Funded by the 1440 Foundation and Mind & Life Institute, the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society is pleased to announce the Contemplative Mind Teaching and Learning Center Grants to foster and support the use of contemplative practices throughout the curriculum.
Background and Vision
Over the past few years, the Center has established strong relationships with Teaching and Learning Centers (TLCs) throughout the country. Teaching and Learning Centers exist within colleges and universities and work to improve teaching by providing faculty with training and resources. TLCs may also be referred to by other names, such as “faculty development centers,” “centers for teaching and learning,” or “centers for teaching excellence.”
Working with Teaching and Learning Centers is a highly effective means to reach right across the curriculum and work with professionals who are committed to teaching excellence. TLCs have legitimacy on campuses and can easily reach hundreds of instructors across all types of instruction and disciplines. In addition, these centers are ideally situated to collect and assess the outcomes of the implementation of contemplative pedagogies, an area that is currently underdeveloped.
In the Fall of 2011, the Center sponsored an event at Amherst College with the leadership of the Professional and Organizational Development Network in Higher Education (POD) and a number of directors of TLCs. It was a very successful and exciting meeting, and we realized the powerful potential of working more closely with TLCs. In 2012, we gave two presentations at the POD conference in Atlanta–the annual conference of TLC professionals–and an article, co-written by Daniel Barbezat and Allison Pingree, was released in the annual POD publication, To Improve the Academy (Jossey-Bass).
In 2013, we established our Contemplative Mind Teaching and Learning Grants, which provided $5000 seed grants to six institutions (Elon University, University of Virginia, Xavier University of Louisiana, Bridgewater State University, University of North Carolina at Asheville, and Montclair State University) as well as supplemental funding to support visiting speakers on contemplative pedagogy at six institutions. In 2014, with funding from the 1440 Foundation and the Mind & Life Institute, TLC and speaker grants were provided to ten institutions.
Our intention is that these grants will provide resources to TLCs to support and develop groups and courses to extend the use of contemplative practices throughout their institutions and assess their impacts.
The Center has provided two types of support:
The Contemplative Pedagogy and Teaching and Learning Grants are open to Teaching and Learning Centers that 1) have Directors and/or staff who are members of the ACMHE and 2) who have attended an event organized by the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society (such as a Summer Session on Contemplative Pedagogy, ACMHE Conference or Retreat for Educators) or have already invited speakers to address them and faculty on contemplative pedagogy.
Grants were awarded through a competitive application, review and selection process by the review committee. Applications that satisfied the requirement above were reviewed and selected based on four criteria: 1) potential for current and future impact, 2) feasibility, 3) innovation/originality, and 4) the strength of the assessment plan.
The Invited Speaker Grants offer funds to subsidize the costs of Center approved invited speakers on contemplative pedagogy. This program may be of particular benefit to TLCs which do not qualify for the Contemplative Pedagogy and Teaching and Learning Grants.
Barbezat, Daniel & Pingree, Allison. (2012). Contemplative Pedagogy: The Special Role of Teaching and Learning Centers.” In James E. Groccia and Laura Cruz (Eds.), To Improve the Academy, 31, 177-191. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
2014 Review Committee
Professor of Economics,
Assistant Professor of English,
The Community College of Baltimore County
Roy Carroll Professor of Honors Arts and Sciences,
University of North Carolina at Asheville
Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, The University of Texas at San Antonio
The 2014 Awardees
The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society is very pleased to announce the 2014 recipients of its Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) Grants and Invited Speaker Grants. We would like to thank you, our community, for your efforts in bringing contemplative methods and practices into your centers for teaching and learning, where faculty from all disciplines can convene and access training and resources to enrich their teaching. We would also like to extend our deep gratitude to the 1440 Foundation and the Mind & Life Institute for providing funding to make this grant program possible.
The grant review committee and the Center received a large number of promising proposals from teaching and learning centers at colleges and universities across the country and abroad, which made for a challenging selection process.
This year’s grant awards span a variety of types of institutions, communities, and contemplative pedagogy programs at different stages of implementation, including: a collaborative program between a TLC and a community service-learning office, a mindful teaching and learning program at a community college, and a plan to integrate contemplative pedagogy into formalized learning outcomes at a 2-year college. We look forward to hearing more about the progress and outcomes of these programs.
The 2013 Awardees
Engaged working groups, speakers’ series, and attendance at our events all have stimulated far greater depth and breath of contemplative approaches at each of the institutions. We believe that these changes will continue to bear fruit over the next few years, producing multiplicative effects going forward.
Highlights of 2013 TLC Grant Projects
- 5 faculty groups (28 members total) were formed with the intention of incorporating contemplative practice and thought into curriculum and personal practice, and have continued their discussions and activities in the 2013-2014 academic year.
- 11 faculty members were able to attend summer institutes, conferences, or retreats on contemplative pedagogy.
- 2 online resource databases were created and made available to all staff and faculty, containing ideas for contemplative practices in the classroom, reflections on experiences, and reading lists.
- 4 workshops, seminars, and speaker events were held in the Fall 2013 semester, with more planned for Spring 2014.
- 8 contemplative pedagogy events were funded at 6 campuses.