The Five College Blended Learning Initiative is pleased to announce two new grant opportunities for 2017-18 (with work to begin this summer), one for experienced “blenders,” another for beginners seeking training:
“Stage 2” projects are for faculty members who have already completed at least one major blended teaching project, and who are ready to expand and/or revise based on lessons learned. Read the call for applications and submit. (Deadlines for application are March 1 and May 15, 2017)
Mini-grants for Training are for faculty members just beginning to explore ways a course (or part of a course) might be blended. Grantees awarded from these grants will be supported to attend one or more “hands on” workshops offered this summer within the Five Colleges or further afield. Read the call for applications and submit. (Deadline for application is March 15.)
Congratulations to the faculty and staff who have received funding through the Five Colleges to develop new courses that use blended approaches – incorporating digital materials and tools into their courses. Michele Hardesty and Alana Kumbier, Lili Kim, Jennifer Bajorek and Karen Koehler, and Uditi Sen.
The funds come from two consortial grants – one from the Mellon Foundation and the other from the Teagle Foundation. You can read about the programs here.
But here are our colleague’s projects:
Beyond the Riot: Zines in Archives and Digital Space
Michele Hardesty (Humanities, Arts, and Cultural Studies, Hampshire College): Beyond the Riot: Zines in Archives and Digital Space will use online, classroom and site-specific learning to engage students with zines as primary sources for exploring feminist, queer, and POC cultural production in the 1990s. As the title suggests, these explorations will include, but go beyond, the well-known history of Riot Grrrl. With a blend of data visualization, digital annotation, DIY videogame creation, and physical zinemaking, students will create transformative means of researching zines and engaging with the contexts of their production. This course will be headquartered at Hampshire and taught by Dr. Michele Hardesty and Dr. Alana Kumbier, but will include multiple sessions and collaborators at other sites. This course will be offered to all Five College students in Fall 2016.
From Sugar Plantation Laborers to “Gangnam Style Consumers: Transnational History of Korean Americans
Lili Kim (Critical Social Inquiry, Hampshire College): The goal of this project is to utilize technology and digital resources to deeply engage students in conducting transnational historical research through identifying, investigating, and interpreting primary source materials that span across time, languages, and continents to produce histories of Koreans in the United States. The emphasis and incorporation of blended learning work will allow students to access a growing number of important digital archives on Korean American history and U.S. history, and to help overcome the logistical stumbling block of not being able to travel to the archives to conduct research. Using selected online tools, this blended learning course will enhance opportunities and access for students to work collaboratively and individually on organizing and analyzing primary sources as well as synthesizing scholarship in the field. Students will ultimately help fill in the gaps in and further our understanding of Korean American history through their collaborative research projects, which will be available and archived online.
Jennifer Bajorek and Karen Koehler (Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies, Hampshire College): Reading Photography will take an innovative approach to teaching the history of photography by integrating the design and creation of online course modules, organized around selected photographs, with a slow teaching approach. The digital modules will be designed to increase student engagement, enhance opportunities for collaboration, and deepen the knowledgebase and resources that students will draw on in their assessed work. By allowing students to cultivate knowledge of historical context outside of class, the modules will actively enlist students in advance preparation, thus freeing up class time and allowing us to focus, during in-class interactions, on the development of mindfulness and critical concentration in looking at, and reading, photographs. Additional outcomes will include skills development in research methods, practice using digital tools to create and research image collections, and the sharing of the online modules to enhance public knowledge.
Uditi Sen (Critical Social Inquiry, Hampshire College): This project seeks to develop a blended learning curriculum that enables students to engage analytically and creatively with the memories of refugees in India and Pakistan. These are Hindu and Muslim refugees who often witnessed, and fled from, genocidal ethnic violence that accompanied the partition of British India into India and Pakistan. Their reminiscences, preserved as audio and video files in several online archives and blogs, offer a unique perspective, ‘from below’, of the partition of India, which is arguably the most formative event in South Asian History. They also encourage students to explore broad questions of universal relevance: how do refugees negotiate displacement? What impact does violence and trauma have upon identities? How does memory and identity interact in the telling of life stories? Oral history testimonies have often been describes as the ‘voices of the past’. However, since these testimonies are collected from refugees who not only inhabited a different time, but also a different place and culture, learning to ‘hear’ this voices is a challenge that requires not just careful study, but also creativity, analytical dexterity and empathy. It is here that traditional face to face learning in a classroom falls short of achieving the desired connection between the recorded, often disembodied voice, and the student who is set the task of hearing, analysing and understanding the narrative, in its full complexity. This project aims to develop a hybrid curriculum, entitled Refugees, Memory and History: Hearing and Interpreting Partition Voices, which blends together face to face or readings and lecture-based pedagogy with online resources and learning.
The chief goals achieves by this project will be to overcome student hesitation in creatively engaging with voices from a foreign context, to ensure collaborative learning while students work on their independent projects and to create a course website that maps the learning process and showcases the work of students. The key texts of this course, the interviews, are available in online archives. This project will also blend classroom teaching, that includes lecture, small group discussions and workshops, with online learning using wordcloud, voicethread and blogposts.
Faculty Development grants are supported by several awards from foundations and individual donors and may be used to support the production of scholarship and art, and curriculum development during the academic year. There is a call for Hampshire faculty – look for the proposal application in your email from 4/18
Call for participation (.doc) in a faculty seminar next year (2015-2016) as part of the Five College/Mellon Bridging Grant in the Public Humanities.
Are you using archives, museum collections, or other kinds of public humanities resources in your teaching–either current or proposed courses? If so, join this keenly interdisciplinary group of scholars who are doing the same.
This is open to all tenured, tenure track, and contract employees with on-going appointments. Participating Fellows receive a stipend of $2000 for joining us for eight sessions over the next academic year.
For more information, contact Karen Koehler (Seminar Coordinator)
Professor of Architectural and Art History, Hampshire College
Director, Institute for Curatorial Practice
e for the 2015-2016 Five College Blended Learning grant cycle. There are two separate blended learning grants:
1. Mellon Foundation: 8-10 projects per year, approximately $13,000 per grant for one year, for a blended course in the humanities or humanistic social sciences (multicampus collaboration is possible, but not required);
2. Teagle Foundation: 2-3 projects per year, approximately $15,000-25,000 per grant for one year, for a blended course in any area by a team of faculty members from at least two different Five College institutions.
For more information and application materials, go to https://www.fivecolleges.edu/blended, or contact Rogelio Miñana, Faculty Director of the Five College Blended Learning Program (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Nate Therien, Five College Director of Academic Programs (email@example.com).
This spring semester marks the start of a new course that explores the enduring question, “What is Art?” The course will be taught by Dr. Karen Koehler, professor of architectural and art history, with support from a $22,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Organized around five concepts (Origins, Authenticity, Spirituality and Transcendence, Mimesis, and Commitment), this course will use selected texts in philosophy alongside literature, film, visual art and performance to probe a series of sub-questions, such as:
What is creative expression?
What is artistic authenticity?
What makes art transcendent?
How do artists see themselves?
What is political art?
The course features a film series component, including two films at Amherst Cinema, and a trip to New York City to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art. A final digital exhibition culminates the course, where students will explore an object of their choice that raises an enduring question about art.
After a five-minute Google search for “grant writing cartoons,” it became very clear that applying for grants gets a bad rap. It’s true—grant writing can be an arduous, tedious process, in which you can put forth tremendous effort with potentially little return. Writing a grant proposal is very much like preparing for a big life event (a wedding, a major trip, or having a child). You plan. You stress. You dedicate tremendous time to make sure everything is perfect. And then your great aunt complains that her piece of the wedding cake was stale. Or your friend looks at the photos from your trip to Europe and tells you that his trip to Europe took a more original, “off the beaten path” approach. All your planning and care seems to fly out the window and what you’re left with is dismay and disappointment.
And you know what? It can hurt. Hearing that your proposal was not selected for funding can be a real drag, but it can also present you with a learning opportunity. We’ve been told by many Hampshire faculty who are new to grant seeking that they don’t “get grant writing” and that it seems like “some sort of mystical thing that doesn’t make sense” to them. Good news: Grant writing doesn’t have to be nebulous.
One of the best ways to learn why certain grants get funded is to serve on a grants review panel. There are many government agencies who are constantly looking for peer reviewers (and most pay a stipend!) for grant applications. In turn, you get the chance to see how grant proposals are evaluated, giving you key insights into approaches to your own proposal writing. Being a peer reviewer on a grants panel is also a great addition to your CV!
The National Science Foundation is always looking for Volunteer Peer Reviewers, who will not only gain direct knowledge about the NSF peer review process, but also meet colleagues and NSF program officers managing programs related to their interest. Please keep in mind that NSF includes the social sciences. http://nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/merit_review/reviewer.jsp