OVPGA Announces COIL Faculty Fellows
September 15, 2022
Four Carolina faculty members will serve as COIL fellows for the 2022-23 academic year. (Photo by Donn Young)
The Office of the Vice Provost for Global Affairs (OVPGA) has appointed four faculty members to serve as Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) faculty fellows for the 2022-23 academic year.
COIL is a flexible pedagogical approach that involves shared virtual learning between students in a course at UNC-Chapel Hill and peer students at a global partner university. OVPGA offers support for Carolina faculty to incorporate COIL into new and existing UNC-Chapel Hill courses through its Curriculum Development Awards for COIL.
The COIL faculty fellows will meet with Carolina faculty interested in developing COIL courses, visit department meetings to introduce the COIL pedagogy, assist faculty who are currently designing or teaching COIL courses and co-lead COIL information sessions and workshops together with program staff. Each fellow represents a different area of the UNC-Chapel Hill curriculum and will be able to tailor their support to faculty in different disciplines.
Each faculty fellow has previously received a Curriculum Development Award for COIL and has taught one or more iterations of their COIL course.
“The faculty fellows are experienced practitioners of COIL, having incorporated it in their own courses, and they will bring that expertise with them as they support new COIL faculty,” said Sharmila Udyavar, associate director for global education. “The faculty fellows represent diverse disciplines and will champion COIL and engage in peer-to-peer learning with faculty who are interested in exploring this approach for their courses,” she said.
Lornaida Avilés, assistant teaching professor of Spanish, served as the first COIL faculty fellow in 2021-22, and she joins the cohort this year. In spring 2021, she taught SPAN 329: Spanish for Professional and Community Engagement as a COIL course in partnership with Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador. In the class, Avilés guided students through conversations in Spanish and had students deliver group presentations on research topics relevant to Spanish-speaking communities.
Michael Meredith is a clinical professor of management and corporate community at the Kenan Flagler Business School. In spring 2022, he taught BUSI 201: Business in Europe as a COIL Plus course, a hybrid iteration of COIL that involves a travel component and thereby reinforces intercultural learning. Meredith collaborated with Corvinus University in Budapest.
“Working within the COIL+ classroom design has been one of the most enjoyable and transformative learning environments I’ve ever experienced,” said Meredith. “COIL helps facilitate a deeper, richer experience related to pedagogical content while also facilitating the building of relationships with international peers. The depth and breadth of student learning has been remarkable, and teaching in this environment, for me, is a highly rewarding experience.”
Adam Versényi collaborated with two international partners, one from Queen’s University Belfast and one from National University of Ireland, to teach a three-way COIL course, DRAM 284. In spring 2021, the course focused on theatre and the pandemic, and in spring 2022, theatre and sustainability. Versényi will again teach the course with his collaborators in spring 2023. Cohorts of students from each campus take part in a series of creative exercises culminating in Collaborative Performance Projects via Zoom. This spring the topic will be theatre and democracy.
Lisa Woodley, clinical associate professor in the School of Nursing, has incorporated COIL three times into NURS 483: Family Centered Nursing Care from Birth Through Adolescence with a faculty partner at University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Through COIL, Woodley’s students have explored best practices in providing culturally responsive nursing care.
“COIL experiences afford students the opportunity to learn about other cultures, develop a sense of global citizenship, understand the importance of their chosen profession at a global level and appreciate similarities and differences across countries,” said Woodley. “I cannot imagine offering the course without COIL anymore!”
The four COIL faculty fellows represent a growing body of expertise at UNC-Chapel Hill.
“Not only will they develop a community of practice, but they will also function as a learning community to assist OVPGA in further strengthening COIL at Carolina,” said Udyavar.
For Carolina faculty members who are interested in learning more about the COIL program, OVPGA will host a free “Introduction to COIL” workshop on Sept. 22. The COIL faculty fellows will be present, as well as Hope Windle, community development lead at the SUNY COIL Center, the institution in which COIL originated. Registration is required.
Applications for the Curriculum Development Award for COIL are open through Oct. 15.