Organized by Stefana Gargova
April 22-23, 2021
University of Toronto
The Toronto German Studies Symposium (TGSS) organized by the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at University of Toronto is an annual highlight for post-secondary educators and academics in the field. This year, the Symposium will have a teaching focus and will offer an opportunity for experts and leaders in pedagogy to come together and share their knowledge and experiences. This will also be the first virtual TGSS event to be held exclusively on Zoom.
The theme of Sites of Learning will address current shifts in education and explore new perspectives on contemporary and broadened understanding of learning and knowledge production. Specifically, we will focus on the various learner identities and viewpoints present in our classrooms, as well as on how these affect the ways we occupy and use spaces – as learners, as teachers and as a community. These spaces, both figurative and literal, impact, shape and transform teaching and learning experiences. Presenters at this year’s Symposium will offer insights into diverse teaching strategies aimed at magnifying their potential.
Participants will present in various formats ranging from talks to performances and workshops, in which active participation is welcome. The first day of the Symposium will be dedicated to teaching strategies that allow learners to claim learning spaces. In order to frame our thinking around these topics, our initial sessions will offer perspectives on various identities in the classroom, as well as tangible solutions for creating inclusive learning spaces. The second half of the Symposium will be dedicated to the ways in which physical learning spaces can be expanded and augmented, affording new kinds of learning, including digital.
While some of the presentations will focus on learning spaces within German language and German studies classrooms, the majority of presenters will share insights and strategies applicable to a variety of teaching subjects and environments. We are convinced that the Symposium will be the place for educators from various fields to discover methods and ideas that they can introduce into their own learning and teaching spaces thus enhancing and improving student learning and experiences across the university campus.