Picture from Affective Learning Institute workshop

Affective Learning Institute (ALI)

Ellen Carey, college Professor/Librarian, leads an activity during a recent Affective Learning Institute workshop.

Rationale for ALI

SBCC’s Title III Hispanic Serving Institution Federal grant, Removing Barriers to STEM Success, includes many professional development and student support opportunities designed to better serve LatinX and low income students, and benefit all our students.  While much of the grant includes interventions specific to STEM students and faculty, several of the grant programs are not STEM-specific and provide professional development opportunities for all credit SBCC faculty to support grant objectives related to student persistence and transfer.  One of the most important is the Affective Learning Institute (ALI) which is designed to provide you with practical tools to use in your classroom or campus programs and give you the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues from across campus departments.  Participation in the ALI makes you eligible for the ALI Retreat and Conference which will include more advanced affective training and will only be open to colleagues who have completed the ALI.  

Description of ALI

Affective pedagogy, also known as non-cognitive pedagogy, or Social-Emotional Learning (SEL), emphasizes the foundational skills and relationships students need in place in order to best absorb, integrate, and apply course content.  During this three-day (9-3:30) intensive institute led by SBCC faculty, participants learn to infuse new teaching strategies directly into curriculum. This experiential workshop explains major approaches to affective learning and presents evidence for how it works to support student success and persistence through the cultivation of  a sense of academic and cultural belonging among students. Belonging is especially important at Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSI), as the research documents the belief that one does not belong in higher education to be among the greatest inhibitors to success for LatinX college students.  

Key to the success of non-cognitive pedagogy is the collaboration between faculty and students to co-produce knowledge to ensure courses are culturally responsive and emphasize cultural wealth, are relevant to students’ experiences and goals, are academically rigorous, and cultivate belonging and community among students and faculty.  Workshop participants experience examples of non-cognitive teaching from the perspective of the student and leave the workshop with tools and techniques that can be immediately integrated into any academic discipline or program.  As instructors live through the pedagogy, they more fully internalize the methodologies and appreciate the personal development benefits of the techniques, as well as become grounded in the academic and communication skills they will soon share with their students.  The faculty participants from across disciplines develop a sense of community among themselves which serves as a model for the community they are encouraged to cultivate in their classes.

The SBCC Library has developed a number of resource guides for faculty interested in learning more about the ALI and its components.

Check out some of the photos below from a recent ALI workshop. Use the right/left arrows to navigate.