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Past Events

Minor Requirement at Hunter:  April 2009

During the fall of 2008, the general education reform committee conducted an in-depth analysis of the Minor Requirement at Hunter, and developed a set of recommendations which were widely circulated and discussed among the faculty, students and advising services:

  • A minor is made optional for BA students.
  • The courses needed to fulfill a minor—the minor course of study—are determined by the department or program that offers the minor, or in the case of an interdisciplinary minor (e.g., Public Policy) a committee of faculty members.
  • The creation of a minor course of study would be optional for a department or program.

The Hunter College Senate approved these recommendations, which are the first changes to the minor requirement since 1943.

Pluralism and Diversity Discussion:  January 23, 2009

This discussion was attended by the committee and a selection of faculty and administration who have worked with issues of pluralism and diversity. This discussion was part of an ongoing consideration of the Pluralism and Diversity requirements at Hunter College.

New Horizons for Human Rights: A Colloquium on the 60th Anniversary of the Signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: December 10, 2008.

The talk featured: Richard A. Wilson on Human Rights Knowledge – Gladstein Chair of Human Rights, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Human Rights Institute, University of Connecticut; Richard P. Hiskes on Human Rights Education, Professor of Political Science, Minor Director of the Human Rights Institute, University of Connecticut and Mariclaire Acosta on Human Rights Politics – Director, Americas Program of the International Center for Transitional Justice, Former Deputy Secretary for Human Rights and Democracy at the Mexico Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Founding Member and Former President of the Mexican Commission for the Defense and Promotion of Human Rights. Introductory remarks were made by President Jennifer J. Raab.

Pluralism and Diversity with Lani Guinier and Jonnetta Cole: September 24 and 25, 2008

This public conversation and faculty seminar in September 2008 on pluralism and diversity in higher education, with Lani Guinier, the first African American to achieve tenure at Harvard Law School, and Dr. Jonnetta Cole, the first African American woman to become president of Spellman College was moderated by Prof. Jacqueline Brown of the Department of Anthropology. Over 400 faculty, students, and community members attended the event.  The following morning, Guinier and Cole participated in a discussion session with some 60 Hunter faculty and students.

Summer Summit on General Education: June 26 and 27, 2008

A gathering of faculty to discuss specific curricular issues took place on Thursday and Friday, June 26 and 27. The agenda and background materials from this meeting are posted on BlackBoard. Invitations were extended to approximately 80 faculty who have been attending Mellon Project meetings and have expressed interest in the relevant areas of discussion.

Technology Across the Curriculum: May 14, 2008

Topics included: 1) how the curriculum should create opportunities for students to think critically about technologies in their social, cultural, and political dimensions (curricular content issue); 2) exploration of the ways in which the curriculum might integrate experiences with new media, particularly in ways that make visible the cognitive processes and capabilities we are trying to help students cultivate, and which we as educators, researchers, and critical inquirers want to understand better ourselves (curricular content and pedagogical issue); and 3) technological training and "information literacy" (databases, search processes, specific technological skills).

Quantitative Reasoning Across the Curriculum: April 15, 2008

Panelists included: Manfred Kuechler (Sociology); Cullen Schaffer (Computer Science); Ezra Shahn (Biology); Rob Thompson (Math); Jason Young (Psychology)

Civic Understanding: Panel Discussion and Open Forum: April 9, 2008 

Panelists included: Anthony Browne, Africana and Puerto Rican Studies; Omar Dahbour, Philosophy; Helena Rosenblatt, History; Joan Tronto, Political Science; Andrew Polsky, Political Science; and John Wallach, Political Science.

March 27, 2008: Captive Audiences: The Arts in General Education 

A panel discussion on the arts in general education, including consideration of the benefits of engaging in performance and how performance might provide the basis for other learning, the relationship between performance and creativity, a broad definition of performance, and whether a curricular requirement in performance could accommodate a greater variety of arts courses.

March 19, 2008: Devising a Hunter Education for Multiple Points of Entry 

A panel discussion about devising a general education program that focuses on the needs of students regardless of point of entry, including including Rebecca Connor, English; Case Willoughby, Director of Advising Services; Jerrell Robinson, Student Activities; Scott Stursa, Transfer Advising; Robert Cowan, Coordinator, Block Program and Co-Coordinator First Year Program; Linda Carlson, Special Assistant to the President.

December 3, 2007: "General Education in the 21st Century "

  • Speaker: Bobbi Owen, Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education, Professor of Dramatic Art, College of Arts and Sciences, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Presentation: "The Process of General Education Reform"
  • Discussion: "Supporting and Implementing General Education"
  • Links: UNC Curricula, UNC biography of Bobbi Owen
  • Listen to the Podcast 

November, 2007: Workshop on "What Makes Good Writing?"

Leader: Shirley Clay Scott, Dean of Arts and Sciences, Hunter College

November, 2007: "What Every Hunter Graduate Should Know"

Faculty-wide discussion

October 31, 2007: Map of Knowledge

  • Speaker: Alan Hausman
  • Focus: How the course, Humanities 110: Map of Knowledge, in its present form, came into being, and the academic principles that guide it. Two important parts of the presentation will be concerned with the writing component of the course and the mentoring of TAs and Writing Fellows. Dr. Roblin Meeks of Princeton University, a former teaching assistant for the course, will discuss its influence on his career. Ms. Inna Goldberg, a graduate of the Thomas Hunter Honors Program, now a teaching assistant for the class and an adviser at the Reading Writing Center, will discuss her experiences in both capacities with HUM 110. Ms. Jessica Watson, a Mellon Fellow and student in the Thomas Hunter Honors Program, will discuss her experience as a student in the course. A question and answer period will follow.
  • Listen to the Podcast

October 23, 2007: Innovative Approaches to Instruction in Writing and the Humanities: Two Programs led by Gerald Graff

  • Presenter: Gerald Graff, Professor of English and of Education, University of Illinois at Chicago and President of the MLA.
  • "Teaching Debate with Templates," with Cathy Birkenstein and Gerald Graff
    Often without realizing it, experienced writers are masters of certain rhetorical conventions or "moves" that underlie all persuasive writing. In this session, Cathy Birkenstein and Gerald Graff suggest that these conventional moves are so commonly made that they can be represented in templates: fill-in-the-blank grids or scaffoldings that student writers can use right away to structure and even generate their ideas. The basic template that Cathy and Gerald Graff will focus on is one that, in their recent textbook,They Say/I Say": The Moves that Matter in Academic Writing(W.W. Norton 2006), they call the "They Say/I Say" move, which helps students engage the arguments 0f others ("they say") in a way that sets up their own claims ("I say").
  • "Looking Back on the Culture War, or the New Improved Teach the Conflicts"
    In the 1980s and 90s Gerald Graff became known for the argument that the best way educational institutions could respond to the increasingly polarized controversies over the canon and the curriculum would be to "teach the conflicts" themselves. In this talk, Graff reviews some of his earlier positions and the culture war climate then and now and offers a revised and corrected version of his former thesis.

September 26, 2007: Program on Science in General Education

  • Darcy Kelley, Professor of Biology and creator of Columbia University's common core science course
  • Donald Stearns, Project Director within Wagner College (SENSOR)
  • Ezra Shahn, Professor of Biology, Hunter College.

May 11, 2007: Launching Event: Introducing Hunter’s Mellon Project

  • Welcome and Introduction: Jennifer J. Raab, President, Hunter CollegeVita C. Rabinowitz, Provost and Professor of Psychology, Hunter CollegePanel: “Demystifying General Education within CUNY and Beyond”.
  • Wendy Katkin, Facilitator, Mellon Project, Hunter College, "National Trends in General Education: Issues and Challenges."
  • Judith Summerfield, University Dean for Undergraduate Education, City University of New York, “Liberal & General Education at CUNY:  Promises and Practices”
  • Francisco Soto, Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Staten Island, "General Education at CSI: Renewal and Assessment."
  • Donald M. Scott, Professor of History and Director, Center for Teaching and Learning, Queens College, "Reforming General Education:  Visions, Proposals, and Politics"
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