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How Can Faculty Development Lead to a Greater International Focus in the Curriculum?

How Can Faculty Development Lead to a Greater International Focus in the Curriculum? May 26, 2016

How can colleges internationalize the curriculum to help prepare their students to address complex issues and problems in an interconnected, global context?

One avenue is through faculty development activities, according to ACM vice presidents Joan Gillespie and Brian Williams and Elizabeth Brewer, Director of International Education at Beloit College. They will team up to give a presentation at the annual conference of NAFSA: Association of International Educators that will outline three approaches being used by ACM and Beloit in faculty development programming to increase the international focus in the curriculum.

During their conference session, titled Internationalizing the Curriculum through Faculty Development Opportunities, Gillespie, Williams, and Brewer will each talk about an ongoing effort that gives faculty a chance to travel internationally for on-site learning and to engage in collaborative, multi-disciplinary curricular development.

All three models aim to increase faculty capacity for interdisciplinary inquiry and interdisciplinary teaching, as well as engage faculty in exploring new pedagogies and creating new teaching resources, including modules and courses that can be shared with and adopted by other faculty.

The presenters will lay out the successes and challenges they have encountered and evaluate the progress so far toward the goals of three programs:

  • Problem-Based, Interdisciplinary International Projects (Luce LIASE)

Elizabeth BrewerElizabeth Brewer

Presenter: Elizabeth Brewer, Director of International Education, Beloit College

With funding from the Luce Foundation, Beloit College’s  Landscapes in Transition: Environment, Culture, Society in China and Japan project is using a model of international, interdisciplinary projects with partner universities – Henan University in China and Akita International University in Japan – in which faculty and students conduct research into sustainability along China’s Yellow River and rural sustainability in Japan and the US Midwest.

  • Modeling the Pedagogy of On-Site Experiences with Faculty (SAIL)

Brian WilliamsBrian Williams

Presenter: Brian Williams, Vice President and Director of Faculty Development and Grant Programs, ACM

Two ACM Seminars in Advanced Interdisciplinary Learning (SAIL) for faculty, held in Italy and Jordan, will be used as case studies, focusing on the pedagogy used in the on-site experiences and examples of innovative curricula developed by faculty following the seminars.

  • Faculty Leadership Training for Off-Campus Student Programs

Joan GillespieJoan Gillespie

Presenter: Joan Gillespie, Vice President and Director of Off-Campus Study Programs, ACM

A set of ACM-sponsored site visits have taken ACM faculty to consortial study away sites to learn firsthand about off-campus programs, to give faculty direct knowledge of leading a student study away group and a chance to practice experiential learning, and to complement internationalization efforts on the ACM campuses.

The NAFSA Conference & Expo, held this year in Denver on May 29-June 3, annually draws more than 9,000 professionals in the field of international education from around the world for a program of training workshops, educational sessions, networking opportunities, and special events.


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