Teaching in Troubled Times

More Than Words: In Conversation with the Language of Racial and Social Justice-Making


Commitments to the work that connects diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging/justice, anti-racism, anti-Blackness, anti-white supremacy and abolition work, are deep and rich. Each of these terms also have motivations and genealogies. During this event there was a discussion focused on unpacking the relationships between these frameworks and how they help us better understand and situate the work and the questions that they generate. When we think about the relationships that we hope to foster with and between students, how do we use these frameworks to inform our practice?...

Understanding UC Berkeley Students and their Experiences

Event Description

This event was an open dialogue, supported by campus climate data from several recent surveys. Together, the speaker and attendees considered whether the survey results support their own experiences; how the data might shift expectations of relationships with students; and what resulting efforts individually and collectively could be designed to provide an equitable and fully inclusive classroom.

Event Outline California Demographics Berkeley Undergraduate Demographics Race/Ethnicity Gender Sexuality Socioeconomic Status (SES)...

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired: Dealing with Toxic Stresses on Campus and in our Classrooms

Event Description:

This has been a difficult year for many Berkeley students and faculty. At the national level, we have seen an increase in hateful rhetoric and exclusionary policies directed at many identities and communities. And here on campus, we have been deeply challenged by tensions around recent speaker events, as well as by increased policing, painful intergroup dynamics, and repeated instances of bias and harassment. All of this has led to an increase in individual and collective stress, trauma, and anxiety, which research shows can negatively impact learning, memory,...

Squeezed on All Sides: Economic Pressures Facing Berkeley Students

Event Description:

According to a July 2017 nation-wide report, 60 percent or more of the total cost of attending a college or university comes from expenses other than tuition, and the cost of living for college students has increased by more than 80 percent over the past 40 years. In a high-cost area such as Berkeley, affordability is especially acute and impacts many aspects of students' lives beyond the financial: housing and food insecurity, commute time, mental and emotional health, the ability to pay for course materials, working for money vs. doing research or taking...

How to Have Political Conversations in the Classroom?

Event Description:

Tuesday, September 25th, 2018 marked the largest National Voter Registration Day on record. Over 800,000 people updated their registration or registered to vote for the first time. At the same time that so many Americans are involved in ballot box politics, the country is polarized, partisan and politicized. With sharp political differences seemingly not going away any time soon, how do we support robust discussions in our classrooms? How do we support our students to consider issues from immigration to gun control through deliberation and not shouting...

Beyond Accommodation: Changing the Disability Frame

Event Description

Discussions of disability on college campuses often focus on how we can support and accommodate individual needs and meet compliance requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act. With this panel of and dialogue sessions, we hope to expand that important conversation. On November 18, 2019, Berkeley faculty, graduate student instructors, staff, and students were invited to think in creative and visionary ways about culture, structure, teaching and learning, and broader institutional transformation. Some key discussion questions included:

How can we as a campus...

Assignment Design for Social Justice Education

ACES Student Projects

Find on our Student Projects page a collection of the powerful projects growing from the collaborative understanding and effort developed in UC Berkeley's ACES courses to inspire you to create thought-...

What to Do If ICE Comes to Campus: Rights, Recommendations, and Resources

Event Description:

The ongoing national conversation about immigration status lies across a bipartisan political landscape, but statements made by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Acting Director Thomas Homan indicate that enforcement will be significantly increased and specifically target California.

In response, across the U.C. system broadly and at U.C. Berkeley specifically, procedures and recommendations have been shared on best preparing to support all members of our undocumented community. However, understandable questions remain in what support we can...

Difficult Knowledge, Trauma Informed Pedagogy and Safe-ish Spaces

Event Description

Violence and trauma are all around us—fatal shootings by police, sexual violence, family separations, addiction, abuse, displacement of refugees. Often, these situations give rise to individual healing journeys and collective efforts to create change. But the pain and loss embedded in them also have a damaging effect long after the events have passed.

We invite many difficult experiences into our classrooms, historically intimate and distant, often through written and visual text depicting traumatic events and experiences. At the same time, we have many students...