How could you apply the resources to your own teaching practice?
I found the website quite informative in the sense that it serves as a site to share other professors and academics’ research on faith in relation to art and design, higher education, and other practitioners’ work related to this topic. While faith isn’t a topic that regularly comes up in my teaching, this is the first year that I have encountered a muslim student in my class and I think it’s important to be cognizant of her needs when necessary. I think the site shares a lot of interesting viewpoints and examples hat I’ve never thought of or seen before. For example, I really enjoyed looking through the student’s and alumni section of the site because it shares examples of work that’s been done in the subject of religion and the arts. These are great examples to share with students who may be doing work in that area of interest, as I have very little references in that area. The other piece I learned a lot and loved is the quiet capsule project. I have seen signs for the quiet capsule at CSM but have never known too much about it and the site explains the concept behind it. It is also important and great to know that CSM values religious diversity and needs as part of their campus/environment. Whether this religious diversity is based around an actual organized religion, it is still valuing a peaceful and quiet space for reflective thinking, be that worship, meditation, or just the need for some quiet, me time!
How could you integrate the research/work your students do on this subject into your teaching/professional practice?
I haven’t personally encountered many students who have interest in bringing religion/relgious identity into their work, but when I did mid-term assessments with another tutor, there was a student who was trying to integrate the concept of faith into her work and it would’ve been useful to know about this and be able to direct her to read some of this research material available as well as work other practitioners have made in this field. I think it would be beneficial to share this site to students in my tutor group regardless because it’s important to keep students in the know about what is available at CSM.
This is my first year teaching a muslim female student who asked me if she could step out of my class to do her prayer. I got taken a back bit because I have never had anyone ask me that, but also because the answer is of course, yes! You shouldn’t have to ask for permission per se. But I appreciated her letting me know and it made me think that maybe it’s worth having the first session of the class always include some ‘ground rules’ and my views on topics such as this. I have been thinking a lot more about what it means to set up these ‘ground rules’ and how it’s worth making it part of the class, just as one would establish for any community. Because this is my first year teaching third year students where I get to see them for the whole year, it’s occurred to me that it’s worth remembering to make a mention of this.