It is a global pandemic, of course, and educators across nations are being newly assigned to online instruction. They face similar challenges in getting started and similarly benefit from seeing concrete pedagogical models that are effective in online and remote learning.
The educator-founders of Equity Unbound, Maha Bali, of the American University in Cairo, Egypt; Catherine Cronin of the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching & Learning in Higher Education in Ireland; and Mia Zamora, director of the Kean University Writing Project; saw the need to assist their fellow faculty in practices for equity-focused open learning. Working with another colleague, Autumm Caines of the University of Michigan, Dearborn, Maha and Mia began curating and adapting a rich collection of activities and models for creating community and fostering learning in open online environments. Autumm’s concept of “intentionally equitable hospitality,” a concept developed in an effort called Virtually Connecting, seemed to nicely frame their collection of activities. With support from OneHE, they have published the initial (and growing) collection at OneHE: Community Building Activities.
In this CoLab, they introduce us to the collection and provide advice for creating strong learning communities in online settings.
Resources mentioned in the CoLab:
- OneHE Community Building Activities
- Equity Unbound main site
- Virtually Connecting
- Liberating Structures
- Bali, Maha, & Greg Curran (2018). Complicating diversity and inclusion with Maha Bali. Pushing the Edge podcast. [also Unpacking terms around equity, power and privilege blog post by Maha Bali, referred to in podcast]