Matt Croasmun directs the Life Worth Living Program at the Yale Center for Faith and Culture, and teaches a course with the same name in Yale College. Started by Miroslav Volf and Ryan McAnnally-Linz, the course helps students engage with a big important question: What is a good life? In an especially wide ranging conversation, we talk with Matt about possible answers, how to go about finding an answer, and the nuts and bolts of teaching such an ambitious class.
Our guest is Michael Faison from the Yale Department of Astronomy. He teaches undergraduate classes that range from the search for extraterrestrial life to advanced radio astronomy, and he directs the Leitner Family Observatory and Planetarium where he often hosts classes. Outside Yale, he gives public lectures about astronomy, astrology, and the difference between the two. In this episode we talk about the advantages of teaching outside a traditional classroom, thinking creatively about what happens during class time, and how he handles students with very different backgrounds in science and math.
In this episode Parama Chaudhury joins us from University College London’s Department of Economics. Parama is a teaching fellow at UCL where she does all sorts of innovative things in the classroom. We spend most of our time talking about Parama’s experience with Team-Based Learning (TBL), but she also tells how she ended up starting the world’s first Centre for Teaching and Learning in Economics.
During my recent visit to the Center for Teaching and Learning in Economics (CTaLE) at University College London I had the pleasure of sitting in on Marcos Vera-Hernández’s class on economic development. I learned much about taxation in developing countries (which was great), but I was very pleasantly surprised to get a master class in handling student questions and responses to his own questions.
In this episode we talk to Frank Robinson from Yale’s Center for Teaching and Learning. Frank has a PhD in Applied Math and he works with a wide range of scientists at Yale co-teaching some of our most innovative classes. He shares what he learned flipping Fundamentals of Physics with Helen Caines, and also tells us about creating a public website (coming soon!) based on his Movie Physics class.
Geoff Connors is our first guest from the Yale School of Medicine. He’s an assistant professor of pulmonology and teaches medical students how to reason and make decisions. He also teaches a class called “Teaching Teachers” through the Med School’s Teaching and Learning Center (not to be confused with the Yale Center for Teaching and Learning). In this episode Geoff explains how differently (and not so differently) education works in his world.