Relationship-Rich Education: How Human Connections Drive Success in College

Relationship-Rich Education: How Human Connections Drive Success in College

by Peter Felten, Leo M. Lambert

NOOK Book(eBook)

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What single factor makes for an excellent college education? As it turns out, it's pretty simple: human relationships. Decades of research demonstrate the transformative potential and the lasting legacies of a relationship-rich college experience. Critics suggest that to build connections with peers, faculty, staff, and other mentors is expensive and only an option at elite institutions where instructors have the luxury of time with students. But in this revelatory book brimming with the voices of students, faculty, and staff from across the country, Peter Felten and Leo M. Lambert argue that relationship-rich environments can and should exist for all students at all types of institutions.

In Relationship-Rich Education, Felten and Lambert demonstrate that for relationships to be central in undergraduate education, colleges and universities do not require immense resources, privileged students, or specially qualified faculty and staff. All students learn best in an environment characterized by high expectation and high support, and all faculty and staff can learn to teach and work in ways that enable relationship-based education. Emphasizing the centrality of the classroom experience to fostering quality relationships, Felten and Lambert focus on students' influence in shaping the learning environment for their peers, as well as the key difference a single, well-timed conversation can make in a student's life. They also stress that relationship-rich education is particularly important for first-generation college students, who bring significant capacities to college but often face long-standing inequities and barriers to attaining their educational aspirations.

Drawing on nearly 400 interviews with students, faculty, and staff at 29 higher education institutions across the country, Relationship-Rich Education provides readers with practical advice on how they can develop and sustain powerful relationship-based learning in their own contexts. Ultimately, the book is an invitation—and a challenge—for faculty, administrators, and student life staff to move relationships from the periphery to the center of undergraduate education.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781421439372
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date: 11/03/2020
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 208
File size: 2 MB
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Peter Felten is the executive director of the Center for Engaged Learning, the assistant provost for teaching and learning, and a professor of history at Elon University. He is the coauthor of Transforming Students: Fulfilling the Promise of Higher Education. Leo M. Lambert is a professor of education and president emeritus of Elon University, where he served as president from 1999 to 2018. Felten and Lambert are coauthors of The Undergraduate Experience: Focusing Institutions on What Matters Most.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Visions of the Possible
Chapter 2. Why Is This So Hard?
Chapter 3. Making Relationships a Cultural Priority
Chapter 4. Creating Relationship-Rich Classrooms
Chapter 5. Rich Relationships Everywhere
Chapter 6. Mentoring Conversations
Conclusion. The Future Is Relationship Rich

What People are Saying About This

Ted Mitchell

"This is the right book for a challenging time. Whether on campus or online or somewhere in between, relationships matter, perhaps now more than ever. In this wonderful book, Felten and Lambert remind us of that truth and show us practical examples of relationship-rich environments for students, faculty, and staff."

Mildred García

"As our country becomes more diverse and our institutions serve the new majority—first generation students, students of color, and/or low-income students—colleges and universities must learn how to build trusted relationships that demonstrate authentic caring, respect, understanding, validation, and love. Relationship-Rich Education provides guidelines for institutions to follow to ensure success for all students."

James M. Lang

"Anyone who works on a college or university campus—administrators, faculty, and staff—will come away from this book with fresh inspiration to form supportive and meaningful relationships with students. Readers will also find here a trove of creative, practical strategies for achieving that goal."

Adrianna Kezar

"This book takes an innovative approach to student success interventions, focusing on the essential role of relationships in shaping student experience and long-term success. The book includes numerous and detailed examples of how to create relationship-rich environments and incorporates the voices of faculty, staff, administrators, and students to bring its big ideas to life."

Nicholas A. Bowman

"Full of numerous examples of enacting relationship-rich environments, this book marshals a broad range of evidence to make a coherent argument about the importance of relationships while offering specific ways in which they can be enhanced at an individual, departmental, and institutional level. Relationship-Rich Education will resonate with higher education practitioners."

W. Brad Johnson

"Education luminaries Peter Felten and Leo M. Lambert challenge us never to forget that undergraduate education is at heart a relational enterprise. Relationship-Rich Education offers a cogent practitioner's guide to the art of teaching and mentorship—and a stern challenge to institutional leaders to prioritize and celebrate relationship-rich cultures. A game-changer in higher education."

Lynn Pasquerella

"At a time of unprecedented transformation, Felten and Lambert demonstrate why the future of higher education must be grounded in the creation of welcoming campus communities that encourage a sense of belonging. They offer a compelling, insightful guide to fostering relationship-rich undergraduate education and fulfilling the burgeoning equity mandate at institutions of all types."

Louis Albert

"The content of this impressively researched book has the potential to transform institutional culture. The voices of these students grabbed me in powerful ways, enabling me to understand more deeply the value of rich relationships to undergraduate success across institutional types and student status."

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