Research and Writing on Teaching

Grants - Topic: Research and Writing on Teaching - 86 results

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Teaching Theological Bibliography in the Internet Age: Comparative Approaches in Three Theological Libraries

Awarded Grant
Lincoln, Timothy
Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
To study user training practices that librarians use to teach theological bibliography in the libraries of Brite Divinity, Epis. Theo. Sem. of the SW, and Univ. of St. Thomas Grad. Sch of Theo.
Proposal abstract :
To study user training practices that librarians use to teach theological bibliography in the libraries of Brite Divinity, Epis. Theo. Sem. of the SW, and Univ. of St. Thomas Grad. Sch of Theo.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought funding for research to study user training practices in the libraries of three ATS schools in Texas. Using quantitative methods, the project sought "to identify commonalities in practice with a view toward improving user training."
The project director's first goal was to let each library articulate its own contextual reality, and then secondly to seek comparisons in the sites. Two significant themes emerged from the data: the relationship between formal evaluation and satisfaction, and the effectiveness of mandatory training.
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Ethnicity and Pedagogy in Theological Education

Awarded Grant
Priest, Robert|Tienou, Tite
Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Theological Schools
2000
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty within an Institution   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
Faculty interested in the implications of ethnicity/race for theo. ed. and for ministry in congregational settings will meet 15 times for lunch/discussion and have guest speakers to address these issue.
Proposal abstract :
Faculty interested in the implications of ethnicity/race for theo. ed. and for ministry in congregational settings will meet 15 times for lunch/discussion and have guest speakers to address these issue.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to gather faculty weekly over lunch on the topic of the implications of ethnicity/race for theological education and for ministry in congregational settings.
Their gatherings were successful in forging and strengthening the relationships among the faculty. A rich conversation on ethnicity and theological education was carried out. Faculty felt the lunches were safe spaces to explore difficult issues that were seldom, if ever, discussed in a larger faculty setting. A result of these meetings was the commitment of the group to engage in a joint writing project focusing on ethnicity and race as a way of bringing the conversation more to the center of institutional life at the school.
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Teaching from a Community Context: The Role of the Field Educator in Theological Education

Awarded Grant
O’Gorman, Robert
Association for Theological Field Education
Agencies
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
The project seeks to produce in manuscript form the findings of the Wabash Center funded consultation, “Teaching and Learning in Theological Field Education: The Role of the Field Educator,” held in Nashville in January 2000.
Proposal abstract :
The project seeks to produce in manuscript form the findings of the Wabash Center funded consultation, “Teaching and Learning in Theological Field Education: The Role of the Field Educator,” held in Nashville in January 2000.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought funding to produce a manuscript from the findings of the Wabash Center funded consultation (990 010), "Teaching and Learning in Theological Education: the Role of the Field Educator," held in January 2000. In writing this manuscript the authors hoped to engage field education colleagues more broadly into the conversation that was begun at the consultation. They also hoped to contribute original scholarship in teaching and learning in the area of theological field education. Finally, they hoped to partner with the Association of Theological Schools in its work on contextualization in theological education.
The authors produced a major article published in Theological Education (Vol. 37, No. 2, 2001, 1-57), entitled "Teaching from a Community Context: The Role of the Field Educator in Theological Education." With this project they feel that they produced a major work on issues of teaching and learning in theological field education that will set standards for field educators as faculty in theological education. This will strengthen theological education in that it will challenge field educators to see their primary function as teachers, while understanding they must also function effectively as administrators.
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Special Meeting on the Development of Children's Ministry Leadership

Awarded Grant
Cannell, Linda
Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Theological Schools
2001
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Four faculty from graduate schools will meet to develop materials and guidelines for the preparation of leaders of children's ministry in congregations.
Proposal abstract :
Four faculty from graduate schools will meet to develop materials and guidelines for the preparation of leaders of children's ministry in congregations.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to fund a special meeting of four faculty members from four different graduate schools who have invested in the development of children's ministry leadership. The project had three goals: to discuss the nature of resources that are needed to inform seminaries and graduate schools about the development of academic programs for church ministry leaders; to create a working plan for a book on children's ministry in congregations; to create a preliminary outline of criteria and describe a model that can be used in the design of learning and worship experiences for children.
The book developed through the project had a working title: Being the People of God: Only When Children Are Present. The book intends to engage the topics of the principles of children's ministry, historical themes and perspectives, understanding community and cultural context, and implications for leadership and ministry development. They conceptualized a consortium of schools concerned with children's ministry development among 14-15 seminaries and graduate schools interested in developing children's ministry leaders.
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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Project

Awarded Grant
Walvoord, Barbara
University of Notre Dame
2001
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Assessment

Proposal abstract :
Supports the participation of two religion faculty (Kyle Roberts, Trinity International University, and Paul Keim, Goshen College) in an interdisciplinary faculty project on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, sponsored by the Kaneb Center at Notre Dame.
Proposal abstract :
Supports the participation of two religion faculty (Kyle Roberts, Trinity International University, and Paul Keim, Goshen College) in an interdisciplinary faculty project on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, sponsored by the Kaneb Center at Notre Dame.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to support research to assess the curriculum approach of the REACH program (Relevant Education for Adults) of Trinity International University. This research was a project of the Kaneb Center of Notre Dame University. They sought to develop a questionnaire to analyze how their liberal arts approach to biblical studies is received and appropriated by students in the foundational courses of their Christian Ministry major.
Researchers report that the original objectives were met to a degree. They were able to discern to a limited degree some apparent progression in students from the first course through the final course. However, the research tool was unable to provide clear criteria to determine objectively the results. The most beneficial outcome was in acquiring a "snapshot" of student perceptions of the Bible and their approaches towards solutions to contradictions they observed in the Bible.
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New Horizons in Theology

Awarded Grant
Jones, Serene|Lakeland, Paul
Vanderbilt University
Colleges/Universities
2001
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Three yearly meetings of this group of theologians will serve as a "forming ground" for the development of a major seminary textbook that helps students explore the relationship between classic doctrine and present day challenges.
Proposal abstract :
Three yearly meetings of this group of theologians will serve as a "forming ground" for the development of a major seminary textbook that helps students explore the relationship between classic doctrine and present day challenges.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to fund three years of gatherings (renewed for two extra years) of the Constructive Christian Theology working group. Its aim was to develop a major introductory textbook addressing all the major themes of Christian theology from a contemporary North American ecumenical perspective. They also aimed to create a "forming ground" for a new generation of North American theologians.
The meetings consisted of panel discussions and subgroup work on topical subsections. In addition to the work, the weekend was filled with good colleagueship and a growing sense of their shared vocation as professors of theology. The developed textbook was completed and published under the title, Constructive Theology: A Contemporary Approach to Classical Themes (Fortress, 2005).
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Teaching and Learning in a Multicultural Setting

Awarded Grant
Bain - Selbo, Eric
Lebanon Valley College of PA
Colleges/Universities
2001
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
Assist a one-year research project on the teaching of Maori religion and culture in New Zealand colleges and universities to develop a pedagogy for teaching and learning in a multicultural setting.
Proposal abstract :
Assist a one-year research project on the teaching of Maori religion and culture in New Zealand colleges and universities to develop a pedagogy for teaching and learning in a multicultural setting.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to fund research investigating the ways Maori religion and culture is taught in New Zealand colleges and universities today. Goals included understanding how Maori-Pakeha (white) relations are played out in college classrooms and curricula; to broaden an understanding of how we should teach about "the other" in classrooms and through curricula in the United States.
Through faculty interviews, library research and classroom learning at the University of Waikato he was able to think carefully about teaching in a multicultural context. First, he had to overcome assumptions about the British model of higher education and about "the myth of racial harmony that is present in New Zealand society today." Fundamentally, in regards to the teaching and learning, he discerned the necessity of teaching Maori culture as a cooperative effort among Maori and Pakeha faculty.
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Attendance at Anti-Racism Training the Trainers Seminars

Awarded Grant
Ramsay, Nancy
Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2001
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
Attendance at three anti-racism programs to observe and compare evolving methods for their application to seminary education.
Proposal abstract :
Attendance at three anti-racism programs to observe and compare evolving methods for their application to seminary education.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought funds to extend an inadequately budgeted item in a prior grant (WC 2000 008), a study leave grant concerning anti-racism research, including training sessions, in relation to teaching and learning in theological education. Training sessions for the grant period included The National Coalition Building Institute (NCBI), the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and personal consultations with an anti-racism training specialist.
Attending the workshops and engaging the consultant helped her to complete her research goals of directly observing current approaches and doing comparative analysis of each in order to develop proposals for seminary based experiences.
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Mining the Motherlode: Teaching and Learning African American Religious Life

Awarded Grant
McNary-Zak, Bernadette|Aponte, Edwin
Perkins School of Theology Southern Methodist University
Theological Schools
2001
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Support for three meetings of seventeen faculty to develop and distribute materials that explore methods for teaching about African American religious traditions.
Proposal abstract :
Support for three meetings of seventeen faculty to develop and distribute materials that explore methods for teaching about African American religious traditions.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to gather a group to develop and distribute materials that explore methods of teaching and learning about African American religious traditions. They hoped to discuss issues related to teaching and learning, and to examine innovative ways to engage African American students, in particular, and all students, in general, in the study of African American religious traditions. The result of their gathering and work together would be a book on the topic. The group members were all participants of the 1999-2000 AAR Teaching and Learning Workshop, "Mining the Mother Load of African American Religious Life."
The project directors report that the group met three times between November, 2001 and October, 2002. The manuscript was written through a collaborative process of dialogue and engagement which the formal gatherings made possible. The completed work was accepted for publication at Oxford University Press.
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Knowledge, Power and Wisdom: Transforming Biblical Studies

Awarded Grant
Schüssler Fiorenza, Elisabeth
Harvard University
Colleges/Universities
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Research and writing to develop intellectual frameworks, methodological practices, educational measures and institutional analyses to rethink biblical doctoral studies as regards the rhetorics and ethics of biblical inquiry.
Proposal abstract :
Research and writing to develop intellectual frameworks, methodological practices, educational measures and institutional analyses to rethink biblical doctoral studies as regards the rhetorics and ethics of biblical inquiry.

Learning Abstract :
The project is a study leave work that is part of an overarching project to rethink the standard educational methods and framework of Biblical Studies in order to address "the uneasy relationship between church and critical biblical scholarship" and "the political functions of Biblical Studies in the face of increasing global fundamentalism and Scriptural literalism."
During the study leave two types of work were engaged: "further research on the issues and initiation of public discussion on how to reshape graduate biblical education in general and doctoral education in particular." A total of four articles on the research topic were published during the study leave period.
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Teaching the Context of Theological Education: The Role of the Field Educator

Awarded Grant
O’Gorman, Robert
Loyola University Chicago
Colleges/Universities
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
A study of contextual pedagogy in selected theological schools to assess effective methods, underlying curricular vision, and faculty transition to new methods.
Proposal abstract :
A study of contextual pedagogy in selected theological schools to assess effective methods, underlying curricular vision, and faculty transition to new methods.

Learning Abstract :
This study leave project sought to study in selected theological schools the teaching practices of field educators that best connect students' learning to the contexts of ministry, and thus, provide a fuller description of teaching in professional theological education. He hoped to assess the following issues: the methods of teaching and learning relating ministerial contexts and theology; the curricular vision this approach to teaching and learning requires; and change strategies necessary for a faculty to make a commitment to contextual theological teaching practices.
A total of six theological schools were studied with 97 persons interviewed (45 students and 52 faculty). He found, overall, that for each school the definition of context differed, and this in turn influenced the models used to relate theory to practice and the dominant characteristic of the school.
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Teaching the Bible: How the History and Culture of Biblical Interpretation in the Bible Belt has Influenced Teaching and Learning in Theology

Awarded Grant
Bonilla, Max
University of St. Thomas (MN)
Colleges/Universities
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Technology and Teaching

Proposal abstract :
To make explicit the cultural assumptions of the Bible Belt that affect teaching and learning in biblical studies by videotaping interviews with Southern pastors, students, and teachers; to develop web resources from the data collected for exploring the formational aspects of learning.
Proposal abstract :
To make explicit the cultural assumptions of the Bible Belt that affect teaching and learning in biblical studies by videotaping interviews with Southern pastors, students, and teachers; to develop web resources from the data collected for exploring the formational aspects of learning.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to understand how teaching trends contributed to the development of hermeneutical and theological assumptions concerning the Bible in the "Bible Belt." Through interviews with pastors, students and professors, the research hoped to discern primarily the role that "Bible Belt" culture plays in the teaching and learning process, as well as the influence of the teaching process directly on the "Bible Belt" cultural perception of the Bible. Hoped for results included a website of collected data and a course on the topic.
Research data collected was put into a website as www.biblebeltresearch.org. The course that emerged was well attended and included a variety of pedagogical strategies including field research and multimedia presentations. Important outcomes of the research also included a paper entitled, "Hermeneutics of the Bible Belt: Struggles in Interpretation" and various talks to local churches to raise awareness of the culture and cultural dynamics of their context.
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Learning Communities: Pedagogies for Congregational Change

Awarded Grant
Nieman, James
Wartburg Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Designing Courses   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
The purpose of this project is to assess and recommend pedagogical approaches for use in congregational studies that can effectively assist the move from congregational analysis and assessment to critical engagement, creative reform, and genuine change.
Proposal abstract :
The purpose of this project is to assess and recommend pedagogical approaches for use in congregational studies that can effectively assist the move from congregational analysis and assessment to critical engagement, creative reform, and genuine change.

Learning Abstract :
When congregations enter into intentional theological self-appraisal, they can still feel unclear how to turn these insights toward genuine reform. There are, however, vast resources in the literature of transformative community pedagogy (community organizing, critical pedagogy, reflective practitioners, adult education, and leadership development) for learning how to face and enact change. These resources can be effectively employed in congregations provided that key leaders have themselves participated in training events that model these approaches and how to introduce them to others in a broadly-owned process. At the same time, such leaders should be aware that these methods adopt views of confrontation, politics, responsibility, and change that may seem at odds with congregations theologically committed to conflict avoidance or social stability. Since such characterization of these pedagogies is inaccurate, leaders must clarify that these methods share with Christianity a commitment to mutuality in ministry and the gift of abundant life for all.
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Survey of Academic Support Services in Theological Schools in the United States and Canada

Awarded Grant
Reistroffer, Dianne|Mapes, Kathryn
Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching

Proposal abstract :
This project will survey seminaries in the US and Canada regarding academic support services in their respective institutions in order to evaluate and disseminate information about the teaching/learning programs which faculty and administrators need as they seek to provide readiness and remedial education for students in theological schools.
Proposal abstract :
This project will survey seminaries in the US and Canada regarding academic support services in their respective institutions in order to evaluate and disseminate information about the teaching/learning programs which faculty and administrators need as they seek to provide readiness and remedial education for students in theological schools.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to survey seminaries in the US and Canada regarding academic support services in their institutions. The principle goal of the project was to gather information about academic support services and the teaching and learning strategies used to assist students in need of readiness and remedial support in seminaries. They hoped the research would provide a resource for developing academic support programs in theological education, as well as providing a faculty resource for course development and instruction.
The project director reports that 15 Canadian graduate theological institutions and 103 U.S. seminaries participated in the survey. The survey found that "while wishful thinking abounds, productive planning and implementation of comprehensive academic support programs range, except in a few notable exceptions, from meager to non-existent in most of the ATS schools."
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Constructing a Theological Vocation Across the Religious/Secular Divide

Awarded Grant
Priest, Robert
Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Theological Schools
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Ethnographic interviews with Christian anthropologists working in seminary settings in order to develop a broader understanding of how they construct their vocation as theological educators and examining how this relates to broader questions of vocation in academic settings.
Proposal abstract :
Ethnographic interviews with Christian anthropologists working in seminary settings in order to develop a broader understanding of how they construct their vocation as theological educators and examining how this relates to broader questions of vocation in academic settings.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to interview Christian anthropologists who teach, or who have formally taught in theological seminaries. This work was part of research by the grantee related to a larger project of the "Wabash Center Consultation on Vocation: A Career in Theological Scholarship."
The project director was able to conduct 20 interviews during the time of the grant. He reports that the grant funds supported a "significant block of research," helped to redirect his interviewing more toward the topic of vocation, and clarify the importance of seminary "as a crucial social location" in which Christians struggle to integrate various forms of knowledge."
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Curriculum and Teaching

Awarded Grant
Seymour, Jack
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2002
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
The intent of the project is to connect curriculum to teaching practices through examination and analysis of selected seminary mission statements in relation to curriculum design and teaching practices.
Proposal abstract :
The intent of the project is to connect curriculum to teaching practices through examination and analysis of selected seminary mission statements in relation to curriculum design and teaching practices.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to examine the interface between seminary mission statements, curricula and its implications for teaching in theological school curricula. This would be accomplished through interviews at selected seminaries.
The project director reports that the grant provided the opportunity to visit face-to-face with 25 persons at 12 seminaries, and by phone with another 5 persons at 5 additional seminaries. He consulted deans, assessment officers, faculty members and researchers in theological education. In his work he discovered that "a culture of learning and teaching within the institution can be fueled by curricular conversation itself, or by faculty development efforts where the content and methods of courses are shared and clarifications made about how these courses fit into a whole pattern."
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The Distributed Seminary: Approaches and Issues

Awarded Grant
Delamarter, Steve
Portland Seminary
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Technology and Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will identify the approaches seminaries are taking to distributed teaching and learning and to understand how they are addressing challenges related to 1) delivery systems, 2) academic content, 3) "non-academic" content (professional skills, character and spiritual formation), and 4) assessment.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will identify the approaches seminaries are taking to distributed teaching and learning and to understand how they are addressing challenges related to 1) delivery systems, 2) academic content, 3) "non-academic" content (professional skills, character and spiritual formation), and 4) assessment.

Learning Abstract :
This study leave project sought to identify the approaches seminaries are taking to distributed teaching and learning and distance education. It also hoped to understand how these programs address challenges related to delivery systems, academic content, "non-academic" content related to professional skills, character and spiritual formation, and assessment.
The project director reports that data was gathered from 85 interviews on technology and theological education with representatives of 43 seminaries. The schools represented made up 46% of the population of ATS schools. The interviews consisted of in-person interviews, site visits to 11 seminaries, and phone interviews. This developed a "snapshot" of attitudes toward and uses of technology by theological educators at the time of the study (2003), resulting in 5 articles on the topic for both Teaching Theology and Religion and Theological Education.
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The Role of the Religious Studies Introductory Course in Supporting the Jesuit Mission in Catholic Higher Education in the 21st Century

Awarded Grant
McGinn, Sheila
John Carroll University
Colleges/Universities
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Designing Courses

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to improve religious and theological education at the 28 Jesuit Catholic colleges and universities in the United States by structuring a conversation among the institutions concerning how their current introductory Religious Studies/Theology courses can better support the Jesuit mission in higher education in the current environment of religious pluralism, technological innovation, and a developing global culture in the 21st century.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to improve religious and theological education at the 28 Jesuit Catholic colleges and universities in the United States by structuring a conversation among the institutions concerning how their current introductory Religious Studies/Theology courses can better support the Jesuit mission in higher education in the current environment of religious pluralism, technological innovation, and a developing global culture in the 21st century.

Learning Abstract :
The primary points I learned from the data-collection and analysis phases of this project were that a) collecting and analyzing survey data takes at least five times more time and energy than projected, and (b) faculty and administrators are not nearly as responsive to a colleague's request for data as one might like.

1. Mail-in surveys have a notoriously low rate of return, so it takes considerable effort to follow up with recipients if you want a substantial response to the survey. We resorted to email, telephone calls, and even personal visits to certain key respondents in order to get a broad response to the questionnaires.

2. Collating the results - including generating the schema for collating the responses to the open-ended questions-took somewhat less time than anticipated, but the tremendous learning curve for using SPSS to analyze the student data more than compensated for this. I relied heavily on a colleague in the Psychology department for both a tutorial on how to use the program and suggestions about which kinds of analyses to run.

My success with the course re-design phase of the project reinforced for me the idea that it is essential to lay a solid foundation for collaboration if you want to gain a consensus on a key decision, particularly in the abbreviated time frame of a grant project. This project was designed to include consultation with a wide range of individuals and interest groups, and this consultation was key to achieving the final result of changing the course design in ways that all the faculty could support.
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Training Seminarians to Minister in Rural Contexts and Crises: Research in Effective Teaching Strategies

Awarded Grant
Harder, Cameron
Lutheran Theological Seminary, (SK)
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to research institutions that train students in rural contexts in order to develop strategies for teaching that would equip seminarians and clergy for ministry in increasingly stressed rural communities.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to research institutions that train students in rural contexts in order to develop strategies for teaching that would equip seminarians and clergy for ministry in increasingly stressed rural communities.

Learning Abstract :
I rediscovered the value of a Trinitarian theology for congregational mission focused on community development. I found several excellent community-building tools (appreciative inquiry, asset-mapping and intergenerational dialogue) that I am training my students to use with their congregations on internship and after graduation. I have become convinced of the urgent necessity, fruitfulness and potential difficulties of doing interdisciplinary training for clergy. And from the last segment of the project I have learned the value of a well designed and maintained website as a way of networking with folks who, in Canadian rural settings, are often far distant from one another.
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Leading a Writing Workshop on Technology and Theological Education

Awarded Grant
Delamarter, Steve
Portland Seminary
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Technology and Teaching

Proposal abstract :
A two-week writing workshop for a small number of faculty to produce publications on the subject of improved teaching and learning in theological education through the strategic uses of technology.
Proposal abstract :
A two-week writing workshop for a small number of faculty to produce publications on the subject of improved teaching and learning in theological education through the strategic uses of technology.

Learning Abstract :
The grant proposal sought support for the preparation and execution of a writing workshop on theological education with a group of my colleagues. The workshop was held on six days between June 30 and July 11, 2003 with the project director and three colleagues. Four papers were completed during the workshop and sent to the journals, Theological Education and Teaching Theology and Religion.
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Formation and Training of Catholic Women for Ministry

Awarded Grant
Zagano, Phyllis
Hofstra University
Colleges/Universities
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to investigate the pedagogical needs in formation and training of Catholic women for ministry outside Catholic seminaries and universities through research (literature review and consultation with experts), and to present this research in a scholarly forae (conference paper and journal article).
Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to investigate the pedagogical needs in formation and training of Catholic women for ministry outside Catholic seminaries and universities through research (literature review and consultation with experts), and to present this research in a scholarly forae (conference paper and journal article).

Learning Abstract :
Several problems surrounding the formation and training of Catholic lay ministers were identified during the research period. The research demonstrates that a large population of Catholic women and lay men in the highest levels of full-time ministry training (i.e. M.Div., D.Min.) are training under non-Catholic auspices.

While the level of non-Catholic institutions is uniformly high, the lack of specifically Catholic formation and training puts these students at a disadvantage. Many courses necessary for Catholic ministry are simply not available. While some students at non-Catholic institutions in or near major metropolitan areas (Boston, Chicago, Washington, D.C.) can register for necessary courses through their institutions' consortia memberships, large areas of the United States have no Catholic resources nearby. Preliminary conversations with officials of the Vanderbilt Divinity School and with the US Conference of Catholic Bishops during the project indicated the need to measure the problem and provide pedagogical solutions to non-Catholic institutions. This is especially important in the light of coming Catholic requirements for lay ecclesial ministry that include four competency areas: human, spiritual, intellectual, and pastoral formation.
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Writing Theology Well

Awarded Grant
YaghFjian, Lucretia
Weston Jesuit School of Theology
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a book project aimed at the development of a text, "Writing Theology Well: A Theological Writer's Rhetoric," that will provide a discipline driven introduction to theological writing and research for students enrolled in theological schools and seminaries, writing instructors and tutors, and theological faculty.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a book project aimed at the development of a text, "Writing Theology Well: A Theological Writer's Rhetoric," that will provide a discipline driven introduction to theological writing and research for students enrolled in theological schools and seminaries, writing instructors and tutors, and theological faculty.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to fund a semester's leave to research and write a text on theological writing. The text, Writing Well: a Theological Writer's Rhetoric, is adapted from materials developed from the Episcopal Divinity School/Weston Jesuit Theological Seminary WRITE program.
Speaking from her strengths,the project director would encourage applicants to design proposals that emerge from writing and research they are already doing, for such proposals will be grounded in the "already" as they imagine and articulate the "not yet." Secondly, the project should be important enough to undertake even if it doesn't get funded; and if it is important, there is a high probability that it will get funded. Finally, travel to other institutions can contribute significantly to a project, and expand one's imagination of its intended "audience." Speaking from hindsight, one thing the project director would do differently is request a longer grant period. However, given most people's natural tendency to underestimate the time required to complete a project, she would advise aspirants to expect to have more work to do when the grant concludes, because there is never enough time to do everything one had hoped to do. But if, like her, they look forward to finishing the work, then the "grant" will continue to support, inspire and encourage its recipients, long after its termination date.
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Teaching Theology Students at the Masters Level in Institutions Affiliated with a University

Awarded Grant
MacLachlan, David
Atlantic School of Theology
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
Support for a dean to travel and meet with deans, students and faculty at selected schools in the U.S. and Canada that offer the M Div degree, and other theological programs at the masters level that have had to affiliate their theological school with a major university to remain viable. Discussions will include use of internet courses in ministerial programs, faith formation in versions of the M. Div that ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a dean to travel and meet with deans, students and faculty at selected schools in the U.S. and Canada that offer the M Div degree, and other theological programs at the masters level that have had to affiliate their theological school with a major university to remain viable. Discussions will include use of internet courses in ministerial programs, faith formation in versions of the M. Div that use significant off campus teaching and the deployment of theological and religious study faculty.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to examine ministerial programs in institutions of theological education that are affiliated with universities. The project director hoped to speak to the deans of 18 institutions to discuss their theological programs, and the teaching and learning issues involved that are particular to their relationship to a secular university.
The project director reports fruitful conversations with all 18 schools visited. He observes that while many theological schools are affiliated with universities, the M.Div. program generally "has been kept unto itself with its own concerns and agenda in the curriculum, more or less free from interfaith or other institutional connections." In these settings it is viewed primarily as a professional degree for work in churches. He believes this is a result of ATS standards, along with church expectations that determine curriculum requirements. He hopes to continue his research in schools where the university connected is "professed to be strong and workable."
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Information Literacy in Theological Education

Awarded Grant
Graham, M. Patrick|Gragg, Douglas
Candler School of Theology - Emory University
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to review bibliographic instruction programs in select theological libraries, formulate a more systematic approach for such instructional programs in terms of information literacy, and introduce this as a collaborative program for American Theological Library Association (ATLA) libraries.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to review bibliographic instruction programs in select theological libraries, formulate a more systematic approach for such instructional programs in terms of information literacy, and introduce this as a collaborative program for American Theological Library Association (ATLA) libraries.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought "to review bibliographic instructional programs in select theological libraries, formulate a systematic approach for such instructional programs in terms of information literacy, and introduce this as a collaborative program for American Theological Association (ATLA) libraries."
The project director reports that he completed a review of research on information literacy programs, interviewed four leading figures in the movement, and visited some of the leading theological libraries to discuss their instructional programs. He also visited the ATLA offices and four premiere academic libraries that have information literacy programs. He received an "overwhelmingly positive" response from faculty in his attempt to develop an information literacy program based in the large core courses at Candler. As a result of this project, he will be working with 19 courses to develop the students' information literacy.
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Integrating Visually Impaired Students into the MDiv Program

Awarded Grant
Walls, Neal
Wake Forest University Divinity School
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to conduct a feasibility study and initial planning for a comprehensive program to successfully integrate students with visual impairments into the M.Div. degree program at the Wake Forest University Divinity School.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to conduct a feasibility study and initial planning for a comprehensive program to successfully integrate students with visual impairments into the M.Div. degree program at the Wake Forest University Divinity School.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to conduct a "feasibility study and initial planning" for a comprehensive program to integrate students with visual impairments into the M.Div. degree program. They hoped to gather information about currently available library and technological resources to aid blind and visually impaired students, to determine which components of their curriculum required modification, and to seek out financial resources for special scholarships to support students with visual impairments.
The project director reports that information and resources were gathered in the following areas: university disability services, current technology resources, and current library resources. In regards to curriculum, the following areas were highlighted for modification: biblical languages, field education internships and library research resources. Finally, scholarship possibilities were highlighted, as well as agencies to advertise in to attract qualified students with visual impairments. In conclusion, as a result of the project, the school finds itself in an "excellent position" to integrate visually impaired students into the M.Div. program in a comprehensive manner.
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Generative Congregations for Theological Field Education

Awarded Grant
Carroll, R. Leon
Columbia Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2003
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a project that seeks to identify critical qualities of teaching congregations that distinguish them as generative centers for theological field education.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a project that seeks to identify critical qualities of teaching congregations that distinguish them as generative centers for theological field education.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to identify critical qualities of teaching congregations that distinguish them as "generative centers of theological education." The research would be done as a "modest congregational studies project, involving in an analysis of five to six congregations."
One could argue that these fourteen habits and virtues of generative congregations (future oriented, theologically grounded, missionally focused, worship-centered, contextually savvy, publicly engaged, cooperatively linked, shared leadership, personally hospitable, grace-fully managed, programmatically balanced, missional resources, highly participatory, and spiritually nurturing) are merely a personal description of the "ideal church," and there are grounds for such a critique. However, it is important to note that numerous qualities of the ideal church did not make their way onto this list. For example, no one theological perspective was found to be a common characteristic. These congregations range from moderately evangelical-conservative to relatively liberal. Likewise, no one political ideology was found. Some congregations are predominately Republican; others are largely Democratic - with all of the customary partisan views about war, abortion, taxation, welfare and other issue. Also, fewer than half of these congregations see themselves as having strong programs of ministry with children and youth. And numerous other qualities that one might expect on a personal "wish list" do not appear on this list of habits and virtues.

One characteristic not on the list is assumed - but should be acknowledged. All of these congregations are obviously deeply faithful to God, and this faith commitment profoundly influences the identity and mission of each church. While different congregations may emphasize different aspects of the Christian Gospel, all of them live out their faith in ways that have integrity with their understanding of their vocation as Christian disciples.

It was suggested earlier that a critical element of any pastoral internship is the supervising pastor. And this premise is borne out with each of these five congregations. Without exception, there is a strong and able supervisor who is a careful mentor with personal enthusiasm for working with theological students. Without this commitment, even the most generative of congregations would probably struggle as a teaching partner in theological education.

Perhaps the ultimate test of congregational generativity has to do with the competencies cultivated by an intern in the field setting. The following is my own minimal list of competencies that one might hope an intern will address in a pastoral internship: Constructive theological reflection, self-knowledge, authentic personal piety or spirituality, healthy interpersonal relationships, leadership, insightful contextual analysis, pastoral skills, and vocational clarity.

While there are no guarantees that an intern and congregational placement will experience the chemistry needed to develop a constructive internship, there is an interesting correlation between this list of pastoral competencies and the characteristics of generative congregations. One might easily conclude that congregations with the habits and virtues described in this report are positioned to contribute significantly to the personal growth and professional development of students in ministry.
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Supplemental Funding for Training Seminarians to Minister in Rural Contexts and Crises: Research in Effective Teaching Strategies

Awarded Grant
Harder, Cameron
Lutheran Theological Seminary, (SK)
Theological Schools
2004
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to research institutions that train students in rural contexts in order to develop strategies for teaching that would equip seminarians and clergy for ministry in increasingly stressed rural communities.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave grant to research institutions that train students in rural contexts in order to develop strategies for teaching that would equip seminarians and clergy for ministry in increasingly stressed rural communities.

Learning Abstract :
I rediscovered the value of a Trinitarian theology for congregational mission focused on community development. I found several excellent community-building tools (appreciative inquiry, asset-mapping and intergenerational dialogue) that I am training my students to use with their congregations on internship and after graduation. I have become convinced of the urgent necessity, fruitfulness and potential difficulties of doing interdisciplinary training for clergy. And from the last segment of the project I have learned the value of a well-designed and maintained website as a way of networking with folks who, in Canadian rural settings, are often far dfstant from one another
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Congregational Studies: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach to Contextualize Teaching in Theological Education

Awarded Grant
Mercer, Joyce
San Francisco Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2004
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that concerns the intersections between congregational studies and teaching-learning in theological education. The purpose of the project is to explore the use of congregational studies as an important and valuable tool for teaching and learning across the disciplines in theological education, contributing to a broader conversation about teaching-learning issues among seminary faculties, and offering new possibilities for contextual education in theology.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that concerns the intersections between congregational studies and teaching-learning in theological education. The purpose of the project is to explore the use of congregational studies as an important and valuable tool for teaching and learning across the disciplines in theological education, contributing to a broader conversation about teaching-learning issues among seminary faculties, and offering new possibilities for contextual education in theology.

Learning Abstract :
This study leave project examined the intersections between congregational studies and teaching-learning issues in theological education. Congregational studies offers opportunities to contextualize such teaching and learning by locating it in the interstices between particular contexts of ministry (congregations and other settings), the processes by which learners analyze these contexts, and the larger questions of theology, biblical studies, history, ethics, leadership, etc. that go beyond any one particular setting or context. Instead of studying the issues and questions that make up the explicit curriculum of theological education in the abstract, a congregational studies-based pedagogy allows particular ministry settings to operate as "case studies" for teaching and learning. Because a congregational studies approach apprentices learners in the practices of "reading" congregational contexts, it invites them into the "community of practice" made up of public theologians/church leaders able to understand such contexts and think theologically without reducing the scope of their concern to a single case. Such practices are portable across contexts for ministry.
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Teaching as a Practice of Cross-Cultural Encounter

Awarded Grant
Riggs, Marcia
Columbia Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2004
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Designing Courses

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will seek to develop a pedagogical model that makes connections between religion, culture, and conflict. The model will integrate theories of the social construction of difference, cultural analysis of religion and conflict, communicative ethics, transformative mediation, and intercultural communication for use in both academic and congregational contexts.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will seek to develop a pedagogical model that makes connections between religion, culture, and conflict. The model will integrate theories of the social construction of difference, cultural analysis of religion and conflict, communicative ethics, transformative mediation, and intercultural communication for use in both academic and congregational contexts.

Learning Abstract :
The goals of my study leave grant were five fold. (1) To complete the research for and writing of a manuscript on a theory of ethics as cross-cultural encounter and the practice of religious ethical mediation and to translate that theory and practice into a pedagogical model. I have completed most of the research for the manuscript but have not completed writing the book yet. Additional theory work needed to be done prior to the writing. (2) To develop this pedagogical model for use in both academic and congregational contexts. (3) To develop a bibliography of audio-video resources and fiction that will supplement the use of traditional textual sources in this model of teaching and learning. (4) To redesign the required ethics course in the seminary's M.Div. curriculum using this pedagogical model and bibliography. Goals two, three, and four were linked. The bibliography has been completed and will be used in two ethics courses. The course syllabi will be submitted to the AAR Syllabus Project. (5) To design a workshop for clergy and lay leadership development that teaches the theory and practice of teaching as a practice of cross-cultural encounter for the continuing education program of the seminary. I hope to do a workshop next year. I have delayed presenting workshops on the material until after the book manuscript is completed.
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Overview and Evaluation of Course Management Systems for Teaching Theology

Awarded Grant
Rafferty, Jim
Minnesota Consortium of Theological Schools
Agencies
2004
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Technology and Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Course Management Systems (CMS) are becoming commonplace in the teaching of theology and religion. Following up on an overview of courseware options I presented at InfoTech in August, 2003 (http://www.mncts.org/workshops/infotechcourseware.htm) I propose to update and expand the overview, explore the impact of some of these sytems, and point to some promsing alternatives for the future.
Proposal abstract :
Course Management Systems (CMS) are becoming commonplace in the teaching of theology and religion. Following up on an overview of courseware options I presented at InfoTech in August, 2003 (http://www.mncts.org/workshops/infotechcourseware.htm) I propose to update and expand the overview, explore the impact of some of these sytems, and point to some promsing alternatives for the future.

Learning Abstract :
Learning Management systems like Blackboard are impacting how one trains for ministry. The grant provided an opportunity to interview LMS pioneer and founder of Fisher's Net Tom Walker who discussed the history of LMS in seminaries and shared what he thinks about its future. Additionally there was an opportunity to build on a list of resources to further explore what's happening in LMS and what it means for ministry training. Questions that remained at the end of the project were: 1) Are there better tools and techniques out there? 2) Open source software offers tools like Moodle or Nicenet as low cost alternatives to Blackboard but are they good choices? 3) Is academic based LMS software event the right model for people training for parish ministry?
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Teaching and Learning Scriptural Reasoning

Awarded Grant
Ochs, Peter
University of Virginia
Colleges/Universities
2004
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study of how to teach and learn a new approach to religious studies called "Scriptural Reasoning." "Scriptural Reasoning" refers to two dimensions of practice: a learning practice that engages students of all three Abrahamic traditions in the activity of scriptural study, and a scholarly practice of generating theories that both guide and account for this learning practice.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study of how to teach and learn a new approach to religious studies called "Scriptural Reasoning." "Scriptural Reasoning" refers to two dimensions of practice: a learning practice that engages students of all three Abrahamic traditions in the activity of scriptural study, and a scholarly practice of generating theories that both guide and account for this learning practice.

Learning Abstract :
During the leave period I completed all background research and composed most of the book manuscript. Following the leave period I continued to work on the book and acquired a book contract with Eerdmans/SCM Press. As noted in my application, Scriptural Reasoning names a new approach to scriptural study and interpretation. Nurtured over the past 10-15 years by a still expanding movement of Christian, Jewish, Muslim scholars, SR has at least two purposes: (a) To show how scriptural study serves as a neglected source of instruction in patterns of reasoning that apply not just to religious life but also for all manners of reflection on what we are to make of this world and how to live in it; (b) To show how such patterns of reasoning can be drawn out of each of the three Abrahamic traditions of scriptural study. For, the more deeply they study scripture together, the more these erstwhile religious adversaries may begin to see in each other's faces evidence of an analogous love of God. I would not have felt it so important to write a book about SR if it were not for these unexpected outcomes.

While members of SR fellowships have begun to write about SR in journal essays and some collected works, there is as yet no singly authored volume on the character and implications of SR practice.

The book will have three basic foci. First, it welcomes university and seminary teachers, and other interested readers, to "observe" scriptural reasoning as it has been practiced in several fellowships. Second, it gives a speculative account of the kinds of reasoning the SR folks are engaged in. Third, it focuses more concretely on how SR might be introduced into various classroom settings in the university and in the seminaries.

The book is due to be published in late Fall of 2006.
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Theological Education in a Multicultural Environment: Identifying and Evaluating Best Practices for Empowerment. Part I - Research and Planning

Awarded Grant
Lee, Cameron
Fuller Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2004
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching

Proposal abstract :
The Joint Faculty Multiethnic Concerns Committee of Fuller Theological Seminary proposes a four-stage evaluation of student perceptions of classroom practices. The proposal is conceived as the first part of a larger planning initiative to further policymaking and pedagogy which will support the culturally diverse ministries of our student body. Stage 1 uses focus group methods to elicit from ethnically representative student groups their perceptions of how well current classroom practices empower ...
Proposal abstract :
The Joint Faculty Multiethnic Concerns Committee of Fuller Theological Seminary proposes a four-stage evaluation of student perceptions of classroom practices. The proposal is conceived as the first part of a larger planning initiative to further policymaking and pedagogy which will support the culturally diverse ministries of our student body. Stage 1 uses focus group methods to elicit from ethnically representative student groups their perceptions of how well current classroom practices empower them to minister in their intended cultural settings. Stage 2 utilizes this data to construct a quantitative survey instrument to be distributed to the entire student body. In Stage 3, an initial report of the foregoing results will be submitted to outside consultants for their feedback and response. In the final stage, the report and the consultants’ responses will be distributed to faculty, staff, and students campus-wide, as an empirical base for planning and evaluation discussions.

Learning Abstract :
An empirical study of full-time students at Fuller Seminary was begun in 2005 to address issues of pedagogy and climate related to empowering a culturally diverse body of students. Initial qualitative data were used to construct a questionnaire that was completed by 298 students. A preliminary report of the findings was then circulated to external consultants and student focus groups for comment. Survey results indicated that pedagogical concerns were secondary to those of campus climate. Student focus groups responses raised significant concerns with implicit and explicit racism in the classroom. Overall, the study suggests that the empowerment of an increasingly diverse population of seminary students requires specific attention to the ways in which the classroom and campus environment may be experienced as unsafe and disempowering.
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Youth Ministry Education and a Multicultural Society

Awarded Grant
Linhart, Terence
Bethel College
Colleges/Universities
2004
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study to examine how teachers at Christian colleges and seminaries educate men and women about multicultural issues within youth ministry programs.
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study to examine how teachers at Christian colleges and seminaries educate men and women about multicultural issues within youth ministry programs.

Learning Abstract :
The teachers in this study intended for these courses to be moments of awakening for students, satisfied that students may depart the course without "answers," but with new awareness and critical principles for how to minister in diverse situations. Conscious that the course curriculum intentionally created dissonance and confronted ingrained perspectives, the instructors functioned as spiritual directors or pastors, assisting students in their understanding of self, racism and related subjects, and the implications for their futures as ministry leaders and citizens. The manner in which they led students through discussions was an integral part of the curriculum, a conscious modeling of how Christians should be addressing these subjects, and in a manner that reflected God's forgiveness and desire for reconciliation. This study has begun an ongoing conversation regarding the need for multicultural subjects to be integral parts of ministry degree programs in Christian colleges and seminaries.
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Trends in International Enrollments: Implications for Roman Catholic Seminaries, Theological Education and Ministry Formation

Awarded Grant
Stratman, Bernard
National Catholic Educational Assoc. (NCEA)
Agencies
2004
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to collect and reflect on data from seminaries and dioceses related to international enrollments and implications for Roman Catholic seminaries, theological education and ministry formation. The project will also include roundtables of scholars and seminary leaders to examine the implications of this trend for theological education and seminary life as a whole. The project will provide opportunities for Catholic theological educators to consider this issue from ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a project to collect and reflect on data from seminaries and dioceses related to international enrollments and implications for Roman Catholic seminaries, theological education and ministry formation. The project will also include roundtables of scholars and seminary leaders to examine the implications of this trend for theological education and seminary life as a whole. The project will provide opportunities for Catholic theological educators to consider this issue from all perspectives and to collectively develop practical resources to respond to the challenge.

Learning Abstract :
In 2004, approximately 30% of the candidates for the priesthood in Roman Catholic seminaries in the United States were born outside this country. In response to this trend of increasing international enrollments, the Seminary Department of the National Catholic Educational Association initiated a study to consider the implications of this increasing cultural diversity on theological education and pastoral formation. The project was based on the following assumptions: that culture is all-encompassing; that effective seminary formation is the complex web of systemic relationships, and that shifts in the cultural mix of a seminary will impact theological learning and pastoral formation program. The project was under the direction of Bernard F. Stratman, SM, director of the NCEA Seminary Department. The project team included Father James Schuerman, director of Spiritual Formation at St. Francis Seminary in Milwaukee, WI, and Dr. Bryan Froehle, Ph.D., director of the Siena Center of Dominican University, River Forest, IL.

The results have been published in the Fall 2005 Seminary Journal and the Winter 2005 Seminary Journal.
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Biblical Studies in Classroom and Church: Scripture as Sanctuary, Commentary as Hypertext

Awarded Grant
Martin, Dale
Yale University
Colleges/Universities
2005
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that seeks to clarify how current ways of teaching biblical studies, mainly through the use of historical criticism, encourage certain teaching practices that may or may not adequately equip pastors with the variety of tools they later need for teaching about the Bible. The study will examine and critique current practices involved with teaching historical criticism in theological education, focusing both on theoretical critiques ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that seeks to clarify how current ways of teaching biblical studies, mainly through the use of historical criticism, encourage certain teaching practices that may or may not adequately equip pastors with the variety of tools they later need for teaching about the Bible. The study will examine and critique current practices involved with teaching historical criticism in theological education, focusing both on theoretical critiques inspired by poststructuralist and postmodernist theories and on theological critiques inspired by the long history of Christian interpretation and theologies of interpretation. The study also proposes to develop specific suggestions for thinking anew about the nature of scripture and practices of teaching biblical interpretation -- suggestions that could radically change the way biblical studies are taught in seminaries, divinity schools, and churches. In addition, this study endeavors to expand the interpretative frame for reading the Bible, and even more centrally, promote a corresponding shift in teaching practices.

Learning Abstract :
I set out with concerns that ministerial students were being taught biblical interpretation mostly through the modern historical critical method and with little emphasis on other methods of interpretation, or the relationship of scripture to other media, such as art, music, and literature. I also wanted to find out if students were being taught particularly theological methods of interpretation, and if so how. I learned that in some cases faculty and curricula were doing a good job of broadening the curriculum related to the Bible and teaching theological interpretation. But this seems not to be the case in many, if not most, Protestant seminaries and divinity schools. I offer general and specific suggestions for changing the teaching of biblical studies to emphasize explicit training in theological hermeneutics. I also advocate placing historical critical methods within a much more varied and interdisciplinary curriculum.
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Ethnicity in Interpreting and Teaching the New Testament

Awarded Grant
Wan, Sze-kar
Andover Newton Theological School
Theological Schools
2005
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project to extend methods and agendas developed by biblical scholars for the study of ethnicity to the teaching and learning of the Bible. Specifically, this project aims at accomplishing the following goals: 1) to study how ethnicity is incorporated in introductory courses to the Bible both as a method of interpreting the biblical text and as a pedagogical instrument to involve students of diverse racial and ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project to extend methods and agendas developed by biblical scholars for the study of ethnicity to the teaching and learning of the Bible. Specifically, this project aims at accomplishing the following goals: 1) to study how ethnicity is incorporated in introductory courses to the Bible both as a method of interpreting the biblical text and as a pedagogical instrument to involve students of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. This is to be accomplished by means of a survey of Bible courses that stress the importance of ethnicity; 2) to learn from scholars who are most successful in incorporating issues of race and ethnicity into their teaching of the Bible through team-teaching with them; 3) to pool together resources developed by others to help scholars better handle the issue of race and ethnicity in Bible courses.

Learning Abstract :
Insofar as teaching and learning the Bible occupies center stage in a theological curriculum, how to do it will continue to be contested. This project convinces me that the most effective pedagogy is one that begins by engaging the students' construction of self and ends with the students' bringing their identities into dialogue with the biblical text. The text is not conveyed merely as a value-free object but filtered through the students' own identities. By the same token, the students' self-understanding is not simply affirmed but is brought into a dialogue with the text. An enduring question is how to reconcile this dialogical model of learning with the current orthodoxy of objective learning. These two sets of ideal are not inherently contradictory, but to bridge them requires creative and sustained collaboration with other teachers. What is true with teaching and learning the Bible is eminently true in other theological and religious disciplines as well.
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Teaching Political Engagement

Awarded Grant
Broadway, Mikael
Shaw University Divinity School
Theological Schools
2005
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will examine better ways to teach church-state relations and political engagement in order to help students (a) more accurately understand the changing context of church and state in the contemporary setting, (b) creatively and constructively lead congregations to engage political institutions and structures in accord with ecclesiological and other theological convictions; and (c) rethink political engagement so that it reaches to the level ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a study leave project that will examine better ways to teach church-state relations and political engagement in order to help students (a) more accurately understand the changing context of church and state in the contemporary setting, (b) creatively and constructively lead congregations to engage political institutions and structures in accord with ecclesiological and other theological convictions; and (c) rethink political engagement so that it reaches to the level of everyday practices of churches and local community organizations. The research will include gathering information, through interviews and focus groups, on how churches and church-related organizations understand and teach political and social engagement. A particular focus will be the practices of teaching and formation which enable African American churches to engage social and political structures in their communities. A conference will bring together seminary teachers with other practitioners and teachers to articulate methods of teaching political engagement in seminary classes on theology and ethics.

Learning Abstract :
This project provided valuable opportunities for scholarly interaction with leaders of exemplary churches through interviews. The interviews produced useful data in audio form which will bear fruit for analysis and reflection. The focus groups with Black church leaders will provide data both for comparison with the interviews and for the body of data about Black churches in North Carolina. The information on teaching and learning processes employed in exemplary churches is already influencing professors' teaching.
Providing financial assistance to students did not always cohere with the technical skills needed for the project. A Project schedule requires clarity about how long it will take to initiate basic institutional paperwork and processes.
This project contributes to the discussion of integrating core theological, biblical, and historical courses with day-to-day practices of churches. It also contributes to using church practice-based models of teaching and learning as sources for course design in theological education.
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Other Voices: Learning From Those of Other Faith Perspectives in the Theology and Religious Studies Classroom

Awarded Grant
Kollar, Nathan
St. Bernard's School of Theology & Ministry
Theological Schools
2005
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching

Proposal abstract :
This project will develop curricular and pedagogical tools for bringing views oppositional to students' faith life into the classroom. Administrators, faculty, and students from five diverse faith institutions (three schools of theology and two religious studies departments) will describe, review, and critique what is currently happening in their institutions in order to design, test, and evaluate curricula and pedagogies that foster inter and intra religious knowledge and relationships.
Proposal abstract :
This project will develop curricular and pedagogical tools for bringing views oppositional to students' faith life into the classroom. Administrators, faculty, and students from five diverse faith institutions (three schools of theology and two religious studies departments) will describe, review, and critique what is currently happening in their institutions in order to design, test, and evaluate curricula and pedagogies that foster inter and intra religious knowledge and relationships.

Learning Abstract :
Others interested in how to include the "religious other" in their classes may obtain from us nine pedagogies and the syllabi within which they are included, institutional principles that should be adopted to encourage learning about the religious other, and a review, critique, and suggestions as to coaching, crisis management, and creating a safe space for dealing with "religious others." Several institutions were reluctant to survey their students, to allow some or any expression of religious diversity oppositional to their institutional identity, and move beyond the status quo. These institutions, or subsets within the institution, demonstrate the necessity of continuing the project in some form.
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Modern Methods for an Ancient Language: A Workshop on Second Language Acquisition and Biblical Hebrew

Awarded Grant
Overland, Paul
Ashland Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2005
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
The overarching goal is collaboratively to advance pedagogy of Biblical Hebrew by 1) exploring strategies for adapting to Hebrew the insights uncovered in Second Language Acquisition (including Communicative Language Teaching), b) to train a pilot-group of teachers who will field-test communicative methods in their Hebrew classrooms, and c) to asses these methods’ effectiveness with a view to extending their use among both English-speaking and non-English-speaking students of Hebrew.
Proposal abstract :
The overarching goal is collaboratively to advance pedagogy of Biblical Hebrew by 1) exploring strategies for adapting to Hebrew the insights uncovered in Second Language Acquisition (including Communicative Language Teaching), b) to train a pilot-group of teachers who will field-test communicative methods in their Hebrew classrooms, and c) to asses these methods’ effectiveness with a view to extending their use among both English-speaking and non-English-speaking students of Hebrew.

Learning Abstract :
What we learned - As to product: Second Language Acquisition principles generate genuine benefit for students of ancient languages. Adaptation and implementation of these principles to Hebrew is achievable.
As to process: a group of cordial, competent, and dedicated strangers will foster a synergy escorting all to achievements none could have imagined alone. Also, to generate a complex, novel, and cohesive written tool requires uncommon forethought and considerable dedication.
Recommendations for teaching and learning: 1) import skills from experts in parallel fields; 2) collaborate, forming teams reaching beyond known networks; 3) when unearthing fresh pedagogy, plot not only to inform but actually to train teachers; 4) arrange to field test discoveries; 5) maximize any design efforts by asking early, "How could this be ‘wrapped' for easiest access in a non-English context?"; 6) state any technology-for-teaching as a second layer, after primary content is solidly in place.
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The U.S. Borderlands as Transformative Pedagogical Resource: Re-envisioning the Teaching of Social Ethics in U.S. Higher Education

Awarded Grant
Hill, Jack
Texas Christian University
2006
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Support for a Study Leave Grant project to provide professors of ethics with practical insights for re-envisioning their courses in ways that engage encounters with difference in the borderlands. Utilizing in-depth, qualitative interviews with fifteen professors and forty students, observations of classroom practices and analyses of course syllabi, as well as background writings by the professors themselves, this project aims to do four things: identify borderlands teaching strategies, write narratives ...
Proposal abstract :
Support for a Study Leave Grant project to provide professors of ethics with practical insights for re-envisioning their courses in ways that engage encounters with difference in the borderlands. Utilizing in-depth, qualitative interviews with fifteen professors and forty students, observations of classroom practices and analyses of course syllabi, as well as background writings by the professors themselves, this project aims to do four things: identify borderlands teaching strategies, write narratives of these strategies, re-envision a course in the light of these narratives, and assist professors in re-imagining their own ethics courses.

Learning Abstract :
This research has enabled me to identify "generative themes" in the pedagogical arsenals of faculty who teach for diversity and justice. Professors, especially colleagues of color, articulate complex sets of intercultural identities. In dialoguing about these, I not only gained a deeper understanding of my own identity, but came to realize the value of challenging students in our predominately white colleges and universities to examine the "intercultural" nature of their own identities as well.

Another generative theme that surfaced was the explication of critical approaches to oppression. I learned that racism is alive and well in academia. Further, teaching for diversity can not be separated from teaching for social justice, and recognizing this interrelationship necessitates some painful acknowledgments for many of us. Clearly, transforming teaching dynamics in the classroom must go hand in hand with changing structural dynamics in the institution, and we all have constructive, subversive roles to play.
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Who Are Our Students? And What Does that Mean for Our Teaching - Joint Project with Connecticut College (Eugene Gallagher)

Awarded Grant
Anderson, Carol
Kalamazoo College
Colleges/Universities
2006
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
This project aims to develop substantial quantitative and qualitative data about the attitudes, expectations, and interests of students involved in the academic study of religion at two liberal arts colleges, Connecticut College and Kalamazoo College.
Proposal abstract :
This project aims to develop substantial quantitative and qualitative data about the attitudes, expectations, and interests of students involved in the academic study of religion at two liberal arts colleges, Connecticut College and Kalamazoo College.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to develop substantial data about the attitudes, expectations, and interests of students involved in the academic study of religion at two liberal arts colleges, Connecticut College and Kalamazoo College. Reduced to an in-depth study at Kalamazoo College, we surveyed four different courses over three years. We used a very useful methodology: a two page open-ended survey, analysis of the survey results, and follow-up focus groups with volunteers from each course. Our findings were largely unanticipated: students have a relatively sophisticated sense of what they want to learn in their courses in Religion, including the intersections between religion and culture, the role of religion in people's lives (and in their own), how religions develop, and the variation in religious beliefs around the world, both what kind of diversity and why that diversity exists. However, students were less articulate when it came to explaining why it was important to them to know this - not an unexpected result. We are interested in expanding the survey tool to other institutions.
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Who Are Our Students? And What Does that Mean for Our Teaching - Joint Project with Kalamazoo College (Carol Anderson)

Awarded Grant
Gallagher, Eugene
Connecticut College
Colleges/Universities
2006
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
This project aims to develop substantial quantitative and qualitative data about the attitudes, expectations, and interests of students involved in the academic study of religion at two liberal arts colleges, Connecticut College and Kalamazoo College.
Proposal abstract :
This project aims to develop substantial quantitative and qualitative data about the attitudes, expectations, and interests of students involved in the academic study of religion at two liberal arts colleges, Connecticut College and Kalamazoo College.

Learning Abstract :
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Teaching for Transformation: Collaborative Teaching and Learning in Biblical Studies

Awarded Grant
Schüssler Fiorenza, Elisabeth
Harvard Divinity School
Theological Schools
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
This research project seeks to explore the conditions and practices of collaborative teaching and learning in biblical studies. It is situated in the intersection of her work in feminist hermeneutics, biblical rhetorical studies and graduate biblical education. Cooperative education requires from faculty and students “reflective action,” that is context specific, recognizes differences, and bridges the gap between theory and practice. Such a collaborative pedagogy is concretized through an analysis of ...
Proposal abstract :
This research project seeks to explore the conditions and practices of collaborative teaching and learning in biblical studies. It is situated in the intersection of her work in feminist hermeneutics, biblical rhetorical studies and graduate biblical education. Cooperative education requires from faculty and students “reflective action,” that is context specific, recognizes differences, and bridges the gap between theory and practice. Such a collaborative pedagogy is concretized through an analysis of the didactic approach developed in Germany called Theme-Centered-Interaction (TCI) with its relation of group dynamics to a democratic goal of education. By focusing on the modes and conditions of collaborative learning and teamwork, the project seeks to develop the didactics of collaborative learning and teaching in biblical studies understood as critical rhetorical studies.

Learning Abstract :
I am very grateful to the Wabash Center for awarding me a faculty research grant which allowed me to continue my exploration of the need for transforming graduate education on the MA and PhD/ThD levels. The rich academic literature on collaborative teaching and learning seems to have had great impact on undergraduate teaching but seems not yet to have transformed the pedagogy of doctoral studies. Yet such a transformation is necessary not only because the discipline presently cultivates a great variety of methods, sub-fields and theoretical perspectives but also because doctoral students often no longer have comprehensive religious-theoretical or the logical training before entering the field. Whereas this situation is seen by many as one of crisis and fragmentation, it also provides an opportunity for rethinking graduate biblical studies. I hope that this project and its forthcoming publications will engender increased discussion of this important issue.
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Introducing Whom to What? Purposes and Practices of Teaching Introductory Bible Courses as a Non-Major Requirement at Select CCCU Schools

Awarded Grant
Kirkpatrick, Shane
Anderson University
Colleges/Universities
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
A lot of the colleges that are members of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) require that all students, regardless of their major, take courses in Bible. Though this practice is common, it is not without its pedagogical challenges. To focus reflection upon the teaching of such courses, this project pursues three interrelated questions. The first is a question of purpose: Why are introductory Bible courses required for ...
Proposal abstract :
A lot of the colleges that are members of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) require that all students, regardless of their major, take courses in Bible. Though this practice is common, it is not without its pedagogical challenges. To focus reflection upon the teaching of such courses, this project pursues three interrelated questions. The first is a question of purpose: Why are introductory Bible courses required for non-majors? The second is a question of practice: Depending upon the stated purpose, how are such courses taught? The third is a question of assessment: How are such courses assessed? Gathering the instructors of introductory Bible courses at select midwestern CCCU schools can result not only in opportunities for pedagogical reflection and coordination among the faculty at each school but also in the gathering of comparative data to further enrich the reflection on these questions.

Learning Abstract :
Part of the success of this project was realized already in the gathering of faculty members who teach these challenging introductory Bible courses; the opportunity-rarely experienced-to share with and find support from others who face similar pedagogical challenges was empowering and encouraging. The question of why such courses are required was generally answered with reference to the institutional history, identity, and context of the particular school and its constituency. The question of how they are taught involved the identity of the instructors, who draw upon their own strengths and preparation in relation to that institutional context. The third question found that formal or large-scale assessment measures are generally not well developed but are the focus of increasing interest and attention. Instructors of these courses work to design an experience that can be educationally, developmentally, and vocationally valuable for their particular students.
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Teaching the Bible: Toward Responsible Interpretation

Awarded Grant
Kirkham Hawkins, Faith
Candler School of Theology - Emory University
Theological Schools
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
A central argument of educational theorists - that focusing upon transferring information is less effective at promoting learning than focusing upon developing skills that use information - is the foundation for the project director’s conviction that teachers and students of the Bible are likely to benefit from pedagogical resources that help foster among students commitment to and skills for responsible interpretation of the Bible. Hence, this study leave project ...
Proposal abstract :
A central argument of educational theorists - that focusing upon transferring information is less effective at promoting learning than focusing upon developing skills that use information - is the foundation for the project director’s conviction that teachers and students of the Bible are likely to benefit from pedagogical resources that help foster among students commitment to and skills for responsible interpretation of the Bible. Hence, this study leave project is focused on research and development of approaches to teaching the Bible focused on responsible interpretation. The project aims to combine a scholar’s understanding of the Bible with a teacher’s understanding of the classroom. Specific attention will be given to study of an array of pedagogical theories and methods particularly germane to enhancing student learning in biblical studies courses.

Learning Abstract :
This project sought to research pedagogical theories in relation to a way of interpreting the Bible that would engage the students in their own questions and interpretations. Successful at surveying a selection of the pedagogical literature, there is much left to mine in the resources of problem based learnings and using case studies. Suggestions for future study leaves include structuring a learning community for the leave recipient.
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Designing a Student Portfolio for Assessing Seminarian Progress in the Master of Divinity Degree Program (M.Div.) at Roman Catholic Seminaries

Awarded Grant
Latcovich, Mark
St. Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology
Theological Schools
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy   |   Assessment

Proposal abstract :
This project builds upon and extends work initiated last year to develop a framework for assessing student progress at Roman Catholic seminaries. A team of seminary educators and senior staff of Education Development Center will complete the design of an assessment model that integrates the major and minor occupational responsibilities of successful priests and the behavioral attributes called for in priestly formation. The team will then research, review and prioritize ...
Proposal abstract :
This project builds upon and extends work initiated last year to develop a framework for assessing student progress at Roman Catholic seminaries. A team of seminary educators and senior staff of Education Development Center will complete the design of an assessment model that integrates the major and minor occupational responsibilities of successful priests and the behavioral attributes called for in priestly formation. The team will then research, review and prioritize elements of student portfolios that are most applicable to the assessment model. They will then draft a design for a portfolio that can collect and display evidence of seminarian progress as measured by the assessment model.

Learning Abstract :
Outcome assessment tools for the depth and breadth of the Master of Divinity degree remains a complex challenge for most divinity schools. While successful academic performance is evaluated through capstone seminars and comprehensive exams, the overall assessment of a student's personal growth, pastoral skills, spirituality and leadership abilities are often clouded by reported ratings of only successful academic performance. Without specific examples of evidence in these other domains, the student's self-knowledge of the integration of formational elements may never be adequately assessed. Portfolios enable the measurement of multiple dimensions of student progress through the collection of different types of data and materials in order to achieve an integrated portrait.

The Midwest Association of Theological Schools represented in this project by the collaboration of eight Roman Catholic seminaries researched portfolio use and design. They incorporated the four pillars of priestly formation; human, spiritual, intellectual and pastoral with the DACUM of duties and tasks of ordained priests in order to create a portfolio template for seminaries.

The merits of this project demonstrate that an integrated portfolio for M.Div students is possible. Each school will need to adapt their current academic program and design portfolio components around their program outcomes and goals. A portfolio model requires the commitment of an institution and its faculty, the creation of an assessment-minded culture within the school, and graduated implementation and monitoring. Currently there are a few schools beginning to pilot this work for future implementation. Time commitment, facilitation of the portfolio process and ongoing monitoring of student performance remain challenges for seminaries with minimal human resources and budgets. Nevertheless, portfolios help bridge the gap between formation in seminaries and ongoing formation and continuing education of future church leaders.
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Working Group on Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies

Awarded Grant
McNary-Zak, Bernadette|Peters, Rebecca Todd
Elon University
Colleges/Universities
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Over an eighteen-month period, this Working Group will engage in the development of the theoretical and practical issues pertaining to the distinctive processes and aims of Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies. Sustained attention to the place of Undergraduate Research in higher education nationally, its origin in the methodological framework of the natural sciences, and the current state of this pedagogy in our discipline and on our campuses, makes this work ...
Proposal abstract :
Over an eighteen-month period, this Working Group will engage in the development of the theoretical and practical issues pertaining to the distinctive processes and aims of Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies. Sustained attention to the place of Undergraduate Research in higher education nationally, its origin in the methodological framework of the natural sciences, and the current state of this pedagogy in our discipline and on our campuses, makes this work timely and necessary. Sustained conversation regarding the theoretical issues related to Undergraduate Research in the field of Religious Studies will provide support for faculty development and will make a significant contribution to teaching and learning in Theology and Religious Studies.

Learning Abstract :
The Working Group on Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies successfully accomplished the stated goals of this grant in the allotted time period. Sustained thought and discussion was given to the primary theoretical issues related to Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies, and to relevant pedagogical methods and processes for promoting excellence in Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies. Through the completion of a variety of dissemination tasks in our classrooms, the academy, and organizations focused on UR, the members of this Working Group promoted institutional and disciplinary support for Undergraduate Research in Religious Studies and have become emerging leaders in this pedagogy. The desire and commitment to locate ongoing efforts to continue this work past the grant period on the part of Working Group members attests to an appreciation for the subsequent work that can still be done.
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Pursuing a Culture of Engaged Conversation for School and Church

Awarded Grant
Heille, Gregory|Garrido, Ann
Aquinas Institute of Theology
Theological Schools
2007
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty within an Institution   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
While neither Aquinas Institute of Theology nor the Catholic Church are alone in confronting hard or at times disruptive conversations in faculty meetings, class, or field supervision, our Dominican heritage of collaborative learning in pursuit of truth requires intentional commitment to meaningful difficult conversation. As a school, we propose to learn and practice the art of difficult conversation through a facilitated faculty study of the Harvard Negotiation Project’s book ...
Proposal abstract :
While neither Aquinas Institute of Theology nor the Catholic Church are alone in confronting hard or at times disruptive conversations in faculty meetings, class, or field supervision, our Dominican heritage of collaborative learning in pursuit of truth requires intentional commitment to meaningful difficult conversation. As a school, we propose to learn and practice the art of difficult conversation through a facilitated faculty study of the Harvard Negotiation Project’s book on Difficult Conversations and facilitated case studies of difficult conversations in our classrooms. By improving our difficult conversations in class, we intend to lay the groundwork for a successful all-school symposium on the neuralgic topic, “What is truth?” At grant’s end, we will publish on what we have learned and then take a further step by teaching the art of difficult education to others in the community who collaborate with us in the formation of our students, especially field education supervisors.

Learning Abstract :
From January 2008 – May 2009, the faculty of Aquinas Institute studied together the text Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most and then engaged in a series of exercises that involved practicing the approach advocated in the book within faculty meetings, classroom interactions, and a school-wide symposium. We learned that the "s" at the end of the book title is not accidental; one difficult conversation inevitably evokes many more. We discovered these conversations require a great deal of time and emotional energy, but also can create a culture of greater honesty within an institution as well as professional and spiritual growth within individuals. In the end, we recognized that increased understanding of each other is a true gift, but that understanding alone is not enough. We commit ourselves now to also studying and practicing skills for negotiation and group decision-making.
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Exploring an Apprentice Model for Ph.D. Students in an Emerging Field: Incarnational Pedagogy for Teaching the Practices of Youth

Awarded Grant
Dean, Kenda
Princeton Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2008
Topics: Study Leave Grants   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Research suggests that approaching Ph.D. students as junior colleagues fosters intellectual—and in theological education, spiritual—communities in which teacher/scholars flourish. This project develops an “incarnational pedagogy” for the vocational formation of doctoral students in adolescent discipleship formation (i.e, “youth/young adult ministries”), emphasizing apprenticeship models and situated learning. Incarnational pedagogies seek to embody Christ in communities of practice where students: 1) experience learning in accountable Christian communities, 2) ...
Proposal abstract :
Research suggests that approaching Ph.D. students as junior colleagues fosters intellectual—and in theological education, spiritual—communities in which teacher/scholars flourish. This project develops an “incarnational pedagogy” for the vocational formation of doctoral students in adolescent discipleship formation (i.e, “youth/young adult ministries”), emphasizing apprenticeship models and situated learning. Incarnational pedagogies seek to embody Christ in communities of practice where students: 1) experience learning in accountable Christian communities, 2) model informal and situated learning approaches consistent with the practice of youth ministry, and 3) learn to match teaching with what is taught. This project approaches the field of adolescent discipleship formation as a community of practice that incorporates Ph.D. students through legitimate peripheral participation, and challenges dominant models of doctoral education by favoring informal and situated learning strategies alongside practices of spiritual and intellectual discernment to equip future teacher/scholars. I suggest that these practices will improve doctoral theological education, especially in emerging fields.

Learning Abstract :
The project explored the benefits of using "incarnational" pedagogies drawn from adolescent discipleship formation (youth ministry, emerging adult ministry, family ministries, campus ministries, etc.) for preparing doctoral students in these fields. By engaging youth ministry/practical theology doctoral students in cross-institutional "teaching colloquia" and incarnational teaching practices drawn from youth ministry (e.g., mentoring, learning communities, situated and transformative learning opportunities), and by examining research on and practices of informal learning, the project enabled reflection on apprenticeship education for future professors in adolescent discipleship formation. This model is currently being tested at Princeton Theological Seminary for Ph.D. students interested in teaching youth/young adult/family ministries, who submit to a program of intellectual, spiritual, and pedagogical formation during their academic program. The project also yielded several essays on previously unexplored relationships between informal teaching and youth ministry, and an article on "incarnational pedagogy" as a form of apprenticeship for theological education.
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Teaching Practices for the Integration of Psychology and Theology

Awarded Grant
Holeman, Toddy (Virginia)
Asbury Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2008
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Relating Pedagogy and Curriculum

Proposal abstract :
The integration of psychology/theology has been written and discussed energetically during the last decade. These discussions focused on the question: Can one integrate these disciplines? This project extends this discussion beyond the philosophical by asking a different question: How does one teach towards the practice of integration? What teaching practices help counseling/psychology students know “how to do” integration when they are sitting with a client? Therefore this project ...
Proposal abstract :
The integration of psychology/theology has been written and discussed energetically during the last decade. These discussions focused on the question: Can one integrate these disciplines? This project extends this discussion beyond the philosophical by asking a different question: How does one teach towards the practice of integration? What teaching practices help counseling/psychology students know “how to do” integration when they are sitting with a client? Therefore this project will investigate teaching practices that promote the integration of psychology/counseling/ theology/biblical studies. Using qualitative methodology, through face to face interviews with professors of psychology/counseling and/or their students, and observation of class sessions when available, the lead investigator will discover how professors of psychology or counseling prepare counseling students to “think Christianly” when in session with a client. Journal articles, teaching resources, symposium at professional counseling conferences, and/or an edited book on teaching practices in integration will emerge from this project.

Learning Abstract :
Are students in counselor training programs as theologically competent as they are clinically competent? What teaching strategies promote a sophisticated level of integration? Integrating theological reflection with counseling practice is a skill that does not come intuitively to master level students. Beginning counseling students in theological settings want specific tools for their counseling integration toolbox. In contrast, graduating students view integration as something that happens primarily within the counselor as embodied in the "person of the counselor". Yet the depth and breadth of theological reflection remains in question. Faculty in counselor education programs tend to rely on texts written by other counselors which integrate theology into the presentation. Accessible and applicable theological resources written by theologians are lacking. Teaching practices related to the integration of counseling practice and theology must move beyond the theoretical and into the realm of application within the classroom as well as in field placement.
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Project Hermeneutics: Making 'Understanding' Count in Theological Education

Awarded Grant
Moritz, Thorsten
Bethel Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2008
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
The late modern era has generated a particular tension in many Christian denominations and their training schools: Many believers are no longer satisfied with accepting Christian tradition(s) uncritically. On the other hand, there is a strong perception that theology has become so specialized that only theological schools and those trained professionally can make the intellectual connection between the theological disciplines and the faith of believers. This has major repercussions, ...
Proposal abstract :
The late modern era has generated a particular tension in many Christian denominations and their training schools: Many believers are no longer satisfied with accepting Christian tradition(s) uncritically. On the other hand, there is a strong perception that theology has become so specialized that only theological schools and those trained professionally can make the intellectual connection between the theological disciplines and the faith of believers. This has major repercussions, both ecclesiologically and for our seminaries. It is the latter that this project focuses on. There are significant and relatively recent philosophical and academic tools available to help bridge the chasm between 'experts' and 'believers'. I propose to study a small, but wide-ranging selection of seminaries across the country to establish how and to what extent these tools are being appropriated in student learning and what recommendations can be made to improve student learning by renewing our approaches to hermeneutics teaching.

Learning Abstract :
Based on visiting thirty ATS accredited schools, this project reports on the state of hermeneutics and integration in current M.Div. training in the USA. How are students helped to avoid unhealthy dissonance between different academic disciplines and what role does hermeneutics play to that effect? More specifically, to what extent are relatively recent advances in hermeneutical scholarship appropriated and disseminated in M.Div. programs? The report suggests that the state of hermeneutics could be significantly healthier and that major tools at our disposal are not yet being used for improving the student experience. It notes specific approaches that have the potential to facilitate integration. It also makes preliminary recommendations for improving the understanding and use of hermeneutics in theological training and suggests that ecumenical dialog about this state of affairs would be highly beneficial. The outcome report of twenty pages is available, and both critical and affirming feedback will be gratefully received by the author.
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Service Learning, Experiential Learning and Biblical Studies: Alternatives to Violence Project Workshops as a Test Case

Awarded Grant
Newheart, Michael
Howard University School of Divinity
Theological Schools
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
This fellowship will fund research, writing, and a bibliography about service learning and experiential learning in the context of the use of the Alternatives to Violence Project in New Testament Introductory courses.
Proposal abstract :
This fellowship will fund research, writing, and a bibliography about service learning and experiential learning in the context of the use of the Alternatives to Violence Project in New Testament Introductory courses.

Learning Abstract :
Through my project I learned that a great amount of literature exists concerning service-learning in higher education. In my discussions of pedagogy, however, both at Howard and at Wabash, I have never witnessed a discussion of service-learning. I also learned that service-learning is largely absent in theological education in general and in biblical studies in particular. Service-learning seems particularly appropriate at Howard Divinity because the motto of Howard University is "Veritas et Utilitas (Truth and Service)." Furthermore the Divinity School used to require a "prophetic Ministry" requirement in which one credit hour was tacked onto a three-hour course such as "The Historical Jesus" or "Women in the Hebrew Bible." This practice was discontinued a few years ago, and "Prophetic Ministry" became a stand-alone course. Integrating service-learning in Div School courses, especially in my New Testament Introduction courses, would reinstitute the spirit of that requirement.
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Designing an On-line Course in New Testament

Awarded Grant
Park, Eugene
San Francisco Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Designing Courses

Proposal abstract :
The grant will support a project to design an online course for New Testament Introduction (Gospels and Acts) by 1) composing a syllabus; 2) creating a Moodle site for the course; 3) creating lecture notes, a discussion room, a chat room, and mid-term exam and quizzes. Two colleagues will be consulted during the grant period to help with pedagogical issues and viability of the project as an actual online course offering.
Proposal abstract :
The grant will support a project to design an online course for New Testament Introduction (Gospels and Acts) by 1) composing a syllabus; 2) creating a Moodle site for the course; 3) creating lecture notes, a discussion room, a chat room, and mid-term exam and quizzes. Two colleagues will be consulted during the grant period to help with pedagogical issues and viability of the project as an actual online course offering.

Learning Abstract :
The activities of the fellowship included an updating of skills and tools used for online courses both in an onsite context as well as in a satellite class which addresses the various kinds of learners found in contemporary classrooms as well as a time of critical reflection on the pros and cons of a hybrid course that meets the requirements of the seminary.
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Short-term Intercultural Immersion Experiences at ATS Seminaries: A Study of Pedagogical Practices Contributing to Transformative Learning and Cultural Competency

Awarded Grant
Tortorici, Joseph
Wesley Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
This two-year research project will research pedagogical practices of short-term intercultural immersion programs at eight ATS institutions. Analysis of program design, implementation, administration, and evaluation will seek to determine best practices in offering transformative learning experiences, cultivating intercultural competencies, and evoking affective outcomes. In an increasingly multicultural global reality, intercultural immersion programs are a critical element in seminary formation for ministerial leadership. It is anticipated research will contribute to an ...
Proposal abstract :
This two-year research project will research pedagogical practices of short-term intercultural immersion programs at eight ATS institutions. Analysis of program design, implementation, administration, and evaluation will seek to determine best practices in offering transformative learning experiences, cultivating intercultural competencies, and evoking affective outcomes. In an increasingly multicultural global reality, intercultural immersion programs are a critical element in seminary formation for ministerial leadership. It is anticipated research will contribute to an increase in both effectiveness of current programs as well as interest in establishing new programs.

Learning Abstract :
This research project supported the overall finding that schools need to be more intentional about the design and implementation of short term immersion programs. The elements that we identified that contribute to the success of these programs are: 1) Institutional leadership that is supportive of this curriculum component; 2) Faculty who are passionate about leading immersion trips; 3) Adequate funding for immersion programs; 4) Well designed pre-immersion components of readings, presentations, and discussions in order to prepare students for the actual cultural immersion experience; 5) Adequate evaluation instruments and procedures which ensure feedback and improvement of the program and the learning. An additional benefit to the study was the way in which even a modest research project in this area stimulates those being interviewed to look much more carefully at their pedagogy, design, and evaluation.
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Designing Courses with Learning Outcomes in Mind

Awarded Grant
Ascough, Richard
Queen's University
Colleges/Universities
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Assessment

Proposal abstract :
The objectives of this grant are threefold: to learn more about learning outcomes, to learn more about designing for teaching with cases and to learn more about best practices in course design. To pursue these goals, the activities of the grant will include research and writing, interviewing faculty, and creating and applying a rubric.
Proposal abstract :
The objectives of this grant are threefold: to learn more about learning outcomes, to learn more about designing for teaching with cases and to learn more about best practices in course design. To pursue these goals, the activities of the grant will include research and writing, interviewing faculty, and creating and applying a rubric.

Learning Abstract :
As a result of this fellowship I recognized that there is much confusion about learning outcomes among faculty, of whom many demands for outcomes are being made, but no clear guidance is given. Through reading and research I developed a strong sense of how to design appropriate learning outcomes for courses. At the same time, I can articulate problems with poorly developed outcomes and help instructors understand where there is a disjuncture with their course design. The development of a rubric for designing course outcomes, outputs, and objectives has proven particularly helpful to me and to others, and I hope to develop the rubric further for wider dissemination. Overall, I am more confident that I can explain to instructors how learning outcomes can be used for improved course design that puts student learning at its center.
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Towards a Pedagogy of Global Citizenship

Awarded Grant
Desjardins, Michel|Benham Rennick, Joanne
St. Jerome's University
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Student learning through international experience is a developing area that combines interdisciplinary methods. Normally the goal is to provide students with greater awareness about global society while also building specific knowledge in their own field (e.g., religious studies or language). Across North America institutions are pursuing this objective in a variety of ways. The disciplines of Religious Studies and Theology, with their predominant concern for social justice and care ...
Proposal abstract :
Student learning through international experience is a developing area that combines interdisciplinary methods. Normally the goal is to provide students with greater awareness about global society while also building specific knowledge in their own field (e.g., religious studies or language). Across North America institutions are pursuing this objective in a variety of ways. The disciplines of Religious Studies and Theology, with their predominant concern for social justice and care for others, have much to contribute to the discussion of how to prepare students for such experiences. Moreover, given the long standing presence of service learning and travel associated with education about religion, there is a precedent in place for scholars of religion to offer insights into past successes and failures in such ventures. As such, this project seeks to establish a community of scholars who incorporate service learning in their programs to define and elaborate the parameters of the discipline in its various forms, as well as identify and compile a variety of “best practices” relating to student learning outside their home country.

Learning Abstract :
Wabash funding allowed us to pursue questions about pedagogical models promoting global citizenship. The Good Global Citizenship Think Tank I (January 2010) and II (January 2011), provided a forum for students, scholars and program facilitators to listen, think together and learn about the implications of international experience programs on student learning and on the international communities to which our students travel. We were able to focus on the ethical and moral implications of such education and asked questions surrounding the kinds of values implicit in and absent from such programs. Together we identified some "core concerns" and worked to examine these through student reflection papers, scholarly articles on internationalization of education, and case studies that examine the kinds of programming happening in Canada today. We have been excited and inspired by the inclusion of students throughout this project: their public presentations during the think tank and in academic forums, and their written contributions that will be included in our collaborative volume on this topic. Furthermore, Wabash funds have allowed us to pursue and share a breadth of new research on this topic through public workshops, scholarly presentations, research articles, and a forthcoming edited book.
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Storytelling as a Pedagogical Tool Within an Introductory Classroom

Awarded Grant
Martínez-Vázquez, Hjamil
Texas Christian University
2009
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Designing Courses

Proposal abstract :
One of the major problems with education today is the lack of connection between the subject matter and the student-learners. Because students come into the classroom with the perception that knowledge is something to be grasped and attained, they concentrate in acquiring information not in actually thinking critically about it or actually learning it. While there may be multiple group activities and other pedagogical strategies to address this issue, I ...
Proposal abstract :
One of the major problems with education today is the lack of connection between the subject matter and the student-learners. Because students come into the classroom with the perception that knowledge is something to be grasped and attained, they concentrate in acquiring information not in actually thinking critically about it or actually learning it. While there may be multiple group activities and other pedagogical strategies to address this issue, I argue that storytelling as an active participatory activity would get students involved within the process of learning. Through storytelling, students are able to put themselves inside of the action and not stay as passive “recipients.”

Learning Abstract :
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Making Menudo in a Stone Soup World: An “other” Reading of Christian Scripture

Awarded Grant
Sanchez, David
Loyola Marymount University
Colleges/Universities
2009
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Assessment

Proposal abstract :
The goals of this project are as follows: 1) A review of the literature produced by contemporary Latino/a biblical scholars to assess the commonalities and differences within them; 2) An analysis of the shared hermeneutic textures and points of differentiation among those scholars; 3) An ethnographic assessment of how these shared and opposing textures play out in the institutions in which we teach; 4) The project will also ask the question if Latino/...
Proposal abstract :
The goals of this project are as follows: 1) A review of the literature produced by contemporary Latino/a biblical scholars to assess the commonalities and differences within them; 2) An analysis of the shared hermeneutic textures and points of differentiation among those scholars; 3) An ethnographic assessment of how these shared and opposing textures play out in the institutions in which we teach; 4) The project will also ask the question if Latino/a storytelling differs in the academy as pertains to tenure status; 5) The composition of a chapter for an edited book.

Learning Abstract :
"Making Menudo in a Stone Soup World: A Latino/a Reading of Christian Scripture" explored the history of biblical hermeneutics, progressive hermeneutical models, and histories of North American cultural experience. The project surfaced shared and non-shared perspectives about hermeneutics in biblical scholarship among Latino/a scholars. The project paid close attention to the role of Latino/a story telling in the classroom and examined how privilege works in the story telling process.
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Strategic Pedagogical Intervention in the Latino/a Religious History Doctoral Pipeline

Awarded Grant
Ramirez, Daniel
University of Michigan
2009
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
This proposed strategic intervention project seeks to develop pedagogical and curricular resources to attract a new generation of scholars into the field of Latina/o Religious History, and to lay the groundwork for growing a new cohort in the field among current undergraduates, including, especially, Latina/o-identified students. The creation and dissemination of learning and research modules for insertion into syllabi, courses and research programs across the humanistic and social ...
Proposal abstract :
This proposed strategic intervention project seeks to develop pedagogical and curricular resources to attract a new generation of scholars into the field of Latina/o Religious History, and to lay the groundwork for growing a new cohort in the field among current undergraduates, including, especially, Latina/o-identified students. The creation and dissemination of learning and research modules for insertion into syllabi, courses and research programs across the humanistic and social scientific disciplines will expand the pedagogical repertoire of faculty at institutions across the country, and prime them to serve as collaborative recruiters and mentors of potential future historians and scholars of the U.S. Latina/o religious experience.

Learning Abstract :
The project developed pedagogical and curricular resources to attract a new generation of scholars into the field of Latina/o Religious History, and to lay the groundwork for growing a new cohort in the field among current undergraduates, including, especially, Latina/o identified students. The project surveyed the state of Latina/o religious experience in U.S. religious history courses and illustrated a general lack of materials and modules related to the topic. Given the lack of materials in higher education classrooms, the project also included the development of learning and research modules that could be inserted into existing syllabi, courses and research programs across the humanistic and social scientific disciplines in North America.
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Provoking Justice: Community Engagement and Teaching Religion

Awarded Grant
Pippin, Tina
Agnes Scott College
Colleges/Universities
2010
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
During my twenty years of teaching at a small liberal arts college for women I have built various community partnerships through short-term field trips and long-term programs. These partnerships range from campus (departmental process; living wage campaign; teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) to Atlanta (local human rights organizations; a homeless shelter for women and children; a teen parenting program with a local high school; a seminary teaching intern ...
Proposal abstract :
During my twenty years of teaching at a small liberal arts college for women I have built various community partnerships through short-term field trips and long-term programs. These partnerships range from campus (departmental process; living wage campaign; teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) to Atlanta (local human rights organizations; a homeless shelter for women and children; a teen parenting program with a local high school; a seminary teaching intern program) I believe that the long-term relationships with community partners provide the sites for transformative learning. In this sabbatical project I want to investigate more deeply the scholarship of teaching social justice and religion, analyze the connections between the partners and transformative learning by students (and teacher), and identify ways to expand the academic experiences both theoretically and practically. I am planning a book project tentatively entitled, “Provoking Justice: Community Engagement and Teaching Religion,” based on these experiences as they are in conversation with pedagogical theories.

Learning Abstract :
From my reading in pedagogies and theatre of the oppressed and other critical, feminist, and popular education theories and practices, I learned the importance of dreaming big, of pushing the impossible. What this means more concretely is developing questions about faculty power in relation to democratic ideals. Our departmental model is about offering an alternative in higher education - one that is committed to living out more radical pedagogical practices in my classroom and my department. One outcome is the current movement in our department's student leadership group out of our department and into the larger institutional system. The witness of grassroots teachers in various social movements and alternative models for social transformation offer important hints about movement building in unjust systems. There are failures and successes in the journey that are always centered in ethical relationship - in the classroom, with community partners, in a web of relationships.
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The Millennial Generation in Religious and Theological Studies Classrooms

Awarded Grant
Marchal, Joseph
Ball State University
Colleges/Universities
2010
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
While scholarship about the “millennial generation” and its impact on higher education abounds, a significant gap in the literature exists when it comes to examining the implications of the new millennial conditions for teaching and learning in the disciplines of religious and theological studies. This project aims to: 1) map out the available literature to illuminate the distinct characteristics of the millennial generation and the institutional challenges of teaching in the ...
Proposal abstract :
While scholarship about the “millennial generation” and its impact on higher education abounds, a significant gap in the literature exists when it comes to examining the implications of the new millennial conditions for teaching and learning in the disciplines of religious and theological studies. This project aims to: 1) map out the available literature to illuminate the distinct characteristics of the millennial generation and the institutional challenges of teaching in the new millennial conditions; 2) begin developing teaching resources to address the challenges and opportunities entailed in teaching this generation in religious/theological studies; and 3) continue collaborative work for a larger grant proposal on a related topic. This grant will build upon previous work on the topic of teaching millennials, begun during the 2009-10 Pre-Tenure Workshop for College/University Faculty by bringing together five workshop participants at the AAR in November 2010 for a one-day workshop (Monday afternoon-midday Tuesday).

Learning Abstract :
According to a range of sources, the students entering North American universities today - often dubbed the "millennial generation" - come from a world in which they have always been connected. The impact of these conditions for teaching and learning remains largely unknown, and the emerging literature to this effect is at least passionate if not consistent. Understanding the conditions and characteristics of millennial students, such as their degree of media literacies, concepts of multiple integrated identities, and altered experience of embodiment, should be a priority for professors of theology and religious studies. Not only do these students increasingly define the context of our teaching, but more importantly many of the learning objectives of theology and religious studies also uniquely position teachers in these disciplines to engage students in developing a critical perspective on this millennial context.
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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Writing Group

Awarded Grant
Clingerman, Forrest
Ohio Northern University
2012
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
This project will bring together four scholars working on projects in the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) for a peer consultation and a writers’ retreat. The project is the second stage of conversations for the writing group; the group was formed as a cohort at the 2011 Wabash Writing the Scholarship of Teaching in Theology and Religion Workshop, where the first discussions occurred. The project allows the participants to form ...
Proposal abstract :
This project will bring together four scholars working on projects in the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) for a peer consultation and a writers’ retreat. The project is the second stage of conversations for the writing group; the group was formed as a cohort at the 2011 Wabash Writing the Scholarship of Teaching in Theology and Religion Workshop, where the first discussions occurred. The project allows the participants to form a writing cohort around SoTL research. Meeting in Montreat, NC, for three days, the members of the writing cohort will offer formal responses and discussion of each paper, as well as be available for informal guidance and support. Members of the cohort will also use this opportunity to work on the next stages of their individual writing projects.

Learning Abstract :
This project organized a peer consultation and writers' retreat for three religion scholars who are working on the scholarship of teaching and learning. The project advanced the work of a writing cohort formed at a Wabash Center pre-AAR "Writing the Scholarship of Teaching in Theology and Religion" Workshop. Project participants met in Montreat, NC, for three days in August 2012 to offer formal responses to and discussion of SoTL works-in-progress. The writers' retreat also served as an opportunity to assess how to engage effectively in SoTL research, to identify the limits and challenges in undertaking SoTL research at mid-career stage, and to provide peer resources for future work in SoTL. Participants were asked to be available for informal guidance and support for the duration of the project. The project resulted in three SoTL articles, to be submitted to appropriate SoTL-related journals.
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Sacred Teaching and Spiritual Learning Project at Hebrew College

Awarded Grant
Shire, Michael
Hebrew College
Colleges/Universities
2012
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Jewish educators at all levels and venues have been wringing their hands for years about the failure to engage students emotionally and spiritually, especially in the context of Jewish ritual practice and prayer. This is a core problem field wide for Jewish educators at all levels who recognize the emotional and spiritual determinants of identity formation. We will address this reality by promoting a new conception of Jewish learning that ...
Proposal abstract :
Jewish educators at all levels and venues have been wringing their hands for years about the failure to engage students emotionally and spiritually, especially in the context of Jewish ritual practice and prayer. This is a core problem field wide for Jewish educators at all levels who recognize the emotional and spiritual determinants of identity formation. We will address this reality by promoting a new conception of Jewish learning that reflects our spiritually-rich Jewish legacy and its distinctive ethos. This project has the potential to drive a new paradigm of religious growth within the field of Jewish early childhood education and beyond. Through this project we imagine that the Shoolman School will contribute significantly to the field of Jewish spiritual and faith education, becoming a leading center for teacher preparation, conceptual development, action research and publishing.

Learning Abstract :
I defined my presenting issue as the introduction of a new paradigm into Jewish Education, namely that of the spiritual growth of children. This grant was intended to furnish me with the opportunity to pursue the research for the implementation of this project.

Through my research I have further refined conceptual questions of a Jewish spiritual education drawing upon research and deliberation in Jewish and Christian religious education. I have been invited to publish thought pieces in various places including online forums and academic publications. I have also been invited to present at various conferences in the USA and Europe.

My hope for this stage of the project was to clearly express the need for a Jewish spiritual education and the means to develop spiritual practices for Jewish educators. I was delighted with the response to the project which attracted over 100 educators to the professional development seminars and the Community of Practice. I was also pleased to be invited to guest edit CCAR: Journal of Reform Judaism which provides innovative and compelling descriptions of teacher education, adult learning, children's programming and evaluation for Jewish Spiritual Education.
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Inclusive Language in Recognizing Religious Commitments in the Classroom

Awarded Grant
Burford, Grace|Brown, Sidney
Sewanee: The University of the South
2013
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
This project focuses on developing tools to promote the use of language in religious studies and theology classrooms that fully includes students with commitments either to religions different from those that dominate religious discourse in our culture, or to no religion at all, and even those ...
Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
This project focuses on developing tools to promote the use of language in religious studies and theology classrooms that fully includes students with commitments either to religions different from those that dominate religious discourse in our culture, or to no religion at all, and even those who consider themselves anti-religious. These tools will include scenarios of improvisational dialogical play, readings and questions for discussion, and a checklist for religious privilege. The project co-directors will create these tools by analyzing work that has been done in this area consulting with two other scholars in this field, and interviewing with key participants in interreligious dialogue. We will present these tools in 2014 to the other members of the “Religious Commitments in the Classroom” Wabash colloquy. Publication of our work in an interreligious journal such as Buddhist-Christian Studies and/or presentation of it at a professional conference are also potential outcomes for this project.

Learning Abstract :
How can sensitive, intelligent people with commitments to different religions and to no religions at all, as well as those who consider themselves anti-religious, engage responsibly in a classroom discussion about religion? While professors in religious studies do this every day in their own classrooms, we wondered how inclusively we are doing it. How well are we managing to welcome everyone in the room and to make use of all their good ideas? Because inclusive language is an integral part of encouraging all voices and all religious commitments (or lack thereof) in the classroom, we designed an in-class survey on religion that excludes most mainstream Americans, in order to generate that feeling of exclusion in those who might not otherwise have experienced religious exclusion before. We also created teaching tools such as a handout on more inclusive terms, a bibliography, and selections from a test of Christian privilege.
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Religious Commitments in the Classroom: Interviews with Students

Awarded Grant
Webster, Jane
Barton College
Colleges/Universities
2013
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
Why are my students not talking about their religious commitments? What’s at stake for them either way? How can I (or should I) encourage them to engage the conversation? This student-led project will explore the dynamics of religious commitments in a small town in rural ...
Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
Why are my students not talking about their religious commitments? What’s at stake for them either way? How can I (or should I) encourage them to engage the conversation? This student-led project will explore the dynamics of religious commitments in a small town in rural North Carolina where religion is part of the everyday life. Working with a faculty member, select religion majors will conduct surveys and interviews to assess the contours and constraints of the talk about religious commitments in the college environment. From their evaluation, they will devise strategies to inform faculty and staff, and evaluate their success the following semester. They will report the results of their study in a Scholars Symposium and to the Board of Trustees. The desired outcome is to develop a robust conversation about religious commitments in this Eastern North Carolina undergraduate college, and to promote leadership and research among Religion majors.

Learning Abstract :
Alexander Astin, et al, argue that conversations in the classroom about meaning and purpose in life ("spiritual quest") enhance other college outcomes, such as academic performance, psychological well-being, leadership development, and satisfaction with college (2008: 10). This student-led project assessed the contours and constraints of the talk about religious commitments in the college environment with surveys, individual interviews, and class questionnaires. They found that most students wanted to engage conversations of personal identity, meaning, and purpose in the classroom, to ask questions to each other about their religious commitments and to learn how to describe their own. Instructors can facilitate these conversations by developing personal relationships with the students, setting norms, using small groups, linking the conversations to course content, and being flexible. The student team presented their findings in a Scholars Symposium.


Students discuss their part in the project



Powerpoint slide show reviewing the project

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Millennial Students and the Pedagogy of Comparative Theology

Awarded Grant
Locklin, Reid|Brecht, Mara
St. Norbert College
Colleges/Universities
2014
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
If Millennial students do not see boundaries between religious traditions, as suggested by sociological studies of the generation, is the academic project of comparative theology, which aims to transgress boundaries between traditions, at risk? Colloquia participants will gather to explore and share pedagogical strategies for “meeting” Millennial students “where they are” in order to invite them into the discipline of comparative theology. First, the colloquia project aims to establish a ...
Proposal abstract :
If Millennial students do not see boundaries between religious traditions, as suggested by sociological studies of the generation, is the academic project of comparative theology, which aims to transgress boundaries between traditions, at risk? Colloquia participants will gather to explore and share pedagogical strategies for “meeting” Millennial students “where they are” in order to invite them into the discipline of comparative theology. First, the colloquia project aims to establish a shared understanding of our Millennial students and the unique features of the Millennial classroom. Around this foundational paradigm, colloquia participants will offer scholarly perspectives on teaching comparative theology for Millennial students; collaborate to develop specific teaching techniques and learning designs to best engage the Millennials; and collectively imagine how comparative theology itself ought to be reshaped in conversation with this generation of students.

Learning Abstract :
Comparative theology presumes boundaries between traditions, in order to transgress them. Millennial students, who resist and reconfigure traditional boundaries, would seem to represent an uncomfortable demographic for such a practice. Our project gathered teacher-scholars to imagine new pedagogies that are student learning-focused and also meaningful for comparative theologians' own scholarly work. Drawing on participants' classroom experience, as well as sociological studies of millennial students, the workshop reflected on the challenges posed by the emergence of new epistemologies and patterns of religious belonging. At the same time, we learned that comparative theology offers certain "affordances" to millennial students that other forms of theology or religious studies may not. Because comparative theology is premised on engaging across boundaries, teaching in this mode enables students to talk about and learn with the diverse forms of boundaries, including religious ones, they experience in their lives, while also affording new grammars for naming transcendence.
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Study on "The Relationship between Religious Commitments and Views on Social Issues"

Awarded Grant
Johnson, Nicole
University of Mount Union
Colleges/Universities
2014
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
The proposed research project forms the centerpiece of the REL400 seminar, entitled "Theologies of Nonviolence." The project seeks to answer the following working question: What is the relationship between the religious commitments of Mount Union students and their commitments to nonviolent belief, practice, and lifestyle? Another ...
Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
The proposed research project forms the centerpiece of the REL400 seminar, entitled "Theologies of Nonviolence." The project seeks to answer the following working question: What is the relationship between the religious commitments of Mount Union students and their commitments to nonviolent belief, practice, and lifestyle? Another version of the question currently under discussion is: Do stronger/higher religious commitments translate into stronger/higher commitments to nonviolence? While the project does not explore religious commitments solely, they are a key concern of the project insofar as they are explored in conjunction with and connection to undergraduate commitments to nonviolent belief and practice and to related social issues.

Learning Abstract :
This Wabash Center grant-supported project involved a student-led, mixed methods research project which served as the centerpiece of an upper-level seminar on "Theologies of Nonviolence." The project was developed and conducted collaboratively from beginning to end with students and sought to explore the relationship between undergraduates' religious commitments and their perspectives about ethical and social issues related to nonviolent belief and practice. The work involved engagement with the literature of faith-based nonviolence theory and practice, a survey of juniors and seniors at the University of Mount Union, qualitative interview data collection and analysis, and a formal class presentation at SCHOLAR Day, Mount Union's annual undergraduate research forum in late April.
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Humor, Departmental Identity, and Religious Commitments

Awarded Grant
Houck, Anita
Saint Mary's College - Notre Dame
Colleges/Universities
2014
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Designing Courses

Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
This project aims to compare how faculty members and students in Roman Catholic institutions view religious commitments in the classroom. In particular, the project addresses three questions: 1) Do faculty and students agree on the extent to which their courses should and do engage religious commitments? 2) Does ...
Proposal abstract :
This grant project was conducted in the context of the Wabash Center’s
2013-14 Colloquy on Religious Commitments in the Undergraduate Classroom.
This project aims to compare how faculty members and students in Roman Catholic institutions view religious commitments in the classroom. In particular, the project addresses three questions: 1) Do faculty and students agree on the extent to which their courses should and do engage religious commitments? 2) Does the name of a department - Theology, Religious Studies, or Theology and Religious Studies - shape students' expectations of how the course will engage their and their teachers' religious commitments? and 3) In what ways might humor be an effective tool in religious studies and theology classes, particularly for engaging religious commitments? The project will investigate these questions through a literature review and online student and faculty surveys. Faculty participants, who have been recruited from a range of Roman Catholic colleges and universities, will then gather at the annual meeting of the Catholic Theological Society of America to discuss the findings and distill insights.

Learning Abstract :
Through surveys and faculty conversations, this project compared the views of faculty and students in Roman Catholic institutions on three topics. First, faculty and students differed in their perceptions of how much their courses engaged students' religious commitments; in a follow-up conversation, faculty hypothesized that students have a narrower view than faculty of what constitutes "religious commitments." Though courses varied in the extent to which students and instructors reflected on their religious commitments, most students reported that the level of reflection worked well for them. Second, students did not perceive significant differences among three common names of departments in Catholic institutions (Theology, Religious Studies, Theology and Religious Studies). Third, faculty and students agreed that humor has significant pedagogical benefits, though their views of certain kinds of humor differed. Students with clear, strong religious commitments, and students who found their courses especially challenging, had less positive views of humor.
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Can Virtue be Learned? An Exploration of Student Learning Experiences Using Select Pedagogies and Their Implications for Fostering Altruism, Compassion, and Solidarity as Learning Outcomes in Undergraduate Ethics Courses

Awarded Grant
Fozard Weaver, Darlene|Agnew Cochran, Elizabeth
Duquesne University
Colleges/Universities
2015
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
What does it mean to teach virtue, or to learn it? We consider this question through research related to student learning outcomes in undergraduate ethics courses at a religiously-affiliated university with an explicit commitment to social justice. We will gather qualitative data on student learning experiences, with particular focus on select pedagogical approaches that involve exposing students to the experiences of others. We also focus our inquiry around the implications ...
Proposal abstract :
What does it mean to teach virtue, or to learn it? We consider this question through research related to student learning outcomes in undergraduate ethics courses at a religiously-affiliated university with an explicit commitment to social justice. We will gather qualitative data on student learning experiences, with particular focus on select pedagogical approaches that involve exposing students to the experiences of others. We also focus our inquiry around the implications of these pedagogies in relation to student understanding of and attitudes regarding three character traits identified as “other-regarding” virtues in theological and philosophical scholarship--altruism, compassion, and solidarity. Our research will assist us in refining student learning outcomes for our ethics courses and will also generate a collaborative journal article exploring virtue and select pedagogies in the undergraduate classroom.

Learning Abstract :
This qualitative study examined student experiences of learning in required undergraduate ethics courses at a religiously affiliated university. The study used three pedagogical strategies (reflection on literature and film, deep listening via community-engaged conversations, and experiential learning activities) that expose students to others' experiences. Our guiding questions were: How do our students understand the purposes and value of ethics courses? Do students experience some pedagogical strategies as having greater impact on the learning, particularly with regard to virtues of altruism, compassion, and solidarity? Do their attitudes toward the moral value of theological resources shift during the course? Students reported that the pedagogical strategies positively impacted their learning by enhancing comprehension of course material, introducing affectively engaging moral exemplars, and facilitating cognitive shifts that informed their moral reasoning. The results aligned with student attitudes regarding the purposes and value of ethics courses but showed less impact on attitudes toward theological resources.
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Legal Issues in Theological Field Education and Their Implications for Teaching Through Service Learning Experiences

Awarded Grant
Fox, Susan
Association of Presbyterian Theological Field Educators
Agencies
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Consultations to engage theological field educators in examining major legal issues which shape the context of their work and influence the educational processes they use in theological field education; and to develop a basic legal guide for Supervised Ministry faculty.
Proposal abstract :
Consultations to engage theological field educators in examining major legal issues which shape the context of their work and influence the educational processes they use in theological field education; and to develop a basic legal guide for Supervised Ministry faculty.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to convene a series of consultations that would engage theological field educators in examining major legal issues which shape the context of their work and influence the educational processes they use in their work. They also sought to develop a basic legal guide for Supervised Ministry faculty.
The consultations and writing led to the development of A Handbook on Legal Issues in Theological Field Education. This text examines the major legal issues which shape the context of field education and influence its pedagogy. Specifically, the group considered "theological reflection around the intersection of cultural context, personal experience, faith tradition and legal issues." This provided a framework for their conversations. They also considered ways to make a place for legal issues pedagogically in theological field education without "displacing the learning-teaching dynamic."
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Theological Teaching

Awarded Grant
Foster, Charles
Candler School of Theology - Emory University
Theological Schools
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support research and writing, consultation and training to expand the awareness of theological faculties to the praxis of theological teaching.
Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support research and writing, consultation and training to expand the awareness of theological faculties to the praxis of theological teaching.

Learning Abstract :
During the basic year of the grant the research and organization of the field notes from the interviews, observations of classroom teaching, and focus group conversations with the six faculty members from Candler who participated in the project were completed. Plans for writing by the project director had to be postponed after he was invited to direct a much larger research project on teaching practices in theological education by The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. After focusing on the development of a research design for the new Carnegie project, a way was found to integrate the research that was already accomplished with the Candler faculty into the larger Carnegie project.

This led to three further research activities with the Candler professors. These activities included: 1) Continuing email correspondence with the original six on the subjects of "space" in teaching and the dynamics of mystery in teaching; 2) Meeting with the Candler six to obtain their support for reviewing the chapters in the Carnegie book that this project director will write; and 3) Obtaining the agreement from the six to complete a questionnaire on theological teaching practices that will be compared to reflections on teaching by theological educators across the country.
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Anti-Racism Resources for Practical Theological Instruction

Awarded Grant
Ramsay, Nancy
Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
2000
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Educating Clergy

Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support development of theological teaching resources and strategies for stimulating and supporting proactive commitment to an anti-racist, inclusive vision for community for seminarians and others in theological education.
Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support development of theological teaching resources and strategies for stimulating and supporting proactive commitment to an anti-racist, inclusive vision for community for seminarians and others in theological education.

Learning Abstract :
The study leave project sought to develop teaching resources and strategies to assist white theological faculty and seminarians to deconstruct unreflective racist assumptions underlying white racial identity and to develop teaching practices and resources that stimulate and support a mutually relational learning community. The project hoped to assess operative distortions shaping race relations in North American mainline Protestantism, critically assess anti-racism programs, and identify resources that might contribute to deconstructing white racism.
Her hypothesis that white religious leaders hold inadequate tools for analyzing and responding to racism proved true. She was struck by the pervasive difficulty of white religious leaders to adequately understand the scope and depth of racism. Anti-racism training experiences and resources proved helpful in developing new teaching strategies. She was able to engage a wide variety of works on race from many disciplinary perspectives that proved invaluable for her revision of her courses.
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Teaching Religious and Theological Texts in an Integrated Freshman Core

Awarded Grant
Niedner, Frederick
Valparaiso University
Colleges/Universities
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support study of teaching and learning issues involved in the integration of religious and theological texts into core curriculum, including faculty resistance to such topics of study.
Proposal abstract :
Study leave grant to support study of teaching and learning issues involved in the integration of religious and theological texts into core curriculum, including faculty resistance to such topics of study.

Learning Abstract :
This study leave project sought to study ways of assisting the teaching and enhancing the learning of theological texts in the Valparaiso University's Freshman Core course. He sought to examine and reflect upon reasons why both students and teachers find the study of religious and theological texts more problematic than the study of other kinds of texts. He also hoped to provide training for faculty who would teach the core, and to develop materials that could assist in recruitment of faculty instructors.
A significant learning gained from discussion with faculty concerned their own feelings of uneasiness and inadequacy when handling religious texts, particularly sacred or canonical texts. These instructors concluded that their uneasiness must have surely affected the nature of the class discussions and contributed to student uneasiness. Speaking at length with faculty in the area of Literature helped him to see that these instructors treat all texts as sacred and thus model for other faculty and students a "religious reading" of text. This is a useful stance to bring to the core course.
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Integrating Archaeology into Biblical Studies: A Consultation Series for Improving Instruction

Awarded Grant
Aubin, Melissa
Florida State University
Colleges/Universities
2000
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Consultation to work on improving teaching and learning in the area of biblical studies through identifying strategies for the integration of the study of archaeology.
Proposal abstract :
Consultation to work on improving teaching and learning in the area of biblical studies through identifying strategies for the integration of the study of archaeology.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to convene scholars in a series of consultations devoted to integrating knowledge from the field of biblical archeology into biblical studies courses that have been traditionally limited to the literature of biblical cultures. It sought to identify ways to integrate the material culture of the biblical world into biblical studies courses, to consider new pedagogical strategies to that end, and to strategize practical approaches for integrating the work into syllabi.
The first consultation was dedicated to creating material for an anthology of practical strategies for integrating archeology into biblical studies. Participants' remarks became the basis of essays for the anthology. They also discussed teaching experiences in this area, syllabi and teaching materials. The second consultation was devoted to continued discussion on the anthology and the practical pedagogical issues it raised. Finally, they discussed ways to present accumulated teaching materials and specific resources.
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Teaching Theology in the Contemporary Media Culture

Awarded Grant
Pence, Nadine
Bethany Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Technology and Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Study the pedagogical and epistemological changes that are implied with the use of contemporary visual media (films, videos, TV, computer imaging) in teaching the discipline of theology.
Proposal abstract :
Study the pedagogical and epistemological changes that are implied with the use of contemporary visual media (films, videos, TV, computer imaging) in teaching the discipline of theology.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to study the "pedagogical and epistemological changes that implied with the use of contemporary visual media (films, video, tv, computer imaging) in teaching the discipline of theology." The goal would be to understand the changes in a theological course and curriculum when these modes of learning and teaching are engaged.
The study found that "the use of digitalized images and media in the theological classroom could well expand the world of the students and their approach to the scriptural and interpretive texts such that the students were able to see with new eyes what might be possible." However, it does not replace the basic relationship between the teacher and the student which is central in a learning experience. Thus, she concludes the following: "contemporary media cannot itself a class session make, only a teacher can do that. The task of helping students in the theological construction of meaning is at the center of the theological classroom. Whatever media is chosen, it must be serviced to this goal, not any other."
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Case Book on the Teaching of Religion

Awarded Grant
Eckel, David
Boston University
Colleges/Universities
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Preparing Graduate Students to Teach

Proposal abstract :
Renewal of 1997 grant to extend a book of case studies about real-life classroom situations for use in training doctoral students and teaching fellows, focusing on the religious dimension of their work in the classroom.
Proposal abstract :
Renewal of 1997 grant to extend a book of case studies about real-life classroom situations for use in training doctoral students and teaching fellows, focusing on the religious dimension of their work in the classroom.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to continue the work begun two years earlier which involved creating a book of case studies about real-life classroom situations. The book would emerge from seminars for doctoral students on teaching, using an adapted version of the case study method developed at the Harvard Business School. With this second grant they hoped to create cases focusing on the religious dimensions of their classroom work, as well as expand its audience to include the teaching fellows of the Boston University School of Theology.
The manuscript, Casebook for College and University Instructors of Religion, was created. The project director reports that their teaching fellows found it both exciting and useful to reflect upon their teaching using this method, and that it made them "far more thoughtful and effective teachers."
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The Teaching of Worship in Roman Catholic Seminaries: Examining the Interplay of Theory and Practice

Awarded Grant
Foley, Edward
Catholic Theological Union of Chicago
Theological Schools
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Teaching a Specific Subject

Proposal abstract :
Research project to examine the ways in which the foundational theology, theological reflection, and practical skills for worship leadership are taught in selected Roman Catholic Seminaries in the U.S. so as to discover what pedagogies, curricular designs, deployment of personnel or other factors might contribute to this integration in Roman Catholic seminarians.
Proposal abstract :
Research project to examine the ways in which the foundational theology, theological reflection, and practical skills for worship leadership are taught in selected Roman Catholic Seminaries in the U.S. so as to discover what pedagogies, curricular designs, deployment of personnel or other factors might contribute to this integration in Roman Catholic seminarians.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought "to examine the ways in which the foundational theology, theological reflection and practical skills for worship leadership courses are taught in selective Roman Catholic seminaries in the U.S. so as to discover what pedagogies, curricula designs, deployment of personnel or other factors might contribute to this integration in Roman Catholic seminaries." This would be accomplished through site visits, interviews with professors, and feedback from students and recently ordained graduates.
From this study the researchers learned that for the group study the total environment of the institution, as well as the openness of the student contributed most to the acquisition of integration skills. Faculty mentoring and modeling of holistic integration also proved to be important. The researcher assumed that curriculum pedagogy issues would dominate his findings, but discovered that environment and personal openness were more important.
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Research for Book on Theological Teaching

Awarded Grant
Foster, Charles
Candler School of Theology - Emory University
Theological Schools
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Funding for theological-school-based research project on theological teaching which will form the basis for a book.
Proposal abstract :
Funding for theological-school-based research project on theological teaching which will form the basis for a book.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to research the concept of theological teaching by examining six different professors in different disciplines of theology. The project hoped to reveal "the diversity of their approaches as practitioners of theological teaching and the convergence of their shared efforts in forming a theological community of teaching and learning."
Six faculty members from Candler representing the fields of Old testament, New Testament, Historical theology, World Christianity, Church and Community and religion and Education participated. Field notes from interviews, observations of classroom teaching and focus group conversations with the faculty became the basis of the research. This work will be integrated into a larger study on teaching practices in theological education sponsored by The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
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Writing Program Initiative

Awarded Grant
McAvoy, Jane
Lexington Theological Seminary
Theological Schools
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Relating Pedagogy and Curriculum

Proposal abstract :
Collaborative development of a writing initiative that creates a separate space and instruction for seminary students’ writing in tandem with the regular courses and faculty of the seminary, and completion of a handbook on writing for seminarians.
Proposal abstract :
Collaborative development of a writing initiative that creates a separate space and instruction for seminary students’ writing in tandem with the regular courses and faculty of the seminary, and completion of a handbook on writing for seminarians.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to fund a retreat to examine the way in which the seminary is attempting "to build a writing initiative that creates a separate space and instruction for writing in tandem with regular courses and faculty of the seminary." The grant also sought funding for a summer research stipend for the director of the seminary's writing center to complete a handbook on writing for seminarians.
As a result of their reflection, they learned that the writing director works on a number of levels and needs to be aware of the varying kinds of instruction needed. An article was written as a result of this reflection and the book research was completed.
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Forming Faculty and Students in Theological Education: One School’s Reflection: A Book Manuscript

Awarded Grant
Leslie, Kristen
Yale Divinity School
Theological Schools
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty within an Institution   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Collaborative project amoung members of the Junior Faculty at Yale Divinity School to write and publish an edited volume reflecting primarily on two complementary subjects: a)the formation of faculty and students in theological education and b)the vocational experiences and responsibilities of faculty in theological schools that contribute to the quality of theological education.
Proposal abstract :
Collaborative project amoung members of the Junior Faculty at Yale Divinity School to write and publish an edited volume reflecting primarily on two complementary subjects: a)the formation of faculty and students in theological education and b)the vocational experiences and responsibilities of faculty in theological schools that contribute to the quality of theological education.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to support a collaborative project among junior faculty members at Yale Divinity School to write and publish an edited volume on a) the formation of faculty and students in theological education, and b) the vocational experiences of faculty that contribute to the quality of theological education.
Over a two year period the seminar participants gathered monthly to discuss topics related to the project, such as spiritual formation in the classroom, issues of authority in the classroom, racially diverse teaching, publishing and grant writing. With large turnover the seminar became a key location of orientation for new junior faculty. The original goal of producing and edited volume was changed upon the departure of the first project director; the goal was then changed to producing individual writings for various publishing venues.
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A National Conference on Service/Learning in the Discipline of Religion: A Future of Service

Awarded Grant
McLain, F. Michael|Favazza, Joseph
Rhodes College
Colleges/Universities
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Gathering Faculty across Institutions   |   Teaching a Specific Subject   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Convene a conference on service-learning in religion as a pre-conference of the 1999 AAR meeting in Boston and publish a volume based on the proceedings as part of the American Association of Higher Education’s series on service/learning in the disciplines.
Proposal abstract :
Convene a conference on service-learning in religion as a pre-conference of the 1999 AAR meeting in Boston and publish a volume based on the proceedings as part of the American Association of Higher Education’s series on service/learning in the disciplines.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to organize a national conference on service learning in religion, emphasizing foundational and curricular issues. It would be scheduled as a pre-conference to the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion. Based on conference proceedings they hoped to publish a volume on service learning in religion in collaboration with the American Association of Higher Education and National Campus Compact.
Conference evaluation forms indicate that the conference achieved its intended goals. Further, reflection included a continued effort to articulate issues related to service learning, including the positive and negative aspects of it as a pedagogical strategy. They also sought to clarify issues surrounding different service sites, different institutional locations and different missions. Finally, they saw the need to continue reflecting on the place of service learning in graduate programs.
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Professors’ Use of Professional Development Resources in Canadian Christian Higher Education: A Research Proposal

Awarded Grant
Smith, Gordon|Badley, Ken
Regent College
Theological Schools
1998
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Help support research through surveys and interviews to investigate professors’ knowledge and use of resources for their professional development as teachers, and to develop a profile of the teaching force in Canadian Christian higher education.
Proposal abstract :
Help support research through surveys and interviews to investigate professors’ knowledge and use of resources for their professional development as teachers, and to develop a profile of the teaching force in Canadian Christian higher education.

Learning Abstract :
This program sought to assess through a survey profile the use of professional development resources among the faculty at seminaries, Bible colleges and Christian liberal arts colleges in Canada, so as to develop a profile of the teaching force in Canadian Christian higher education.
They obtained data from 165 faculty from the schools surveyed. Wabash money was part of a larger project funded with other monies. As of the period of this grant, no significant results were yet reported and the work continued.
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Talking about Teaching: Why Higher Education Needs Christian Theology to Survive

Awarded Grant
Webb, Stephen
Wabash College
1999
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts

Proposal abstract :
A study leave grant to write a book on the role of Christian theology in higher education.
Proposal abstract :
A study leave grant to write a book on the role of Christian theology in higher education.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought replacement funds for a study leave for the researcher to write a book on the role of Christian theology in higher education.
Results of the study can be found in the author's completed manuscript entitled Taking Religion to School: Christian Theology and Secular Education (Brazos, 2000)
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Project to Develop a Case Book for Teaching in Religion

Awarded Grant
Eckel, David
Boston University
Colleges/Universities
1997
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices   |   Preparing Graduate Students to Teach

Proposal abstract :
Development of a case book for use in teaching religion comparable to the case studies about real-life classroom situations developed at Harvard Business School.
Proposal abstract :
Development of a case book for use in teaching religion comparable to the case studies about real-life classroom situations developed at Harvard Business School.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to develop a case book for teaching in religion, based on the model of case studies on teaching developed by the Harvard-Danforth Center for Teaching and Learning. With this tool they hoped to stimulate the quality of teaching at Boston University's religion program, to enhance the professional growth of their graduate students, and to develop a resource that would be useful to programs in graduate schools, divinity schools and liberal arts colleges.
A case book was developed entitled, Where Magic Dwells: A Teaching Casebook for Instruction of Religion in the University. The book includes twelve cases, written and presented by ten different graduate students. Some cases are distinctive to the study of religion and philosophy; other cases are more general to university teaching. The seminar on teaching and case studies became the central location of teacher training in the department. While beginning as an experimental program, it became required in the department.
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The Formation of Theological Educators: One School’s Reflections

Awarded Grant
Martin, Robert
Yale University
Colleges/Universities
1997
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Identity, Vocation, and Culture of Teaching

Proposal abstract :
Planning grant for collaborative project to produce a book on the vocation and practical methods of theological teachers.
Proposal abstract :
Planning grant for collaborative project to produce a book on the vocation and practical methods of theological teachers.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought funds to expand the current literature on ‘Theological teaching" through the writing of a book entitled, The Formation of the Theological Educator. The book would focus on two concerns: the nature of the educative vocation in a theological school and the various contexts within which faculty find themselves working as "theological teachers." They hoped to combine narratives of common everyday experiences of teaching with more general reflections on the teaching vocation. The work would be intended as a tool for all teachers of religion in general, but especially for junior level faculty.
The project leaders felt that the reflective process that the grant supported generated "an inventive and substantive conceptual framework" for the book. They found that the book could advance the contemporary debate on theological education by suggesting an original framework by which to construe theological education.
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Curricular Instruction in the Boston Theological Institute

Awarded Grant
Petersen, Rodney
Boston Theological Institute
Theological Schools
1996
Topics: Research and Writing on Teaching   |   Relating Pedagogy and Curriculum

Proposal abstract :
Analysis of past curricular offerings in the schools in the Boston Theological Institute in order to assess trends and facilitate long-term planning in theological education.
Proposal abstract :
Analysis of past curricular offerings in the schools in the Boston Theological Institute in order to assess trends and facilitate long-term planning in theological education.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to analyze the history of curricular instruction in the schools of the Boston Theological Institute. They compiled and analyzed the information found within the annual BTI catalogue over a period of 25 years. With this information they sought to a) develop a precise history of the courses offered in the consortium from 1967-92, b) recognize patterns or trends of theological education, c) assist theological institutions in developing long-term strategies and faculty selection.
The study began a process that led to two certificates offered through the BTI, one in International Mission and Ecumenism, and a second in Science and Religion in three tracks: Natural Science, Bio-ethics, Religion and Ecology. Also, from this study came an edited collection, Theological Literacy in the 21st Century, published by Eerdmans Publishing Company.