The ITS Office of Teaching, Learning, and Technology is excited to welcome Jamie Tanas as our new course improvement coordinator. In her role, Jamie will support departments that offer large-enrollment introductory courses—also known as gateway courses—to improve student outcomes and reduce learning disparities for students, particularly for those who are first generation and from underrepresented groups.

As the course improvement coordinator, Jamie will leverage her extensive experience in consulting with instructors to help them identify and develop goals and learning objectives and analyze potential barriers that may impact student success in a course. She’ll also coordinate cross-functional teams of specialists in learning analytics, faculty development, classroom technology, and instructional services to develop, deliver, and evaluate course-specific instructional interventions.

To better support campus-wide initiatives surrounding student success and retention, this position was designed with input from key partners: the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Student Affairs, and Academic Support & Retention in University College. Jamie will work directly with these partners, who are offering additional academic support to instructors through resources like Excelling@Iowa, Supplemental Instruction, peer mentors, and equity training in the academic experience.

“We are excited for Jamie to join our campus-wide efforts to improve the learning experience for undergraduate students in large-enrollment, introductory courses,” Cornelia Lang, associate dean for Undergraduate Education, said. “Jamie will play a critical role in the collaboration between CLAS departments, the Office of Teaching, Learning and Technology, the Office of Academic Support and Retention in University College, and the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.”

Jamie will join Shelby Herig in coordinating efforts around improving student success and enhancing the instructor experience and the quality of course design and delivery at the UI.

More About Jamie

Jamie earned a bachelor’s degree in biology and education from Whitworth University in Spokane, WA, and a master’s degree in biology for teachers from the University of Washington in Seattle. She expects to complete her PhD in science education at the University of Iowa in spring 2021. Her research focuses on the use of the Next Generation Science Standards in the development of instructional materials. Prior to joining OTLT, she spent eight years as a K12 and postsecondary instructor.