Site Content

Pre-Conference Workshops

Student with his host family

WISE 2016 Conference information will be updated soon.

2015 conference information is available here for reference.

Four pre-conference workshops have been scheduled at WISE 2015. They will take place on Wednesday February 4, 2015. Two full-day and two half-day workshops are available. The two half-day workshops (one in the morning, one in the afternoon) are scheduled to allow individuals to register for and attend both.

2015 Pre-conference Information:

Pre-conference Workshop #1 ($320)

“Intercultural Concepts for the Overworked International Educator”
Wednesday February 4, 2015, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Dr. Janet Bennett

The international educator’s plate is rather full. With bureaucracy demanding time and learning requiring reflection, building intercultural competence may seem like a far-fetched luxury. But wait—it can be a pleasure in your work! This day of intercultural concepts will not only be a crash course in some enjoyable ideas, it will also provide ways for you to use these concepts in your daily work advising, teaching and administrating your programs.


Pre-conference Workshop #2 ($320)

Bridging the (Multiple) Gaps in Student Learning Abroad
Wednesday February 4, 2015, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Dr. Michael Vande Berg

We often talk about helping students “bridge the cultural gap” when they study abroad.  However, interacting effectively and appropriately within the context of student learning abroad in fact requires us to participate in bridging three different gaps: the first between our students and their own cultural experience, the second between ourselves and the students, and the third between ourselves and our institutions.  This workshop asks participants to explore how they can work within and reconcile these three different gaps as they interact with their own students and colleagues.


Pre-conference Workshop #3  ($200)

Designing Qualitative Assessment Questionnaires for Effective Intercultural Programs
Wednesday February 4, 2015, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Lilli Engle

Appropriate assessment tools offer valuable feedback and leverage for the evolution of program effectiveness as well as for advocacy and program funding.  Unfortunately, research shows that most qualitative assessment questionnaires used in study abroad today solicit students as agents of quality control and, in the process, undermine with ethnocentric bias the values and experiences essential to intercultural learning.  For those who wish to design in-house qualitative assessment questionnaires appropriate to study abroad, this workshop offers a method of targeting and formulating questions that highlight student learning and development, respect intercultural complexity, and consider the essential elements of student engagement necessary to a “successful” experience abroad.


Pre-Conference Workshop #4  ($200)

Re-Entry Training: Why, How, and When
Wednesday February 4, 1:30 – 5:00 pm
Dr. Bruce La Brack and Andrew Smith

What can we do to help returning study abroad students make the most of their experiences?  How can we assist them to better process their re-entry to life in the US, and apply overseas intercultural learning to domestic settings? After a brief overview of the rationale for re-entry courses and programs, presenters will share tips for the design, content, training materials and activities, as well as sequencing and dealing with challenges. Participants will also examine steps they can take at their own institutions to develop or improve a re-entry program or course.


2015 Registration Fees

Pre-conference workshops require separate registration from the WISE conference itself.

Workshop Registration Fee
Janet Bennett, “Intercultural Concepts for the Overworked International Educator” $320
Michael Vande Berg, “Bridging the (Multiple) Gaps in Student Learning Abroad” $320
Lilli Engle, “Designing Qualitative Assessment Questionnaires for Effective Intercultural Programs” $200
Bruce La Brack and Andrew Smith, “Re-Entry Training: Why, How, and When” $200