Working Together

Professor of Social Sciences Jay Corrin (left), Senior Lecturer Christopher Coffman (right), and their fellow faculty team members are collaborating on assignments for the Delmas Foundation grant. Photo by Alisa Harris

The College of General Studies has been awarded two grants that help faculty to assess student learning and collaborate across disciplines. The first, a $2,500 assessment grant from BU’s Office of the Provost—matched by CGS and the Center for Interdisciplinary Teaching & Learning (CITL)—supports faculty who incorporate quantitative reasoning into their teaching. Megan Sullivan, associate dean for faculty research & development and director of CITL, says that CGS’ own assessments had shown students needed more quantitative reasoning training. Under the grant, faculty from the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences attended a workshop to help them develop assignments that teach quantitative reasoning; they will also assess the results of any changes they make.

The second grant, $10,000 from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, encourages faculty to develop interdisciplinary projects. Christopher Coffman, a senior lecturer in the humanities department, gives the example of a fall semester paper that asked students to draw from both humanities and social sciences readings as they performed a rhetorical analysis of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.

The goal of both grants is to glean insights that all faculty can use, says Sullivan. “I think faculty are excited about really being able to put the time into something they believe in, which is collaborative and interdisciplinary teaching.”

–Alisa Harris