Follow-Up: Planning for Our Pedagogical Futures

Below is the recording of the presentation and discussion with Christin DePouw “Planning for Our Pedagogical Futures” from Thursday, Apr. 21, 2022. We’ve provided the video as a PlayPosit bulb so that you can engage with questions from the workshop facilitator.

To view the bulb, type your first and last name, then click “Save.”

Additional Sources & Reading

Follow-Up: Culturally Sustaining/Responsive Pedagogy in the “After” of the Pandemic

Below is the recording of the presentation and discussion with Christin DePouw “Culturally Sustaining/Responsive Pedagogy in the ‘After’ of the Pandemic” from Thursday, Mar. 31, 2022. We’ve provided the video as a PlayPosit bulb so that you can engage with questions from the workshop facilitator.

To view the bulb, type your first and last name, then click “Save.”

Presentation & Discussion: Planning for Our Pedagogical Futures (Apr. 21, 1–2 p.m.)

Join Christin DePouw (Associate Professor, Education & 2021-22 EDI Consultant) for a presentation and guided conversation on Thursday, Apr. 21 from 1–2 p.m. Our institution’s strategic plan includes becoming a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI), which means becoming more responsive and welcoming to the students within Green Bay Area Public Schools and surrounding districts. Together we will discuss some of the teaching implications of becoming an HSI and how we as culturally sustaining/responsive educators can ensure a welcoming and inclusive environment within the shifting demographics of our classrooms and university.

Register Here for a Teams Meeting Invitation

Resources and Session Recording

You can watch the recording from this session and engage with some reflection questions with the PlayPosit bulb in this blog post.

How Can We Help Our Student Parents?

Follow-Up: Student Parent Advocacy Workshop

This post was co-authored by Dr. Katia Levintova, a 2021-22 EDI Consultant, and Shannon Ribich, a 2021-22 EDI Intern.

How much do any of us know about the number of student parents in our classes or on our campus in general? What educational resources and solutions do our student parents want that we can, or already do, offer?

According to a campus survey and the childcare support program at the Dean of Students office, UWGB numbers are consistent with national statistics—about 16–20% of our students are also parents. They encompass all genders, they are veterans and consummate professionals, they are first generation students and returning students, and they represent various ethnic and racial groups. In many ways, they are just like the rest of our student body, but in many ways they are not. For one, student parents not only work 30+ hours a week on average, but also devote 10 hours a day to childcare responsibilities, leaving them with only 9 hours a day for sleeping, taking classes, studying, and any leisure activities. These precious 9 hours also often come in small increments, not in one block of time that coincides with typical class offerings.

Our student parents are also routinely disadvantaged when it comes to classroom policies, especially involving attendance and group work. They lack access to many high-impact practices or HIPs (especially study abroad opportunities, teaching assistantships, and leadership of student orgs), campus resources, and on-campus events. They do not have a sense of belonging on campus, but they value support, encouragement, and recognition of their dedication and persistence. And support has been coming, albeit not very fast.

The Taskforce on Student Caregiving, a new subcommittee of the UW System Caregiving Taskforce, recommends centralization of information about on campus resources and allies for student parents, priority course registration, better data collection reflecting the student parent population on campus, childcare subsidies, and universal childcare acknowledgements/statements in the syllabi. Nationally recognized best practices also include student parent-led and -focused campus orgs (to build community and network), specialized advising (ex: student orientation designed for student parents), cohorts, inclusion of student parents in marketing and campus materials, and access to changing tables and lactation rooms.

Some of these recommendations have already been implemented on our campus. Take, for example, our Dean of Students’ childcare support program, funded both by the federal grant and by UWGB SGA childcare student fees. We do have a lactation room and meeting rooms specifically for student parents, but more needs to be done. To this end, participants in the “Student Parent Advocacy Workshop” (held on campus on March 24, 2022) brought up several solutions that we can implement with relative ease and without major financial implications.

  • Priority registration was one universal theme and, in this regard, the work on our campus has begun. Participants also stressed the need for more evening classes options for in-person courses, like labs and practicums, though increased evening, online, and hybrid offerings for student parents should extend beyond the sciences and medical fields.
  • Another proposed initiative would aggregate all available student parents-related resources on campus—including the priority registration process—on one page, to be linked from the Dean of Students childcare support program page.
  • In our classrooms, CATL can help by adding to already existing syllabus checklists two additional items: (1) a child care syllabus statement and (2) sample attendance policies ensuring that all pregnancy and caregiving-related absences will be automatically excused.
  • Student parents are often distracted by the needs of their children and have shorter uninterrupted periods of time to devote to their studies. While preparing course materials, instructors might consider using shorter videos or reading materials (or breaking up longer materials into smaller chunks) which makes it easier to digest and retain the information.
  • For access to HIPs, there is funding available in the Dean of Students’ childcare support program specific for participation in HIPs. However, we also need to promote these learning experiences to student parents and be more intentional about inviting them to participate in undergraduate research, teaching assistantships, and internships—the three HIPs that seem to be more accessible to student parents. For study broad access (a persistent problem), shorter trips or a destination with childcare facilities on campus might offer partial solutions as well.

So, what is next? Please expect continued work by student parent advocates and allies on our campus. You will recognize them by the “Student Parent Advocate” badges that were awarded for participating in this year’s programs highlighting student caregiving.

If all of us are more aware of the increasing presence of student parents on our campus and in our classrooms, are sensitive to their unique needs, and make these sensible changes in our teaching and student support roles, we will create a more inclusive community where student parents, too, feel a sense of belonging. They are, after all, truly modeling the essence of transformative education for the next generation of learners and, potentially, our future students!

Resources on Dual Domain Pedagogy and Growth Mindset

Recently Dr. Angela Bauer, former UWGB instructor and current Vice President of Academic Affairs at High Point University, visited our institution and presented her research regarding the equity gaps in introductory science courses. We invite you to engage with the readings and videos below to learn more about dual domain pedagogy (both cognitive & affective) and its relationship to equity gaps in the college classroom. If you would like to talk more about how you might use this information in your teaching, feel free to request a consultation with a CATL member. Please remember as you consider these resources that growth mindset interventions should not be used to de-legitimize real structural, systemic, economic, etc., obstacles that students face.

  • On Mar. 4, 2022, Angie Bauer visited the Green Bay campus and gave a presentation on her research titled Tapping into the Affective Domain of Learning to Close Classroom Performance Gaps. View the recording by clicking on the link and then logging in with your UWGB credentials.
  • You can also read the study that Dr. Bauer contributed to, Fostering Equitable Outcomes in Introductory Biology Courses through Use of Dual Domain Pedagogy. The article describes Dr. Bauer’s work at High Point, including growth mindset interventions and the impact on equity gaps.

A great place to start learning about growth and fixed mindsets is with the work of Carol Dweck, who is the psychologist best known for research on this concept. Watch this 50-minute talk on YouTube which Dweck gave in 2019 at the Annual Convention of the American Psychology Association, or, for a shorter watch, check out her TED Talk from 2014. You can also read the first three chapters of her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, online for free. These are, of course, just a starting place—to dig deeper, check out the research articles in other sections of this guide.

  • For a good overview of growth and fixed mindsets, including specific examples, research findings, and even videos illustrating educators using growth mindset language in class, check out this guide from the MIT Teaching + Learning Lab.
  • Also found on the MIT Teaching + Learning Lab site is Dr. Elizabeth Canning's 1-hour talk about growth mindset and research surrounding the impact of instructors’ mindset on student success. There’s also a written summary of some of the relevant research on this site. Note some of her full articles are included in the "Influence of Instructor Mindset on Students" section of this post.
  • Academic Affairs at the University of Arizona has a series of "Learning to Learn" strategies for teaching and learning, including an overview of growth mindset with videos and practical tips for instructors.
  • One potential growth mindset intervention, if used well, is normalizing struggles and even failure. Read about Stanford University’s institutional attempt at reinforcing this idea and watch brief videos from the project.
  • Transforming Education has some sample strategies for supporting students' growth mindset, as well as a growth mindset toolkit. Although intended for K-12 educators, these sites provide some helpful, practical tips about encouraging growth mindset as an instructor that could be adapted for higher education, as well as video clips, PowerPoint presentations, and graphics.
  • Dr. Bauer referenced the affective domain of learning in her "dual domain pedagogy" intervention. The affective domain is an extension of Bloom's taxonomy created by psychologist David Krathwohl, one of Bloom's colleagues. We are typically more familiar with the cognitive domain, but this document by Indiana University provides a nice overview of the affective realm.

A critical research finding is that instructor mindset influences multiple factors for student success, including students' motivation, academic performance, and whether growth mindset interventions will be effective on them. These results are important to consider as we transition to becoming an access institution. If we expect students will be less capable as we embrace that mission and believe that ability is fixed, will we produce the poor results we expect?

  • It is vital to remember that growth mindset is not about telling students to “think positive” and expecting it to achieve miraculous results. For one thing, growth mindset is not the same as “thinking positively.” For another, students may experience a number of obstacles to academic success, and no one is suggesting mindset will overcome issues such as poverty. Living in poverty, for example, can be associated with a greater fixed mindset, for understandable reasons. That said, a national study suggests that children with a growth mindset had some buffer against the effects of poverty on their academic performance.
  • For another interesting read, these authors explored how the mindsets of 875 organic chemistry students changed across a semester. In their analysis of students' responses, they found that students attributed their own beliefs about the malleability of intelligence to five main factors: academic experiences, observing peers, deducing logically, taking societal cues, and formal learning.

Growth mindset research is one of those areas that has endured some criticism as part of the social science “replication crisis.” For those of you interested in really digging into that, the articles below are good resources. We also include them because they do point to some of the nuance involved in this work. For example, the success of growth mindset interventions on a student's academic performance may also be tied to the student's trust in their instructor, as indicated in the third article.