After a long search for the perfect cover, I am very happy with this final version.
After submitting my final typescript a couple of weeks ago, I have started to think about what’s coming next. Lots of exciting things are happening: my book cover has been finalized and the book has appeared on the publisher’s website for pre-order. I now have a whole summer to work on promoting the book and its ideas. So here is a glimpse at what’s to come.
I am slowly turning this writing blog into a website, so you will notice a few changes over the coming weeks. Now that the actual writing of the book is done, I thought it would be more useful to have a site that provides not only information about the book, but also about upcoming presentations and other public
engagements, about teaching resources and about how the book is being received by educators, students and other readers.
The Book: publisher information, content summary, reviews
Here are early reviewers’ comments that can be found on my new The Book page. I am very excited that academics whose books have influenced my own thinking are so positive about my book.
“The combination of larger arguments for the reimagining of universities and practical examples of engaged teaching is a distinctive contribution to fields where many works usually offer one or the other. The shift from critique to reconstruction is vitally needed at a moment when many debates about universities shows signs of critique fatigue.”
“By inviting cross-disciplinary pedagogic infusions, Schwittay argues for the creation of alternative educational and social futures through the design of new learning environments; the development of student curiosity, introspection and imagination; prototyping activities and the taking of creative risks. This is a timely, important and optimistic book – a conceptual and practical antidote to the challenges of our times.”
Presentations: academic conferences, workshops and public engagements
As you can see from my new Presentations page, I am also beginning to present ideas from the book. My first presentation, a couple of weeks ago at the Global Festival of Active Learning, went really well. It was a zoom presentation of a short summary of my critical-creative pedagogy and a few teaching examples to about 50 participants, and I got some lovely comments. Some participants were wondering how this might work in the STEM subjects or the physical sciences, some of which also focus on global challenges. The idea of whole-person learning, a term I borrow from Alison James and Stephen Brookfield who have written a lot on creative education, seemed to especially resonate, with one participant saying that it was about developing wisdom as much as knowledge. Another person commented that they liked the balance between the critical aspect in the pedagogy and the nurture that comes with the creative aspect. Critical hope, revealing some of our own biases and becoming more reflective about the choices we make in our teaching were other things that resonated with participants. I really could not have gotten off to a better start!
I have two more presentations coming up in the next couple of months, one at the Tobias Centre for Innovation in International Development at the Indiana University, Bloomington in the US and the other at the 2021 EADI/ISS conference. Both are virtual interactive sessions co-designed with colleagues as Sussex such as Elizabeth Mills, Paul Gilbert and Suda Perera, which I am really looking forward to developing and then delivering. In addition I am also working on other public engagements: I recently submitted a short piece to the UNESCO’s Future of Learning initiative and am pitching a piece to the Times Higher Education section for the upcoming UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development.
Resources: teaching guides, templates and other tools
I am also planning to create a Resources Page on the website where I will be sharing templates, guidelines and descriptions of the teaching activities described in the book. I hope this will help to inspire like-minded educators to experiment with their own versions of critical-creative pedagogy and will make it easier for them to adapt some of my ideas for their own teaching.