Exploring Well-being in Learning Environments: An Integrated Seminar Series and Grants Program

Positive well-being is a key predictor for learning and student success. Research indicates that well-being is associated with deep learning, and that teaching practices contribute to experiences of well-being (Adler, 2016; Fernandez et al, 2016, Harward, 2016; Stanton, Zandvliet, Dhaliwal & Black, 2016). In partnership with the SFU Teaching and Learning Centre, SFU Health Promotion works with instructional staff and faculty to create conditions for well-being within learning environments. SFU Health Promotion is expanding this network by partnering with TILT to pilot a seminar series and grants program. This new program is intended to:

  • Provide support for SFU faculty to investigate strategies that create conditions of well-being in learning environments.
  • Increase knowledge of ways faculty can create well-being in learning environments.
  • Provide the opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration through a well-being lens.
  • Facilitate knowledge and ideas exchange that contribute to identifying effective practices that enhance student well-being.

Throughout this program, participants will:

  • Gain knowledge about the importance of and how to create conditions of well-being in learning environments that positively affect student academic success.
  • Develop a project proposal to implement and evaluate changes made to a learning environment in order to foster learning and well-being.
  • Provide input to and receive feedback from fellow program participants and facilitators.
  • Receive up to $5000 of funding to support the design and/or implementation and evaluation of their work.
  • Submit a final report and share the outcomes of the project by connecting with other faculty members and colleagues within and outside of the SFU community.

Time commitment and workload

  • Participants will meet 5 times for 3 hours each between October 2019 and November 2020.
  • The first 3 meetings will be scheduled approximately three weeks apart in Fall 2019.
  • The next meeting will take place about 3 months later in Spring 2020 and focus on participants’ progress in their inquiries.
  • The final meeting will take place upon participants’ completion of their inquiries anticipated no later than Fall 2020 and involve sharing the outcomes of their research.
  • Some readings and relevant research articles will be provided.

Facilitation team

This sessions will be facilitated by members of SFU’s Health Promotion team in collaboration with TILT. Faculty members engaged in SFU's Well-being in Learning Environments project may also facilitate some components of the program.


Adler, A. (2016). Teaching well-being increases academic performance: Evidence from Bhutan, Mexico and Peru. Publicly Accessible Penn Dissertations. 1572.

Harward, D. (2016). Well-being and higher education. A Strategy for change and the revitalization of education’s greater purpose. Washington, DC: Bringing Theory to Practice.

Fernandez, A., Howse, E., Rubio-Valera, M., Thorncraft, K., Noone, J., Luu, X., Veness, B., Leech, M., Llewellyn, G. & Salvador-Carulla, L. (2016). Setting-based interventions to promote mental health at the university: a systematic review. International Journal of Public Health, 61(7): 797-807.

Stanton, A., Zandvliet, D.B., Black, T. & Dhaliwal, R. (2016). Understanding students’ experiences of well-being in learning environments. Higher Education Studies, 6(3), 90-99.


The call for applications is now closed.