Rethinking Inclusive Teaching: Disciplinarity and Diversity in Higher Education


Please join the campus community in this one-hour presentation with visiting scholar Linda Adler-Kassner, Interim Co-Dean, Undergraduate Education Chair, Conference on College Composition and Communication, and Professor of Writing Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

As postsecondary institutions and their faculty consider how to deeply engage anti-racism and cultural inclusivity on campus, we must frame this work through our own disciplinary lenses. This talk, by Linda Adler-Kassner of University of California Santa Barbara, illuminates the connections between the important goals of anti-racism and equity to strategies for creating disciplinary access for all students.

When we think about equity in education, we need to consider an issue rarely raised on campuses or in the literature on teaching and learning: epistemological inclusivity. This concept refers to making visible and accessible the ways of seeing, thinking, practicing, and doing that are embedded in our work as experts in our fields. For instance: our expert lenses shape our understandings of what types of questions are appropriate to ask in our disciplines, what is the "right" kind of evidence or data to collect, how that evidence or data should be analyzed, and how the results of this process should be represented in written form. But how is this knowledge made explicit to students and how many opportunities do we give students to grapple or wrestle with this knowledge in ways that promote their access to a discipline rather than inhibit it?

In this talk, Linda will share results of an analysis of written materials and interviews from 7 faculty members from across the disciplines (from Biochemistry to Theater) who participated in a year-long professional seminar designed to facilitate epistemological inclusivity for all students. The seminar helped these faculty view their disciplines through threshold concepts, epistemological lenses, and novice-to-expert practices. Her talk will help HSU faculty think about learning bottlenecks in their own courses—those places where student learning gets stuck—and how to support learning for all students by making disciplinary concepts more visible and accessible. Followed by Q and A.

Friday, September 8, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm
Linda Adler-Kassner
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