Testimonials

Hear from those who've participated in the Discussion Project

Kathy Cramer

Professor, Political Science, UW-Madison

"I was fortunate to take part in your training last month. I am not exaggerating when I say it has changed my life. I am teaching a 15-person and a 50-person undergraduate course this term, and I am using the skills you taught me each class session. It has made me think differently about my teaching and I am quite sure the students’ experience is all the better for it. Thank you! You all are providing a fantastic service."

Shweta Chandrashekhar

PhD student, Department of Rehabilitation Psychology and Special Education, UW-Madison

"Do it. It's life changing. If that doesn't get them to do the course, well, we shouldn't be friends. Just kidding. It would depend on what stage of their career they are in. As a TA the course is gold - it provides in-depth learning to design and implement discussions that we can suggest / use going forward in classes we support or independently teach. This is a no stress, purely learning environment where you are being graded or evaluated, i cannot emphasize the pressure that that lifts off. ALL the strategies are immediately implementable. I am redesigning my workshop for tomorrow to incorporate three ideas. The course distinguishes the between preparing students to discuss and engaging them meaningfully to optimize course material and ensure learning. The aspect of teaching students how to discuss is taken for granted and in making those assumptions leads to inequity and creates barriers of learning that impacts student learning, the class / community as a whole. Nobody explicitly teaches us these nuances of accessibility, inclusion and building relationships ; we need to continue to be student centric in our practice."

Carey McAndrews

,Associate professor, Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture, UW-Madison

"Unlike other forms of professional learning, the Collaborative Classroom Visit was an immersion, a 360. First, we prepared to observe a classroom, learning about how to observe and collect evidence and hearing about the lesson. Next, we attended the class and paid close attention to what students were doing. Along the way, we couldn't help but pick up some of the class content, which was intellectually exciting. Finally, we had the opportunity to debrief what we learned using a method of communicative feedback that has helped me feel more confident communicating in a host of other situations. The entire experience has helped me think about what I might be able to accomplish in my classroom with a little attention from helpful colleagues and a fantastic method. "

Next Series Starting October 25!

Online Course

Seven 2-Hour Online Sessions

The Discussion Project Virtual is an online training for designing and implementing equitable, inclusive, and engaging online (rather than in-person) discussion in university classrooms. The training focuses entirely on synchronous video conference discussion (online discussion via Zoom or another video conference platform. It consists of seven 2-hour online (Zoom) sessions, each preceded by 1.5 hours of preparatory work.

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Coming Soon

In-Person Course

3-day course

The Discussion Project offers an in-person course for designing and implementing equitable, inclusive, and engaging discussion. We will provide this course in 2022. Please contact us if interested.

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Coming Soon

Services

Sharing our expertise

Services provided by The Discussion Project include instructional consultation, embedded professional development, and classroom discussion observations and feedback (including reporting on institutional status of discussion implementation). We will begin offering these services in summer of 2022. Please contact us if interested.

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Research

Iterative improvement

The Discussion Project courses have been created using rigorous iterative process of improvement grounded in the research evidence of what makes discussion work in classroom and feedback from our participants.

Since 2017, The Discussion Project professional learning series has undergone design research process and program evaluation to ensure its quality and efficacy. Most recently, the curriculum, instruction, and their effects on university instructor participants have been the subject of a million-dollar Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Grant, administered through the Wisconsin Center for Education Research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.