Faculty Center for Teaching

Selected Past FCT Programs    

2014 – 2015

Designing and Teaching MILA Courses -- Muhlenberg faculty who have taught MILA courses shared their ideas about conceptualizing, planning, and teaching these classes.

Applying for Summer Grants -- This event was co-hosted with the Faculty Development and Scholarship Committee (FDSC) and the Writing Program Committee (WPC). Representatives from each group outlined what makes for a successful proposal and addressed commonly asked questions.

Designing & Teaching Cluster Courses -- Muhlenberg faculty who have taught cluster courses shared their ideas about connecting, planning, and teaching these classes. This session was designed for faculty who had not yet taught a cluster course, for those who have taught cluster courses and want to share in the conversation, and for those looking to revise a cluster they have already taught.

Student Collaborations -- When we think about ways in which we collaborate with students, we often think about how students might work with us on research projects. Have you ever explored ways in which you might work together with students on teaching? Several faculty members (and some of their student collaborators) from different disciplines shared models where they have partnered with students on teaching endeavors.

Supporting our International Student Community -- The international student population is increasing nation-wide and Muhlenberg is no exception. We have been fortunate to add increasingly greater numbers of international students to our community. In this discussion, a panel of faculty, students and support staff shared concerns and successes of our current programming, and answer questions faculty members have as we anticipate more international students each year.

Honors Programs at Muhlenberg: How can Faculty Get Involved? -- Have you ever wondered how to have your course designated as an honors course? Or how to get involved by mentoring student projects? Or what the honors programs are all about? The Directors of the three Honors Programs at Muhlenberg (RJ Fellows, Dana Scholars, and Muhlenberg Scholars) presented information on each of the programs and how faculty can be engaged with the honors students in these programs.

Cluster Workshop (1 day) -- This workshop was a follow-up to and extension of earlier programs on this new component of the general academic curriculum. Faculty worked on cluster course development with their faculty partner and discussed cluster themes, course topics, disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches, and shared learning objectives for courses.

Inclusive Pedagogy Workshop: Race, Equity, and Higher Education – This the interactive session focused on race and equity in higher education with an emphasis on how these constructs cut across and inform academic and co-curricular spaces of an institution, as well as the impact that campus environment and climate has on student persistence and success.

Mellon Global Learning Workshop -- This workshop aims to provide interested faculty the opportunity to learn about an array of conceptual frameworks that shape global learning in higher education in the United States, reflect upon the pedagogic assumptions and goals implicit in their own current approach to global learning, investigate models for course design that aim to take seriously the social, ethical, and affective complexity of global learning and compare their globally oriented courses, existing or imagined, to the parameters of Muhlenberg’s new HDGE requirement.

Sharing Insights from Small Group Grant Projects and other Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Project descriptions

New Directions in my Teaching: Presentation and Conversation with Pedagogical Grant Awardees
Projection descriptions

Applying for summer grants: a discussion
This session was co-hosted with the Writing Program Committee (WPC) and the Faculty Development and Scholarship Committee (FDSC).  Representatives from each group outlined what makes for a successful proposal and addressed questions.

Talking about academic integrity at Muhlenberg
Faculty and staff representatives from the Academic Judicial Board helped lead an informal discussion about academic honesty at Muhlenberg.  We talked about proactive strategies to minimize cheating and discussed faculty responsibilities with respect to the AIC. 
Results from Fall 2011 pilot of online plagiarism tutorial
Model violation letter from faculty to Dean Huber


Refining themes for cluster proposals

Click here for discussion guide adapted from Evergreen State's "Designing a Learning Community in an Hour"

Sharing insights from small group grant projects and teaching conferences

Project descriptions

New Directions in my Teaching: Presentation and Conversation with Pedagogical Grant Awardees
Project descriptions

High Speed Connections: Exploring Possibilities for Interdisciplinary Teaching


Sharing pedagogical development from FCT-funded experiences - This session highlighted recent course and pedagogical development work across campus, with colleagues who sought FCT support in the form of summer grants or funds to attend teaching conferences as well as those who participated in the May 2011 course design workshop sharing what they have learned. Project descriptions

Informal discussion of articles from The Teaching Professor - Faculty members came together to discuss recent articles from The Teaching Professor journal.

Teaching students with learning differences and disabilities - Wendy Cole and Pamela Moschini facilitated a discussion based on case studies to explore how we can best help students, navigate our responsibilities to an increasingly diverse student population, and meet our course or program goals. Case studies handout.

Greening our pedagogy: Ways to integrate sustainability theory and practice into courses across the curriculum - If a product, program, or action is to be labeled as sustainable, it must serve to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.  This is best accomplished by encouraging or enhancing economic development; environmental protection and resource conservation; and human welfare including social justice, community enhancement, and public health.  This program explored opportunities to integrate these aspects of sustainability widely across our curriculum including a more in depth look at the new Office of Campus Sustainability and how it can help support teaching. Handouts: Sustainability Resources and Ideas Kalyna Procyk, Office of Sustainability, Working definition of sustainability

Considering the “texts” of our courses and how to get students to “read” them -This program offered the opportunity to share strategies and challenges in student preparation, with an emphasis on reading texts. We adopted a broad consideration of the concept of “reading texts” to include musical scores, visual artwork, etc. Questions discussed included: What are the texts you use in a given course? Do you provide specific guidance to students as to how to read a text in preparation for class discussion, written response, etc.? What does that guidance look like? How do you gauge whether or not (or how well) students have read a text? Handouts: Questions for discussion, Information on student reading, AAC&U reading rubric, Additional reference (suggested by Mary Beth Kallen): Vandsburger, E. and R. Duncan-Datson. 2011. Evaluating the Study Guide as a Tool for Increasing Students' Accountability for Reading the Textbook.  Journal of College Reading and Learning, 42(1).

Open forum for FCT - exploring the mission of FCT and ideas about what types of programs and support are most effective and enjoyable for our community. Handouts: FCT mission statement.

    Responding to "Scientific Foundations for Future Physicians" - Curriculum Mapping Pre-Med Courses: This event was organized by Jane Flood, Christine Ingersoll, and Elizabeth McCain and co-sponsored by the science departments, interdisciplinary science, and the Faculty Center for Teaching.  The organizers shared what they had learned at a recent PKAL/AAC&U conference, particularly at a session focused on the HHMI/AAMC report "Scientific Foundations for Future Physicians" (SFFP), and engaged colleagues in how proposed changes to the MCAT intersect with our curriculum.

    Teaching with technology - The goal of this workshop was to facilitate conversations about when and why to consider use of technology to confront pedagogical challenges. The workshop featured roundtable discussions on topics gathered from faculty input and focused on an exchange of views, ideas, and questions. Specific topics discussed were enhancing class discussions and group work, creating and implementing meaningful assignments and assessments, and campus support and services with the instructional designer and instructional technologist. Materials: Class discussions and group work session summary, Campus technology support and services summary


Information Literacy  - Facilitated by Jen Jarson, Information Literacy and Assessment Librarian, with Kathy Harring and Amy Hark, this program explored information literacy, including understanding the concept, students' abilities in information literacy, and assignment ideas.

Connecting your course to the Community Garden - This program featured an informal discussion regarding how faculty and their courses could benefit from participating in Muhlenberg’s Community Garden.  

Getting students to make meaningful connections - Led by Adam Clarke and Jim Bloom, this session explored how students make (or fail to make) connections between the concepts in our courses and experiences and ideas they encounter elsewhere: in other classes, while working on community projects, while traveling and studying abroad, when playing on an athletic team or writing and editing a student publication, with an eye toward designing courses and assignments that foster integration across our curriculum.

Making Connections Across Disciplines - Professors Esacove, Cate and Teissere presented their experiences team-teaching an interdisciplinary course called Bodies of Knowledge. They discussed their process of defining interdisciplinarity in relation to the learning goals they set forth for the course, how they assessed the course, their teaching strategies, assignments, evaluation and course structure.

Learning community on service learning, phase II - Eight faculty members along with Beth Halpern discussed ways to integrate service learning into the College’s institutional structure, address potential challenges related to partnerships, and ensure that our course-related relationships within the community are mutually beneficial.

 New Contexts for Your Course: Connecting to Students’ Experiences - Led by Charles Anderson, this workshop focused on developing assignments and activities that faculty can use to meaningfully engage students with course material outside of class. 

 Making groups work - Led by Kimberly Heiman and Michael London, this program focused on facilitating understanding of the keys to effective group activities and assignments through an interactive group-based approach.

 Course design workshop - A two-day workshop, facilitated by Dr. Barbara Tewksbury of Hamilton College, focusing on a course design process that involves setting overarching goals for students and developing assignments that help students make progress toward the goals. The workshop emphasized the development of courses that get students to think for themselves and transfer the skills and knowledge they have learned in a specific class to other contexts, whether academic or beyond the classroom.


Learning community on service learning, phase I - Organized by Lisa Perfetti and Beth Halpern, this program was primarily designed to support faculty members and community partners by providing a place to reflect on and learn about best practices of community- based learning.

Personal Boundaries -This program focused on handling issues such as what to do when students want to “friend” faculty and invite us into their social network, online or otherwise; how we should respond when students share information that we find overly personal; how to foster a supportive and comfortable learning environment in class while ensuring that students are treating the classroom space with respect; and how to balance expectations that Muhlenberg faculty should be friendly and available with our own need to have a private life away from students and campus.

Theory to Practice Learning Community -A summer learning community open to all faculty, academic support staff and student affairs professionals to explore the neuroscience research on learning and to apply these findings to revisions in classroom pedagogies.

Study Abroad -A round table discussion about student learning in short-term study abroad programs.

Choosing a Life of Teaching and Learning -Former Dean of the Wescoe School and currently a consultant specializing in emotional intelligence, Jim Brennan led this discussion about “lifelong learning”; what it is, how to inspire it in our students, and how we embody it.

Teaching with Technology - A workshop focused on how technology can help faculty to: save time, improve student learning, and make exploration of your teaching meaningful and enjoyable.