Statement on Engagement and Participation in Class
Students, instructors, guest speakers, as well as readings and media in Sexual Diversity Studies courses often (and intentionally) raise difficult issues in classroom discussion. It is vital for our mutual experience of learning that students and instructors treat each other respectfully at all times in all of these interactions. We are a community of learners in our SDS courses. Given the complex, political, and, oftentimes personal topics we cover, respecting and maintaining a space for critical inquiry and intellectual generosity for all is absolutely crucial. At times this involves thinking through controversial material; at others, struggling with language; and, at still others, productive disagreement. SDS is dedicated to maintaining its classrooms as spaces of intellectual responsibility and possibility, where students ranging from those who are curious about the ideas that SDS enables to those who come to the classroom with strong intellectual and personal investments can engage with, help, and respectfully challenge each other. Constructive response is a value and a gift, and SDS strives to be a place in which necessary discussions concerning sexuality, race, gender, class, disability, citizenship, and cultural and religious affiliations can productively occur.