Who We Are
If you are a member of the faculty at Montclair State University, or a staff member concerned with teaching and learning issues, you are potentially a part of the Research Academy for University Learning. We are a community of scholars who care about the learning of our students and recognize that learning is an enormously complex process. We regard the learning of our students as an appropriate subject of scholarly inquiry: what does it mean to learn; how do we best foster its development; how do we and our students best come to understand the nature and progress of their learning; and how do we evaluate our own efforts? We expect to contribute to the emerging scholarship of learning and teaching, to create powerful learning environments for our students, to address many of the most troublesome social and personal forces that often keep highly talented students from realizing their full potential, and to contribute to a learner-centered, researched-based approach to higher education that has the potential to transform colleges and universities.
Some of us come from disciplines that study human learning; most of us do not. But as college educators we are all concerned with helping other people to learn, and we realize that there is a vast and growing body of research and theoretical literature on learning and motivation that can inform our practices. We realize also that we can learn from one another, pooling the rich insights and best practices of many people to create richer insights for all of us.
Fellows of the Academy
The Research Academy will have both Junior and Senior Fellows. Go here for more information on the Junior Fellows Program. Senior Fellows will be selected annually.
Faculty Advisory Board
A board of distinguished scholars at Montclair State will help guide the activities and policies of the Research Academy.
International Board of Visitors
An International body of distinguished leaders will form our board of visitors to help us keep broader perspectives in mind.
Director and Associate Director
The Director and Associate Director have special responsibilities to contribute vigorously and extensively to the conversation about teaching and learning, to assist with faculty research projects, to coordinate activities and services that faculty members will offer one another, to advance university learning, and to pursue the scholarship of learning and teaching in higher education, but they are not the Center. They are part of a larger community of Montclair State University faculty members who constitute the Teaching and Learning Resource Center.
Director, Programs and Research; Acting Director, Research Academy for University Learning
Dr. Cigdem P Talgar joined the Research Academy as Associate Director in 2011, with a career-long dedication to promoting excellence in University teaching which includes four years of active involvement directly with the Research Academy. She is currently the Acting Director of the Research Academy and oversees all programs and research development. As a Psychologist with a Ph.D. from NYU, Dr. Talgar’s research has focused on both Experimental and Applied Psychological research including topics in Attention, Perception, Cognition and Social Psychology. More recently she has focused on how different psychological phenomenon impact the classroom-learning environment. Dr. Talgar looks forward to the opportunity to work with individuals throughout the University to facilitate interdisciplinary research with the common goal of building engaged learning environments.
Julie Dalley is Assistant Director and Editor for the Research Academy for University Learning. She holds a B.A. in History from Vermont College, Norwich University, Vermont and an M.A. in English Composition from Montclair State University. She is chief writer and editor for The Teaching Times in Higher Education, a regular blogger at Tumblr, and has co-authored articles for the Huffington Post. She has brought a strong background in education to the Research Academy, with experience as a high school history teacher, debate club mentor/coach and historical researcher of women in antiquity. She worked for five years as a marketing and program coordinator for an Internet Recruitment software company and a human capital research institute (non-profit). She has served in several volunteer positions, including as an Emergency Care Attendant for a local ambulance service in her hometown in Vermont, as well as a youth soccer coach for Vermont Technical College's youth programs. She continues her research into the historical, social and cultural power and influence of women, and between genders and well as continued studies in college writing and composition.
Service Learning Faculty and Staff
Bryan Murdock, Associate Director for Service-Learning and Community Engagement. Bryan is Director of the Service-Learning and Community Engagement Program and manages the day-to-day operations of programs and projects to advance service-learning and community engagement. Prior to coming to MSU he worked as a program director at the Charles A. Dana Center at The University of Texas at Austin.
Krystal Woolston, Interim Service-Learning Coordinator for Service-Learning and Community Engagement.Krystal is the service learning coordinator, managing the placement of students into service sites, maintaining community partnerships, and supporting faculty teaching service-learning courses. She co-coordinates the Bonner Leader AmeriCorps program. Krystal also assists with the Service-learning Fellows program. Krystal holds a master’s in counseling and has prior experience supporting a variety of government agency and non-profit programs and organizations.