Tulane University’s student population is 59% female and 41% male, and undergraduate professors are 36% female. These figures combined with the university's switch to online learning last spring pushed Clare Daniel, PhD, administrative assistant professor of Women's Leadership at Newcomb Institute, and Jacquelyne Thoni Howard, PhD, administrative assistant professor of Technology and Women's History at Newcomb Institute, to create the “Feminist Pedagogy for Teaching Online.”
The guide describes feminist pedagogy and includes sample assignments, Canvas tutorials within Canvas, the university's online course management system, and other technology tools and campus resources. It has reached 6,400 views thus far, and is being circulated on Twitter and receiving praise from the wider academic community, including those outside of Tulane University.
At the time of the guide’s creation, Daniel and Howard did not realize how much the academic community needed a guide such as this one.
“I’m not sure we realized we were filling a need for the wider feminist academic community when we began creating the guide, but the very positive reactions we have gotten indicate this,” said Daniel. “It’s great to see people engaging with the guide and passing along their feedback and suggestions. We look forward to continuing to develop it into a robust digital resource for feminist instructors across fields.”
While the guide was made with online learning in mind, it can be applied to physical classrooms as well as virtual ones. Howard says she hopes “that with the right instructional technology tools and intentional integration of feminist pedagogy principles, instructors could construct dynamic and active online learning communities similar to what occurs in the traditional classroom.”
Lauren Lehmann, one of the co-presidents of Feminist Alliance of Students at Tulane, encourages the university community to read the guide, saying “it is so necessary to include increased gender and sexuality education in Tulane’s curriculum to send Tulane alumni out into the world with a well-rounded and inclusive world view.”
With effort from the entire Tulane community, the guide for feminist teaching can be implemented to create a more inclusive and encouraging educational environment.