FARMINGTON — What motivates a student to be successful? The University of Maine at Farmington Public Classroom Series will explore the question with “Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name,” a presentation by Rhonda Jamison, UMF assistant professor of psychology.

The talk will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 24, in the UMF Emery Community Arts Center. It is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served at 6 p.m. 

Jamison’s talk will explore the importance of relationships and how they can be a motivational force in a person’s life. More specifically, she will focus on the importance of warm, supportive relationships that can help motivate students to be behaviorally and emotionally engaged in the classroom.

She also will share her most recent research findings regarding mandatory office hours as they relate to student engagement. The ultimate goal of the talk is to shed light on the idea that supportive, caring relationships might be better developed with individual students outside of normal classroom interactions.

Jamison’s research concerns student motivation, engagement and achievement. She is especially interested in the relationships and environments that are associated with positive learning outcomes. In her most recent research, she  examined this through the lens of peer relations and teacher-student relations. In her classroom, she focuses on creating an active, social, learner-centered environment, where students can engage with the material and construct their own knowledge.

At UMF, Jamison teaches child and adolescent development and research methods for psychology majors.

Originally from Florida, Jamison received her PhD in educational psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign before joining UMF in 2014.

The UMF Public Classroom Series is sponsored by the UMF Office of the President.

Rhonda Jamison

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