Title: Going Beyond The Institutional Model: Rethinking How To Teach And Take A Course

As teachers and students who have been conditioned to see teachers as experts and the students as novices, The Pacific Review and Literary Production courses that we have designed require all of us to re-imagine our work. We have been forced to re-evaluate our pedagogy, syllabi, and assessment models.

Previously, my pedagogy grew out of a top-down model of teaching that was determined by departmental and University criteria. I was teaching the way I was taught. In constructing a syllabus I interpreted how I should represent those criteria without seriously considering what the student brought to my courses. I have begun to use a model of dialogue rather than monologue. Dialogue depends on my knowing what I, the other instructor, and my students bring to the course and how this collaboration will lead to effective production teams. The course plan and assessments must be negotiated with students because they must define their own skills and how they can utilize them in order to set class goals, production deadlines, and evaluate their own performances.

This kind of work poses an entirely different model for developing and teaching a course, especially in a class that is interdisciplinary and a mixture of gradate and undergraduate students. Professors must be willing to relinquish control over the typical decisions that govern an academic course and students must be willing to take on this responsibility. I will explore what problems and successes we encountered in these courses, given this wide array of complicating factors. I will conclude by offering suggestions for improving this model.

Presenter: Juan Delgado


Target Audience: Intermediate

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