first point of contact for phone calls from students, faculty, and staff for password and other IT issues. The TLC has lots of contact with students. We support all students using Canvas. Close to 75% of all course sections use the system, and we support all faculty using the system, too.