Welcome to Episode 41 of the ThinkUDL podcast: An Online Pedagogy of Kindness with Cate Denial. Cate Denial is the Bright Distinguished Professor of American History and Director of the Bright Institute at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. In this episode, which is part of a Summer 2020 series on Universal Design for Learning in online environments, I ask Cate about how she applies the concepts in her 2019 article (and forthcoming book) “A Pedagogy of Kindness” to online courses. In this conversation, Cate explains how her ideas about trusting her students, believing them and believing in them, and employing an ethos of care are utilized in specific online design principles and actions. Along the way, Cate and I connect these ideas to Universal Design for Learning principles to provide our listeners with opportunities to implement not only well-researched and neuro-science based UDL principles in online or hybrid courses, but also --as Cate so eloquently writes and speaks about-- a pedagogy of kindness as well.
I just wanted to add a short signpost here before the interview. Cate mentions the term LMS several times in our conversation and this refers to a Learning Management System. An LMS is a technological platform managed by the college or university where the instructor and students can access the course content and communicate with each other throughout the course. I am thankful for Cate’s thoughtfulness and, yes, kindness, in wanting us to define our terms for our listeners.