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The Center for Teaching and Learning will periodically sponsor the formation of “Learning Communities,” faculty reading groups meant to enrich the curriculum.   These learning communities will be targeted at the Integrated Core and they will come with a stipend for participants.

Our goal is to help start conversations which might later lead to integrated classes (specifically, Experiencing the Natural World, Examining the Human Experience, and Examining the Global Community courses).  Each proposed learning community should have 4-5 participants.  There will be a rolling deadline for proposals.  Those interested in applying should contact the Director of the CTL.  These proposals will be judged by select members of the Integrated Core Curriculum Committee.  Each participant will receive a $350 stipend.

Proposals should include the following:

1) the chosen topic or theme for the learning community (briefly explained; a single paragraph)

2) a list of participants

3) a reading schedule for the reading discussions (at least 5 planned gatherings)

4) a suggestion of possible courses which might be created by these meetings

Our hope is that participants will then take the next step and apply for a summer course development grant.  However, it is not required that you take that next step to participate in a learning community.  The more we can gather colleagues together to share research and ideas, the richer our classes will be regardless.


Learning Community on the University’s Mission 

Context and Goals:
John Carroll University emphasizes in its official documents, policies, and practices a commitment to its mission as a Jesuit and Catholic institution.  It does so in a way that seeks to maintain the centuries-old Jesuit tradition of academic excellence and care for students along with the current concern for Social Justice.    It aspires to do this in a manner that is inclusive and ecumenical and welcomes people from many walks of life.   Each member of the faculty has a valuable opportunity to further this mission in his or her research, teaching, and interactions with colleagues and students.

This learning community is designed to allow faculty to:

  • Explore the mission in a collegial and supportive environment that is intellectually stimulating.
  • Learn about the intellectual and cultural sources for the Jesuit tradition in higher education
  • Imagine new ways in which they can engage in this tradition in ways that are consistent with their own work and convictions.

Readings will include, among others, the following:

  • Gray, Howard. “The Experience of Ignatius Loyola: the Background to Jesuit Education.”
  • O’Malley, John W. “How the First Jesuit Became Involved in Education.”
  • Hellwig, Monica.  “The Best of Times, The Worst of Times: Catholic Intellectual Life in Today’s Academic Setting.”
  • Nicolas, Adolfo.  “Depth, Universality, and Learned Ministry: Challenges to Jesuit Higher Education Today.”
  • O’Brien, David.  “Conversations on Jesuit (and Catholic?) Higher Education: Jesuit Sí, Catholic . . . Not So Sure”


This Learning Community will meet approximately 8 times over the course of the academic year.  Specific dates will be set when participants are determined but the sessions will take place on Thursday evenings.  In order to ensure a manageable size for discussions the number of participants will be limited to 12.  Interested faculty should submit an application including a 300-word essay on their interest in this learning community and what they hope to gain from it.  This application should be sent to Dr. Paul V. Murphy at  A  stipend of $1,000 will be provided to each participant upon completion of the series and the submission of an essay on how they approach the mission of the university in their own work in light of the readings and discussion of this learning community.

Facilitator:  Dr. Paul V. Murphy