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A Culture of Care
Read Smith’s plans for the fall 2020 semester
and the college’s ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pedagogical Partnership

Professor Benita Jackson with student Chelsea Pimentel

Smith College professors believe that there are many ways to teach well and that all teaching is improvable. As one pathway towards improvement, the Smith College Student-Faculty Pedagogical Partnership Program engages students as partners to work with faculty in the classroom over an entire semester. We imagine that there are various models that fall under this umbrella.

How Does It Work?

What a Faculty Member Should Do

  1. Identify a course and/or pedagogical area where they think an informed student perspective could help them think about their teaching in new ways.

  2. Identify a student with whom the faculty member would like to partner. These may be students who have taken the course before; there are also models where the student is a novice to the material. This would be up to the faculty member.

  3. Identify a weekly meeting time when the student(s)/faculty partners will discuss the course.

  4. Decide what aspect of teaching (e.g., classes, labs, discussions, assessments, group work) to focus on at the outset of the partnership. Confirm the schedule requirements.

  5. Decide whether the student(s) will be compensated (e.g., a work/study job) or if a Special Studies may suit the partnership better. The Sherrerd Director and Teaching Mentors can help in this decision.

What the Sherrerd Center Will Do

  1. Begin the semester with a faculty/student partners event where we will share what we’ve learned about partnerships, help you set goals, and help get your partnership off to a good start.

  2. Begin the semester with a student-focused workshop where we will facilitate a conversation with students about pedagogy.

  3. Set monthly meeting times for all student partners to share their experiences in the classroom.

  4. Support faculty partners with consultation, monthly group meetings and informal discussions.

  5. Pay the students an hourly wage for their time spent with their faculty partners and in the classroom (up to 6 hours a week).

Perhaps you are planning or considering exploring new pedagogical ideas, such as the importance of having students be active and reflective learners, or introducing new content into your courses (e.g., issues around climate change during the Year on Climate), or you want to work on creating a more inclusive learning community; student partnerships could work well for you.


Spring 2020

Faculty Partner Student Partner Course
Brian Katz Allison Quintana MTH 153: Introduction to Discrete Mathematics
Alicia Grubb Mariah White CSC 111: Introduction to Computer Science Through Programming
Jack Loveless Clara Brill-Carlat GEO 241: Structural Geology
Roisin O'Sullivan Yuqi (Iris) Wei ECO 375: Seminar: The Theory and Practice of Central Banking
Kevin Shea and Leslie Nickerson Marva Tariq and Ahlenne Abreu      CHM 222: Chemistry II: Organic Chemistry
Jon Caris and Tracy Tien Morgan Jones IDP 109: Aerial Imagery and Cinematography (fall 2020)
David Gorin Akilah Williams CHM 222: Chemistry II: Organic Chemistry

Past Partners

Faculty Partner Student Partner Course
Lily Gurton-Wachter Meaghan Haff English 237: Environmental Poetry and Ecological Thought
Dawn Fulton Shukang Liu FRN 230: Women Writers of Africa and the Caribbean
Yanlong Guo Gwen Jones ARH 200: China in Expansion
Susan Sayre Diana Umana ECO 150: Introductory Microeconomics
Tina Wildhagen Dionna Jenkins SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology
Faculty Partner Student Partner Course
Laura Jensen Shukang Liu FRN 101: Accelerated Beginning French I
Simon Halliday Gwen Jones ECO250: Intermediate Microeconomics
Michelle Joffroy Endi Mato LAS 150: Introduction to Latin American Studies
Bosiljka Glumac Diana Umana GEO 232: Sedimentary Geology
Adrián Gras-Velázquez Maeve Porter Holliday SPN200: Intermediate Spanish
Sujane Wu Yasmine Vera EAL 231: The Culture of the Lyric in Traditional China
Faculty Partner Student Partner Course
Ginetta Candelario Kennedy Guest-Pritchett SOC 213: Race and National Identity in the United States
Erica Tibbetts Rose Silverman ESS 200: Sport: In Search of the American Dream
Nathan Derr Emily Bellanca BIO 132: Cells, Physiology and Development
Simon Halliday Emily Olmos-Govea ECO 220: Introduction to Statistics and Econometrics
Gary Felder Zoe Hildenbrand PHY 210: Mathematical Methods of Physical Sciences and Engineering

Faculty Partner

  Student Partner Course
Susan Sayre   Jeny Kwon ENV 311: Interpreting and Communicating
Environmental Information
Gary Felder   Taré Suriel PHY 117: Introductory Physics I
Kelly Anderson   Caty Seger FYS 179: Rebellious Women
Shannon Audley   Jocelyn Yax EDC 235: Child and Adolescent Growth and Development
Elizabeth Klarich   Rose Silverman ANT 135: Introduction to Archaeology
Jamie Worms   Emily Bellanca LAS 201: Colloquium in Latin American and Latino/a Studies: Landscapes of Work, Wealth and Power: The Economic Geography of Latin America
Rick Millington   Nybria Acklin FYS 192: America in 1925
Benita Jackson   Beverly Lipsey PSY 240: Colloquium: Health Promotion

Faculty Partner

  Student Partner Course
Joyce Palmer-Fortune   Erin Garofolo

PHY 117: Introductory Physics

Barbara Kellum   Kasch Meier

ARH 285: Great Cities: Pompeii

Jennifer Guglielmo   Cecelia Lim & Maria Perez HST 383: Research in United States Women's History
Leslie King  

Tare Suriel

SOC 232: World Populations
Rick Millington   Michaella Mentu ENG 199: Methods in Literary Study

Faculty Partner

  Student Partner Course
Joshua Birk   Allison Wu HST 225: Making of the Medieval World
John Brady   Naomi Jahan GEO 221: Mineralogy
Benita Jackson   Chelsea Pimentel PSY 240: Health Promotion
Tina Wildhagen   Angelica Vargas SOC 317: Inequality in Higher Education

What Do Faculty Partners Say?

"I am seeing the dramatic impact that this program is having on students as well. . . To be turned to as pedagogical experts has greatly enhanced their sense of their own academic and intellectual capacities."

"As faculty members discover how rewarding it is to have a pedagogical partner, soon every faculty member will want to have one."

"Working with a pedagogical partner has pushed me to reflect deeply on my teaching in real time throughout the semester—not just once my course evaluations have been submitted at the end of the semester."

What Do Student Partners Say?

"From discussing growth mindset to figuring out ways to get students more engaged, I’ve ended this semester feeling way more accomplished than I originally expected."

"My ability as a student has grown and will continue to grow thanks to this partnership."

"As the program spreads at Smith, it will benefit both the individuals involved in the partnership and the community as a whole."