Working with Diverse Student Perspectives: When Discussions Get Difficult

Streaming Media


Thoughtful intellectual discussions are at the heart of learning in higher education, but in the current political and social moment many students struggle to manage their own and others' reactions when topics like immigration, trans rights, or gun policy become part of the discussion. Even when controversy is a planned part of the course, faculty may let discussion run away from them rather than lead the discussion productively. This session provides a framework for honoring students' emotional responses and five strategies for managing difficult discussions, so that faculty can teach students how to slow down and learn from controversy.

Kimberly Van Orman in an instructional consultant with the Institute for Teaching, Learning and Academic Leadership at the University at Albany. Her teaching development work focuses on effective course design, critical thinking, fostering student engagement and helping students with deep learning practices, including Team-Based Learning (TBL). She also works with both faculty and graduate students on issues of career development, including the development of the Future Faculty and Teaching Development Program for graduate students.

Type of Work


Event Name

Hamilton College Summer Program in Philosophy

Event Sponsor

Philosophy Department, Hamilton College

Event Location

Clinton, NY, USA

Presentation Date


Hamilton Areas of Study


Hamilton Scholarship Series

Hamilton College Summer Program in Philosophy

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