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The Syllabus Project

The Syllabus Project Faculty Learning Community (FLC) is a 10-month learning community that will bring together faculty from our 10 Areas of Study to explore one of the key components of the teaching and learning process – the syllabus!

In researching the ‘purpose’ of a syllabus, we find it described as the ‘guide’ or ‘agenda’ for what will happen in a course during the teaching period — Indeed, the word “syllabus” is a Late Latin term meaning “list.” It has traditionally contained details about the course logistics, contact information, course objectives, assessments, what activities will take place throughout the semester and all related student expectations and requirements.

Researchers have found that there are three purposes that it serves:

    1. as a record of the course,
    2. as a contract between the instructor and the student, and
    3. as a learning tool (Parkes & Harris, 2002).

This learning community will focus on the third purpose – the syllabus as a learning tool. Faculty teams will explore instructional and information strategies with the syllabus in mind that help students feel belonging and consider their strengths, skills, values, interests, and needs to find purpose and pursue meaningful work and careers. Participants in the Syllabus Project FLC will connect, collaborate and foster a culture of care through a learning community using equity, diversity, and inclusion frameworks and the power of purpose and belonging (EDI-PB) in course syllabi.


Team 1: Lifelong Learners
Color: Orange

  • Angela Hadlock – Interdisciplinary Health Sciences
  • Anne “Shellie” Withrow – Interdisciplinary Health Sciences
  • Sherry Blum – Interdisciplinary LA: Philosophy/Humanities

Team 2: STEMsters
Color: Turquoise

  • Brooke Hollingsworth – SEM
  • Paula Talley – SEM
  • Samantha Soebbing – SEM

Team 3: The Facilitators
Color: Blue

  • Devin Preston – Interdisciplinary SEM: Biology
  • Tolly James Jr. – Interdisciplinary DMCAT
  • Rodney E Rohde – Interdisciplinary SEM: Biology

Team 4: LDL
Color: Green

  • Diane Echevarria – Interdisciplinary Foreign Language
  • Laura DiMeo – Interdisciplinary RTF
  • Stacy (Liz) Hundley – Interdisciplinary Hospitality

Team 5: Co-Defenders
Color: Purple

  • James M Gividen (Mike) – LA: Government
  • Vanessa Faz – LA: Government

Team 6: Labor ipse voluptas, Color: Red

  • Don Morris – LA: SDEV/EDUC
  • Marissa Burrill – LA: SDEV/EDUC

Team 7: The Orange Zone
Color: Orange

  • Corinne Coons-Gallagher – LA: SDEV/EDUC
  • Natalia Almanza – LA: SDEV/EDUC
  • Paul Smith – LA: SDEV/EDUC

Team 8: KASH-in for Belonging!
Color: Yellow

  • Amber Sarker – Interdisciplinary LA: SDEV/EDUC
  • Heather Syrett – Interdisciplinary LA: SDEV/EDUC
  • Kendall Dingee – Interdisciplinary LA: CLS
  • Stephanie Frausto – Interdisciplinary LA: CLS

Team 9: Illuminators
Color: Slate PS

  • Anja Ketcham – LA: CLS
  • Susan Meigs – LA: CLS
  • Virginia Villareal – LA: CLS

Team 10: Lavender
Color: Lavender

  • Amy Velchoff – LA: Interdisciplinary Studies / Sociology
  • Ariana Cortes – LA: Sociology
  • Jackie Burns – LA: Interdisciplinary Studies / Sociology


Participation is by application only and open to all full-time and adjunct instructional faculty. Applicants are welcome to apply as individuals or as Area of Study teams of 2 to 4 members. All accepted faculty will form teams of at least 2 members. Each accepted faculty will also receive a $1020 stipend. The FLC will include 40 individuals across 10 areas of study.


The deadline has passed and applicants have been notified.


Opening Seminar: “Purpose and Belonging-Informed Educator”

Date: July 27th and July 28th, 2022

Time: 8:30am – 12:00pm

Location:  Eastview Campus (EVC) Multipurpose Room 8500, 3401 Webberville Rd, Austin, TX 78702, USA

The opening seminar will be in-person.

FLC Meeting Dates

The monthly presentations by key experts on EDI syllabus strategies from September through March will be 1-hour sessions from Noon to 1:00 pm over zoom.

The closing presentation event on April 21, 2023 (Noon to 2:00 pm) will be hyflex. FLC participants will be presenting.

Location: TBD.

This is a tentative schedule and dates are subject to change.

FALL 2022
September 23
October 21
November 18
December 2*

*The December session will be from Noon-2:00 pm for team collaborations.

January 27
February 24
March 24
April 21**

**The April session will be from Noon to 2:00 pm and will be the closing presentation event.


If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Susan Warner-Sanchez,