Dr. Nicola Simmons

Assistant Professor (PhD), Department of Educational Studies

Available load full; please contact professor

Hamilton, ON
Office: WH 265
905 547 3555 x3137
nsimmons@brocku.ca

Nicola Simmons has held national and international leadership roles in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and as Chair of the Educational Developers Caucus. She focuses on higher and adult education, including Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, lifelong learning, and leadership. Named a 3M National Teaching Fellow and Brock’s inaugural Open Access Award winner in 2017, in 2016 she received an inaugural Educational Developers’ Caucus Distinguished Educational Development Career Award. Currently, she holds a Brock Chancellor’s Chair for Teaching Excellence exploring how a Wikipedia assignment develops graduate outcomes.

Academic Awards and Distinctions  

National Award

  • 2017 3M National Teaching Fellowship (Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education) given for excellence in educational leadership and teaching 

Provincial Award

  • 2020 Minister of College and Universities’ Award of Excellence

Brock University Awards

  • 2018 Chancellor’s Chair in Teaching Excellence
  • 2017 Brock University Inaugural Open Access Award
  • 2016 Brock University Distinguished Teaching Award
  • 2016 Brock University Faculty of Education Award for Teaching Excellence

Research interests

  • Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL)
  • Educational development
  • Adult personal and professional role and identity development
  • Adult developmental psychology
  • Reflective practice
  • Arts integration
  • Approaches to teaching
  • Research methods: qualitative methods
  • Action research
  • Phenomenography
  • Narrative inquiry

Research in progress 

  • 3M National Fellows: Stories of Inspiring Teaching, Learning, and Educational Leadership
  • Developing graduate students’ employability skills and improving outcomes through a Wikipedia assignment (Chancellor’s Chair research)
  • SoTL annotations database (EDC grant; FOE GRAD grant)
  • How do teaching and learning centres develop SoTL capacity?

Papers in progress

  • SoTL Institutional Assessment (revisions)
  • Telling SoTL Tales: Research Results in the Right Places (revisions)

Edited books in progress

  • Adults in the Academy: Voices of Lifelong Learners. Brill Publishing. (anticipated Winter 2021)
  • 2019-2020 – Co-Chair, Advocacy and Outreach Committee, International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSOTL)
  • 2018-present   3M Mentoring Network member, Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE)
  • 2012-2014 Regional VP, Canada, International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
  • 2012-2014 Founding Chair, SoTL Canada (Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education SIG)
  • 2012-2014 Past Chair, Educational Developers’ Caucus, Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
  • 2009-2014 Founding Chair, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Ontario
  • 2008-2010 Vice-President, SoTL portfolio, The Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education

Book 

Herteis, E. M., & Simmons, N. (2010). The portfolio process: Green guide no. 10. London, ON: Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.

Edited Special Issue Journal and Edited Books

Edited Special Issue Journal and Edited Books

Simmons, N. (2019). Critical collaborative communities: Academic writing partnerships, groups, and retreats. The Netherlands: Brill.

Simmons, N., & Marquis, E. (Eds.),(2017). The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 8(2).

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2017, October). A degree of mastery, 11. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2017, June). A degree of mastery, 10. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2016, October). A degree of mastery, 9. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2016, summer). The scholarship of teaching and learning in Canada: Institutional impact. New Directions in Teaching and Learning, 146. (A Jossey-Bass publication).

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2016, June). A degree of mastery, 8. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2015, October). A degree of mastery, 7. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2015, June). A degree of mastery, 6. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2015, June). A degree of mastery, 5. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2013, October). A degree of mastery, 4. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2013, October). A degree of mastery, 3. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.  

Simmons, N. (Ed.), (2013, June). A degree of mastery, 2. Burlington, ON: Northshore Publications.

Contributions to Edited Books 

Simmons, N. (in press). Going public with ISSOTL advocacy and outreach: Then, now, and next. In N. Chick, & J. Friberg (Eds.), SoTL as public scholarship. Sterling, VA: Stylus.

Simmons, N. (2020). SoTL. In Educational developers thinking allowed (chapter 9: The real deal). Online book at https://edta.info.yorku.ca/

Simmons, N. (2020). How values shape our motivation to write. In M. Healey, K. Matthews, & A. Cook-Sather (Eds.), Writing about learning and teaching in higher education.

Simmons, N. (2020). Participatory action research: Lessons learned. In N. Fenton, & W. Ross (Eds.), Critical reflection on research in teaching and learning.  The Netherlands: Brill.

Marquis, E., & Simmons, N. (2019). Growing the Canadian SoTL Community through a Collaborative Writing Initiative. In N. Simmons (Ed.), Critical collaborative communities: Academic writing partnerships, groups, and retreats. The Netherlands: Brill

Kensington-Miller, B., Oliver, C., Morón-García, S., Manarin, K., Abrahamson, E., Simmons, N., Deshler, J. (2019). An international collaborative writing group: Perspectives on building partnerships and developing community. In N. Simmons (Ed.), Critical collaborative communities: Academic writing partnerships, groups, and retreats. The Netherlands: Brill.

Publications in Peer-Reviewed Journals

Simmons, K., & Simmons, N. (in press). A relational perspective: Using drama theory to transform instructor-student engagement.

Simmons, K., & Simmons, N. (in press). Collaborative theatre: Creating questions for inquiry into instructor-student engagement. Imagining SoTL.

Hamilton, M., & Simmons, N. (in press). How educational developers can re-engage mid-career faculty using SoTL. Imagining SoTL.

Simmons, N., Eady, M., Gregory, D., & Scharff, L. (in press). SoTL in the margins: Teaching-stream role case studies. Teaching and Learning Inquiry.

Simmons, N. (2020). Scholars of teaching and learning: The 4M framework as analytic lens for SoTL’s impact. Teaching and Learning Inquiry.

Simmons, N., & Taylor, K. L. (2019). Leadership for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Understanding bridges and gaps in practice. Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 10(1), article 1.

Simmons, N. (2018). Crossing the [SoTL] bridge and diving in. Teaching and Learning Inquiry, 6(2).

Publication in professional magazines

Simmons, N. (2016, Aug/Sept). Teaching: I just can’t talk about it. University Affairs. Available at http://www.universityaffairs.ca/letters-editor-aug-sept-2016/ 

Web-based Resources

Simmons, N., & Neisler, O. (2020). Resources against racism. Online at https://drive.google.com/drive/u/1/my-drive

Simmons, N. (2020). Brock FOE Online teaching group (OTG). Online at https://brockonlineteachinggroup.wordpress.com/

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019a). SoTL: What works? Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/hOeNMtETMAg

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019b). SoTL: Words of wisdom to those starting out. Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/-P_uA_SNjJk

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019c). SoTL: Processes vs outcomes. Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/pCEKJqtKjzk

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019d). SoTL: Institutional recognition. Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/8EehFAaPLeg

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019e). SoTL: Growth in Canada. Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/p3Z7e9MZbTs

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019f). SoTL: Grand challenges. Available on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhQfX8iKrU4

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019g). SoTL: Educating funding agencies. Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/QiY7tmEbJZE

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019h). Microscopic and macroscopic effects of SoTL. Available on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2xrXir-mAkQ

Simmons, N., Louie, M., & Poole, G. (2019i). SoTL: Why care? Available on YouTube at https://youtu.be/k9MoXxmxysE

Papers in progress

  • SoTL Institutional Assessment (revisions)
  • Telling SoTL Tales: Research Results in the Right Places (revisions)

Edited books in progress

  • Adults in the Academy: Voices of Lifelong Learners (anticipated Winter 2021)

Invited Podcasts

Schwier, R., & Simmons, N. (2020). Situating SoTL research in the 4M framework with Nicola Simmons. SoTL Chat. Online at https://sotl-uofs.libsyn.com/situating-sotl-research-in-the-4m-framework-with-nicola-simmons

Potts, D., & Simmons, N. (2017). Episode 2: Part 1 and 2. Nicola Simmons. In LiveLifeLearning: Faculty of Education podcast series. Online at https://sites.google.com/view/livelifelearning/foe-podcasts?authuser=0

2020 Scholarship of Leadership in Education, 3M Council, STLHE
$6500.00

2020 Brock Research Initiatives: 3M National Fellows’ Educational Leadership
$2000.00

2020 Brock FOE GRAD Fund for Adults in the Academy book
$1811.41

2020 Brock FOE Discretionary Fund – Online Teaching Group website development
$2196.00

2020 Brock FOE GRAD Fund for SoTL Annotations
$1811.41

2020 Brock FOE R&D Fund for Inspiring Teaching project                                                     $1000.00

2019 Brock FOE R&D Fund for Inspiring Teaching project                                                     $1000.00

2019, Summer Brock FOE GRAD Fund for ADED video scribing                                                    $1811.41

2019, Spring Brock FOE GRAD Fund for ADED video scribing                                                    $1811.41

Peer review conference presentations

Simmons, N. (2020). Defining SoTL: Contexts and culture. Accepted for presentation at the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education annual conference, Ottawa, ON. (deferred to 2021)

Simmons, N., & Yorga, J. (2020). The Wikipedia assignment: Developing graduate outcomes, skills, and attributes for the 21st century. Accepted for presentation at the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education annual conference, Ottawa, ON. (deferred to 2021)

Simmons, N. (2019). The Wikipedia assignment: An experiential approach to developing 21st century transferable employability skills. Presented at the McMaster University SoTL annual conference, December, Hamilton.

Simmons, N. (2019). Wikipedia: Engaging graduate students in employability skills development for the 21st century. Presented at the Mount Royal University Scholarship Symposium, November, Banff, AB.

Simmons, K., & Simmons, N. (2019). Collaborative theatre: Creating questions for inquiry into instructor-student engagement. Presented at the Mount Royal University Scholarship Symposium, November, Banff, AB.

Hamilton, M., & Simmons, N. (2019). Beyond the classroom: Re-engaging mid-career faculty using SoTL. Presented at the Mount Royal University Scholarship Symposium, November, Banff, AB.

Simmons, N. (2018). Moving institutional assessment of the SoTL from instrumental to transformative. Presented at the McMaster University SoTL annual conference.

Simmons, N. (2018). Growing a culture of metacognitive learners: Using Wikipedia to develop graduate outcomes. Presented at the TESS conference, Ecampus Ontario, Toronto.

Simmons, N. (2018). Creating community around transformative assessment of a SoTL culture. Presented at the Mount Royal University Scholarship Symposium, Banff, AB.

Simmons, N. (2018). Constructing definitions: Contexts and culture for SoTl. Presented at the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Bergen, Norway, October.

Simmons, N., Scharff, L, Gregory, D., & Eady, M. (2018). SoTL in the margins: Case studies of teaching-stream roles. Presented at the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Bergen, Norway, October.

Simmons, N., Freiburg, J., Gregory, D., & Mistry, V. (2018). The ISSoTL journey: Creating a culture that learns. Presented at the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Bergen, Norway, October.

Abrahamson, E., Simmons, N., Manarin, K., Deshler, J., Oliver, C., Kensington-Miller, B., & Moron-Garcia, S. (2018). Experience and expectations of a collaborative writing group: Forging a learning culture for SoTL. Presented at the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, Bergen, Norway, October.

Invited Keynote and Plenary Presentations

Simmons, N. (2019, May). SoTL with impact. Opening keynote presentation for the University of Lethbridge.

Simmons, N. (2019, May). SoTL Symposium synthesis: Lego constructs. Closing keynote presentation for the University of Lethbridge.

Simmons, N. (2019, May). Starting with teaching: SoTL fundamentals. Keynote presentation for the University of Saskatchewan.

Simmons, N. (2019, May). University of Saskatchewan’s “SoTL Breakfast Club.” Informal presentation to Deans and Associate Deans. University of Saskatchewan.

Simmons, N. (2019). Challenges of ‘measuring impact’ of teaching: Transforming perspectives. Keynote workshop at the University of Calgary, February.

 

EDUC 5P30 Development, Learning and Curriculum
EDUC 5P32 Learning and the Mind
EDUC 5P33 Development, Lifelong Learning, and Meaning-Making
EDUC 5P34 Individuals, Institutions, and Lifelong Learning in Higher and Adult Education
EDUC 5P35 Adult Teaching and Learning
EDUC 5P36 Critical Perspectives on Adult Learning
EDUC 5P51 Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
EDUC 5P52 Contemporary Issues in Higher Education
EDUC 5P54 Designing Curriculum to Foster Critical Thinking
EDUC 5P73 Challenges of Educational Leadership
EDUC 5P84 Exploring Approaches to Professional Development
EDUC 5P85 Reflective Practice
EDUC 5P87 Evaluating Teaching Effectiveness
EDUC 5P92 An Introduction to Educational Research
EDUC 5P95 Qualitative Methods in Educational Research
EDUC 5Q97 Culminating Seminar in Educational Studies
EDUC 5N99 Introduction to Graduate Studies
EDUC 4P03 Reflection on Practice
ADED 4P50 Scholarly Reflection on Postsecondary Teaching and Learning