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Encountering Faith in the Classroom: Turning Difficult Discussions into Constructive Engagement Paperback – April 10, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-1579222376 ISBN-10: 1579222374

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Among the many volumes now available on religion and spirituality in higher education, this one stands out for moving beyond basic description and broad prescription to a discussion of actual pedagogical practice... Encountering Faith in the Classroom is an important book for professors of theology and religious studies to read." (Teaching Theology and Religion)

www.unc.edu/ddi/blog/2008/07/faith-in-classroom.html (Click on above link for review in Peter M. Wright's "Teaching for Inclusion" blog)

"Encountering faith in the classroom: Turning difficult discussions into constructive engagement presents a theoretical justification as well as practical tools for intentionally introducing and thoughtfully managing classroom exploration of religious and spiritual values that are an inherent part of the makeup of college and university students. In the foreword, Art Chickering stresses that it is in the classroom that challenges of religion and spiritual diversity must be addressed. Diamond’s book situates educators to better develop their awareness and integration of this important area of student development into the classroom. Though largely targeted for classroom settings, the ability of faculty as well as student affairs professionals to engage in difficult yet meaningful dialogue in the classroom as well as in mentoring and advisory roles is clearly relevant as an important component of holistic student development.

Many who argue against inclusion of religion and spirituality in higher education do so from a concern that one religion is promoted over another. Clearly, as is noted above, this is not the case among educators included in this text. The value as addressed by all of the authors for integration of religion and spiritual concepts lies in goals of developing critical thinking skills, a stronger knowledge base of religions and belief systems held by our students, and a resulting improved ability to understand one another which can lead to a stronger, more inclusive democracy.

In this book, religion and spirituality are not explored in terms of coercing or changing one’s belief system nor is this book an effort to espouse which, if any, religion is correct. Instead, it is about learning and better understanding one’s own religion or lack thereof, as well as the religious convictions of others. Further, it is about being able to have dialogue around these topics which are great influences on who we are." (Education Review: A Journal of Book Reviews)

"Researchers in education and teachers in a number of disciplines suggest various approaches for de-problematizing issues relating to religion in secular classrooms. Their topics include faith in graduate education, using the CHANGE method to resolve cognitive dissonance, when faith and science collide, and law school." (Book News Inc.)

"Religion is a touchy subject -- one wrong word can imply a deep personal insult to someone merely intended to have an intellectual discussion with. Encountering Faith in the Classroom: Turning Difficult Discussion into Constructive Engagement is a deftly written look at how to handle discussions in a classroom -- a setting unlikely to have students who are all of one faith. Focusing on changing religion from a controversial matter to an elightening one for all involved Encountering Faith in the Classroom is a seminal pick for any educator who deals with religion on a common basis, and for cummunity library education collections." (The Midwest Book Review - Education Shelf)

“I am not aware of another book that has put together a collection of penetrating and thoughtful writing from experienced teachers that tackles these bedrock complexities. It is clear that each contributor has a deep and personal investment in doing the very best he or she can to meet these difficult challenges.” (from the Foreword by Art Chickering)

About the Author

Miriam R. Diamond is a faculty developer and coordinator of the Society for Values in Higher Education's Religion and Public Life Project. She was formerly Associate Director for Faculty Programs at Northwestern University's Searle Center for Teaching Excellence She is co-author of Chalk Talk: E-Advice from Jonas Chalk, Legendary College Teacher. Miriam has researched, published, consulted, and led workshops internationally on ethical development, educational outcomes of creative interactive lesson plans, using technology to create learning communities, and holistic approaches to teaching and learning. She teaches courses in education, the psychology of adult development, ethics, and religious studies.

Art Chickering

Product Details

  • Paperback: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Stylus Publishing (April 10, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579222374
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579222376
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,350,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on August 11, 2008
Format: Paperback
Religion is a touchy subject - one wrong word can imply a deep, personal insult to someone one merely intended to have an intellectual discussion with. "Encountering Faith in the Classroom: Turning Difficult Discussions into Constructive Engagement" is a deftly written look at how to handle discussions in a classroom - a setting unlikely to have students who are all of one faith. Focusing on changing religion from a controversial matter to an enlightening one for all involved, "Encountering Faith in the Classroom: Turning Difficult Discussions into Constructive Engagement" is a seminal pick for any educator who deals with religion on a common basis, and for community library education collections.
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