Summer 2016 Reading Groups

The Kaneb Center purchases books on teaching and learning in higher education for small informal reading groups. This service is available to faculty, graduate student teaching assistants, and postdoctoral scholars. To participate:

  1. Choose a book from the list below. Existing groups (with confirmed availability for meeting times) may choose a book from the list below or propose another title. If you propose another title contact for approval prior to step 2.
  2. Sign Up As an individual, we will put you in a group (Now Closed) — OR as an existing group's facilitator (sign up for the GROUP and provide the participating group members' ND email addresses). We will purchase and distribute the books.
  3. Read and Discuss The facilitator contacts the group to determine reading goals and arrange meetings. Groups may meet several times with specific reading goals or once, upon completion of the book. We recommend 2 to 4 meetings.
  4. Submit Upon completion, the facilitator provides a short summary (1 page or less) of the group's impressions of the book.

Book Cover, STEM

Teaching and Learning STEM
Richard M. Felder and Rebecca Brent; Jossey-Bass; 2016. 336 pages.

This spring, STEM education "rock stars" Felder and Brent presented a very well received workshop at Notre Dame. Their new book highlights research that tells us learner-centered methods can lead to improved learning outcomes, development of critical high-level skills, and increased retention. The book features a trove of practical research-based strategies for teaching and assessment in STEM disciplines. If you attended the spring workshop you should have a copy of the book; why not read it over the summer? If you weren't there, this is a chance to learn what you missed.

Book Cover, Transgress

Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom
bell hooks; Routledge; 1994. 216 pages.

In Teaching to Transgress, bell hooks--writer, teacher, and insurgent black intellectual--writes about a new kind of education, "education as the practice of freedom."

If you are interested in confronting the cultural and political aspects of the classroom in order to create inclusive learning environments then this is the book for you.

Book Cover, Twydk

Teaching What You Don't Know
Therese Huston; Harvard University Press; 2012. 320 pages.

If you are looking for an enjoyable read packed with concrete strategies for teaching effectively, this is the book for you. Huston offers an accessible look at good teaching practices, which will help you improve your teaching, regardless of your comfort level with course material or your level of teaching experience. 

Book Cover, Teaching With Fire

Teaching with Fire: Poetry That Sustains the Courage to Teach
Edited by Sam M. Intrator, Megan Scribner, Parker J. Palmer, Tom Vander Ark; Jossey-Bass; 2003. 256 pages.

This is an excellent collection of poems by known authors, submitted by educators for whom they have had special meaning. Each work is accompanied by a thoughtful explanation of the impact it had on the teacher who submitted it. The poets include Tennyson, Williams, Hughes, Neruda, Safford, Oliver, Collins, and many others. This wonderful little book was inspired by The Courage to Teach.

Book Cover, Small Teaching

Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning
James M. Lang; Jossey-Bass; 2016. 272 pages.

This book provides scientific explanations of the cognitive processes of learning and concrete strategies to take advantage of those processes to help students learn. As the publishers say, "Small Teaching bridges the gap between research and practice by providing a fully developed strategy for making deliberate, structured, and incremental steps towards tuning into how your students are hardwired to learn."

Book Cover, Effective Grading

Effective Grading: A Tool for Learning and Assessment in College
Barbara E. Walvoord and Virginia Johnson Anderson; Jossey-Bass; 2nd edition; 2009. 272 pages.

This book examines grading as an integral part of course design and implementation. In addition to discussing efficient and effective methods of grading it offers ideas for creating engaged, learner-centered, courses.

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