Teaching in Turbulent Times

The Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) in partnership with the Teaching, Learning and Assessment Center (TLAC) offers the “Teaching in Turbulent Times” workshop annually.  Originally created in Spring 2017, this workshop was presented as a Lunch-and-Learn through TLAC in Spring 2019 and Fall 2019. In Summer and Fall 2020, we offered the workshop several more times, with over 20 faculty members signing on to the Faculty Network for Teaching in Turbulent Times. We will continue to make the workshop available in Spring 2021.

Workshop Overview

Workshop Creator: Dr. Tracey Robinson Ray, Office for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion                             Duration: 1.5 hours

As the daily news often reminds us, there are moments in our society that are fraught with controversy and contention.  As a University that values diversity and inclusion, how can you assure that our classrooms are places for civil discourse and respectful disagreement?  This discussion will allow faculty to explore this issue through an examination of university classroom case studies. (90 minutes)

The fall semester may be filled with anticipated and unanticipated challenges ranging from managing remote teaching, ensuring accessibility, managing student expectations, dealing with issues related the pandemic, responding to issues related to the national climate, understanding student responses to the upcoming local and national elections and more. Resources relates to the Teaching in Turbulent Times workshop are available to faculty to help them think proactively about strategies you might employ. Further, Chief Diversity Officer Tracey Robinson has trained a Faculty Network for Teaching in Turbulent Times, including individuals representing each college who are available to facilitate the workshop in settings across campus, a program in collaboration with TLAC and the Faculty Ombudsperson, Joan Woolfrey. 

Request this workshop for your department, class, group, or organization on a specific date(s). Note: this workshop requires a minimum of 15 participants and a maximum of 50. Email TLAC@wcupa.edu to find out more information or to schedule a workshop, or to sign up for our next round of Faculty Network training. 

Email TLAC to reserve a spot in the January 21, 2:00-3:30 pm workshop, led by TLAC Faculty Associate Janneken Smucker and Faculty Omsbud Joan Woolfrey

Teaching in Turbulent Times Open Forums

Are you currently grappling with an issue you don’t know how to handle? Are you feeling that university policies don’t address everything you’re seeing or concerned about? 

In addition to offering workshop training sessions, we have scheduled open forums to learn more about the Teaching in Turbulent Times training opportunity and to address classroom concerns “ripped from the headlines” of your real-life teaching. Please join us for a discussion of challenging teaching situations you may have encountered and to seek and trade strategies for handling our turbulent times.  

TLAC and the Faculty Omsbud will host open forums throughout Spring 2021 for you to have a safe place to discuss the challenges you are facing in the classroom. Stay tuned for dates. 

Faculty Network for Teaching in Turbulent Times

The following faculty members have completed the training workshop and are available to help you brainstorm and strategize when difficult issues come up in your classroom.

Matin Katirai, Department of Geography and Planning, College of Business and Public Management
Whitney Katirai,  Department of Health, College of Health Sciences
Jackie Hodes, Educational Foundations and Policy Studies, College of Education and Social Work
Sendy Alcidonis, Senior Director for the Center for Women and Gender Equity, Division of Student Affairs
Mahrukh Azam, Department of Chemistry, College of Sciences and Mathematics
Jeffrey Harris, Department of Nutrition, College of Health Sciences
Ebru Isgin, Department of Economics and Finance, College of Business and Public Management
Liz Pfaffle, Department of Instrumental Music, Wells School of Music
Janneken Smucker, Department of History, College of Arts and Humanities
Joan Woolfrey, Departments of Philosophy and Women and Gender Studies, College of Arts and Humanities
Brie Radis, Undergraduate Social Work Department, College of Education and Social Work
Shana Bryan, Middle Grades Education, College of Education and Social Work
Lauri Hyers, Department of Psychology, College of Sciences and Mathematics
Patricia Jan Crump, Department of Communication and Media, College of Arts and Humanities
Eleanor Shevlin, Department of English, College of Arts and Humanities
Chris Stangl, Department of Political Science, College of Sciences and Mathematics
Nicole Bennett, Vice Provost for Research and Creative Activity, Division of Academic Affairs
Jessica Sullivan-Brown, Department of Biology, College of Sciences and Mathematics
Julie Tennille, Graduate Social Work Department, College of Education and Social Work
Tina Alessandria, Department of Counselor Education, College of Education and Social Work
Jessica Schedlbauer, Department of Biology, College of Sciences and Mathematics

Faculty Resources related to supporting diversity and inclusion in the classroom 

Faculty Resources for Diversity and Inclusion in the Classroom

Sample Syllabus Statement with Ground Rules for Class Discussions  (ECD 225 Foundations of Cultural Competence, North Carolina State)

Anti-Racist Resources for Teaching (compiled by Educational Foundations and Policy Studies Professor Dana Morrison)

Sample Diversity and Inclusion Syllabus Statements  (Clemson University)

Teaching in Turbulent Times Workshop Slides





Back to top of page.