Sheridan Center Events Archive: Lectures

This page of the archive includes descriptions of the Sheridan Teaching Seminar Lectures and other lectures, and links to resources from those lectures. 

The Sheridan Teaching Seminar Lectures

Offered each year, this five-part lecture series is designed to introduce the fundamental components of reflective teaching:  careful planning and continuous refinement of one’s teaching practice; establishing learning goals and gauging student learning; engaging learners and acknowledging one’s audience.   Following the description of each lecture is a comprehensive list of the various speakers who have delivered that lecture since Fall 2010. 

  • Reflection on Teaching & Learning
    This lecture addressed the development of one’s teaching practice.  The lecture promoted the practice of identifying and exploring our own practices and underlying beliefs about teaching and considering them with respect to the broader purpose of improving the learning of our students and our own experience as teachers. 
    Recent speakers:  
    Jan Baker (RISD- Graphic Design)
    Andrew Campbell (Bio Med Molecular Microbiology & Immunology)
    Nancy Jacobs (Africana Studies; History)
    Robert Pelcovits (Physics)
    Victoria Smith (Hispanic Studies)
    Arnold Weinstein (Comparative Literature)  
    Matthew Zimmt (Chemistry)
  • Developing Student Learning Goals: Course & Syllabus Design
    This lecture addressed effective course development techniques, using the syllabus as a design tool, and provided Brown faculty perspectives on their own course syllabus development.
    Recent speakers:  
    Zachary Sng (German Studies)
    Laura Snyder (Education)
    Jan Tullis (Geological Sciences)
  • How Students Learn
    This lecture applied what is known about student learning to the practice of teaching.  During this interactive lecture, participants reflected on their own learning preferences and considered how to enhance their students’ learning by creating multiple portals of engagement.
    Recent speakers:
    Catherine Axe (Student and Employee Accessibility Services)
    Kathy Takayama (Sheridan Center)
  • Grading and Evaluation: Measuring Your Students’ Learning
    This lecture addressed the goals of assessment and the role assessment in student learning.  This lecture covered the importance of setting clear standards for grading, and the development of rubrics and other assessment techniques.
    Recent speakers:
    Maureen Sigler (Education)
    Luther Spoehr (Education; History)
  • Rhetorical Practice: Teaching as Persuasive Communication
    Teachers are primarily communicators, and reflection on rhetorical practices promotes better engagement and communication with students. This lecture introduced techniques to help improve your classroom communication.
    Recent speakers: 
    Nancy Dunbar (Asssociate Provost; Theatre Arts & Performance Studies)
    Barbara Tannenbaum (Theatre Arts & Performance Studies)

Other Lectures

  • Teaching Consultants Invited Speakers Program: "Contemplative Pedagogy & the Transformation of Education"
    Speaker: Daniel Barbezat, Professor of Economics at Amherst College & Executive Director of the Center for Contemplative Mind in the Society
    Professor Barbezat delivered a lecture exploring how contemplative pedagogy can be a powerful way in which we can work together to reclaim the transformative nature of education.  He described the ways in which first-person critical inquiry can cultivate better discernment and attention in students, provide the means for deepening their understanding of the material they are studying, and foster environments to inquire about and live meaningfully.
  • Teaching Consultants Invited Speakers Program: “Building an Imagined Future: Teaching as Architecture”
    Speaker: Steven Volk, Professor of History & Director of the Center for Teaching Innovation and Excellence, Oberlin College, and 2011 US Professor of the Year 
    Using architecture and construction as an extended metaphor for teaching, Prof. Volk probed the challenges of teaching, which is a creative and imaginative act rooted in the present but directed to the future.  In his talk Prof. Volk suggested a few approaches that have proven to be highly productive in his own teaching; he engaged in a larger discussion on how to make the most of on-site learning.
  • Sheridan Center 25th Anniversary Keynote Address: “Circa 2012: Teaching in the Age of Learning”
    Speaker: Randy Bass (Brown Ph.D. ’91), Associate Provost, Professor of English & Executive Director of the Center for New Designs in Learning & Scholarship, Georgetown University
    This lecture prompted us to reimagine what it means to teach and create learning designs in an era where access to learning is fluid and the evidence about high impact learning has little to do with the classroom.

    Randy Bass delivering 25th Anniversary Keynote AddressRandy Bass delivering 25th Anniversary Keynote Address