Ignatian Pedagogy in the Classroom

Posted on: November 26th, 2013 by Carol Scheidenhelm

Cura personalis. Magis. AMDG. These terms, familiar in Jesuit ideology, may be less obvious as we move into the classroom. How do we exemplify these ideals as faculty working with students? On Wednesday, November 20, three Loyola faculty shared their views on how Ignatian Pedagogy informs their work in the classroom, and the teaching and learning mission at Loyola University Chicago.

Dr. Micael Clarke, Department of English, spoke of her history as a student and faculty member at Loyola University Chicago, and how the institution has changed and grown over time. She emphasized the importance of the tradition of our Ignatian heritage in informing our approach to materials assigned for course reading. In her instruction as an English professor, she teaches all the major themes of any given literary work, including and at times especially the religious elements, because she believes such study helps students understand the “insights into human life that religion offers.”

Dr. Marilyn Krogh, Department of Sociology, assigns reflective exercises that complement the Ignatian Pedagogy paradigm and emphasize the importance of reflection in the learning process. Dr. Krogh discussed the importance of helping students see beyond their world as they become people engaged in the community around them. She also works hard to connect with students in multiple ways, including through student activities on campus. As a part of her syllabus, she recommended a short video produced by Fairfield University students about the life of Ignatius Loyola and his ideals as they are recognized in contemporary Jesuit education (i.e., http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSvOPtq30Xw). She also offered other suggestions on syllabus design, including adding the LUC mission statement to the lead of the syllabus.

Dr. Patrick Daubenmire, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, explained that he did not choose to be a teacher, but the profession chose him. He envisions Chemistry as God’s poetry and is his medium for helping students navigate the skills important to Ignatian pedagogy. Dr. Daubenmire explained his thoughts about Ignatian humanism and tied it to cura personalis, which dictates that we treat each student in a fair and just manner, no matter who or how they are as they walk through our classroom doors.

The panel was moderated by Dr. Julia Pryce, Associate Professor in the School of Social Work and Associate Director of the Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy. A recording of the panel will be available on the FCIP website before the end of the fall term. There will be another panel, as well as a repeat of the two lectures by Fr. Jose Mesa, at the Water Tower Campus later in the spring term. Watch the FCIP calendar for spring programming dates.

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