“Belonging: The Science of Creating Connection and Bridging Divides”

Hosted by Geoffrey L. Cohen

Everyone desires to feel a sense of community, but many students who enroll in schools and colleges today have a nagging sense that they don’t belong—a feeling that can have real consequences for their academic performance and lead to inequitable outcomes. In this workshop, belonging expert Geoffrey L. Cohen will highlight research in psychology to explain how individuals can overcome differences and forge lasting connections.

Most instructors aim to create a welcoming learning environment, but often inadvertently, they behave in ways that threaten their students’ sense of belonging. Yet small acts that establish connection, brief activities such as reflecting on our core values, and a suite of practices that Cohen defines as “situation-crafting” have been shown to improve motivation and performance, lessen political polarization, combat racism in our communities, and unleash our and our students’ potential. This workshop is essential for anyone who wants their students to thrive.

About the presenter:
Geoffrey L. Cohen is professor of psychology and the James G. March Professor of Organizational Studies in Education and Business at Stanford University. He lives in Palo Alto, California.

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