Global Learning at LaGuardia
“Global Learning” is one of three new LaGuardia Core Competencies (alongside Inquiry and Problem Solving and Integrative Learning) which are now in mid-implementation. Assessment rubrics for all three competencies have been carefully drafted, redrafted, and vetted. Across the college faculty are designing and revising assignments that will meet the learning dimensions specified in the rubrics.
The importance of Global Learning stems in great measure from LaGuardia’s incredible diversity, its population of students (and faculty) drawn from every part of the world, bringing depths of cultural richness and varying perspectives to everything that happens on our campus. What can we do to capture this richness and use it to enrich the education we offer? Two current initiatives are helping to answer this question.
Beginning last August, LaGuardia joined the most recent cohort of higher education institutions participating in the American Council on Education (ACE) Internationalization Laboratory, a structured 18-month process designed to generate recommendations that will build a comprehensive campuswide strategy for internationalizing a LaGuardia education. Co-led by Dr. Padmini Biswas, CTL’s Associate Director for Global Initiatives, Prof. Tomonori Nagano from the Education and Language Acquisition Department, and CTL Director Dean Howard Wach, the Lab Team of 14 faculty and staff have begun a careful inquiry into current policy and practice. Recommendations will follow this “fact-finding,” with a completion target of early 2017 for the entire project.
Another set of strategies for strengthening global learning was outlined in a National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant proposal LaGuardia submitted in June 2015. If funded (we anticipate finding out in December), the Challenge Grant will enable LaGuardia to establish an endowment dedicated to supporting global learning in humanities disciplines in multiple ways: through international partnerships and study abroad; professional development and support for curriculum, pedagogy, and scholarly research on global themes; co-curricular and experiential learning; and internships or service learning opportunities that leverage New York City’s enormously rich global presence.
In Fall 2015, the Center for Teaching and Learning launched a faculty seminar focused on global learning at LaGuardia co-led by Associate Professor Karen Miller and Associate Professor Christopher Schmidt. The seminar engages theoretical frameworks for global learning and provides a scholarly forum for assignment creation and revision. In addition, global learning initiatives frame interdisciplinary campus-wide events such as an author talk on “Coolie Woman” by Gaiutra Bahadur, attended by LaGuardia faculty, students, and staff.
Stay tuned for updates on these exciting global learning initiatives!