Convergent Design: A Framework for Co-creating Knowledge to Transform Our Food System
with Sauleh Siddiqui (Associate Professor of Environmental Science / Director, Multiscale RECIPES for Sustainable Food Systems)
Up to 40% of all food produced in the United States is wasted. Tackling this problem requires insights from multiple disciplines, stakeholders, and individuals. In this plenary presentation, Professor Siddiqui presents a new framework inspired by convergent science and human-centered design to co-create knowledge that can help transform societal systems towards sustainability, equity, and resilience. (Sauleh Siddiqui is the principal investigator in the recently announced $15 Million, 5-year NSF-funded research network to minimize and manage wasted food.)
The Campus Color Line: How Past Presidents Can Help Point Colleges Towards Equity
with Eddie R. Cole (Associate Professor of Higher Education and Organizational Change at the University of California, Los Angeles
Looking beyond the ways in which college students and other activists, as well as politicians, actively participated in the fight for and against civil rights in the middle decades of the twentieth century, historical accounts have not adequately focused on the roles that the nation’s college presidents played in the debates concerning racism. Focusing on the period between 1948 and 1968, Eddie Cole shows how college presidents, during a time of violence and unrest, strategically, yet often silently, initiated and shaped racial policies and practices inside and outside of the educational sphere. This research has formed the basis for the book The Campus Color Line: College Presidents and the Struggle for Black Freedom which was described by New York Times–bestselling author Ibram X. Kendi as “A stunning and ambitious origins story.”
with Nicholas Caraballo, Gabrielle Levy, Hamza Noor, Qudsia Saeed (members of Class of 2024), Abigail Jackson (Class of 2023) & Amaarah DeCuir (School of Education)
AU students want antiracist classrooms. They share that students need to learn in humanizing spaces. They want to decolonize course material by examining issues of race, power, and inequality across disciplines. They are also passionate about advancing antiracism beyond the classroom, and into the broader DC community. Join students as they share examples of antiracist pedagogy experienced in their classrooms and hear them describe how these best practices directly impacted their learning experiences.
In response to requests for additional support, CAS has convened a working group to develop resources that aim to support faculty working with multilingual students. The presenters will discuss faculty needs and questions, give a preview of the resources they are developing, and share practical tips and activities for working with multilingual students at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Session attendees will be invited to offer feedback and elaborate on the type of support and resources they would like to see this group develop.
with TaLisa J. Carter (SPA-Justice, Law & Criminology), Melissa Noel (SPA-Justice, Law & Criminology), Linda Phiri (SPA-Justice, Law & Criminology PhD Student) & Jazmine Talley (SPA-Justice, Law & Criminology PhD Student)
Both faculty and minoritized students face unique challenges as mentors and mentees in Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs). This panel will anchor the discussion under one main question: since minoritized instructors do not only serve as mentors for minoritized students and minoritized students are not only mentored by minoritized instructors at PWIs, what then is the key to effective mentorship in these spaces?
In this session, we will discuss how evidence-based mindfulness practices amplify the ability of educators and students to do antiracist work in the classroom. Participants will experience how these practices can ground us in intention and fortify our wellbeing, plan how to integrate mindfulness into their classrooms, and learn how mindfulness practices have been integrated into AUx student experiences. As we continue to teach in multiple concurrent crises, explore how centering mindfulness practices in our antiracist pedagogy positions faculty to successfully co-create classroom communities that advance justice and equity.
In this session, Writing Studies Program faculty will lead participants in a workshop on effective strategies for working with student writing in disciplinary (not first-year writing) classes with a goal of improving students’ writing and creating more time for engagement with disciplinary content—the “good stuff.” Participants will leave this workshop with ways to assign, teach, and respond to writing efficiently, effectively, and equitably. This session will benefit faculty teaching W2 courses or any course with a writing component, and panelists will engage participants in discussion of their current work with student writing.
How much do we, or our students, understand how our digital activity follows us in digital spaces? Today’s college students need advice as to how one should go about getting around potential and often fatal digital pitfalls. In this session, we invite participants to reflect on their own and their students’ current state of digital participation and explore ways to help students attain essential skills needed in the digital realm: being informed, engaged, balanced, inclusive, and alert.
“To write is to measure the depth of things, as well as to come to a sense of one’s own depth.” (Hunt and Sampson, 1998) Resilience is a ‘growable’ skill that helps people respond creatively to challenges. Supporting new teachers’ resilience is critical because the first years bring novel challenges, as have the additional stressors of the pandemic. In this workshop, we will use a validated resilience instrument and guided, creative writing exercises to explore sources of stress as new faculty, areas of existing resilience, and creative strategies to build our resilience. This workshop is mainly targeting faculty in their first three years of teaching, but others are welcome as well.
In the Summer of 2020, the AUx2 working group was formed and began to redesign the AUx2 curriculum on a foundation of antiracist practices and pedagogy. In this session, we will discuss how the working group identified and responded to common issues in the classroom, identify institutional roadblocks encountered, and consider lessons learned for our campus community.
In this session, we will engage in personal reflection, via a brief writing prompt, on the unique challenges faced by international students. Participants will learn to design and implement inclusive assessment strategies, including what it means to take a “translingual approach” to grading (Horner et al., 2011), to implement labor-based grading strategies, and to provide empathetic feedback. We will also introduce strategies for composing syllabi with empathetic policies that take a “difference-as-resource” stance (Canagarajah, 2002), as well as how to differentiate international students’ needs in the classroom. Additional strategies discussed will include designing visual lecture and discussion tools, as well as fostering group work.
with Tanja Aho (CAS-Critical Race, Gender & Culture Studies), Kelly Joyner (CAS-Literature/Writing Studies Program) & Stina Oakes (CAS-Literature/Writing Studies Program)
How do you grade participation? Many instructors have “Participation” categories, but rarely consider the unnecessary burden it places on many students. The standard approach reinforces cultural hierarchies by rewarding the “normative” student who is “inherently white, masculine, ableist, middle class, and heteronormative” while working against the non-normative student, turning participation into an issue of exclusion rather than inclusion. We will explore the emerging scholarship of participation and equity to develop alternative ways to reimagine participation.
The goal of this interactive session is to engage participants in facilitation tools to navigate problematic incidents in the classroom. Participants will self-reflect on their role in previous problematic incidents, explore common pitfalls in responding to problematic incidents, and discuss inclusive facilitation tools and strategies to address harm in the moment.
The past 18 months of coronavirus, political upheaval, and violent racism have been uniquely challenging, but trauma in the classroom is not new, and it’s not going away. In this session, gain the skills to respond to trauma and distress with calm and confidence while not running afoul of legal obligations or subjecting yourself to compassion fatigue.
Are your assignments grounded in your course learning outcomes? For many faculty teaching AU Core or other foundational courses, learning outcomes may be assigned by their program. However, they can provide a framework for intentionally designing or revising assignments with effective inquiry-based learning in mind. In this hands-on workshop, we’ll explore success stories and lessons learned, and practice building assessments that clearly communicate intentional connections to learning outcomes to facilitate success for both students and faculty. Participants are encouraged to bring their course’s learning outcomes and an assignment they’d like to revise or a rough draft of a future assignment.
This forum discusses face-to-face and online adjunct faculty onboarding and mentoring processes, pinpointing how the university can support the success of diverse adjunct faculty. Speakers will include faculty and program directors, who are responsible for onboarding and mentoring processes, and adjunct faculty who will reflect on how the university can best support their success. Participants will discuss their experiences and practices and come away with new ideas for onboarding, supporting, and integrating adjunct faculty.
The aim of this workshop is to help instructors and staff use the Antiracist Praxis Subject Guide to better address the challenges to equity at a PWI (Primarily White Institution). Attendees will learn how to use the guide as a resource to create commitments to antiracism that are sustainable and theory-informed through our course documents, research habits, and administrative work. We will use the guide’s specific sections on the psychological impacts of racism and performative allyship as models for how we might move from learning about a concept in the guide to integrating it into our practice.
with Tanja Aho (CAS-Critical Race, Gender & Culture Studies), Anna Cook (Public Administration & Policy), Charley Fogel (Office of Development and Alumni Relations), Eden Greenstein (Class of 2024), Marc Medwin (Performing Arts) & Izzy Scholes-Young (Class of 2024)
Disability culture and justice revolve around radical acceptance, abolishing ableist approaches, celebrating neurodiversity, and creating accessibility in all spaces. The lived experiences of disabled individuals will be front-and-center in this discussion with AU faculty, staff, and student panelists, and they will lead conversations about intersectionality, inclusion, community, and support. What can we do to foster this on our campus? Join us to discuss how and why.
This session is part of a campus-wide conversation about aligning faculty tenure, promotion, and reappointment (TPR) guidelines with the values of equity and inclusive excellence. Panelists will set the scene with recent findings from AU’s NSF-funded ADVANCE* research team, update colleagues on the current, ongoing TPR revision process, and discuss the role of scholarship metrics in inclusive excellence.
*ADVANCE is an NSF-funded grant with the goal of increasing the representation and advancement of women and underrepresented minorities at all levels in academic science (including social sciences). ADVANCE grants fund both research and activity-based projects at institutions of higher education and STEM related not-for-profits.
In this session, we will specifically explore how academic support professionals apply equity mindedness in their roles and how they can build capacity by teaming up with their school’s diversity officer(s) to address structural forms of oppression and advocate for meaningful change to the systems that create inequality in educational outcomes. The session will include a short presentation, followed by small group discussions using case scenarios, and conclude with a summary of takeaways and action items for participants.
How can the application of Trauma-Informed Response practices enhance co-curricular involvement with student activism? Student Activism is a particularly complex type of campus involvement that is full of challenges and opportunities for the deepest learning. Trauma-Informed focused student activism response design provides a conceptual and structural approach to campus activism engagement that accepts, understands, and embraces the complex intersection of trauma and activism for the individuals engaging with complex systems.
When students communicate learning outcomes in language and modalities that are personally relevant do we recognize their brilliance? Are you unsure of how you’d evaluate a TikTok, podcast, or zine? Non-traditional assessments invite students to articulate deep learning in their own voices. This session will explore ways faculty can use learning outcomes and inquiry-based practices to design, revise, and assess creative assignments. We encourage you to bring an assignment to explore how you might revise it with these ideas in mind.
Given the imminent Middle States process, this session will investigate how program assessment can (and should) be a valuable part of the life and work of a program and more than an act of compliance for accreditation. Faculty members from across the university will share their experience with program assessment work, its scope and nature, and how it informs their teaching. Attending faculty will be invited to discuss what methods (drawn from best practices in the field of assessment) may work best for their own programs and departments.
QPR training focuses on teaching individuals how to recognize the warning signs of suicide and provide guidelines to Question a person about those thoughts, Persuade them to get help, and Refer the person for support. This interactive training will be specifically tailored to the American University community, and panelists are connected to AU through the Counseling Center.
Members of the AU strategic plan experiential learning group have been compiling information on experiential learning as it currently exists at AU, while brainstorming ways to expand our offerings that improve access, inclusion, and interdisciplinarity. In this session members of the team will present what we know about experiential learning at AU. We will then facilitate a discussion around best practices for incorporating experiential learning into the curriculum. Participants are encouraged to share their current practices, barriers they have encountered to student participation and success, and give their insights into how we can move experiential learning forward. It is our hope that this session will also provide faculty to make connections with one another, building bridges between complementary work already happening across the schools and colleges.
Over the past two years faculty have begun to teach new or existing courses for the AU Core’s Diversity & Equity (DIV) requirement. Moderators will prompt panelists from across campus and disciplines to reflect upon opportunities and challenges of teaching DIV courses: updating the canon, making space for students’ identities and experiences, accomplishing our course goals alongside DIV learning outcomes, and feeling a lack of expertise. Participants will discuss pedagogical strategies for delivering on our commitments to students.
In courses with a labor-based grading system, students’ grades are based on a contract and determined by the work the student puts into the course. Research demonstrates how this type of grading can be more inclusive and encourages students to focus more on learning. In this session, I will share my research findings on the impact of labor-based grading in writing courses, showing that different student populations are having similar experiences. However, students whose primary language is not English and first-generation college students seem to appreciate the system even more than other groups. A panel of former students will join me to share their experience, and we will discuss how this model could work in other courses.
In 2019, the art history program gave its masters students a new option to create a digital capstone project using Omeka S or WordPress. To support these projects, a partnership developed between AU’s library, visual resources center, and archives. This session covers how three campus units coordinate support for these digital humanities projects and showcases examples of student work from AU’s MA program in Art History. We will also share and discuss examples of projects developed at other institutions that demonstrate the platform’s potential for use in disciplines beyond Art History.
Struggling to reconcile the digital knowledge you’ve developed during the pandemic with your existing teaching practices? This session will interrogate strategies for integrating digital tools more effectively into the flow of the physical classroom. Ultimately, analyzing the existing multimodality of our in-person teaching styles may be the key to unlocking the full potential of these digital tools.
Are you questioning how to support students who need to miss class and major assessments in order to quarantine? How to actively engage students while following health and safety precautions? In this session we will discuss strategies to respond to the realities of the pandemic while considering the mental, physical, and emotional health of students. We will briefly share evidence-based teaching strategies for you to consider in response to possible challenges in Spring 2022. The session will consist largely of facilitated discussion for you to share what is and isn’t working with your colleagues from across campus and consider new or revised course policies to best support student learning.