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Teaching Discomfort: Facilitating Challenging Discussions in the Classroom
September 28, 2023 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm CDT
Learn best practices on navigating challenging classroom discussions in this two-part workshop. In STEM disciplines, where knowledge is considered to be “objective,” instructors can be caught off-guard when challenging topics – especially ones that relate to social or cultural trauma – arise. In this workshop, participants will learn best practices for “difficult knowledge”—content that causes students to analyze social trauma (Britzman 1998)—in diverse disciplinary contexts, and apply those practices to design a pedagogical tool applicable in their own classrooms. In doing so, participants will gain a better understanding of how to address pressing ideological issues in their discipline and incorporate them in their teaching. By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:
- Define “difficult knowledge,” explain its impact on students, and identify examples from their own field
- Describe and apply best practices for addressing difficult knowledge topics in their classrooms
- Create a pedagogical tool that addresses a difficult knowledge topic in their field
This workshop is part of CIRTL’s fall programming on evidence-based teaching fundamentals.
Valerie Hsieh, Columbia University
Valeria Spacciante, Columbia University
Abby Schroering, Columbia University
This workshop meets in Zoom on Thursdays, September 21 and 28 at 3:30-5PM AT / 2:30-4PM ET / 1:30-3PM CT / 12:30-2PM MT / 11:30AM-1PM PT.
This workshop is designed first and foremost for graduate students, faculty, and instructional staff in STEM/SBE disciplines, but generally relevant to anyone looking to learn approaches to facilitating challenging classroom discussions at the college level.
Registration & Enrollment
No cap. Registration opens on Monday, August 14, and closes Thursday, September 21.
REGISTER BY SEPTEMBER 21
If you have a disability, please let us know your learning needs. Contact Kate Diamond (firstname.lastname@example.org), who is supporting this workshop, to let us know how we can help you have a successful experience. In addition to meeting individualized needs, we will also take measures throughout the workshop to support accessibility for all our students:
- Using alt-text on images in reading materials
- Sending pre-session reminders with upcoming assignments to all students
- Sharing materials for synchronous sessions with students (slides, activity instructions, etc.)
- Enabling live captioning in synchronous sessions
- Incorporating multiple modes of interaction into synchronous sessions
Associate: Evidence-based teaching
- Describe several known high-impact, evidence-based effective instructional practices and materials and recognize their alignment with particular types of learning goals
- Describe and recognize the value of drawing on diversity in the development of teaching plans (including content, teaching practices and assessments) to foster learning
- Describe how an instructor’’s beliefs and biases can influence student learning
- Describe several learning-through-diversity (LtD) techniques and strategies
- Describe the impact of diversity on student learning, in particular how diversity can enhance learning, and how inequities can negatively impact learning if not addressed
- Describe the scope of diversity in learning environments, of both students and instructor