Learning Communities

LCs are  small groups of faculty/instructors who come together regularly over the course of a year to discuss various aspects of their teaching, support each other, and/or work together to solve a shared pedagogical problem or question.  LCs can range from informal to quite structured, depending on the needs and goals of the group. The CTL is currently supporting 3 FLCs (see below) and is always willing to form more, based on faculty interest.

What are some examples of Learning Communities?

A learning community might be formed to:

  • Support a cohort of faculty at a similar point in their careers
  • Share ideas for improved teaching of a particular pedagogical approach (like service learning or problem-based learning)
  • Investigate the potential of a new classroom practice or tool (like “flipping” or student response systems)
  • Build community and support for teaching a common course (like First Year Seminars or Intro to Biology)
  • Discuss scholarship on issues of concern to faculty and their classrooms (like diversity or campus climate)
  • Connect faculty in more intentional ways with people and services that might improve student learning

What are the advantages to joining a LC?

Well, just to name a few, a LC can provide: new ideas for teaching, opportunities to slow down and reflect, scholarly camaraderie, intercollegiate connections, emotional support, potential avenues for publication, and, often, a free lunch! Above all, a LC is a safe place to challenge yourself to grow as a teacher and life-long learner.

Note Taking and Study Skills

hosted by Cory Davia (CMC).

This group will explore questions related to how students prepare for class and how we can help them develop study habits suited to their goals. For instance, we’ll consider different kinds of note-taking strategies and modalities, different roles note-taking can play in a class, and ways of helping students become more self-aware about their reading habits and approach to studying. We’ll meet every two weeks, at a time and place to be determined by the group.

Sign up here: https://forms.gle/TD2Cn39To2swjTEm6

Otherwise Pedagogies

hosted by George Ygarza (PIT).

Scholars Moten and Harney describe entering the space of the undercommons as a ‘ruptural and enraptured disclosure of the commons … where the commons give refuge, where the refuge gives commons.’ (Moten and Harney, 2004) As contingent faculty (part-time, visiting, and adjunct) how do we make use of the liminal space we occupy to engender community? How do we convert these liminal spaces and ways of being in them as sites of refuge and care to inform a liberatory pedagogy? Guided by the notion of the undercommons, this Faculty Learning Community invites BIPoC contingent faculty and early scholars to come together to think through the ways in which our experiential, ancestral and lived knowledges can define our pedagogy and other aspects of our work in academe.

Every other Monday starting Jan 30th, PIT Broad 204
Time: 1230-2pm

Sign up here: https://forms.gle/EEXDiYdmU2Xt32C2A

Visioning and Teaching

hosted by barbara junisbai (CTL, PIT).

hosted by Barbara Junisbai.

in the past two years, barbara has been practicing visioning in her professional and personal life, in her teaching and service, and with her organizational studies students. the process follows a “backward design” model: we take a moment, in community, to name what joyful, meaningful, and fulfilling teaching (and life!) looks like for each of us. we then plot out in a playful, generous, and possibility-filled way concrete steps, resources, deadlines, and accountability structures that help us realize our vision. meeting time and place to be determined by participants.

Sign up here: https://forms.gle/Z1yjSwFDzKcf2dZ2A

The CTL encourages faculty to nominate an FLC.  If you have an idea for a group that is focused on issues in teaching and learning, please email ctl@claremont.edu with the type of group, a main contact person, and what interest already exists for it.

Past LC’s


hosted by Cory Davia (CMC).

This group explored strategies for helping students become more self-aware about their learning processes. 

Indigenous and Decolonizing Studies in Education

hosted by Warren Liu.  FLC members read and reflected on Indigenous & Decolonizing Studies in Education: Mapping the Long View (2019).

Embodied Pedagogies

hosted by Barbara Junisbai.  FLC members chose readings from scholars in contemplative pedagogy, feminist pedagogy, and pedagogies of care, among others.

Justice Education FLC

This was a group of faculty who have taught, will teach, or were interested in teaching “inside-out” courses. They generally met monthly.  Some of the topics this FLC  discussed were:

  • What are the teaching strategies that folks have found to work well?
  • Dealing with expectations both “inside” and “outside” students have about each other, and faculty expectations of these students.
  • What other opportunities are there to participate in justice education?
  • Logistics of teaching inside-printing, materials, travel, registration, etc.
  • Managing stress of requirements of dress, behavior, etc. when going inside, and of leaving half your students behind, responsibility for student safety.

The Learner Centered Classroom

In this FLC faculty read about, discussed, tried, and reflected on the efficacy of learner-centered classroom techniques.

Diversity in Higher Ed FLC

This group of faculty focused on having some shared material (like an article) each meeting to provide a common basis for discussion. Some of the topics this FLC have discussed are:

  • Literature on best practices in inclusion and diversity
  • First-gen and socio-economic concerns
  • The psychological burden of undertaking contentions conversations
  • 5C and 7C resources for discussion on gender, sexuality, and disability