Winter 2014

In This Issue:

I. Introduction: Realizing the Potential of Partnerships Between First-Year Faculty and Undergraduate Student Consultants, in which Alison Cook-Sather, Mary Katharine Woodworth Professor of Education and Coordinator of The Andrew W. Mellon Teaching and Learning Institute (TLI), provides both research support for and a detailed description of the novel approach taken by the TLI to orienting new faculty at Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges. This introduction focuses on the ways in which student-faculty partnerships through the TLI’s Students as Learners and Teachers (SaLT) program supports first-year faculty as they learn to balance the multiple demands of a new context and engage deep philosophical and even ontological questions.

II. The Dynamics of Expertise, in which Miriam Pallant, Haverford College ‘14, complicates the standard notions of expertise in higher education as realized by the SaLT program. She asserts that while faculty are experts in their fields and students are experts in the experience of learning, both forms of expertise should be questioned in productive ways, and she calls for “complementary expertise” in which students and faculty form communities in which different types of expertise can coexist.

III. From Tennis to Teaching: The Power of Mentoring, in which Anita Kurimay, Assistant Professor of History at Bryn Mawr College, considers how her experience of being mentored during her previous career as a professional tennis player can serve as a way of thinking about and growing into her new role as a faculty member. She explores a multi-directional form of mentoring that she experienced with her student consultant and the ways in which this partnership informed her thinking about her mentoring of her own students.

IV. Teaching and Learning as Learning To Be: Finding My Place and Voice as a Leader, in which Alexandra Wolkoff, Haverford College ‘14, describes her realization that it is possible to be introverted and a leader. Wolcoff focuses on how she developed a form of collaboration with her faculty partner that helped both of them work towards the fullest expression of their capacities, and she discusses how this partnership changed not only her sense of herself as a leader within academic contexts but, more broadly, in other areas of her life.

V. Learning to Navigate Quickly and Successfully: The Benefits of Working with a Student Consultant, in which Seung-Youn Oh, Assistant Professor of Political Science at Bryn Mawr College, discusses three ways in which working with a student consultant during her first semester helped her learn to navigate the demands of her classroom and the larger college culture and to develop her own particular teaching identity.

VI. The Weather in Hemingway, in which Lindsay V. Reckson, Assistant Professor of English at Haverford College, describes both the exchange she had with her student consultant and how their partnership supported the development of a generative and sustainable framework for her pedagogical practice — a framework within which Reckson aims to create “productive disorder” that facilitates deep literary exploration and the development of engaged, thoughtful students.

VII. Learning from Respect: Multiple Iterations of Respect in the Classroom, in which Leah Kahler, Bryn Mawr College ‘16, explores the intersection of respect and Vygotsky’s notion of the zone of proximal development. Analyzing both the respect she and her faculty partner developed between them and their discussions of how he could support his own students’ learning, Kahler articulates what has become important to her as a student and as a partner in pedagogical practice.

VIII. Get Out the Map: The Use of Participation Mapping in Planning and Assessment, in which Kathryne Adair Corbin, Lecturer in the French Department at Haverford College, takes as her theme the challenge of getting students to engage in classroom participation. Her essay focuses on the key role that her student consultants’ participation maps played in her analysis of student engagement and the lessons she has taken forward about how to scaffold student participation in future courses.

IX. Reciprocal Support and Shared Empowerment, in which Rosie McInnes, Bryn Mawr College ’16, discusses the way in which she and her faculty partner explored both particular pedagogical challenges, such as how to teach writing, and larger educational issues, such as how to approach one’s college experience with a focus on learning rather than only grades.

X. Silence in the Classroom, in which a new faculty member at Bryn Mawr College who chose to present her reflections anonymously offers a thoughtful account of how a disagreement between her and her student consultant regarding the role of silence in the classroom led to a clarification for her of the value and use of silence. She articulates a rationale for structuring silence into courses and classrooms that is useful across the disciplines.

XI. Letting Us All Be Learners, in which Emma Gulley, Bryn Mawr College ‘14, writes about how, through her partnership with a new faculty member, she came to think of herself very differently as a student, learner, and future teacher. Through uncovering her own assumptions about classroom practice, she came to see the importance of openness and purposefulness — a seeming contradiction but, in fact, a generative complementarity.

XII. Consultancy, Disruption, and the Pulse of Pedagogy, in which Sayres Rudy, Assistant Professor of Political Science, offers a rigorous philosophical analysis of pedagogy. He depicts the “productive disruptions of consciousness” achieved by the SaLT program and in his own experience with a student consultant.



The Weather in Hemingway
Lindsay V. Reckson