Individual Workshop Sessions

The Sheridan Center offers a variety of individual workshop sessions. For upcoming sessions, visit the Sheridan Center calendar.

A selection of past individual workshops and their associated handouts is available below.

Case Based Learning in the Sciences
At this workshop led by Sheridan Center Executive Director Kathy Takayama, participants learned how to create and teach with case studies.  They  discussed what makes a good case study, how to promote group work, and what learning outcomes are possible.

Contemplative Pedagogy
This hands-on workshop led by Professors Hal Roth (Religious & East Asian Studies) and Tori Smith (Hispanic Studies) explored the underlying theory of contemplative pedagogy and practices. 

Enhancing Teaching through Classroom Peer Observation
Peer observation of teaching can be a formative process (providing feedback for improvement) that enhances teaching and learning across a department. In this workshop, faculty became familiar with the steps in an effective observation process and worked on these skills. Specifically, they learned how to create collegial exchange about learning goals for a class, received hands-on practice in observation and formative feedback, and discussed how to gain new insights and ideas for their own teaching through the process.

Getting Started with Digital Humanities
Led by Sheridan Center Associate Director John Melson, this session introduced participants to the emerging field of digital humanities and explored how digital humanities approaches can be used productively in classes and research. 

How Class Discussions Help Students Learn
Led by Carnegie Scholar José Feito, this workshop explored his insights from his ongoing research investigating the development of intellectual community and collaborative discourse within seminar classes. Potential conceptual models for understanding students’ cognitive and social work within classroom discussions were explored. These models were intended to offer new ways to parse the complex flurry of student discussion and arrive at a deeper understanding of the kinds of learning that we hope to facilitate through this type of pedagogy.

Integrating Research into the Undergraduate Laboratory
Does research belong in an undergraduate teaching laboratory, and how should it be incorporated into the laboratory teaching environment? Prof Amit Basu (Chemistry) led a discussion on integrating research in UG labs. He addressed how research might be defined in such a context, and some of the challenges and benefits of conducting research in a classroom laboratory. Prof Basu described how these issues were used to guide the development of a semester-long laboratory sequence.

Leading Discussions in the Humanities & Social Sciences
Led by Prof. Luther Spoehr (Education; History), this workshop addressed effective strategies and other issues involved in leading discussions in the humanities and social sciences. 

Public Communication of Your Scholarship
At this session led by Scott Turner (a science writer and columnist at the Providence Journal, Director of Web Communications) & Cornelia Dean (a science writer, former science editor of The New York Times and author of Am I Making Myself Clear?

Recommended resources:

Responding to Student Writing in the Humanities & Social Sciences
Led by Writing Support Programs Director Doug Brown, this workshop introduced effective strategies for responding to student writing in the humanities and social sciences.  This workshop is offered regularly. 

Student Work for Public Audiences
This roundtable discussion explored how learning deepens and becomes more meaningful when we ask our students to produce work for an audience beyond the classroom and how instructors balance the timeline required for high quality products for public presentation with the time students need to engage in the learning process (which includes leaving room to fail).   Steven Lubar (American Studies), Steven Subotnick (RISD—Visual Arts), John Stein (Neuroscience), Elizabeth Hoover (American Studies), and Andrew Dufton and Linda Gosner (Archaeology & the Ancient World) shared examples of how they designed, implemented and assessed student projects for audiences beyond the classroom. 

Supporting Student Study Habits in the Sciences
At this workshop led by by Joseph Browne (New Scientist Program Coordinator), Carie Cardamone (Sheridan Center Associate Director for the Life & Physical Sciences), Peggy Chang (Curricular Resource Center Director), & David Targan (Associate Dean of the College and Science Center Director), participants learned about the issues Brown students encounter while studying science and what they can do to help students avoid pitfalls and get on track to succeed in courses.

Talking Science with Cornelia Dean
At this session led by Cornelia Dean (a science writer, former science editor of The New York Times and author of Am I Making Myself Clear?), participants learned ways to communicate with the public about their research.

Teaching Undergraduate Science Laboratories
Led by Kathleen Hess (Chemistry) and John Stein (Neuroscience), this workshop addressed how to design laboratory courses to enhance science curricula.  Participants discussed the many contexts in which labs are taught, non-traditional labs and developing meaningful assessments for laboratory courses.addressed why science courses need laboratories as part of the core curriculum. Practical strategies were discussed for what types of experiments are appropriate for undergraduates, how much work is expected of students outside of the lab, and how labs should be graded in the scheme of the whole course.

Visual Learning: Representing Complex Ideas 
This session explored how the visual representation of complex ideas can enhance student learning.  Prof.  Michael Satlow (Religious Studies) presented a case study of his experiences designing and implementing a concept mapping assignment to teach an ancient religious text and led a discussion about the benefits and costs of using visual representations in courses.