Community engagement nudges students to bring their “A” game for the right reason: There is somebody real on the other end depending on them.
About the Fellow
- Senior Lecturer, Department of Global Development, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
- Bryan Duff’s faculty profile
- 2018-19, Faculty Fellow in Engaged Scholarship
- 2013, Faculty Fellow
Arts, Communication, Media and Design; Children, Youth, Seniors and Families; Education
Being challenged to meet real-world expectations can propel the academic and personal growth of students of any age, but that experience can be hard to replicate with familiar classroom instructors. Together with local teachers, Bryan Duff is developing two workshops for educators on the role of engaged learning experiences as a beneficial “reality check” to youth and their college-age mentors alike. Drawing on Duff’s five years of leading engaged learning experiences, the workshops will show how the “reality check” of community engagement can refine the world view of college students and challenge and support the growth of youth with disabilities and public school students.
Bryan re-designed the fieldwork for EDUC 4040 (Engaging Students in Learning). Rather than observing and providing assistance in local classrooms, his students now plan and run an afterschool program at nearby DeWitt Middle School. The result for his students: authentic experience with planning, teaching and reflecting. The results for the middle school kids: a team-produced short story with illustrations and a creative performance or product made within budgetary and other parameters.
“The Faculty Fellows program offered technical support from folks with lots of experience in service learning, as well as inspiration from other teachers on campus who are reinvigorating their professional practice.”
- Students in EDUC 4040 study principles of learning and motivation and then put these principles to work to design a mini-course on story-telling and a small set of elective mini-courses for the afterschool program
- Students work in pairs when they are actually teaching, and they reflect in writing immediately after each episode
- Class time is spent de-briefing, de-bugging, and relating students’ experiences to the principles and research-based strategies that students read about
In the News
Project designs success for local elementary students (May 1, 2019, Cornell Chronicle)
Nearly A Decade After Department’s Demise, Education Minor Continues to Offer Students a Path to the Front of the Classroom (April 30, 2019, Cornell Daily Sun)
“Yep, it’s Worth the Drive” (February 2019, Rural Schools Association of New York)
Engaged learning class enables teaching in the trenches (December 6, 2013, Cornell Chronicle)
Engaged Cornell Grants
Engaged Opportunity Grant: Educational Psychology for Youth Development
Engaged Opportunity Grant: Making Films, Friends and Futures
Engaged Faculty Fellowship Program
A yearlong cohort program in which faculty dive deep into the theory and practice of community-engaged learning; meet monthly to discuss readings, share projects and workshop challenges; and help transform what it means to teach at Cornell