An Announcement

Dear College Community,Today will be the last individual posting of the Knowledge Dispensary (KD).  This blog started as a way to update everyone on the progress on the strategic plan.  We then evolved the KD to cover important events or initiatives in the college.  Moving forward, the KD will become a column in the College of Pharmacy’s monthly e-News.  We will still bring you short updates on important happenings across our strategic areas using this existing news source rather than a standalone publication.

Have a great weekend and GO BUCKS,

Katherine Kelley

Continuing Professional Development

For this week’s post, Emily Keeler has provided an update on two Continuing Professional Development opportunities available this autumn.

Advancing the pharmacy profession and patient-centered care across Ohio and around the globe through innovative teaching and practice, ground-breaking research, and transformative outreach and engagement happens in many ways in the College of Pharmacy. Not only do we strive to educate future pharmacists, but we also work to accomplish this goal is by helping current pharmacists access ongoing professional development.

Our Continuing Professional Development (CPD) program is uniquely positioned to fulfill the college mission by using the latest information to reach out to the pharmacy community to educate them in the latest trends and research in pharmacy.

As an integral part of the medical team, pharmacists are drug experts who need to know the latest and greatest in areas such as new drugs and Medication Therapy Management (MTM). Under the leadership of Bella Mehta, PharmD, FAPhA, Ohio State has ramped up CPD programming by presenting APhA certificate offerings and being one of the first programs in this area to offer the new APhA Pharmacy-Based Cardiovascular Disease Risk Management certificate on Thursday, November 19.

Leading the charge, Mehta has outlined the following goals for the updated program:

Develop and deliver continuing professional development with a contemporary focus that offers real world experiences with business and industry leaders and advances the pharmacy profession locally and globally

  1. Cultivate programs that prepare current and future pharmacists to practice at the top of their license
  2. Collaborate with internal and external university partners to drive practice transformation and improve patient care
  3. Partner with internal and external university partners to conduct and disseminate practice based research
  4. Enhance public education about the value and role of the pharmacist as part of a health team
  5. Foster development and dissemination of best practice models of pharmacist-provided care

Beyond certificate offerings, the College of Pharmacy’s CPD program is working to create unique programming that will only be offered by Ohio State, such as the upcoming Autumn Symposium on Friday, October 9.  This event will be held in conjunction with Alumni Weekend.  Alumni are invited to join in a day of CPD, including Law CE.

The learning continuum spans beyond the undergraduate and professional programs.  Ohio State is filling this need and positioning itself as a leader in professional education for pharmacists.

For additional information about APhA certificate offerings, the Autumn Symposium, or other CPD programs, please contact Dr. Mehta at

Best regards,

Katherine Kelley

Our Office of Student Affairs

Autumn semester in the College of Pharmacy is always a busy and exciting time, as we welcome new and returning students, faculty and staff, and get into the heart of the work that we love:helping our students become the next generation of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists.

 While everyone in the college is committed to helping our students learn and grow, one office in particular specializes in this task, providing  extra support our prospective and current students need to be successful in their educational journey.

For this post, we are highlighting the members of our Office of Student Affairs, to help our readers better understand the great work being done for our students, and to give everyone a chance to get to know the staff members, including several new faces who have recently joined the office. We’ve asked all of them to share a little bit about themselves, their roles in the college, and what they like best about being part of the College of Pharmacy.

Joe Orozco, Director of Student Affairs

Joe develops and supports academic and co-curricular initiatives to improve the student experience in the College of Pharmacy, leads the Student Affairs staff, and chairs the Dean’s Committee on Diversity and Inclusion. “I love the energy that students bring to everything they do in the college,” says Joe. “Their energy makes it easy to come to work every day. My favorite part of working in the Office of Student Affairs is being a part of a diverse group of professionals that works really hard on behalf of students in the College of Pharmacy.” A fun fact about Joe? “I love watching movies in the theatre,” he says. “I love watching movies in the theatre so much that I will go to a movie by myself is there’s no one else who can go with me.” Joe can be reached by emailing or calling (614) 688-3772. His office is located in 150 Parks Hall.

Julie Miller, Program Manager

Julie is responsible for event planning, including PharmD orientation, the white coat ceremony, Dean’s lunches, and the hooding ceremony. She also develops and leads study abroad trips (Switzerland 2016!), assists with strategic planning for the office, and coordinates annual student, faculty and staff awards in the college, along with “other duties as assigned.” Julie has been part of the Office of Student Affairs for eight years, and is the mom of two teenage boys who hope to be Buckeyes one day. Julie says that she feels lucky to spend her days with “great people who truly care about our students,: and notes that, “Our students are extraordinary…whether it’s visiting a new country on a study abroad trip or planning a college event, I always enjoy interacting with them and am honored to be a small part of their overall experience here at the college.” To contact Julie, email or call (614) 292-3813. Her office is located in 150 Parks Hall.

Leigh Eskin Mascolino, Manager of Career Services

Leigh leads career advising initiatives in the college, including meeting individually with BSPS, PharmD, graduate students and alumni, teaching career development courses, and organizing college events like the APhA Pharmacy Career Fair. She also delivers lectures and workshop presentations. Leigh joined the Office of Student Affairs just this summer, and notes that she loves the small college environment in Pharmacy. “I hope to truly build relationships with individual students, and see them many times,” says Leigh. When asked for a fun fact to share for this post, Leigh told us that she has been able to successfully hypnotize people. We’re not sure if this is true, but we are finding ourselves very, very sleepy right now. Leigh’s office is located in 131 Parks Hall. She can be reached via email at or by phone at (614) 292-1365.

Andria Stragisher, Career Advisor

Andria joined the staff just this month, and is responsible for meeting individually with BSPS, PharmD, graduate students and alumni to provide resume/cover letter reviews, mock interviews, and career exploration. She leads the Grad Pad series and keeps students updated with job blasts and event updates. She also helps with college events, delivers lectures and workshop presentations. Andria has already hit the ground running in the College of Pharmacy, and tells us that she “loves the ambition and motivation students have in working toward furthering their education and building a rewarding career.” Outside of the office, Andria owns two rescue dogs who are her “everything.” Andria’s office is located in 131 Parks Hall. She can be reached by email at or by phone at (614) 292-6527.

Kelly Crum, Coordinator of Admissions and Financial Aid

Kelly oversees PharmD admissions and financial aid and the PharmD mentoring program, and advises Pharmacy Club. Her favorite part about working with students in the College of Pharmacy is “advising our amazing students!” She points out, “We have the unique ability to see students grow and develop from BSPS students to PharmD and beyond.” An accomplished saxophonist, Kelly has played with the Clintonville Community Band for five years. Her office is located in 150 Parks Hall, and she can be reached by email at or by phone at (614) 292-7255.

Zayd Abukar, Academic Counselor

Katie Watkins, Academic Counselor

Zayd and Katie both advise Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences students in the College of Pharmacy. Additionally, they both serve on the BSPS Program Committee and conduct summer orientation programs for incoming undergraduates. Zayd manages the Choose Ohio First scholarship program, teaches Pharmacy 1100: Pharmaceutical Sciences Survey, and coordinates the College of Pharmacy Buck-I-Serv service trips. Katie manages the Early Admissions Pathway program and partners with the Office of Residence Life to provide programs and community building for our Pharmacy House learning community.

Thinking about why they like working in the College of Pharmacy’s Office of Student Affairs, Zayd comments that what he likes most about working with BSPS students is that “they’re hard-working, proactive, and passionate about the field. The energy that I get from students when I hear them talk about their goals or future plans motivates me to do as much as I can to help them. Working in a smaller program also affords me the opportunity to get to know students better and work with them in different capacities. I feel like I have been able to build relationships that would have been difficult to build if I advised in a much larger program.”

“Since our college is small, advisors have the opportunity to get to know our students on a deeper level,” says Katie. “Our students are so bright! I love hearing about their aspirations and goals, and helping them along the way when they need it. I especially enjoy the different ways I get to be involved with students in my role. I can spend the day advising students one-on-one, meeting with a prospective student and their family, attending a committee meeting and then end the day with a program in Pharmacy House. It’s a very fun job!”

Fun facts about Zayd and Katie? Zayd knows his way around a basketball court, having set and broken multiple records at his high school in Louisville, Kentucky. Originally from Montreal, he also speaks French “pretty well.” Katie and her husband are members of an indie rock band called the Halamays. Katie plays keyboards and sings, and she and her husband write and perform all-original music.

Zayd and Katie both have offices in 150 Parks Hall. Zayd can be reached by email at or by phone at (614) 688-2303. Katie’s email is Her phone is (614) 247-1599.

Beth Stiles, College Registrar

Joshua Roush, Coordinator of Recruitment

 Both Beth and Joshua joined the Office of Student Affairs just last month. Beth oversees many of the functions that help the college offer great courses, including managing student education records, maintaining and updating databases for pharmacy courses, overseeing the master schedule, scheduling final exams and classrooms, student registration, and providing technical and strategic advice to aid college administrators in decision making. Joshua is responsible for BSPS and PharmD recruitment, interacting with prospective students and families, serving as an external liaison to community and on-campus partners, establishing student pipelines, overseeing the student ambassador program, and assisting with planning and implementing admissions processes.

Although both Beth and Joshua are somewhat new to the college, they both say that what they like best about working in the Office of Student Affairs is the environment. Beth notes that, “The Office of Student Affairs is a welcoming and helpful environment. Everyone is willing to answer all of my questions.” Joshua says that what he likes best is “the people!” He goes on to say that in the Office of Student Affairs, “There is clear and consistent dedication to acting in students’ best interest, and working hard to provide the highest level of service and education.” Beth and Joshua both have offices in 150 Parks Hall. Beth can be reached via email at and by phone at (614) 688-4235, while Joshua can be reached at and (614) 292-1662.

Outside of the office, Joshua is a self-professed “huge sci-fi fan,” having seen all three Stargate shows and movies multiple times. An animal lover, Beth tells us that she loves frogs and toads, and once owned multiple fire-bellied toads.

Kelsi Escobar

Becca Makii

Victoria Williams

Student Assistants

In addition to the full-time professional staff in the Office of Student Affairs, three student employees also help keep things running smoothly. Kelsi (a second-year BSPS student), Becca (a fourth-year BSPS student), and Victoria (PharmD Class of 2019) all assist with intake duties in 150 Parks Hall and help with college events, programs and related tasks. Becca notes that she likes “getting to know everyone that comes into our office,” while Kelsi says, “Everyone I work with is so fantastic!” Like several of their co-workers, both Becca and Kelsi love animals. Kelsi admits that she is “obsessed with elephants” and “would love to be able to ride on the back of one” one day, while Becca has an interest is somewhat smaller animals, namely her pet hedgehog, “Bucky.”

We hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know the staff members in the Office of Student Affairs, and now have a better understanding of some of the services they provide to students, faculty and staff in the College of Pharmacy.

Thank you to Joe, Julie, Leigh, Andrea, Kelly, Zayd, Katie, Beth, Joshua, Kelsi, Becca and Victoria for all that you do on behalf of our students!

Best regards,

Katherine Kelley


A New Curriculum Approaches

We are now just under one year away from our targeted rollout date (autumn 2016) for our new Doctor of Pharmacy curriculum. Exciting progress continues to be made as we build on the program-level plan that was affirmed by college faculty in March 2016.  

Our faculty, with guidance from our Curricular Change Implementation Team, are actively developing content modules to support the program-level plan. These modules, which are different from the existing individual courses that many of us are more familiar with, will focus on integrating key content for entry-level pharmacists, balancing didactic training in foundational sciences and patient care with opportunities for students to develop skills, abilities and behaviors that prepare them to identify, prioritize and solve real-world patient and medication use system problems. Modules will be offered in the new curriculum in such a way that students will be able to immerse themselves in one to three content areas at a time. Key concepts will be introduced and reinforced throughout the curriculum, encouraging deeper connection of important ideas across all levels of the program.

 To help faculty develop the new curriculum, we recently welcomed a new Education Program Director, Mr. Justin Habash, to the college. Justin joined our team in June from Ohio Dominican University, where he worked with faculty development, focusing on teaching and learning strategies. Justin has been instrumental in the curricular revision process here by facilitating conversations among module teams and serving as a resource for our faculty as they explore teaching and learning strategies for the new curriculum.

 For this week’s post, I asked Justin to share a few words about his experience with one of our major curricular change initiatives this summer, our Curriculum Design Institute (CDI). The Institute took place in five installments between June-August, facilitating development of module learning goals, assignments, assessments, and content for the first professional year of the curriculum.

Earlier this month, we wrapped up a Curriculum Design Institute series facilitated by our friends Stephanie Rohdieck and Teresa Johnson from the University Center for Advancement of Teaching (UCAT).  Interested faculty members, preceptors, and fourth-year PharmD students were assigned to module teams to collaborate in designing the first year of the new PharmD curriculum over the course of five sessions this summer.

Using the backward design process for course development, we began by establishing our learning goals: what we wanted our students to be able to accomplish at the end of each module. This proved a challenging step for some of the module teams who had the Herculean task of figuring out how best to integrate concepts and objectives from multiple courses into a single module. The benefit of the new modular approach is that it moves us toward greater integration of vital concepts, facilitating student learning by helping them to connect key ideas across topic areas. After deciding on these learning goals, the module teams developed assignments which would be used to assess student achievement of each of these goals.

Central to the backward design process is the development of assessments that serve as good measurements of the objectives themselves. Mapping the newly developed assignments to the objectives, CDI participants then constructed the basic skeletons of the modules, including some preliminary decisions on time. We closed the final session of the CDI by continuing the cross-talk between module teams relative to topics and time required, providing important feedback to one another as teams continued to refine their module plans.

In addition to establishing the basic framework of each module in the P1 year, CDI participants tackled difficult questions regarding the incorporation of mastery based learning and total student time for each module. These initial conversations have provided a springboard for more advanced discussions and decisions on such topics by the module leaders and the PharmD Program Committee.

The end result of the hard work of these dedicated faculty members, staff, students, and preceptors is a solid foundation for an exciting new PharmD curriculum. Throughout the process, the determination and ingenuity of the CDI participants was truly impressive as they worked through various challenges to design a student-centered curriculum. The new curriculum capitalizes on the strengths of our program while also moving us toward greater student engagement in both didactic and clinical settings.

While there is still much to do as we continue to develop the new curriculum, the effort of the CDI participants over the summer has been vital in setting us up for success. I’d like to extend my deepest thanks to all those who participated for their time and effort. As someone who has been involved in numerous interdisciplinary efforts at several universities, I feel pretty confident in saying that the level of professionalism and teamwork I’ve experienced with this group is exceedingly rare in academic circles. I’m very grateful for the efforts of each member of the team. Finally, a special thanks to Mary Higginbotham for all her coordination efforts over the course of the CDI.

I would also like to extend my thanks to all of the CDI participants (more than forty in all), who devoted time to this process this summer, and who continue to be engaged as we move forward with developing the curriculum. Were it not for this group, and for everyone who has contributed to this process, we would not be able to develop such a robust and promising structure for educating future pharmacists.

 We look forward to continuing to work with this group in future, and to submitting our proposal to the university for the revision of the PharmD curriculum later this fall. We will keep you posted in the Knowledge Dispensary as future developments progress.

 Best regards,

New Tools for Outreach

In the academic world, summer is winding down, and preparations are in full swing for a new academic year, set to start on August 25 at Ohio State. We’re looking forward to welcoming new students and new faculty, and looking forward to the unveiling of some renovations to the 12th Avenue entrance of Parks Hall.

We’re also initiating new efforts to advance our strategic plan, including our outreach and engagement goal of coordinating efforts for practice change. One of the first steps in this process is to get a better understanding of where we are currently directing our outreach and engagement energies.

In today’s blog, I’ve asked Emily Keeler, Program Manager and Community Builder for our Outreach and Engagement team, to share some details about a project they have been working on in recent months:  the creation of an online tool that will enable us to track the great outreach work currently done by faculty, staff and students in the college:

As a pillar of the university’s strategic plan and mission as a land grant university, outreach is an important component of the offerings of our faculty, staff, and students. But how do we quantify and qualify these outreach activities, and how can we identify where we could make the most impact in advancing the pharmacy profession across Ohio and beyond?

The College of Pharmacy Outreach and Engagement team has begun this process by creating an online tool to track outreach and engagement activities. Partnering with an advisory committee and the Experiential Education Program, we developed a new tool that runs on Qualtrics and tracks information such as type of activity, hours, location, and offers a place for feedback.

Designed as a “one-stop-shop,” the tool is designed to be a quick and easy way for participants to tell us about the work they’re doing. Students, especially, now have a way to report outreach and engagement projects as well as Community Health Service hours needed for professional experience program requirements.

Information collected about these activities will provide the Outreach and Engagement Team with real-time feedback on how members of the College of Pharmacy community are making a difference in our local community.

Dr. Jennifer Rodis, Assistant Dean for Outreach and Engagement, notes “By creating one tool to report activities, we can capture data in real-time while making it quick and easy for students.  Also, by offering a place for feedback and ratings, we can make sure outreach activities are safe, foster learning, and bring the most benefit to all parties involved.”

The reporting tool was rolled out to upper-level PharmD students this summer. It will be offered to all students at any level this fall, with plans to bring it to all faculty, staff, and students within the year.

For more information on this project, please contact Emily Keeler at or Jennifer Rodis at

Thanks to Emily, Dr. Rodis, and the Outreach and Engagement team for their efforts to improve data collection to facilitate data-informed decision making in the College of Pharmacy. We’re looking forward to sharing an update on their efforts on this project in the future, as well as to highlighting additional Outreach and Engagement projects in this blog space.

Starting this month, the Outreach and Engagement office will be a regular contributor to our Knowledge Dispensary posts. Community engagement is not only a top priority for the college, but is also something that we’re very proud of. We hope you will enjoy reading more about the great work being done by this group.

Best regards,

Katherine Kelley

Changes in PharmD Admissions

One of the true strengths of the College of Pharmacy can be found by looking at the quality and character of our students. As we noted when doing the environmental scan for our strategic plan, we have a 5:1 applicant to enrolled student ratio in our PharmD program. We are attracting some of the brightest and most promising students to study at Ohio State. 

To continue attracting and retaining high ability, engaged students, we have been focusing on improving our Doctor of Pharmacy admissions process. Specifically, we are implementing new ideas to help us attract well-prepared, diverse and enthusiastic students who are committed to providing excellent patient care and being leaders in the pharmacy profession in years to come.

As we recruited students for the Class of 2019, we implemented several changes to our admissions process and offered a new event— Welcome Day— to communicate to incoming students that we’re excited about them joining the college and choosing to pursue their professional education at The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy.

This week, I have asked the Office of Student Services to share an update about the admissions process this year and the success of our first annual Welcome Day.

The College of Pharmacy is excited to welcome our Doctor of Pharmacy Class of 2019 to campus. Currently, we are on track to meet our target class size of 125. The class of 2019 includes 12 Early Admission Pathway (EAP) students. Plans are underway for orientation, which will begin the week of August 17.

This season’s interview process benefitted from contributions of many dedicated faculty, students, staff, alumni and supporters, who gave generously of their time and talent. The college hosted seven Saturday interview events between January and April. We implemented several changes to the interview process this year, including a change of venue, moving interviews to conference rooms in the Biomedical Research Tower, located next door to Parks Hall. This change allowed us to offer a convenient, centralized interview day while allowing us to increase the number of prospective students invited to each day.

Another exciting update to the process was the addition of a web page specifically designed for our incoming PharmD students. This resource uses informative video blogs and interviews to help students find answers to their questions about the college.  You can check out the new website here:

The Student Services office hosted our first Welcome Day for admitted students on June 13. We opened our doors to the PharmD Class of 2019 for a full day of events.  Seventy students participated and had the opportunity to sit in on an introductory lecture, ask questions, connect with classmates, and tour the campus and The James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. Lunch was served on the top floor of Thompson Library, while recent alumni spoke about their careers as pharmacists. image008

Welcome Day was a great success and we look forward to hosting it again next year. Photos from the event can be found on our student blog:

While we help the Class of 2019 get ready for fall, we are starting to plan for next year’s admissions cycle. Tentative dates are scheduled for interviews and updates to the process are under review.

This season, we plan to start interviews early by participating in the Early Decision option provided by PharmCAS. The Early Decision option offers students who have decided that Ohio State is their number one choice the opportunity to submit their application materials for early review.  In exchange for a binding commitment to attend if admitted, students are reviewed and given an admissions decision very early in the process. This potentially saves students the time, money, and effort of applying to multiple programs. Candidates who are interested in participating in the Early Decision option are required to submit all of their application materials to PharmCAS by September 8, 2015.

We’re looking forward to seeing the Class of 2019 begin its journey through the PharmD program, and are excited to start talking to potential members of the Class of 2020.  Thanks again to all of the alumni, faculty, staff and students who help to support the PharmD admissions process.

If you have any questions about admission to Ohio State’s PharmD program, please visit or contact us at

Thank you to Jessica, Joe, Julie, Kelly and all of the members of the Office of Student Affairs and the College of Pharmacy Admissions Committee for their hard work this year. We’re looking forward to seeing the Class of 2019 in Parks Hall to begin their studies in August, and to meeting future members of the Class of 2020 when they arrive for interviews a few months from now.

Best regards, 

Katherine Kelley


Behind the Scenes Support

As a leading research institution, the Ohio State University encourages and facilitates the investigation of countless ideas and lines of inquiry as part of the university’s core goal to encourage research and innovation. Research is also a central part of the College of Pharmacy’s mission, vision and values, and occupies a key position in our strategic planning efforts. Research and innovation are central to the work that we do in the college each day.

As you can imagine, undertaking ground-breaking research involves not only our very talented faculty, research staff, and trainees, but also a great deal of support from our staff and administrative areas. In this week’s blog, I would like to take a few moments to introduce you to one of the administrative areas in the college that helps to support our research agenda: our central business office.  

I’ve asked Joy Scott, our Business Service Center manager and certified research administrator, to share a few words about the work that she and her colleague, business manager Tesia Forbes, do to support principal investigators and our research mission:

One of our main tasks as business managers for our college is to facilitate the research that is taking place. We manage more than $20 million in research grant awards, and we are continually striving to promote the highest quality research and research administration. As part of the Central Business Office team, Tesia and I provide a centralized resource for grant submissions and administration within the college. We work in close collaboration with the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP), and provide both pre- and post-award grant administration support.

Pre-award, we help principal investigators by identifying and publicizing funding opportunities. We review funding opportunity announcements and sponsor guidelines to identify specific sponsor requirements. We schedule and attend research proposal team meetings as needed, and assist with developing project budgets and seeking budget justifications. We complete authorizations to seek off-campus funding and coordinate questions about award and expenditure credit, indirect cost rates and cost sharing. 

We identify and help obtain supporting documents for research proposals, including bio-sketches, letters of support, and sub-award documents. We assist with formatting proposals (abstracts, images, tables and appendices), to ensure compliance with sponsor requirements. Additionally, we serve as liaisons between OSP’s sponsored program officer and our faculty in award negotiations, revising budgets and responding to funding cuts that are sometimes requested by the sponsor. We can also request preliminary project numbers (accounts) for investigators when needed.

After researchers receive grant awards, we continue to support their efforts by assisting with administrative details such as completing signature authorization forms and ensuring appropriate faculty and staff appointments to a project. We work with faculty, research staff and division coordinators to procure supplies and materials, and complete personnel expenditure transfers to ensure that faculty and staff effort are properly charged to projects. We advise researchers on allowable costs and budget latitude, help faculty complete progress and final reports, and serve as liaisons between researchers and OSP on budget revisions, requests for project period extensions and project close-outs. We monitor project financials, and arrange for consultant and sub-award agreements. We also facilitate compliance activities like effort certification.

These are just some of the services that we provide to support researchers in the College of Pharmacy. We welcome questions about any of the research administration services that we provide in the Central Business Office. Please contact us by calling (614) 247-4697 or emailing or

Thank you Joy and Tesia, for the expertise you share with our faculty on a daily basis. We sincerely appreciate your support for research and innovation in the College of Pharmacy.


Best regards,
Katherine Kelley

Teaching and Learning Scholars Share Their Expertise with Pharmacy Faculty

As the College of Pharmacy works toward our Strategic Plan’s Teaching and Learning Goal of developing and implementing the new curricula for our programs, we’ve been thinking a lot about how we can prepare ourselves to “apply best practices in teaching and structure curricula to achieve optimal student learning outcomes.”As I’ve described in previous blog posts, we’ve been working on developing new courses and curricula in both our Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Science and our Doctor of Pharmacy programs.At the same time, we’ve been talking about our teaching as well. We’ve discussed what we want to continue in our classrooms, and what we could change and improve.  We’ve spent time reading and discussing what works with our students as well as what doesn’t, and we’ve consulted with experts in the scholarship of teaching and learning, all to help our faculty stay up-to-date in pedagogical methods while staying up-to-date in their subject matter.To help our faculty continue to lead the way in pharmacy education, the college recently offered three teaching and learning professional development opportunities that I’d like to tell you a little more about.  In the past four months, three visiting scholars have come to Parks Hall to share their expertise in Team-Based Learning, assessment, and deepening student engagement and learning.

Last February, we hosted Dr. Doug Eder, an internationally-known scholar in higher education assessment and emeritus faculty at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE).  Dr. Eder presented a seminar about effective multiple choice exams, “Thinking Critically About Designing Multiple Choice Tests.” Dr. Eder led seminar participants through the construction of effective multiple choice exams, the properties of effective and ineffective questions, designing questions to evaluate critical thinking skills, and ways that student behaviors foil analysis.

KDA two-time recipient of the University Teaching Excellence award from SIUE, Dr. Eder taught courses in anatomy, physiology, neuroscience, bioethics and biology, and was named the Emerson Visiting Distinguished Scholar at Hamilton College.  He has served in administrative roles at Arizona State University, University of North Florida, and Purdue University, and is currently serving as the “Assessment Coach” at Indiana University Kokomo.  Additionally, Dr. Eder has served as an external evaluator for three US Title II educational development grants and two NSF research grants.  He is also a resource person for The IDEA Center of Manhattan, KS a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve learning in higher education.

In March, Dr. Todd Zakrajsek, Executive Director of the Academy of Educators in the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill spent a day with our faculty, teaching assistants and residents, delivering three talks: “Teaching for Student Learning: Using Habits of Mind to Frame Teaching and Learning,” “Applications of Learning Theory to Support Effective Teaching: Concepts and Evidence,” and “Overcoming Apathy and Motivating Students in the Learning Process.”

A scholar of curriculum design, effective teaching and student learning, Dr.Zakrajsek has delivered keynote addresses and presented workshops in more than 30 states and four countries.  Additionally, he directs three national conferences on college and university teaching as well as an international teaching conference.  He sits on two educationally-related boards, and serves on the editorial board for the Journal of Excellence in College Teaching. He served as the inaugural director of the Center for Innovative Teaching at Central Michigan University and the founding director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Southern Oregon University.

And most recently, on April 30 and May 1, the College hosted Dr. Larry Michaelsen, David Ross Boyd Professor Emeritus at the University of Oklahoma, and Professor Emeritus at the University of Central Missouri.  A Carnegie Scholar, a Fulbright Senior Scholar and, former editor of the Journal of Management Education, Dr. Michaelsen has conducted workshops on teaching effectively with small groups in a wide variety of university and corporate settings.  He has received numerous college, university and national awards for his pioneering work in two areas: Team-Based Learning (TBL), a comprehensive small-group-based instructional process; and Integrative Business Experience (IBE), a program that links student learning to experience creating and operating actual start-up businesses used to fund hands-on community service projects.

Pharmacy faculty and colleagues from the Colleges of Nursing and Veterinary Medicine engaged in three TBL workshops with Dr. Michaelsen.  The first two workshops, “Designing Group Work that Really Works,” “Getting Beyond Covering Content: A Key to Preparing Students for Their Future Professions,” formed the foundation for an advanced workshop, “Turning Good Group Assignments into Great Ones,” where our teachers became students, actively designing and critiquing ideas for group assignments that they can adapt for their own classes next year.

Our faculty strive to be excellent teachers, but implementing innovative teaching and learning strategies in the classroom isn’t something that happens automatically. Factors like the changing healthcare environment, employers’ needs, students’ desire to apply what they learn in the classroom to real-world situations, as well as the importance of interprofessional collaboration all influence what we teach and how we teach.  Each of the visiting scholars contributed new ideas to our internal conversations about teaching and learning, and I can personally say that I am excited to try the strategies shared by Drs. Eder, Zakrajsek and Michaelsen in my own classroom next autumn.

Best regards,

Katherine Kelley

Funding Sources

With budget debates happening in Washington and discussions about funding scientific research appearing in the news recently, we wanted to turn our attention in this week’s post to describing one way researchers in the College of Pharmacy can find sources of funding for the important work that they do. Research dollars come from a variety of local, state, federal and other sources, and finding those sources hasn’t always been a quick or easy process. Electronic Research Administration software and databases have helped to improve the efficiency of this process for our faculty and other researchers across the university.

One such software package, the SPIN funding opportunities database, administered by InfoEd, is a tool that can link researchers not only to customized funding opportunities, but can also help link researchers to other researchers interested in similar areas of study.

Adopted by the Ohio State Office of Research in July 2012, SPIN is a three-part suite of products.

·         The SPIN (Sponsored Programs Information Network) database itself includes more than 40,000 funding opportunities from more than 10,000 global sponsors, including federal, state, foundation and other sources. The database is updated daily and opportunities are regularly reviewed for accuracy and timeliness. The database offers a full-text search engine based on U.S. Library of Congress subject headings and the ability to save searches for future reference. Searches are customizable based on interests, and trainees are able to customize searches to look for fellowships and other support as well.

·         InfoEd’s GENIUS (Global Expertise Network for Industry, Universities and Scholars) offers researchers a place to create a personal profile that helps them connect with other researchers with similar interests. GENIUS profiles can be searched using free text search, or the ability to search profiles according to recent submission, recent funding awards, recent patents, or recent publications.

·         GENIUS also provides a foundation that the third part of the SPIN suite, SMARTS (SPIN Matching and Research Transmittal Service) which uses information in a researcher’s GENIUS profile to identify and deliver customized funding opportunity alerts to the researcher via email.

The SPIN suite is accessible to faculty, staff and students.  Instructions for creating a GENIUS profile as well as a SPIN Reference Guide are available online at In-person training sessions are offered by the Office of Research typically once per semester. Dates may be found at Training sessions can also be arranged for specific departments by contacting Mr. Jeff Agnoli, at  For additional information please visit or contact the Ohio State University Office of Research at

Best regards,

Katherine Kelley

Faculty Professional Leave

If you’ve followed the news updates  posted to the College of Pharmacy website in recent months about the achievements of our faculty, I’m sure you’ve noticed that our faculty members are outstanding scholars, researchers and teachers in pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacy practice. They work countless hours and help the college achieve its mission of advancing pharmaceutical care for the people of Ohio and the global community. The hard work, dedication and tremendous intellectual contributions our faculty members make on a daily basis come directly from demanding years of study and inquiry: proposing theories, collecting data, testing hypotheses, developing conclusions, advancing new ideas.

To support this work and help faculty continue their personal and professional growth, the College of Pharmacy and The Ohio State University offer regular opportunities for professional growth, including  Faculty Professional Leave (FPL).  FPL gives tenure-track faculty with at least seven years of service an opportunity to have “a period of uninterrupted time to invest in their professional development.” [1]

Approved by Ohio State’s Board of Trustees in 1977, FPL is discussed in the college Pattern of Administration document and is also described in detail in the Office of Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Handbook, found online at documents/facultyprofessionalleave.pdf. [2]  Faculty approved for FPL may use one or two semesters to strengthen research skills and knowledge, or to build pedagogical or administrative skills when these are determined to be “mutually beneficial to the faculty member and his or her academic unit.”[3]

FPL can be granted for up to two academic semesters, but may not bridge two academic years (it cannot be taken in a spring semester and the following autumn semester). Stipends awarded during FPL vary with the length of leave. Guidance on compensation during an FPL and the use of funds from external sources to supplement a leave stipend can be found in the FPL policy statement on the Office of Academic Affairs’ website.

Any faculty member who would like to apply for FPL should submit Form 202, which is also found on the Office of Academic Affairs’ website.  Applications should include a cover letter plus supporting documentation describing the proposed leave activity and expected benefits of the leave. Applications should be submitted to the faculty member’s division chair and Dean Mann at least three months prior to the intended start of an FPL.[4]

Approval of leave applications must be granted by the division, the college, the Office of Academic Affairs and the Board of Trustees, and are based on the quality of the proposal and its potential benefit to the faculty member and to the college.  The ability of the division or the college to accommodate the leave at the time requested is also considered.[5]

Faculty who complete an FPL must submit a written summary of goals and accomplishments to their division chair and Dean Mann within 60 days of their return to service following the FPL.

Applying for and completing an FPL requires advanced planning and approval, but can result in a great opportunity to renew, refocus and revitalize professional goals and interests. Eligible faculty interested in applying for FPL may talk with their division chair or Associate Dean for Graduate Students and Research Cynthia Carnes for additional information about whether this opportunity may be right for them.


Best regards,
Katherine Kelley



1Faculty Professional Leave Policy, Office of Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Handbook, files/documents/facultyprofessionalleave.pdf.

2 College of Pharmacy Pattern of Administration, pp. 8-9.

3 Faculty Professional Leave Policy, Office of Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Handbook, files/documents/facultyprofessionalleave.pdf.


5 College of Pharmacy Pattern of Administration, p. 9.

[1] Faculty Professional Leave Policy, Office of Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Handbook, files/documents/facultyprofessionalleave.pdf.

[2] College of Pharmacy Pattern of Administration, pp. 8-9.

[3] Faculty Professional Leave Policy, Office of Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures Handbook, files/documents/facultyprofessionalleave.pdf.



[5] College of Pharmacy Pattern of Administration, p. 9.