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Honors Faculty Research

Dr. Najla Mouchrek working with students in the Honors Culture of Sustainability Lab

Virginia Tech Honors College faculty are active researchers.  Our work focuses on the scholarship of teaching and learning and seeks to improve the undergraduate experience for all university students, both at Virginia Tech and beyond.  A list of our most recent publications and conference presentations appears below. 



  • Paul Heilker. “An Honors Transdisciplinary Minor.” National Collegiate Honors Council Conference. Dallas, Texas, November 2022.

  • Najla Mouchrek. “Creating Community and Empowering Spaces for Students in an Honors Transdisciplinary Course." National Collegiate Honors Council Conference. Dallas, Texas, November 2022.

  • Katie Walkup, Shahabedin Sagheb, and Robert Smith. “Coalitional Curricular Design: Industry-Academic Co-Creation of Technical Communication Modules.” Association for Computing Machinery, Special Interest Group on the Design of Communication. Boston, Massachusetts, October 2022.

  • Branda Nowell, Toddi Steelman, Anne-Lise Velez, and Kate Albrecht. “Co-Management during Crisis: Insights from Jurisdictionally Complex Wildfires.” Meeting of the Academy of Management. Seattle, Washington, August 2022.

  • Shahabedin Sagheb, Katie Walkup, and Robert Smith. “Project-Based Development as a Model for Transdisciplinary Research and Education.” World Multi-Conference on Systemics, Cybernetics, and Informatics. Orlando, Florida, July 2022.

  • Najla Mouchrek. “Fostering Integrative Competencies for Sustainability in University Courses." Educating Engaged Citizens for an Uncertain and Changing World. Elon University. Virtual, June 2022.

  • Najla Mouchrek. “Preparing Honors Students to Deal with Complexity and Uncertainty: A Transdisciplinary Course to Investigate the Eco-Social Emergency." Honors Education at Research Universities Conference. Houston, Texas, June 2022.

  • Katie Walkup. “‘Where are these numbers coming from?’: Salary Data and Digital (Mal)practice in Online Job Ads.” Computers and Writing Conference. Greenville, North Carolina, May 2022.

  • Shahabedin Sagheb, Amy Arnold, Robert Smith, and Katie Walkup. “Project-Based Learning Using the Collaborative Sociotechnical Innovation Model.” Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia, February 2022.

  • Nikki Lewis, Anne-Lise Velez, Najla Mouchrek, Ralph Hall, Zack Underwood, and Daron Williams. “SuperStudio: An Approach for Developing Transdisciplinary, Problem-Focused, Thematic Courses.” Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia, February 2022.

  • Joseph Daniel, Raymond Thomas, Nikki Lewis, and Anne-Lise Velez. “Graduating with Honors: Undergraduate Student Perceptions of Practiced and Applied Ethical Reasoning Skills.” Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia, February 2022.

  • Najla Mouchrek. “Empowerment in Career Exploration: Assessing an Intervention for First-Year Students." Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia, February 2022.

  • Najla Mouchrek. “Empowerment in the Transition to Adulthood: Theoretical Model and Initial Support through Empirical Research.” Conference on Emerging Adulthood. Online, November 2021.

  • Paul Knox and Paul Heilker. “Honors Colleges, Transdisciplinary Education, and Global Challenges.” National Collegiate Honors Council Conference. Orlando, Florida, October 2021.

  • Nikki Lewis, Anne-Lise Velez, Ralph Hall, Zackary Underwood, and Daron Williams. "'Do Not Underestimate This Course’: Logistics and Strategies for a Rigorous, Engaging, Collaborative, and Transdisciplinary Online Course.” National Collegiate Honors Council Conference. Orlando, Florida, October 2021.

  • Ensafi Mahnaz, Kereshmeh Afsari, Sahil Mehta, Niloufar Shadab, Alejandro Salado, Shahabedin Sagheb, and Michael Kretser. “A Modeling Methodology Towards Digital Twin Development in Smart Factories.” Conference of the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction. Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, October 2021.

  • Nikki Lewis, Anne-Lise Velez, Najla Mouchrek. “Discerning Purpose within Complexity: Coordination and Development Strategies for a Transdisciplinary, Problem-Based, Thematic Studio Course for Undergraduates.” International Transdisciplinarity Conference. Zurich, Switzerland, September 2021.

  • Amy Arnold, Jared Keyel, Alkan Soysal, Michael Kretser, Shahabedin Sagheb, and Thanassis Rikakis. “Toward an Integrative Professional and Personal Competency-Based Learning Model for Inclusive Workforce Development.” International Multi-Conference on Society, Cybernetics and Informatics. Orlando, Florida, July 2021.

  • Katie Walkup. “Early Warning Systems, Student Surveillance, and Threat Assessment.” Association of Teachers of Technical Writing Conference. Online, June 2021.

  • Paul Heilker, Caitlin Bowman, and Thea Torrisi. “Honors Reading Seminars and Honors Peer Educators at Virginia Tech.” Virginia Collegiate Honors Council Conference. Richmond, Virginia, April 2021.

  • Anne-Lise Velez, Nikki Lewis, Joanie Banks-Hunt, Ralph Hall R, Daron Williams, Zackary Underwood, and Amy Showalter. “Designing Transdisciplinarity: Logistics and Strategies for Co-Teaching Higher-Order Collaboration.” Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia, February 2021.

  • Anne-Lise Velez, Joseph Daniel, and McKenna Magoffin. “Assessing a Decade of Change in Historic Preservation Nonprofits: Scope, Capacity, and Social Justice.” Association for Research Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action Conference. Online, November 2020.

  • Nikki Lewis, Anne Brown, and Amanda MacDonald. “Researcher Identity: Active Learning Pedagogy for STEM Learners.” American Association of Colleges and Universities Conference on Transforming STEM Higher Education. Online, November 2020.

  • Anne M. Brown and Nikki Lewis. “Developing a Collaborative Teaching Plan: Strategies and Insights." Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy. Blacksburg, Virginia. February 2020.

  • Anne-Lise Velez. “Models of Co-Management.” National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy Workshop: Defining Our Future with Wildfire – A New Paradigm. Plymouth, Massachusetts, October 2019.

  • Anne-Lise Velez, Honey Minkowitz, and Shannon McGovern. “Federalism Meets Social Cognition: Temporal and Substantive Variation in Risk Perception across Levels of Government.” Public Management Research Conference. Chapel Hill, North Carolina, June 2019.

  • Nikki Lewis, Anne-Lise Velez, Desen Ozkan, and Raymond Thomas. “Transdisciplinary Problem-Solving in the Innovation and Discovery Studios at Virginia Tech.” Honors Education at Research Universities. Salt Lake City, Utah, May 2019.

  • Raymond Thomas, Desen Ozkan, Nikki Lewis, and Anne-Lise Velez. “Honors College Mission Evaluation through the Assessment of Topics Courses.” Conference for Higher Education Pedagogy, Blacksburg, Virginia, January 2019.

  • Nikki Lewis, Lori Blanc, Megan Underwood, Lanie Eppers, Madeline Hughley, and Justin McKinney. “Integration of Undergraduate Research Assistants into Programmatic Assessment Research.” Conference on Higher Education Pedagogy, Blacksburg, Virginia. January, 2019.


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