Using Mixed Media and Meeting Students Halfway are Keys to Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking, Presented at Conference by Consortium at Berkeley College

 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2016
Contact: Ilene Greenfield
Director of Media Relations
973-278-5400, ext. 1-5122
igl@BerkeleyCollege.edu
 

USING MIXED MEDIA AND MEETING STUDENTS HALFWAY ARE KEYS
TO CRITICAL READING, WRITING AND THINKING,
PRESENTED AT CONFERENCE BY CONSORTIUM AT BERKELEY COLLEGE 

Berkeley Conference

 

Photo Caption A:   Keynote Speaker Derek Owens, PhD, Professor of English and Director of the Institute for Writing Studies at St. John’s University in New York addresses educators at the 4th Annual Conference of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking (CCRWT) at Berkeley College.  His address, “Transdisciplinarity,” acknowledged how multimedia must be used for students to express what matters to them.

 

Educators from more than a dozen U.S. colleges met at Berkeley College in Midtown Manhattan on October 28, 2016, for the 4th Annual Conference of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing, and Thinking (CCRWT). This year’s theme was “Embracing Innovation: Transcending Tradition in 21st Century Higher Education.”

The 2016 Keynote Speaker was Derek Owens, PhD, Professor of English and Director for Writing Studies at St. John’s University in New York.  His address, Transdisciplinarity, discussed how faculty members must move beyond the traditional boundaries of their respective disciplines to empower students to express what matters to them. Delineating terms, such as interdisciplinary or cross-disciplinary – which are used interchangeably – Dr. Owens ultimately referred to his transdisciplinarity as “mongrel disciplinary.” 

“We have to become more comfortable moving outside of our disciplines,” Dr. Owens said. “That specifically means meeting my students in my courses at least half way, honoring their subjects.  Mongrel pedagogy practice is receptive to unexpected voices and thoughts when we create that type of trusted space.”

Berkeley Conference

Photo Caption B: In the session titled, “Social Justice through Critical Thinking Pedagogy” at the 2016 conference of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking, Judit Torok, PhD, Director, Berkeley College Teaching Learning and Learning Commons, presented a workshop titled, “Pedagogies for Social Change” with Taylor Nelson of SolutionsU, a platform that immerses students and educators in a universe of responses to social problems.

Workshop topics varied, including subjects such as: When ‘Grammar’ Intervention Really Isn’t about Grammar;Collaborative Strategies to Help Students Overcome Library Anxiety; What Emotion Can Teach Us; The Implications of Student Cultural Identity in Curriculum Design; Making Management Theory Occupationally Relevant to MBA Students: The Berkeley College Practicum Experience; Teaching What You Can’t Possibly Know; Transcending Linguistic and Cultural Barriers: Innovative Pedagogies for Non-Traditional Students; and Virtual Discussion Boards for the Non-Virtual Classroom.

In the session on Social Justice and Critical Thinking Pedagogy, Judit Torok, PhD, Director, Berkeley College Teaching and Learning Commons, presented a workshop titled “Pedagogies for Social Change” with Taylor Nelson of SolutionsU, a platform that immerses students and educators in a universe of responses to socialproblems.  The session introduced the new Story Tracker database from the Solution Journalism Network and gave examples of how to incorporate those resources into a Critical Thinking course. During the session, the audience identified what social issues or problems they cared about, and they were shown articles from the database that proposed creative solutions to those social problems. 

James Leftwich and William McNelis, Berkeley College Library Directors in New York City and White Plains, NY, respectively, presented their research on “Collaborative Strategies to Help Students Overcome Library Anxiety.”  According to references they presented, students who use the library and other academic services have higher grade-point averages and higher college retention rates. 

 Berkeley Conference

Photo Caption C: Michael Jacobs, DA, Co-chair, English, Berkeley College School of Liberal Arts, and founding Director of the Consortium for Critical Reading, Writing and Thinking, welcomed participants and introduced Keynote Speaker Derek Owens, PhD, Professor of English and Director of the Institute for Writing Studies at St. John’s University in New York.

“Innovative, cross-disciplinary education—in the name of improved student learning—is why the Consortium began more than four years ago,” said Michael Jacobs, DA, Co-chair, English, Berkeley College School of Liberal Arts, and founding Director of CCRWT. “These dedicated teacher-scholars attended because they firmly believe that effective reading, writing, and critical thinking education is the purview of the entire academy, not just the liberal arts.” 

Conference committee members included faculty from Berkeley College, Iona College, Queensborough Community College and Sacred Heart University. Conference presenters included faculty from the institutions mentioned above, plus those from Ball State University, Colorado Technical University, Columbia University Teachers College, Elizabeth City State University, New York City College of Technology, SolutionsU, St. Johns University, Suffolk Community College, SUNY Albany, Texas Women’s University, University of New Haven, West Chester University and West Virginia State University. 

A leader in providing career-focused education since 1931, Berkeley College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and enrolls more than 8,000 students – including more than 600 international students – in its Master, Baccalaureate, and Associate degree and Certificate programs. Students can study in more than 20 career fields. Berkeley College is comprised of the Larry L. Luing School of Business®, the School of Professional Studies, the School of Health Studies and the School of Liberal Arts. The School of Graduate Studies offers a Master of Business Administration degree in Management online and in Woodland Park, NJ. 

Berkeley College has three New York campuses – Midtown Manhattan, Brooklyn and White Plains. In New Jersey there are five campuses – Dover, Newark, Paramus, Woodbridge and Woodland Park. Berkeley College Online® serves a global population. In 2016, U.S. News & World Report named Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Programs and among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Veterans, both for the third consecutive year. The website address is www.BerkeleyCollege.edu

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To see high resolution images of the above photos go to:
Photo A: http://berkeleycollege.edu/press_release_images/DSCN3106.JPG
Photo B: http://berkeleycollege.edu/press_release_images/DSCN3137.JPG
Photo C: http://berkeleycollege.edu/press_release_images/Michael_Jacobs.jpg

 

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