Important Tips for Professors Attending Events with their Classes

Attending a cultural event is a really beautiful - often even unforgettable - experience for our students. Their ability to fully benefit from and enjoy a cultural event rests primarily in the hands of their professors like yourself who can provide the academic context and objectives for attending, and also share some practical advice.

Made possible thanks to the support of donors, the Inserra cultural programs are developed for the students, as well as for Montclair State professors, staff and the larger community, over several months. Their active link to classes makes these programs particularly meaningful as they fulfill the university's mission to provide dynamic and creative learning opportunities. 

The following tips can help professors involve individual students or entire classes in these events in an effective way, while at the same time supporting the behind-the-scene organization:

  • Consider including the event in your syllabus. The Inserra calendar is developed and promoted in advance in order to help you provide learning opportunities across disciplines via the class experience.
  • Since students' lives are filled with study, work, and family commitments, integrating the event into your class curriculum provides a crucial incentive for them to attend it. Ideally the event should be required (for credit) and in lieu of a class meeting. In these cases, the class meeting would then be canceled. Students who cannot attend for demonstrable reasons such as a class and work schedule conflict, can be given an alternative assignment comparable to the attendance of the event. (Please contact inserra@montclair.edu for more information). Note that extra-credit is not as effective as required attendance. Alternatively, students can be asked to attend to make up for an absence.

  • If you are developing learning units around the content of the cultural event, feel free to share teaching materials in advance. (Write to fiorete@montclair.edu). A whole community of teachers forms around the events: materials are posted on the event page, pre- and post-event activities are shared among colleagues, questions for the Q&A are discussed in advance, and publication projects are developed after the event. Professors who are particularly invested in preparing their students and embracing publication projects are usually invited to a separate pre-event meeting with the event guests.
  • If you are attending with an entire class (or more than one class), please note that you are expected to RSVP for yourself and your single class/es to make sure that adequate seats are available for your students. Please specify the number of students who have agreed to attend.
  • If you’d like to get an attendance sheet with your students' signatures and check-in/check-out times, please send inserra@mail.montclair.edu a list with the names of the students planning to attend, the name of the instructor and the course title and number. Inform your students that they can sign the attendance sheet at the registration table. The scanned signed sheets are returned to professors within a few days.
  • If only a few of your students are planning to attend, please invite them to RSVP for themselves clearly indicating class and instructor. They will be signing a general student attendance sheet that is sent as an attachment via email a few days after the event.
  • Please share with your students the Tips for Students Attending Events page, and discuss it with them in detail in class so that they understand what cultural events entail and offer.
  • After each event, feel free to share your students’ feedback with us. We cherish their points of view. Our calendar is designed to offer them a unique opportunity for cultural enrichment that is a meaningful part of their university experience.