Past Event! Note: this event has already taken place.

Joint Chair in Women’s Studies Communities of Practice

November 13, 2019

Location:2017 Dunton Tower
Audience:Current Students, Faculty, Staff, Staff and Faculty
Key Contact:Ann Morneau
Contact Phone:613-520-2600 x 6644

What are Communities of Practice?

The goal is to have groups of 6-15 people each, who meet for 3 hours each month, from January to June 2020, to support one another’s work and to build community. These groups are open to community members, university staff, faculty, students and others.  What we hold in common is an interest in learning, in social justice, equity, diversity, inclusion, and transforming the structures and contexts of learning.

Each group would consist would meet on either Wednesdays or Thursdays held at two locations, one at the University of Ottawa and one at Carleton University.  Group members may choose to attend a meeting at either location.The idea for these communities of practice originated with two sub-themes: Feminist Pedagogy and Solidarity in our Learning Environment (however, please feel welcome to add suggestions, and to bring your ideas of what matters and ways forward)

Feminist Pedagogy

Feminist pedagogy is a way of learning collectively that may involve: (1) working from our own experiences as starting points, (2) connecting our experiences to reflect on and question wider systems, (3) struggling toward social transformation and social justice, (4) emerging feeling stronger or having grown personally, (5) practicing inclusion and healthy relations, and (6) seeking balance within our ways of knowing, being and doing (CDEACF 2019). In our discussions, we could consider constraints on our capacity to practice feminist pedagogy, and ways we work within or challenge these constraints, in our past, present and future work. One possible avenue for us to explore could involve spending time sharing and learning about inspiring practices (including their challenges!) such as joint courses between faculties, open educational resources, mobilisation- or project-oriented evaluations, students-as-partners in pedagogy and research, and enriched support programs. The goal of these groups is to support one another’s work, to transform ourselves, our work, and our environments, and to learn about learning.

Solidarity in our Learning Environment

Speaking and thinking collectively of our work is helpful to counter what can otherwise be an individualising exercise or environment. Some of us already think in collective terms when we think about learning, but often the emphasis is on a course facilitator, an organisational leader in the community, an administrator, a teaching assistant, or a student, and each individual person’s “performance” in that role. In ordinary times and in times of crisis, we realise that working as a collective can be more enriching, healthy, protective, and mind-opening. We each come across structural impediments that require more than individual change, and the goal of building community (through “communities of practice”) is to pool ideas and resources to address elements that require more than we can give or do as individuals.  A number of inspiring practices currently challenge  or expand the existing academic structures or seek to broaden access to education, including but not limited to:

  • Youth Futures (a bridging program based at the University of Ottawa),
  • Community Mobilisation in Crisis (an international uOttawa-based project to create open educational resources),
  • Discovery University (which brings instructors from Carleton University, the University of Ottawa and Algonquin College to offer free university courses at the Ottawa Mission), and
  • Walls to Bridges (which brings together incarcerated and non-incarcerated students as peers through self-reflexivity and innovative, experiential and dialogical processes).


Communities of Practice

  • Please pick which session you'd like to register for:

Please Note:

The Educational Development Centre (EDC) is also hosting an event entitled “Promising Practices for Inclusive Classrooms – Teaching Panel” that will take place in DT 2017 in between the two Communities of Practice Sessions.  If you are interested in attending (they will have lunch!), please sign up here!