How can the real conditions of the classroom inform the implementation and design of campus curriculum initiatives? How do we design supports for faculty and students in ways that are adaptive, equity oriented, and foster anti-racism?
The Creative Discovery Fellows (CDF) Program helps instructors incorporate creative assignments into UC Berkeley’s undergraduate social justice graduation requirement. The CDF Program supports faculty and students in utilizing digital design tools to deepen and enhance the academic experience and to explore new avenues for public dissemination of research and teaching centered on social issues. The mission of the program is to help Berkeley undergraduates push the boundaries of social justice, knowledge, and meaning-making while also becoming capable technology users.
An important and unique aspect of the program is that we have theorized about and investigated the necessary conditions to achieve the impacts we imagined, with iteration, experimentation, and adaptation as core principles of our program design. Our research focused on three overarching goals:
Support: Affirm and improve the multi-faceted support provided for instructors and students through the CDF Program
Potential: Demonstrate the powerful potential of integrating digital tools in service of social justice-oriented learning goals
Dissemination: Develop best practices and a program model for implementation and support of impactful creative work
Our research protocol was approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and we hope it can support a broader campus conversation and scholarly agenda around effective equity-oriented teaching practices.