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Mental Health, Student Engagement & Resiliency (Roundtable #20112)

U of Buffalo, NY
Organization: Northeast MLA
Event: Roundtable #20112
Categories: Miscellaneous
Event Date: 2023-03-23 to 2023-03-26 Abstract Due: 2022-09-30

54th Annual Northeast MLA 2023 Conference March 23-26, 2023 

Niagara Falls, NY, hosted by U of Buffalo 

Call for Proposals Roundtable #20112: "Mental Health, Student Engagement, and Resiliency" 

Numerous studies and articles support what most of us already know and have been experiencing: our students mental health has reached a breaking point. The significant struggles student express in class might result from stressors experienced prior to attending college, the stresses of college life, or to ones clearly related to a specific class or assignment. Educational institutions activated support systems to help students cope with these stressors, but their availability and use varies widely based on a variety of factors. Regardless of whether students explicitly seek out support, the results of their struggles will be expressed through engagement or a lack thereof in the classroom.   

Increasing engagement through three areas—behavior, affect, and cognition—will lead to more resilient students, classes, and institutions. Their ability to critically engage with their peers, teachers, and the curriculum can be enhanced by helping students feel a sense of belonging. A mindful approach to pedagogy and practice can create this classroom community by developing activities and conversations that allow students express, understand, and act.  

We need to welcome these conversations. Most of us are not trained to navigate the moments of pain, anxiety, and concern that may arise during class; however, passing on them is not the answer because students will suffer. We need to provide faculty with training and guidance on how they might discuss and use these struggles to help students successfully navigate their concerns and to continue to complete assignments and attend class.  

This roundtable is looking to create a robust discussion on how faculty can be more competent and confident negotiating their students’ mental health struggles during in-class conversations, and for ways to incorporate student mental health concerns into critically successful content-related assignments. Strong examples of praxis, pedagogy, and patience from multiple disciplines are welcome. 

If you are interested in submitting for this roundtable, open the submission portal and search with session number 20112

October 15 is the deadline to submit abstracts: https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/CFP 

Confirmed panelists with accepted proposals will need to update membership/registration fee by Dec 9. 



Dr. Tim Gerken and Dr. Cynthia Pope

Department of Writing Studies, Rhetoric & Composition

twgerken@syr.edu and cmpope@syr.edu

239 H.B. Crouse Hall, Syracuse, NY 13244
Office 229 | wrt.syr.edu

Syracuse University



Dr. Tim Gerken