2023-24 Williams Instructional Fund Recipients

Trailblazing: Navigating Your College Experience 

Instructor: Jamie Bufalino 
Funded Amount: $8,070

This project involves developing a new hybrid first-year seminar that will help incoming students develop the skills to successfully navigate their college experience. The seminar will serve as a space for first-year students to develop a sense of belonging on campus, find a community of peers, and hone the skills to successfully navigate the university.

Re-Design of First-Year French Language and Culture Assessments 

Instructor: Connie Dickey 
Funded Amount: $9,645

This project is a re-design all first-year French assessments to reflect the best practices of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language by using integrated performance assessments, which are designed to assess students’ progress toward proficiency in the three modes of communication: interpretative (reading and listening), presentational (speaking and writing), and interpersonal. This revision entails the development of assessment tasks that are aligned around a common theme and require students to deepen their engagement with cultural material; they also reflect how students naturally acquire and use the language in the real world. 

Tourism, Rituals, and Treasures: The Anthropology of Cultural Heritage 

Instructor: Maria Escallón
Funded Amount: $8,320

This project develops a new undergraduate course at an intermediate level (300) that examines the meaning and importance of cultural heritage today. Drawing on cultural anthropology, heritage studies, and archaeology, the course will examine how heritage is defined, administered, and used to build identity, foster economic development, or negotiate legacies of colonialism across the world. Cultural heritage can bring people together, but it can also be divisive and create conflict. Key questions we will address in class revolve around how is the past used in the present, and to what purposes? How do communities regard their cultural forms and traditions and use them in relation to other groups? 

Development of an Inquiry-Based Course and Minor in Cultural Heritage Management 

Instructor: Scott Fitzpatrick 
Funded Amount: $8,820

This project develops a new 200-level course called “Introduction to Cultural Heritage Management.”Sometimes referred to as contract archaeology, CRM in a broader sense is the management of heritage resources, including both tangible and intangible assets related to archaeology, history, folklore, and architecture. This course may become a keystone to a CRM minor proposal in collaboration with faculty and staff in the Department of Anthropology and Museum of Natural and Cultural History. In the course students will, through an inquiry-based approach, gain a greater appreciation for learning archaeology and heritage management that will be introduced to them as a package of skills necessary for analyzing and interpreting archaeological data, employing contract services, and managing collections.

Morse Scholars Teaching Collaboration 

Instructors: Ellen Herman & Dan Tichenor 
Funded Amount: $8,320

This award supports the development and enhancement of the career readiness-oriented aspects of Wayne Morse Scholar courses and co-curriculum, especially lasting resources that will persist, grow, and evolve across Morse Scholars cohorts. The Wayne Morse Scholars Program provides skills building, service learning, and leadership training to students interested in public affairs and community engagement.

Gaming the Middle Ages: Course Design, Implementation, Materials 

Instructor: Maile Hutterer
Funded Amount: $11,940

This project develops infrastructure to support game-based pedagogy, including the proposed course “Gaming the Middle Ages,” and similar play-oriented classes. This proposal also supports the development and implementation of “Gaming the Middle Ages,” a new course that will use board games, live-action role-playing games, and video games to draw out critical historical concepts about medieval life and artistic production. The course moves thematically through aspects of architectural and artistic production, pairing games with scholarly essays.

Career Readiness Teaching Collaboration 

Instructors: Leslie McLees & Dani Amtmann 
Funded Amount: $7,980

Council is delighted to award you an instructional grant for your career readiness teaching collaboration.

This project develops a hybrid—part in person and part online, asynchronous—version of a College of Arts and Sciences Career Readiness course co-taught by a social scientist and colleague from the Career Center. It also builds career readiness-related builds teaching resources for other colleagues to draw on in their own courses. 

Own Your Grammar—Question the ‘Rules,’ Dance with Metalanguage, Explore Real Usage, Make Excellent Choices 

Instructor: Patricia Pashby 
Funded Amount: $5,320

The vision for this project is a course in which students—many of whom lack interest in or perhaps even fear the subject—explore grammar in a fun, anxiety-free setting and then apply it directly to the language used in their academic field and/or career path. Students will examine the origin of many so-called “rules” of grammar (and various forms of gatekeeping and language bias) and explore patterns of actual usage through identifying sample texts (oral or written) from their own field of study or career path and by conducting small-scale original research projects. 

Re-Imagining Writing Courses for International Undergraduate Students 

Instructor: Janine Sepulveda 
Funded Amount: $5,320 

This project re-imagines writing courses for international students considering the advent of generative artificial intelligence. If a given UO class requires in-class writing, international students in particular need the linguistic and academic skills to be able to successfully complete the assignment/exam without the assistance of technology. At the same time, these students need to learn how to use AI responsibly and effectively for UO assignments that allow the use of AI. Thus, this project would redevelop curricula for international students to help them succeed across their UO classes given the latest research, policy, and instructional trends related to AI use at UO.

Paths to Language Learning: Open Pedagogy Course Materials Development for Linguistics 144 

Instructor: Keli Yerian
Funded Amount: $19,902 

This project will allow students to develop a set of open educational online materials for LING 144 “Learning How to Learn Languages.” Students, most of whom are first years, would learn about the benefits and responsibilities of open-access materials and become empowered to see themselves as part of an authoring community, contributing to valuable academically grounded information and perspectives rather than only being consumers of them. Students are more likely to be intrinsically motivated to collaborate in this context and to feel pride in being part of visible academic practices.