Faculty Reading Groups

2021 Fall Reading Groups

This semester, CAT is offering the following fully online faculty reading groups. Each group will meet once a week for three weeks on Zoom to discuss the books in sections. Two books will be available electronically, so it will be possible to participate from anywhere. We hope you can join us! Please register here.

Bandwidth Recovery: Helping Students Reclaim Cognitive Resources Lost to Poverty, Racism, and Social Marginalization

Wednesdays: 9/22, 9/29, 10/6; 2:00–3:30 p.m. on Zoom | print book
Cia Verschelden explains that more than half of our students may be operating with reduced cognitive “bandwidth”: the cognitive resources they need for higher-order thinking and deep learning are tapped because they’re coping with more immediate threats like food insecurity, social marginalization, or disruptive events. The book offers strategies for creating inclusive classroom environments where all students have the opportunity to learn. (If you’re concerned about students in need on our campus, you can also send donations to the food pantry here.)

What the Best College Teachers Do

Fridays: 9/24, 10/1, 10/8; 10:30 a.m.–12:00 p.m. on Zoom | ebook
Ken Bain wanted to know how some faculty make a sustained, substantial, and positive influence on how their students think, act, and feel. How do some consistently provoke deep learning, while others merely have good intentions? Bain conducted a fifteen-year study of a hundred extraordinarily effective teachers to see how they help their students learn. The book traces how these exceptional faculty approach their subjects, their students, and the process of learning.

Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning

Thursdays: 10/14, 10/21, 10/28; 2:30–4:00 p.m. on Zoom | ebook
How do I get my students’ attention? How do I help them to go deeper, to make connections, and to feel empowered by their own learning? James Lang’s book explores the science of learning and shares with us small changes we can make that will have a powerful influence on our students’ learning. Join us as we discuss a variety of practical tools and techniques that can help us answer these and other teaching questions.

What Universities Can Be: A New Model for Preparing Students for Active Concerned Citizenship and Ethical Leadership

Wednesdays: 10/20, 10/27, 11/3; 2:00–3:30 p.m. on Zoom | print book
Robert Sternberg thinks that universities can do a better job teaching things like wisdom, compassion, creativity, and practical thinking. If we’re preparing students to be leaders for the future, they’ll need all of these skills, and opportunities to practice making ethical decisions. This group will discuss strategies for realizing Sternberg’s ideas in our own classrooms.


Looking for great books about college teaching? You can explore our archive of past reading group selections here.