American Liberal Arts Blog

Teaching the Liberal Arts in the American Context

Gerson Moreno-Riano

The Olympics: Nationalism within a Global Context
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on February 25, 2010

Having just co-presented a paper on teaching the American political tradition in a global context, it has been fascinating to watch the Vancouver games and think about nationalism and globalization. For all of the talk about globalization, the Olympics are a great display of how entrenched nationalism still remains.


The Job Application Process: Some Common and New Mistakes
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on February 22, 2010

Several colleagues and I are in the process of interviewing candidates for positions in our department. The candidate pools are large and impressive—perhaps the most impressive I have ever seen. I have read profile after profile after profile and it never ceases to amaze me how job candidates structure their materials and present themselves. Here are some basic guidelines from the trenches:


Snowed In at APSA's Teaching and Learning Conference
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on February 06, 2010

 This picture captures the scene outside APSA's Teaching and Learning Conference at the Sheraton Society Hill Hotel in Philadelphia.


Live from APSA's 2010 Teaching and Learning Conference
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on February 06, 2010

I am coming to you live from APSA's 7th Teaching and Learning Conference in Philadelphia.  Thus far, here are some important details:


On Board the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75)
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on February 05, 2010

The USS Harry S. TrumanImagine going from 150 mph to 0 mph in 3 seconds. Imagine going from 0 to 150 mph in 3 seconds. Imagine a force four times that of gravity on your body. This is just part of what I was able to experience during my visit to the USS Harry S. Truman last week.


A New Year's Resolution
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on January 11, 2010

As we begin another decade, it is fitting to reflect on our calling as faculty—the education of the minds and souls of students. I am now beginning my second decade as a university professor and today marks the first day of classes in my university. There is much to distract faculty in today’s higher education environment. There are pressures from administrators, assessment directors, program directors and interested constituents. It is as if today’s faculty are expected to be much like congressional representatives—delegates representing various hostile interests. Amidst all of this “representation,” it is easy to forget our calling to educate.


Hey, little kids, do you want some candy? Part II
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on December 02, 2009

For those who read Part I of this post, you may recall that a fellow academic or “lead assessor” was conducting a meeting in which I was present. This lead assessor colleague of mine decided to deploy a positive reinforcement technique through the handing out of Hershey Chocolate Bars to all contributing participants.

I sat in complete horror and disbelief. All of the sudden I realized that this elementary technique of positive reinforcement, one that has been tried on little children and canine mutts everywhere would be deployed on all of my colleagues and myself.

“What would happen next?” I wondered. How would this candy be given out? What were the rules of this game?


Hey, little kids, do you want some candy? Part I
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on November 27, 2009

Some Friday fun! This blog post is purely a funny anecdote. If you are looking for meaty intellectual substance, then you will have to read another post. I have decided that for this post I would re-tell one of my assessment experiences that has garnered laughs around the globe.


General Education, Service Learning, and Experiencing the Becoming
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on November 09, 2009

Is it possible to learn through doing? To what degree is a liberal arts general education curriculum truly liberal arts if one involves students in service learning—in learning through doing? In my journey through leading the revision of the general education curriculum at my own university, I have encountered various arguments for and against this question. Some argue that service learning unduly muddles a true liberal arts curriculum with avant-garde pedagogy and a substitution of academic rigor with experiential learning. Others suggest that liberal arts education in the 21st century has to include some type of experiential learning to relate the intellect and the will in the constantly changing global landscape.


The Land of Mordor, Mount Doom, and General Education
By Gerson Moreno-Riano on October 22, 2009

Evaluating and revising a general education curriculum is much like a journey through the Land of Mordor on the way to Mount Doom. Few are one’s allies, many are one’s enemies, perils abound and there is darkness everywhere. I may perhaps write about allies and enemies alike at some other time. For now, I want to write about some of the perils and darkness that pervade the terrain.


about the author

Gerson Moreno-Riano
Gerson Moreno-Riano

Gerson Moreno-Riano has been appointed as Dean of the School of Undergraduate Studies at Regent University.  He is also an associate professor of government at Regent.  He has been at Regent since 2006.

Moreno-Riano's latest publications include the co-authored The Prospect of Internet Democracy (Ashgate, 2009) and the edited volume The World of Marsilius of Padua (Brepols, 2007).  He is currently at work on two commissioned projects: 1) a companion to Marsilius of Padua and 2) organizational evil in the modern era.