Jesse Stommel, Digital Pedagogy Expert, to Keynote 2021 Symposium for Teaching with Technology

Jesse Stommel Headshot

Jesse Stommel

The UChicago Symposium for Teaching with Technology is pleased to announce that Jesse Stommel, Ph.D., an internationally recognized, award-winning teacher and education expert, will present the keynote address at the 2021 Symposium, held online April 21-22, 2021. His keynote address is entitled “Critical Digital Pedagogy: Inclusive Design for Online and Face-to-Face Learning”. The full description is as follows:

“There has been much talk over the last year about maintaining ‘continuity’ of instruction and assessment, but it’s even more important for us to talk about how we maintain the communities at the heart of our educational institutions. This is the design challenge before us. There is no one-size-fits-all set of best practices for building a learning community, whether on-ground or online. Right now, we should begin our efforts toward building community by designing for the students who need that community most, the ones most likely to have been feeling isolated even before the pandemic: disabled students, chronically ill students, students of color, queer students, and students facing housing and food-insecurity. 

A critical digital pedagogy argues that we are better users of technology when we think critically about the nature and effects of that technology. How does a reflective, critical pedagogy translate into digital space. Can the necessary dialogue flourish within Web-based tools, social media platforms, or learning management systems? How can we build platforms that support learning across age, race, gender, culture, ability, geography? What are the specific affordances and limitations of technology toward these ends?”

Stommel is co-founder of Digital Pedagogy Lab and Hybrid Pedagogy: the journal of critical digital pedagogy; co-author of An Urgency of Teachers: The Work of Critical Digital Pedagogy; and co-editor of Disrupting the Digital Humanities. He is best known for his work as a champion of teachers and students in higher education. An award-winning teacher, Stommel has taught for 18 years in humanities disciplines in seven departments at five institutions, and he has designed over 30 courses in a range of subjects, including literature, writing, documentary film, and digital studies. Stommel’s work has drawn national and international attention: he has been invited to give keynotes and plenary talks by the Higher Education Academy, Coventry University, Duke University, Stanford University, BCcampus, Open University, and presented workshops at the Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI), Lewis and Clark College, Guilford College, LaSalle College of the Arts in Singapore, University of Warwick, and more. Stommel has also published over 15 articles in peer-reviewed books and journals.

In 2011, Stommel founded the Hybrid Pedagogy 501(c)(3) nonprofit. In addition to acting as executive director, his work for Hybrid Pedagogy has included creating educational outreach and professional development opportunities for new and experienced teachers. In 2015, he co-founded Digital Pedagogy Lab (DPL), a series of on-ground intensives focused on critical digital pedagogy. Through DPL, he has offered 2-, 3-, and 5-day pedagogical development events at the American University in Cairo, University of Prince Edward Island, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Delaware, University of Mary Washington, University of Colorado, University of Warwick, Open University, and more.

An Urgency of Teachers: The Work of Critical Digital Pedagogy (with Sean Michael Morris) considers how technology (both digital and analogue) changes the work of education. Ultimately, the book argues that education should look to community over content delivery, dialogue over algorithms, human teachers over teaching machines. Along the way, it explores the history of educational technology, innovative teaching practices in higher education and beyond, education as a social good, and the need for inclusive pedagogies. Stommel co-edited with Dorothy Kim Disrupting the Digital Humanities. It includes academic and non-academic writing about the intersections and frictions between the digital humanities, inclusive pedagogies, accessibility, feminist theory, queer theory, and critical race theory.

Stommel has taught undergraduate and graduate students at large research institutions, liberal arts colleges, and a community college, as well as non-traditional adult students and teachers at all levels of education. He has taught face-to-face, hybrid, online, and several MOOCs, including a Coursera MOOC with over 25,000 students from 161 countries.

Stommel has done faculty development work since 2003. Most recently, he has taught courses for teachers, technologists, and administrators in higher education pedagogy, critical digital pedagogy, writing about teaching, and assessment. He has an extensive background in education administration beginning in 2003. He has designed and worked to implement several new undergraduate and graduate programs.

Stommel was most previously a faculty member at University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has a Ph.D. from University of Colorado-Boulder.