North Texas Insider Alumni newsletter

Dr. Norval PohlDear Alum,

We continually increase our understanding of how the brain processes information and "learns." We now know, for example, that young children are most effective at learning the alphabet when sounding out each letter and simultaneously rubbing a finger over a sandpaper version of the letter -- combining visual, sound and tactile stimulation.

Here at UNT, we are applying new discoveries in learning theory in our classrooms. For the past two years, a small group of faculty worked to transform courses with large enrollments by implementing innovative teaching strategies -- bringing in additional multimedia materials, the Internet and simulations and creating small-learning communities that allowed for more active participation by students. These efforts paid off with some dramatic improvements in student learning and retention, as well as in increases in student satisfaction levels.

Now, we are announcing a five-year project called the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP). The plan will continue to focus on large-enrollment courses that impact thousands of students regardless of major. The university is committed to this project and will invest nearly $500,000 each year of the project. Our goal is to document the learning enhancement taking place and provide students with choices, so that they can experience a learning environment that is optimum for their individual learning styles.

We also expect the UNT QEP to help us respond directly to the growing national agenda that seeks to assure Americans they are getting a good return on their investment in a university education, while guiding us in our next steps for continued improvement of the student-learning experience.

To learn more about the UNT QEP, visit



March 2006


Think Green!
Spread UNT Pride!

Join us for Alumni Appreciation Day

UNT earns $1.8 million grant for high school project

Rediscover the power of ideas

Professor seeks to save Iraqi art

Cool link of the month:
The North Texan

How long has the current University Union served our campus?

NTExes membership steadily growing


Think Green! Spread UNT Pride!
I'm excited to see green pride building across campus and throughout our UNT community. We recently kicked off our second Think Green! It's Friday! campaign, which is designed to get faculty, staff, students and alums thinking about UNT points of pride. Our Green Pride Photo Contest, which is built on the old adage "a picture is worth a thousand words," has community members submitting their favorite UNT-themed photos. Last fall, we asked students to write about what makes them proud of UNT. You can read their thoughts when you visit the site to post your pride pictures. And don't forget to sign up to win an iPod. To learn more, visit

Mark your calendars for Alumni Appreciation Day
I hope you plan to attend this year’s Alumni Appreciation Day April 21. A luncheon, which honors outstanding alumni from each academic department, is set for noon in the University Union Silver Eagle Suite. An alumni awards reception, which includes those honored for the Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Award, begins at 6:30 p.m. and dinner follows at 7:30 p.m. in the Gateway Center Ballroom. Tickets cost $12 for the luncheon, and reservations for the reception and dinner cost $40. To purchase tickets by the April 17 deadline, call (940) 565-2900. To see our list of honorees, click the link below.

UNT earns $1.8 million grant for high school project
UNT recently received a $1.8 million grant from the Communities Foundation of Texas to create three "early college high schools" in Dallas and Fort Worth, the first such schools in North Texas to help students who are under-represented on college campuses make a smooth transition to higher education. I'm proud of the College of Education's efforts in helping provide opportunities to students who might not otherwise be able to attend college. To read more, click the link below.

Rediscover the power of ideas at UNT
Thinking about working toward your MBA or a teaching certificate? Want to take a few courses to expand your knowledge in a subject that interests you? Whatever your personal desires, I encourage you to come back to UNT to rediscover the power of ideas in our classrooms. Or maybe you have a son, daughter or favorite neighbor kid who is looking for a great place to take a few summer courses. Register starting May 11 for summer, which now offers more classes and sessions (five-week, eight-week or 10-week) than ever before. To learn more, visit

Professor seeks to save Iraqi art
Nada Shabout, an assistant professor of art history and one of the world's leading authorities on contemporary Iraqi art, recently earned a $10,000 grant from the American Academic Research Institute in Iraq to continue her efforts to save modern art damaged and lost in war-torn Iraq. She has already spent more than two years researching and building an archive of the art missing from the Iraqi Museum of Modern Art. About 1,300 of the 8,000 missing pieces already have been retrieved. To read more, click the link below.

Cool link of the month: The North Texan extras
I know many of you enjoy reading the printed version of The North Texan, our quarterly alumni magazine. But did you know you can get extra stories, photos and other tidbits on The North Texan web site? This month, online extras include a fascinating tale about singer/songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard and his move to Poetry, Texas. You'll also find places to shop for UNT merchandise. To check out The North Texan extras, visit

UNT Trivia

UNTRIVIA: How long has the current University Union served our campus?

a. 10
b. 30
c. 50
d. 70


North Texas Exes logo

Exes membership steadily growing
North Texas Exes membership and chapter numbers are steadily improving as more and more alums get reacquainted with their alma mater. The Exes are making huge strides and now boast the largest membership to date, raised the most money in history and have the most new programs available for alums eager to stay green. If you are not a member of the alumni association or know someone who is not, contact Sarah Heiser at If you are interested in joining or starting an Exes chapter, contact Barbara Sanders at T
o learn more about the Exes and how you can get involved, visit

Spread the word!
If you enjoy this e-mail newsletter and know a fellow alum or UNT loyalist who also might benefit from it, please forward it on. Anyone can sign up at

North Texas Insider is an e-mail digest of fun and interesting facts about the university brought to you by the Office of the President and created by UNT's Division of University Relations, Communications and Marketing. If you no longer wish to receive the newsletter, simply go to You also may write to North Texas Insider, University of North Texas, P.O. Box 311070, Denton 76203-1070, or drop by the Hurley Administration Building (Room 360) at 1501 Chestnut Street, Denton.0, or drop by the Hurley Administration Building at 1501 Chestnut Street, Denton.

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