Reading Circles

The Reading Circles program was launched in Spring of 2009. The program has been profiled in the NC State Bulletin. Circles are offered each Fall and Spring. Registration is announced via the OFD Newsletter. To subscribe to the newsletter, please contact Jonathan Holloway (jphollow@ncsu.edu).

Fall 2020 Reading Circles

Our Fall 2020 Reading Circle selection is:

Small Teaching Online: Applying Learning Science in Online Classes by Flower Darby with James M. Lang (Jossey-Bass, 2019, 288 pages). The concept of small teaching is simple: small and strategic changes have enormous power to improve student learning. Instructors face unique and specific challenges when teaching students online. This book offers small teaching strategies that will positively impact the online classroom. It outlines practical and feasible applications of theoretical principles to help your online students learn. It includes current best practices around educational technologies, strategies to build community and collaboration, and minor changes you can make in your online teaching practice–small but impactful adjustments that result in significant learning gains.

You will be matched with a Reading Circle and enrolled in a Moodle page from which you will access your specific Zoom meeting room at the scheduled day/time. To participate virtually, you will have an internet-capable device that has at least a microphone, and ideally has a camera (smartphone, tablet, laptop) in order to attend virtual, synchronous sessions via Zoom.

“Reading Circles give me time to reflect on teaching. Too often I just fly from class to class without being able to pause. Reading the book and talking to others about it builds those pauses and moments to reflect into my schedule.” - NC State Faculty Member

How do Reading Circles work?

Reading circles are small, self-regulated groups of faculty who meet several times a semester to discuss a common book. Each group is composed of participants from several different disciplines and at varied stages of their careers. The reading circles are designed to provide colleagues with an opportunity to share ideas about teaching and learning in an informal setting with peers from across the University.

Our Fall 2020 Reading Circles will be fully online and synchronous, with meetings held in Zoom. All meeting dates and times have been preset by OFD; you just need to sign up for the schedule that best suits you.

The NC State University Libraries provide unlimited ebook access to Small Teaching Online: https://catalog.lib.ncsu.edu/catalog/NCSU4879123. OFD will not be distributing physical copies this semester.

If you have further questions, please contact us at faculty-development@ncsu.edu.

What is expected of registered participants?

All registered participants agree to

  1. attend reading circle meetings;
  2. contribute to discussions;
  3. take a turn leading their reading circle in a form of shared leadership; and
  4. complete an evaluation of the experience.

All virtual participants also agree to using an internet-capable device that has at least a microphone, and ideally has a camera (smartphone, tablet, laptop) in order to attend virtual sessions via Zoom.

How do I participate in a Reading Circle?

To register for Fall 2020, fill out the form at https://go.ncsu.edu/readingcircles.

Registration takes place each semester and is announced via the OFD Newsletter. To subscribe to the newsletter, please visit https://go.ncsu.edu/ofdnewsletter.

Can I recommend a book for Reading Circles?

Yes, please send us an email at faculty-development@ncsu.edu. We will also be soliciting suggestions for future books and topics from each semester’s reading circle participants.