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Faculty Development for Teaching and Learning in Drew’s Culturally Diverse Community

Awarded Grant
Westfield, Nancy
Drew Theological School
Theological School
Topics: Diversity and Social Justice   |   Gathering Faculty within an Institution   |   Teaching in Specific Contexts   |   Innovative Teaching and Best Practices

Proposal abstract :
Two weekend faculty retreats that will enhance teaching theory and skills specifically for a racially/culturally diverse seminary population.

Learning Abstract :
The project sought to engage the theological faculty in two retreats to enhance their teaching theory and skills specifically for their racially/culturally diverse seminary population. They hoped to be able to become more aware of and responsive to the complexity of their current and future student body and their diverse learning style needs due to their cultural and racial diversity. In addition, they hoped to reflect deeply on their teaching practices in such a diverse context.
The project director reports that the project goals were met. The faculty expressed appreciation of the uninterrupted time in consultation together. They also felt that the consultant proved to be "invaluable" to the process of learning. They report that their conversation raised their level of awareness and demonstrated to them the complexity of teaching in diversity. One outcome of the retreats was the creation of a "peer development system," a voluntary system of pairing faculty peers together for ongoing conversation and mentoring on issues of teaching and learning, as well as classroom visitations with constructive feedback.
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