If you are a graduate student enrolled at Bryn Mawr College in Arts & Sciences or the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, you are invited to participate in the following TLI forums:
“To teach is to create space” - Parker Palmer, quoted in O’Reilley, 1999, p. 1
The Pedagogy Workshops Series consists of weekly, interactive, two-hour sessions for graduate students and interim faculty members interested in exploring, developing, and refining pedagogical conceptions and approaches. Workshops meet every Thursday from 9:00-1:00 a.m. in SWSR 221-Hathway.
The workshops aim to create a space for reflection, analysis, questioning, and planning. You will draw on your experiences as students, T.A.s, and teachers across a range of disciplines and at different stages of your formal preparation and careers, and you will complete templates, respond to critical questions, and generate questions about and plans for effective teaching practice. There will be recommended reading, but the majority of the ‘content’ of the sessions will be generated by participants through templates, discussion, and reflection.
These workshops count toward the Dean’s Certificate in Pedagogy, which is overseen by the Dean of Graduate Studies.
Contact Alison Cook-Sather (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to participate in one or more of these sessions (please send a message at least two days in advance of any particular session you wish to join).
September 4: CONCEPTUALIZATIONS OF EDUCATION
How we understand the concept of 'education' shapes how we think of our roles as teachers and structure learning opportunities for students. In this workshop we will address the question: What do we understand the process of education to be and how can we as teachers facilitate learning according to the definition(s) of education we generate?
September 11: LEARNING ABOUT LEARNING
Notions of how people learn and the purpose of learning have changed over time. In this workshop we will address the question: What do we know about how people learn and how can we build on that to develop classrooms conducive to and supportive of learning?
September 18: PREPARING TO TEACH
In this workshop we will address four key questions from What the Best College Teachers Do: (1) What should my students be able to do intellectually, physically, or emotionally as a result of their learning? (2) How can I best help and encourage them to develop those abilities and the habits of the heart and mind to use them? (3) How can my students and I best understand the nature, quality, and progress of their learning? and (4) How can I evaluate my efforts to foster that learning?
September 25: STARTING WITH THE LEARNER/ KEEPING STUDENT INTEREST
In what ways can we as teachers “start where the learner is” (Bruner, 1977) and engage and keep students’ interest? What do we need to know do take such an approach? What are the drawbacks or challenges of doing so?
October 2: TEACHING STYLES
Teaching styles have much to do with assumptions and beliefs about what teaching is. Styles are not strategies anyone can simply adopt; rather, you need to create a style that is congruent with your commitments and personality. In this workshop we spend some time exploring different people’s notions of teaching, and then we discuss what kinds of teaching styles you might be comfortable developing.
October 9: COURSE DESIGN
This workshop gives you the opportunity to explore individually and as a group key notions from Fink’s Creating Significant Learning Experiences and three key questions in course design from Wiggins & McTighe’s Understanding By Design: (1) What are the learning goals of the course? (2) What will count as acceptable evidence of student learning? and (3) What activities, sequence, and resources are best suited to accomplish your goals?
October 23: ASSESSMENT & GRADING: AN INTEGRATED APPROACH
How do you embed grading within the larger frame/context of how you conceptualize (consciously or unconsciously) course content, student learning processes and participation, and assessment? What is the relationship between grading as a kind of formative assessment used throughout the semester to inform instruction as well as guide learners through the course and grading as a summative assessment that measures what you and students have achieved together by the end of the course?
October 30: THE CONDITIONS OF LEARNING/CULTURALLY RESPONSIVE CLASSROOMS
What kind of classroom climate is open to learning in various ways and supportive of diverse learners? What are the meanings and relevance of safety, risk, and trust in relationship to pedagogy? What lessons can we draw from a project called “Toward More Culturally Responsive Classrooms” and other sources to think about creating a classroom environment conducive to learning for all students?
November 7: LESSON PLANNING
What are your experiences as students and teachers in relation to “lesson plans”? What issues are important to consider in planning? What format works might be the best fit for you and why?
November 13: LECTURES
Lectures can be an effective way to convey a lot of information in a short time, but just because a teacher says something doesn’t mean a student learns it. In this workshop we will explore the purpose of lectures, your own positive and negative experiences with lectures, strategies for creating, delivering, and assessing lectures generated by both bi-co faculty and students across the divisions and disciplines, and your hopes for and concerns about yourself as a lecturer.
November 20: LEADING DISCUSSIONS
Critical theorist Paulo Freire argued that only through dialogue can there be real communication and only through communication can there be genuine education. In this workshop, we will explore the purpose of class discussions, your own positive and negative experiences with class discussions, strategies for facilitating good class discussion generated by both bi-co faculty and students across the divisions and disciplines, and your concerns about yourself as a facilitator of class discussions.
December 4: PULLING IT ALL TOGETHER:
In this workshop we will pull together the various ideas and practices we have explored over the course of the year. Please come prepared to share (1) What you have done or seen done that has been (a) effective and (b) ineffective in establishing a constructive learning environment in a class and (2) Some thoughts on how you would draw on the different concepts and approaches we have explored in our pedagogy workshops to create the kind of learning environment you want in your classroom.
December 11: DEVELOPING A PORTFOLIO AND STATEMENT OF YOUR TEACHING PHILOSOPHY
For this workshop, bring all your notes from workshops you have attended and other work you have done through these workshops. We will discuss ways to organize and build your portfolio, and we will focus specifically on writing a statement of philosophy. Please draft a statement before you attend with the goal of revising it during and subsequent to the workshop.
Contact Alison Cook-Sather, Coordinator of The Andrew W. Mellon Teaching and Learning Institute, email@example.com.