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Tools & Resources

Classroom Activities & Curricula

Creating Connection to Enable Deep Discussion

Debra Mashek

To ready students to take the interpersonal risks of sharing diverse viewpoints, admitting the limits of their own knowledge, or expressing genuine curiosity about the experiences and perspectives of others, professors can dedicate an hour of class time to the goal of facilitating interpersonal connection among their students. This activity, based on experimental social psychological research, offers an effective approach for doing so.

Below are two versions of this activity; one for college and university students and one for high school students. They are intentionally designed to be age-appropriate, so please use the one most relevant to you.

College/University Version

High School Version

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We are compiling a compendium of initiatives, policies, programs, and other innovations that have been deployed in classrooms, on campuses, and in disciplines to support open inquiry, viewpoint diversity, and constructive disagreement. We want to hear practical strategies, tools, and resources that have worked for you, and that others can readily adapt and implement in their own institutions. These can range from entire courses to syllabi, reading lists, and research. Learn more & contribute.

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