Karen Gaul

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The Evergreen State College

Materials Contributed through SERC-hosted Projects

Activity

Ethnographic Methods for Community Visioning part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Activities
Rich narrative data we gather through ethnographic interviews can offer important insight into people's values, priorities and goals. Ethnographic methods can be applied in real community planning processes to "take the pulse" of the community, gather a variety of perspectives, and help to shape a planning process. This teaching model is based on work done at The Evergreen State College to help shape a Master Plan for the college's Organic Farm. (A similar approach is being used with the City of Olympia in their Imagine Olympia outreach process for writing a new comprehensive plan). A community planning process is undertaken by students to interview a variety of stakeholders, identify various positions and priorities with regard to the Organic Farm, and report back to the college. The project emphasizes student research as real, applied research; empowering and giving voice to various stakeholders; learning and applying ethnographic and other methods; and working cooperatively together as a consultancy team. Students will develop a wide range of skills that will be critical for future work.

Course

Sustainability From the Inside Out: A Learning Community Guided by Patanjali's Yoga Sutras part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Courses
This year-long, interdisciplinary, learning community explored the challenges inherent in pursuing sustainable living in today's world and offered concrete tools to move toward a positive global future. Based on the idea that effective community action stems from careful self-reflection, the program focused on a simultaneous journey inward as well as outward.

Other Contribution

Voices of Practice: Teaching Yoga, Sustainability, and Justice part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Essays
Karen Gaul, The Evergreen State College Description This essay describes experiments in a practice-based model of teaching at The Evergreen State College. Integrating yogic texts such as the Yoga Sutra with ...