Skip to Main Content Skip to Footer Toggle Navigation Menu

Toward Equitable and Inclusive Teaching

We are committed to supporting and increasing faculty capacity related to equitable and inclusive pedagogy. In order to be truly inclusive, our curricular and pedagogical strategies must be grounded in equity and social justice. In her post on designing inclusive classes, Maha Bali suggests that a critical “first step is to think about our curriculum from a social justice perspective and recognize that we are not neutral. If we do not make intentional efforts to make content and pedagogical choices that promote equity and amplify the cultures of marginalized groups, our courses are likely to NOT be inclusive.”

The Center for Educational Innovation at the University of Minnesota’s Inclusive Teaching at a Predominantly White Institution guide offers excellent resources as well as critical perspective about the racialized dynamics related to teaching and learning at predominantly white institutions. Learning to be Human Together: Humanizing Learning is an open source book project published in 2022 that explores “the importance of, and processes for, humanizing education.” The book starts “by exploring what humanizing teaching and learning means: to acknowledge that our relationships are foundational to the work that we do. It aims to make learning inclusive with connection, access, and meaning-making at its core.” Another excellent resource, by Professors Isis Artze-Vega, Flower Darby, Bryan Dewsbury, and Mays Imad (2023), is the Norton Guide to Equity-Minded Teaching (available as a free download).

Kelly A. Hogan and Viji Sathy write extensively about inclusive teaching strategies and suggest that “One way in which you can immediately foster inclusive teaching is to ask, listen, and learn from your own students.” The Classroom Community & Connectedness project, piloted at Macalester during the 2021-2022 year as a collaboration between the Associate Director of the Serie Center and colleagues from Institutional Research & Assessment, was designed to learn – from students’ perspectives – about what helps build a sense of connection and belonging in our classrooms. 

Collaborative note taking is an effective inclusive teaching strategy that engages students in a collective process of accountability for their learning and for mutual access. In her recent essay, Amy Mulnix elaborates on four pedagogical strategies for moving from inclusion to equity:

  • make every student feel like they belong (knowing how to pronounce names is an important part of fostering belonging; the NameCoach plug-in on Moodle can help!)
  • expect every student to succeed
  • make your processes transparent
  • think of your students as partners

Resilient Pedagogy: Practical Teaching Strategies to Overcome Distance, Disruption, and Distraction – published in 2021 in the midst of COVID-19’s upending of higher education – is replete with thoughtful essays on course design, student engagement, and other aspects of pedagogy. In the forward to the collection, Jesse Stommel writes:

“Resilient pedagogy means acknowledging that not all students will be able to meet us exactly where our institutions expect them to, and teachers won’t always be able to meet students exactly there either. When the work is honest, as so many of the teachers in this collection show, it will look slightly different from one classroom to the next, from one teacher to the next, from one student to the next, from one embodied experience of learning to the next. That’s the work of a resilient pedagogy — to look for gaps in our expectations, to wait patiently, to lecture more quietly, to listen, to anticipate rather than accommodate, to offer a flexible series of invitations.”

If you’re interested in engaging in a reflective process to support inclusive teaching practices, Elon University’s Inclusive Teaching website offers an excellent set of resources.

The essays and toolkits listed below offer important perspectives about and resources for: 

It is critical to recognize that the work of building inclusive, equitable, and anti-racist classrooms is different for faculty of color than it is for white faculty (see, for example, The “invisible labor” or faculty of color and When the whole classroom is white, except for the professor).

Additional resources


First generation / low income students

Fostering diversity in STEM