CIP Advisory Board Meeting, 9/23/14

The Advisory Board for the Center for Innovative Pedagogy met on Tuesday, September 23rd. The focus of the meeting was a discussion of topics for programming in the coming year.

The Advisory Board had a number of suggestions for our monthy happy hour series on teaching writing. There was interest in these discussion-based sessions being augmented by presentations or workshops on successful techniques. There was also strong interest in using these sessions to create an online library of example assignments, syllabi, and rubrics for teaching writing. Specific topics suggested included writing for podcasts, comparing grading standards by looking at examples of strong and weak papers, the process of creating or adapting a rubric, and providing effective feedback to students. We also discussed the growing popularity of Writing Analytically as a writing textbook at Kenyon. The Writing Center is currently working on plans to bring the authors, David Rosenwasser and Jill Stephen, to campus in the spring semester.

Following the idea of regular happy hours for interest groups, the CIP hosted a lunch discussion on programming in the liberal arts, and there seemed to be enough interest that we should invite that group to hold a regular discussion in the CIP.

Topics suggested for CIP discussions generally included teaching to a wide range of student abilities, managing collaborative class projects, and leading engaging class discussions. The CIP did an interest survey at a faculty meeting last academic year, and we should return to those results for suggestions.

We ran a successful set of book club meetings at the beginning of the summer, on Learning in Harmony with the Brain by Terry Doyle and Todd Zakrajsek. Getting faculty members to read an additional book during the semester seems like a steep request, but we could do a “journal club” where the topic would be limited to an article or two from the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Two topics were mentioned as possible areas for partnership. The CIP will reach out to Ivonne Garcia, in her newly-created role of Associate Provost for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, to discuss programming on conversations about race and class in the classroom. The Faculty Affairs Committee is looking at interdisciplinary teaching at Kenyon, and we should expect to be contacted by them. 



The CIP will again fund travel to the Lilly International Conference on College Teaching for a limited number of faculty. 3 of our colleagues will be presenting at the conference, and the Advisory Board agreed that the CIP should pay their registration and lodging.

We discussed the possibility of setting aside a portion of the CIP budget for grants to travel to pedagogically-focused conferences. Knowledge distribution after the event (in the form of blog posts at the CIP website or discussions) would be a key requirement. Joe Murphy and Jan Thomas will draft a set of guidelines regarding such grants for the Advisory Board’s input. 

We also discussed the possibility of the CIP funding pedagogy research projects at Kenyon. This is certainly possible, and could pay for such costs as travel to meet with a co-author or paying a consultant or research assistant. More than the costs of the research itself, we discussed the concern that the scholarship of teaching and learning is not uniformly seen across departments as disciplinary scholarship appropriate for the tenure and promotion process.


Upcoming Events

The CIP is hosting a working group this fall for faculty interested in revising a syllabus to incorporate service learning.

We will host a talk by Greg Rosenbaum, K'10, at Common Hour on Nov. 13th, titled "Pedagogy to Technology - Top Trends Driving Changes in Education.” Greg now the producer of SXSWedu, a four-day conference  for national leaders in education and education technology. 

We were urged to get this schedule publicized more widely. For 4 PM events, the CIP was also asked to consider the possibility of providing childcare to enable attendance by more faculty members with small children. There was some concern about liability issues, but the point is worth investigating. 

About the Board

The CIP Advisory Board is composed of the John B. McCoy-Banc One Distinguished Teaching Chair, the Associate Provost overseeing faculty development efforts, and eight members of the Kenyon faculty chosen to reflect the various academic divisions and programs on campus. Our members for 2014-15 are :

  • Christopher Bickford, Assistant Professor of Biology
  • Patrick Bottiger, Assistant Professor of History
  • Pamela Camerra-Rowe, Professor of Political Science & John B. McCoy Banc One Distinguished Teaching Chair
  • Katie Corker, Assistant Professor of Psychology
  • Pierre Dairon, Assistant Professor of French
  • Judy Holdener, Professor of Mathematics
  • Ted Mason, Professor of English
  • Ric Sheffield, Professor of Sociology & Legal Studies
  • Jan Thomas, Associate Provost and Professor of Sociology
  • Rebecca Wolf, Assistant Professor of Drama

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