We know that next week’s election is weighing heavily on everyone’s minds ad as an institution of higher education, it is important for us to provide space for students to process and make meaning of the election, regardless of the outcome. A
number of peer institutions have created valuable resources for faculty to engage students in these conversations. For example, James Madison University has a guide for Facilitating
Difficult Election Conversations
as part of its Center for Civic Engagement that includes important points to address when having these conversations, the types of guidelines you might create for the conversation, and how to pose questions that allow students
to express how they feel. At the University of Colorado Boulder, the Center for Teaching and Learning has a resource page for Preparing
Your Classroom for the 2020 National Election
that includes how to keep the learning space open during “charged” conversations, information about structuring civil discourse, some of the do’s and don’ts of facilitation. In addition, the University of Michigan’s
Center for Research on Teaching and Learning has a blog series about how to plan for, frame, and facilitate Conversations
about the 2020 Election
Please know that Counseling and Psychological Services has also posted Election Stress Resources
for students, faculty, and staff which you may wish to share with your students.
Also, the Center for the Advancement of Wellbeing has information on Stress Relief Tips for the Election Season
As faculty consider how to have these conversations over the last third of the
semester, we encourage all to look to these resources for specific strategies and approaches.