The current situation
Currently, our members are on the cusp of transformative change that moves beyond their individual courses. These faculty have faced the difficult task of critically analyzing the learning experience in their own classroom and made changes that have lead to moving their students into activities that promote higher-order thinking skills. This analysis has naturally led to wanting to see these experiences reinforced in classrooms across the curriculum, which would require a sea change in the faculty as a whole as well as a renewed analysis of the curriculum. We have seen this realized by several disciplines (math, sociology, chemistry) reviewing their program curricular goals and assessing the ability of their courses to bring students to the realization of those goals.
The outcomes for our proposed course series have two distinct audiences (1) the students and (2) the instructors. In many ways the nature of the outcomes for both groups are identical; to take ownership and responsibility for their own learning. As IC-bG evolved we have seen the growth of faculty and instructors come from the realization that they are supported and encouraged to make changes in their own teaching that will lead to the global changes across the institution.
In order to bring students and faculty to realizing the goal of their own learning and professional development, we propose to build a series of two courses that use Eagan’s theory of imaginative learning to develop imaginatively engaged learners by providing them with the context for understanding the importance of flexibility and imagination in learning. The course will use theory and real-world examples to emphasize the value and benefit of imagination and flexibility in critical thinking. The course will be team taught by several faculty from a variety of disciplines, which will allow each individual to bring their own unique perspective on imagination informed by their disciplinary perspective as well as how interdisciplinary factors into problem-solving and analysis.