Summer Book Club

By April 10, 2024May 1st, 2024Smeal Academy Newsletter

Smeal Academy Newsletter: Summer Book Club Edition

The Smeal Academy is brought to you by the eLearning Design & Innovation Group (eLDIG) at the Smeal College of Business at The Pennsylvania State University. The goal of the Smeal Academy is to equip the Smeal community with best practices and strategies for teaching and learning with technology to support Smeal’s business education and research needs.

The Smeal Academy Summer Book Club

This year’s summer read is Sara Rose Cavanagh’s The Spark of Learning: Energizing the College Classroom with the Science of Emotion (2016). In this book, she argues that the emotional impact your teaching style and course design have on your students is important, and by keeping this in mind you can create more effective learning experiences.

A limited number of paperback copies of the book are available from the Schreyer Institute on a first-come, first-serve basis by completing this sign-up form. Electronic copies are available at no cost through Penn State Libraries.

You can learn more about the book club by listening to this week’s new podcast, Meet the eLDIG Team – Emily Baxter, Instructional Designer, by clicking below! Smeal Academy Podcasts will be released weekly and housed on our eLDIG website or follow the Smeal Academy Podcast on your preferred podcatcher!

Upcoming Smeal Academy Sessions

  • Discussions & Announcements Redesign: Worth the chatter?
    Have you heard? On May 7, Canvas’ Discussions and Announcements Redesign will be forced on for all Penn State courses. There is no migration or transition needed from the old discussion format to the new one, but this change will affect the look and feel of Canvas discussions. Join us to learn more about this important change to Canvas! Join us on Tuesday, April 23, 2024, from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST via Zoom.
  • Responsible Use of Artificial Intelligence in Business Education and Research Reading and Discussion Group – John Liechty, Facilitator
    Join us for the fifth session of a Smeal series on the role of artificial intelligence in our teaching and research, which will focus on our shared commitment to preparing leaders to leverage artificial intelligence responsibly in business. John will share some trends in fields related to Marketing and how they impact his approach to teaching at Smeal. Join us on Wednesday, May 15, 2024, from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. EST via Zoom.
  • Smeal Academy Summer Book Club
    This summer, we will read The Spark of Learning by Sarah Rose Cavanagh. Fill out this form to sign up and request your free copy of the book!  Discussion sessions will be held throughout the summer. Stay tuned for dates and times!

NOTE: Recordings and resources from previous Smeal Academy sessions can be found on our eLDIG Website.


  • Tip #1: Discover Open Educational Resources (OER)
    Our Smeal Academy Summer Book Club book is available online for free through our library. Have you considered the availability of free educational resources at Penn State? Explore OER and low-cost materials at Penn State. Looking for cases? Sage provides thousands of case studies for free online via Penn State Libraries. Offering free, open, or reduced-cost materials makes a big difference for our students.
  • Tip #2: Nurture in Nature
    In their podcast conversation, Emily and Chris discussed the importance of student well-being. Did you know that Penn State just launched a Nurture in Nature initiative for students? There are established Nurture in Nature Trails at Penn State’s Dr. Keiko Miwa Ross Student Farm, Stone Valley Recreational Center (East Entrance), and Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center. Stone Valley and Shaver’s Creek are hosting a launch party for their trails on April 20th. Find more details and share the info with your students!

Contact Us

Email us at or fill out the eLDIG Contact form and we will be in touch.