Creating Learning Communities: A Practical Guide to Winning Support, Organizing for Change, and Implementing Programs
September 1999, Jossey-Bass
--Arthur Levine, president, Teachers College, Columbia University
"Shapiro and Levine convince us that learning communities address what we now know about how students learn inside and outside the classroom. Read this book for conceptual rationale, practical answers to implementation questions, and passionate voices that speak for a social contract among students, faculty members, and institutions, a contract enacted and assessed for the benefit of all."
--Barbara L. Cambridge, director, Teaching Initiatives, American Association for Higher Education
In recent years, learning communities--a curricular innovation that integrates different facets of the undergraduate experience to enhance and enrich learning--have become the most promising new strategy for promoting student success and satisfaction in college. Now campus professionals have a practical, insightful guide to the essentials of this timely and rewarding new program area, including how to design, fund, staff, manage, and integrate learning communities into different campuses. Drawing from their own experience as well as from experiences of campuses around the country, Nancy S. Shapiro and Jodi H. Levine present a pragmatic blueprint for creating a learning community that can be adapted to almost any campus culture--including specific guidance ranging from who should be placed on planning committees to samples of syllabi for interdisciplinary courses, sample clusters of classes, monthly activity calendars, lists of competencies and expected student outcomes, and other operational program models.
Types and Models of Learning Communities.
Creating a Campus Culture for Learning Communities.
Developing the Curricula.
Recasting Faculty Roles and Rewards.
Building Administrative Partnerships.
Putting Administrative Structures in Place.
Evaluating and Assessing Learning Communities.
How Learning Communities Affect Students, Faculty, and the Institution.
Concluding Advice and Reflections on Creating Learning Communities.
Appendix: Learning Communities Contacts.
JODI H. LEVINE is director of First-Year Programs at Temple University and teaches in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.