Launch of Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative

From Dr. Jean Morrison, University Provost and Chief Academic Officer

I am pleased to announce the launch of the Boston University Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative, a University-wide effort with the ultimate goal of improving learning and educational outcomes for all of our students. Research shows that when educators implement inclusive pedagogy – that is, pedagogy that accounts for and incorporates diverse strengths within a learning space – students feel a greater sense of belonging, utilize diverse learning styles, and exhibit greater rates of retention.

During the development of the 2030 Strategic Plan, inclusive pedagogy was identified as a key area of focus. I tasked a working group with developing a detailed set of recommendations for advancing inclusive pedagogy at Boston University, and they delivered their report to me on September 16, 2021. I want to thank all of the members of the inclusive pedagogy working group, listed below, for their thoughtful and thorough work in developing this initiative that is now coming to fruition.

Individuals and departments across BU have been working in this area for years, including efforts by the medical school’s curriculum committee, trainings and resources provided by the Center for Teaching & Learning, and a variety of projects within specific academic departments. The Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative will connect related efforts across the University, expand and deepen faculty training opportunities and resources, and establish a shared body of knowledge and an expectation for inclusive pedagogy as a standard feature of effective teaching.

The Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative will be housed within the Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) and Megan Sullivan, assistant provost for academic assessment ad interim and associate professor of rhetoric in the College of General Studies, will serve as the faculty director for inclusive pedagogy. Megan co-chaired the inclusive pedagogy working group and has a long history of dedicated work in this realm. She will partner closely with a variety of important stakeholders, including other CTL staff and leaders within the schools and colleges, and plans to form an advisory group to help guide the initiative going forward.

Early projects to advance the Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative will be announced shortly. CTL, the College of Arts & Sciences’ Diversity & Inclusion Action Team, and members of the Inclusive Pedagogy Working Group are currently planning a 2022 summer institute focused on inclusive pedagogy. This inaugural institute aims to create a unique opportunity for those seeking insights on innovative course design, classroom techniques, and departmental engagement practices that create inclusive, and supportive learning environments. Additionally, the new Shipley Center for Digital Learning & Innovation will seek proposals that advance inclusive pedagogy through technology-enabled educational innovation experiments and interventions.

As Boston University continues its efforts to be a more diverse institution, it is vital that we ensure that we are also becoming more inclusive – especially in our core mission of education. I am grateful to all of you who have contributed to our success in this area so far and look forward to even more progress through the organized efforts of the Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative.

Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative Working Group

Karin Hendricks, Associate Professor and Chair of Music Education, College of Fine Arts

Megan Sullivan, Assistant Provost for Academic Assessment ad interim; Associate Professor of Rhetoric, College of General Studies

Crystal Williams, former Vice President and Associate Provost for Community & Inclusion

Dawn Belkin Martinez, Clinical Associate Professor; Associate Dean, Equity & Inclusion, School of Social Work

Jacy Bird, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science & Engineering, College of Engineering

Deborah Breen, Director, Center for Teaching & Learning

David Carballo, Assistant Provost for General Education; Professor of Archaeology, Anthropology, and Latin American Studies, College of Arts & Sciences

Fadie Coleman, Assistant Professor of Medical Sciences & Education, School of Medicine

Karin Firoza, Associate Provost ad interim for Community & Inclusion

Robinson (Wally) Fulweiler, Professor of Biology and Earth & Environment, College of Arts & Sciences

Sue Kennedy, Associate Provost for Special Projects & Emerging Priorities

Shamaila Khan, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, School of Medicine

Daniel Kleinman, Associate Provost for Graduate Affairs

Sarah Madsen Hardy, Master Lecturer; Associate Director, Writing Program, College of Arts & Sciences

Sayyid (Hamid) Nawab, Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering and Biomedical Engineering, College of Engineering

Jean Otsuki, Associate Director, Center for Teaching & Learning

Ann Tobey, Clinical Assistant Professor, Wheelock College of Education & Human Development

Launch of Inclusive Pedagogy Initiative – 2.3.22