Teachers as Scholars Summer Seminars

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Our 2024 Teachers as Scholars Seminars will be offered June 10-13

Register now for our 2024 Program!

What is Teachers as Scholars? 

Teachers as Scholars is an innovative program of professional development that brings together college faculty and secondary school teachers. Through this humanities-based program, secondary school teachers in history/social studies, English/language arts/communication arts and world languages/cultures departments participate with humanities professors in seminars that connect them to the world of scholarship—a major reason that they became teachers in the first place. Unlike most in-service programs that emphasize pedagogy or professional issues, the Teachers as Scholars seminars focus specifically on the latest disciplinary content available in various humanities fields of learning. Teachers are brought together from urban, suburban, and rural districts to interact with one another as scholars, studying the subject matter they love to teach and searching for new insights and approaches found in the most recent research. 


Middle and secondary school teachers from public and private schools are invited to participate in the Teachers as Scholars seminars. Approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education for Act 48 Professional Development, participants can receive ten (10 hours) credits per seminar. Seminars and workshop are free of charge, including lunches. 

In collaboration with your school district administration, we have scheduled summer seminars to maximize the availability for teachers outside the academic year (with an hour break for a provided lunch). All seminars take place in Ernest L. Boyer Hall and are limited to 16 participants. You will therefore be able to include these seminars in your annual professional development plan of in-service for Act 48 credit in conjunction with your district office.

2024 Seminar Workshop Titles

In this course we will study diverse ways of reading and teaching the poetry and letters of Emily Dickinson, one of the most influential and experimental poets of the 19th century, with a focus on understanding the evolution of Dickinson and her poetry over the last 150 years. We will explore Dickinson in material context by exploring (virtually!) her home, gardens, and surviving manuscripts; in cultural and literary context by considering writers that worked around her like Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman; and in social and political context by examining contemporary debates during her lifetime. We will also explore Dickinson’s evolving legacy, including her influence on writers like Sylvia Plath, Marilyn Nelson, and Ocean Vuong and recent film/television/artist adaptations and inventions of Dickinson’s life, and diverse ways of reading her poems. Finally, we will participate in some of the daily practices that shaped Dickinson's thinking and her writing, including nature walks and letter writing.

Portrait of Kerry Hasler-Brooks

 Kerry Hasler-Brooks, Department of Language, Literature & Writing

This course will discuss the process of writing and how it can be used as a tool in any classroom, regardless of the subject matter. We will talk about ways that you can use writing to engage students in exploration, critical thinking, and teach them to effectively communicate their ideas in a variety of ways. Additionally, we will discuss best practices for some of the most challenging aspects of the writing process like helping students to do research beyond the basic internet search and ways to effectively utilize peer reviews. Join us for a discussion about what the writing process can bring to any classroom.

Brooke Dunbar Treadwell 

Brooke Dunbar-Treadwell, Department of Language, Literature and Writing.          

Why do nations fight deadly, costly conflicts? How can countries, international organizations, and individuals help promote peace? This seminar will survey important explanations for political violence that comes from the social sciences and history. We will also discuss policies that are designed to promote peace, including peacekeeping, economic development programs, and military alliances in the context of contemporary conflicts in Ukraine, the Middle East, and East Asia.

Dr. Jason Renn

 Jason Renn, Department of History, Politics & International Relations

In this two-day seminar participants will learn how the full-class “workshop” model widely used in creative writing MFA programs can be adapted to help younger writers develop their skills in research and academic writing. The workshop method can be used to emphasize that writing is a process and a way of learning to incentivize the search for reliable sources to make the concept of audience concrete to encourage students to take ownership of their work and their writing process to help less confident student writers understand their strengths to promote substantive revision. After learning about some best practices around preparing and leading full-class workshop discussions, participants will write and workshop their own short creative works, then reflect on the experience and discuss how the full-class workshop method might be adapted for their specific teaching contexts.

  Ryan Rickrode

 Ryan Rickrode, Department of Language, Literature & Writing

Register Today!

Join us this summer! Register today for the 2024 Teachers as Scholars Summer Seminars.