campus partner(s)

Barnard College






Fresh Thinking

award date


project director

Mark Carnes

Barnard College

Grant Summary

$99,900 over 27 months. A subset of institutions in the "Reacting to the Past" Consortium—Barnard College, Drake University, Loras College, Queens College (CUNY), Smith College, Trinity College (CT), University of Georgia, and University of Texas at Austin—will develop ways to construct and implement a coherent general education curriculum based on the "Reacting to the Past" pedagogy. "Reacting to the Past" consists of elaborate games, set at pivotal moments in the past, in which students are assigned to roles informed by classic texts. It seeks to draw students into the past, promote engagement with big ideas, and improve speaking, writing, and leadership skills. The project will assemble four working groups of faculty to address curriculum design and implementation issues. Each group will construct curriculum modules that can be grouped together in various configurations to fulfill specific general education objectives. A final White Paper will provide the foundation for a "Reacting" general education curriculum, as well as an outline for future curriculum development and faculty training opportunities. More generally it will serve as a model for engaged pedagogy that can be adapted to various institutional and curricular contexts.