Recommitting to trauma-informed teaching principles to support student learning: An example of a transformation in response to the coronavirus pandemic



In our roles as adjunct faculty and full time higher education administrators managing an online program, the two authors were already using Trauma Informed Teaching and Learning (TITL) practices in our own classrooms and training and mentoring faculty on the use of TITL practices as well. However, as a result of the pandemic, we both found that our use of trauma-informed teaching and learning practices significantly increased, particularly our compassion, collaboration with students, and flexibility with assignment deadlines. In this essay, we reflect on our individualized experiences as adjunct faculty, one teaching during the first semester of the pandemic in March-May and the other teaching during the second semester of the pandemic in May-July. Because of the collective trauma and distress of the pandemic, we gained a new perspective on a practice we believed in -- we reconceptualized TITL practices as much more fundamental to teaching, both now and in the long term.