Student Information and Application

In this program, students and faculty members work together as partners in exploring how we can create more engaging, inclusive, learning-rich environments for every student. Each week, students in this program visit and observe their faculty partner’s class, and then they and their faculty partners meet to discuss their respective observations, insights, and wonderings. This program is premised on the idea that students and faculty members can learn much from each other regarding the experience of teaching and learning, and that it is through dialogue and sharing of different perspectives that this learning from each other can occur.

What are the goals of this program?

 This program is designed to:

  • Foster open and constructive student-faculty dialogue to promote understanding, empathy, and connection.
  • Engage students and faculty as co-inquirers who learn and work together to analyze and improve educational practice.
  • Involve students with diverse experiences, identities, and perspectives in creating an inclusive, engaging learning environment here at DU.

NOTE: Information on the rest of this page is student-focused; faculty interested in this program should go to the faculty information page to learn more.

What’s in it for me?

Through participating in this program, not only will you be paid (see below for more on that!), but you will:

  • Play a significant role in creating a more inclusive, engaging learning environment here at DU
  • Gain practical experience in voicing your perspective and advocating for change
  • Develop personal connections with fellow students and your faculty partner
  • Build your leadership, communication, and dialogue skills
  • Gain a whole new perspective on teaching and learning that will allow you to be more successful in your time at DU and beyond

How is this program structured and what is the timeline?

We are currently inviting students to apply to be Student Partners for the Spring 2022 quarter, and are accepting applications through Tuesday, February 15, 2022.   

Each student who is accepted into the program will be paired with a faculty partner. We plan to select participants and determine these pairings by early March (after students know their class schedules for the Spring). In most cases, faculty partners will be in a department/discipline that is different from that of the student partner (as the idea is that students bring an expertise in what it means to be a student, faculty members bring their expertise in the discipline, and it’s the combination of these two types of “expertise” that will lead to great things!)

If you apply and are selected for the program, here is what you can expect after that:

  • In early March, we will have an orientation for all student participants. Also in early March (before Spring break), you and your faculty partner will meet with each other to plan for your Spring 2022 partnership work.
  • Every week of the Spring 2022 quarter, you will:
    • Visit and observe your faculty partner’s classroom and take detailed observation notes.
    • Write up your detailed observation notes and share them with your faculty partner
    • Meet with your faculty partner so you can discuss with each other your perspectives, wonderings, and insights in regards to your observations.
    • Participate in weekly meetings with the other student participants and the program facilitator so that you might support each other in learning from this experience and in figuring out how to best work with your faculty partner.
  • Mid-Spring-quarter, you’ll conduct a feedback session/focus group with the students in your faculty partner’s class, compile the feedback, and share it with your faculty partner.
  • At the end of the Spring quarter, you will write a final summary for your Faculty Partner highlighting the work you and your partner did together, and will also be invited to share your thoughts on what the partnership experience was like – in writing or in person – with the program facilitator.   

How will student participants be compensated, and what is the time commitment?

All students who participate in this program will receive $17/hour for their time. We estimate that the time commitment will be as follows:

  • 4 hours in early March for orientation activities and partnership planning
  • 5 to 6 hours per week in the Spring 2022 quarter – on average – for observing your faculty partners class, writing up your notes/reflections, meeting with your faculty partner, and meeting with the other student participants (exact number of hours will depend primarily on how many hours/week you observe)
  • 2 hours for end-of-quarter wrap up activities at the end of Spring quarter or beginning of summer

How will you decide which students will participate?

We are seeking students who:

  • Are undergraduates who have been at DU for at least 2 quarters
  • Represent a diverse range of social identities and perspectives, particularly those identities/perspectives that are currently under-represented in shaping the higher education environment
  • Are excited about and committed to the goals of this program
  • Are able and committed to spending the time required to make this program a success

We anticipate having more qualified applicants than we will be able to accept. Our final selection of student participants will be determined in large part by the schedules of student and faculty applicants (as we’ll need to ensure that students’ available times mesh with the class times of the participating faculty members) and our efforts to ensure that we have a diverse range of identities/perspectives represented among the members of the Student Partner group.

How do I apply?

You can apply for this program though Pioneer Careers Online (PCO) using this link.  The application deadline is February 15, 2022.  If you have any questions at all, please contact Virginia Pitts, who is the program facilitator.