Reading Groups

 

The Coulter Faculty Commons is excited to offer three Reading Groups this Spring. These cross-disciplinary meetings will allow instructors to discuss recent books about teaching and learning in a safe, relaxed environment. 

Reading Groups will be facilitated by the CFC staff, a faculty fellow, or special guest. Discussions on ideas, theories, and applications for the classroom will occur over four meetings throughout the spring semester. 

IMPORTANT: To ensure productive discussion, participants should be able to commit to at least three scheduled meetings. Please review your calendar before signing up. 

Register Here

Instructors who would like to participate during this Spring semester should fill out the online questionnaire!

If you have questions about the program or are interested but cannot make this semester’s dates and times, please contact Alesia Jennings @ acjennings@wcu.edu.

What Inclusive Teachers Do: Principles and Practices for Excellence in College Teaching

Amazon Review:  

This book uniquely offers the distilled wisdom of scores of instructors across ranks, disciplines and institution types, whose contributions are organized into a thematic framework that progressively introduces the reader to the key dispositions, principles and practices for creating the inclusive classroom environments (in person and online) that will help their students succeed.

The authors asked the hundreds of instructors whom they surveyed as part of a national study to define what inclusive teaching meant to them and what inclusive teaching approaches they implemented in their courses.

The instructors’ voices ring loudly as the authors draw on their responses, building on their experiences and expertise to frame the conversation about what inclusive teachers do. The authors in addition describe their own insights and practices, integrating and discussing current literature relevant to inclusive teaching to ensure a research-supported approach.

Inclusive teaching is no longer an option but a vital teaching competency as our classrooms fill with racially diverse, first generation, and low income and working class students who need a sense of belonging and recognition to thrive and contribute to the construction of knowledge.

The book unfolds as an informal journey that allows the reader to see into other teachers’ practices. With questions for reflection embedded throughout the book, the authors provide the reader with an inviting and thoughtful guide to develop their own inclusive teaching practices.

By utilizing the concepts and principles in this book readers will be able to take steps to transform their courses into spaces that are equitable and welcoming, and adopt practical strategies to address the various inclusion issues that can arise.

The book will also appeal to educational developers and staff who support instructors in their inclusive teaching efforts. It should find a place in reflective workshops, book clubs and learning communities exploring this important topic.  

Facilitated by:  

Dr. Melissa Snyder 

Associate Professor       

School of Health Sciences 

Meeting Dates: 

Wednesday, February 22 

Wednesday, March 15 

Wednesday, April 12 

Wednesday, April 26 

Meeting Time:  

1:30 – 3:00 pm 

Location: 

Health & Human Sciences Building, Room 240

Engaged Teaching: A Handbook for College Faculty

Amazon Review:  

Teaching today can be tough, but when done effectively, it can also be a deeply rewarding profession. To become an effective teacher is to begin by being an engaged teacher—intellectually, emotionally, and cognitively grappling with the art and craft of teaching. Engaged Teaching: A Handbook for College Faculty provides college faculty with a dynamic model of what it means to be an engaged teacher along with practical strategies and techniques for putting the model into practice. It simultaneously offers a comprehensive but concise survey of theory, research, and practical strategies necessary for improving teaching and learning in higher education. In particular, this text provides instructors with a deeper understanding of the foundations of college teaching, course design, the classroom learning environment, instructional methods, and teaching improvement. 

Facilitated by:  

Dr. Alesia Jennings

CFC Faculty Fellow 

Chemistry Instructor 

Meeting Dates: 

Thursday, February 23 

Thursday, March 16 

Thursday, April 13 

Thursday, April 27  

Meeting Time:  

9:30 – 10:45 am  

Location:  

CFC Design Studio  

(Located in Hunter Library) 

Unraveling Faculty Burnout: Pathways to Reckoning and Renewal

From Johns Hopkins University Press: 

A timely book about assessing, coping with, and mitigating burnout in higher education.

Faculty often talk about how busy, overwhelmed, and stressed they are. These qualities are seen as badges of honor in a capitalist culture that values productivity above all else. But for many women in higher education, exhaustion and stress go far deeper than end-of-the-semester malaise.  

Burnout, a mental health syndrome caused by chronic workplace stress, is endemic to higher education in a patriarchal, productivity-obsessed culture. In this unique book for women in higher education, Rebecca Pope-Ruark, PhD, draws from her own burnout experience, as well as collected stories of faculty in various roles and career stages, interviews with coaches and educational developers, and extensive secondary research to address and mitigate burnout. Pope-Ruark lays out four pillars of burnout resilience for faculty members: purpose, compassion, connection, and balance. Each chapter contains relatable stories, reflective opportunities and exercises, and advice from women in higher education. 

Blending memoir, key research, and reflection opportunities, Pope-Ruark helps faculty not only address burnout personally but also use the tools in this book to eradicate the systemic conditions that cause it in the first place. As burnout becomes more visible, we can destigmatize it by acknowledging that women are not unraveling; instead, women in higher education are reckoning with the productivity cult embedded in our institutions, recognizing how it shapes their understanding and approach to faculty work, and learning how they can remedy it for themselves, their peers, and women faculty in the future. 

Contributors: Lee Skallerup Bessette, Cynthia Ganote, Emily O. Gravett, Hillary Hutchinson, Tiffany D. Johnson, Bridget Lepore, Jennifer Marlow, Sharon Michler, Marie Moeller, Valerie Murrenus Pilmaier, Catherine Ross, Kristi Rudenga, Katherine Segal, Kryss Shane, Jennifer Snodgrass, Lindsay Steiner, Kristi Verbeke 

Facilitated by:  

Dr. April Tallant 

Senior Educational Developer          

Coulter Faculty Commons 

Meeting Dates: 

Friday, February 24 

Friday, March 17 

Friday, March 31 

Friday, April 21 

Meeting Time:  

11:15 am – 12:45 pm 

Location: 

CFC Design Studio  

(Located in Hunter Library) 

Register Here

Instructors who would like to participate during this Spring semester should fill out the online questionnaire by Monday, January 30. 

If you have questions about the program or are interested but cannot make this semester’s dates and times, please contact Alesia Jennings @ acjennings@wcu.edu.