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Inclusive Pedagogy

The ND Learning team is committed to supporting your development of equitable teaching practices in order to serve students of all backgrounds and abilities.

“Teaching inclusively means embracing student diversity in all forms — race, ethnicity, gender, disability, socioeconomic background, ideology, even personality traits like introversion — as an asset. It means designing and teaching courses in ways that foster talent in all students, but especially those who come from groups traditionally underrepresented in higher education” (Hogan and Sathy 2021).

Inclusive teaching moves beyond the specific content we deliver to students (readings, assignment descriptions, research, etc.) to also address our pedagogical practices more broadly. How can we interact with our students in equitable ways? How do we organize the classroom space to make it more democratic and accessible? Which student identities are prioritized and/or marginalized through the classroom activities we select? Inclusive pedagogy asks us to continually reflect upon our teaching practices in order to support learners from all backgrounds. Research shows that when we do so, black, indigenous, and students of color can experience improved cognitive development and self-confidence in the classroom (Chang et al., 2016). Inclusive pedagogy also extends beyond the classroom because students who experience cross-racial dialogues and diversity initiatives during college are more likely to be open to and accepting of diversity in their post-university lives (Shim & Perez, 2018).

We offer a range of programming and resources to help faculty, staff, and other campus partners generate inclusive learning experiences. 

Inclusive Pedagogy Partnership

In 2022, Notre Dame Learning | Kaneb Center for Teaching Excellence instituted the Inclusive Pedagogy Partnership, a program designed to help faculty members create inclusive classrooms and foster a sense of belonging in all of their students, but especially underrepresented and historically minoritized students. This partnership pairs faculty members teaching undergraduate courses with trained undergraduate students from across the university for one semester. Student consultants attend class sessions and share their observations and experiences with their faculty partner to develop more inclusive pedagogical practices. Though students are not content-area experts, the partnership values their expertise as Notre Dame students.

Faculty-Student partnerships are not focused on evaluating teaching. Instead, the focus is on improving the teaching and learning experience using evidence-based practices. Partnerships allow students and faculty to connect and collaborate outside of traditional educational hierarchies in ways that benefit them both, including:

  • elevating student perspectives on teaching and learning;
  • obtaining a fresh perspective on classroom practices;
  • developing clarity and confidence about pedagogical decisions;
  • promoting student engagement;
  • and fostering a stronger sense of community and belonging for faculty and students.

Consultations and Workshops

We also offer a variety of ways to engage with inclusive pedagogy including workshops, individual teaching consultations, reading groups, and programmatic DEI assessments for specific departments. We can help you explore and address DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) topics such as:

  • Inclusive curriculum design and syllabus development
  • Creating equitable assessments, assignment descriptions, discussions, and more
  • Crafting an effective diversity statement
  • Implementing anti-racist teaching practices
  • Facilitating difficult conversations that may arise from course content, group dynamics, or other classroom scenarios
  • Responding to microaggressions
  • Addressing challenging instructor/student interactions

We can also develop customized workshops on DEI topics that are of interest to your specific discipline, department, or academic program. The goal of these targeted workshops is to combine conceptual knowledge of DEI issues with practical, skills-based exercises and resources. If you would like to commission a new or existing workshop for your academic unit, please contact us at