Equity and Inclusion

The Bok Center aims to foster teaching and learning communities in which all students can learn and thrive in ways inclusive of their diverse backgrounds and identities.

If you are seeking to cultivate greater equity and inclusivity in your Harvard course or learning community, please tell us more about your interest and submit an inquiry here. Learn more about our approach and programming below.

Overhead shot of overlapping multicolored cards with text about teaching on them

Framework & Evidence

We begin from research-based frameworks and testimonies on power and privilege in the classroom: what approaches can we recommend from critical pedagogical theory, for instance, or research on inclusive teaching strategies? Moreover, what do teachers and learners at Harvard have to say about what makes a learning environment equitable and inclusive? We collect and share both research and perspectives.

UPFs post to the whiteboard at 2019 WTW


Working with these frameworks and testimonies, we aim to clarify: how and where do inequity and exclusion manifest in teaching and learning at Harvard? How and where can we best engage partners to produce change? We target both “technical problems” at the level of classroom teaching technique and “adaptive challenges” at the level of academic culture.

Faculty members look at each other and discuss a workshop that is being presented to them


In alignment with the strategy or strategic opportunities that we’ve identified, we (co-)create programming and resources: what kind of conversation, tool, or other intervention does a course or learning community need in order to promote equity and inclusivity in this moment? What is the best partnership structure for us to support sustained change in practice? We collaborate to shape our offerings.

A group of undergraduate student fellows and graduate student fellows sit around a white rectangular table with colored cards and printed readings scattered around

Reflection & Iteration

We reflect: what do our actions reveal about the “accuracy” or suitability of the frameworks that guide our thinking and/or how we apply those frameworks to our current context? Where can we make adjustments or develop more sophisticated understandings? We iterate our frameworks and programming in response to these reflections.


Faculty and staff sit around a circular table discussing teaching at a seminarFOR FACULTY: Bok Exploratory Seminars offer faculty a collaborative space to deliberate about the most urgent problems and potentially transformational opportunities in higher education, with the primary goal of developing interventions that will chart the course of future teaching and learning at Harvard. In the 2020-21 academic year, Bok Exploratory Seminars focused on anti-racist or critical pedagogy; race, racism, and colonialism in the university curriculum; and/or intersectional and critical approaches to inclusive teaching. See faculty-led projects from past Exploratory Seminars here.


A stack of books with titles including "Indigenous and Decolonizing Studies in Education," "The Privileged Poor," "Teaching to Transgress," "On Critical Pedagogy," "Becoming a Reflective Teacher, and "On Being"FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS: Bok Seminars are designed for GSAS PhD students at every stage of teaching. Equity and Inclusion-themed Bok Seminars cover topics such as critical pedagogy, classroom culture change, and linguistic diversity.

FOR DEPARTMENTS, FACULTY, OR STUDENT INSTRUCTORS: A variety of workshops are available for request on topics ranging from bias awareness training to facilitating difficult conversations about power, privilege, and identity in the classroom. To discuss workshop possibilities with Bok Center staff, please submit an inquiry below.


UPFs Ashley and Skylar present a workshop to faculty



FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS: The Bok Undergraduate Pedagogy Fellows (UPF) program was created with the goal of improving access, equity, and inclusivity in learning experiences at Harvard College. The UPFs’ workshop, "An Introduction to Undergraduate Identities," aims to ensure that participants leave with insights into the Harvard undergraduate experience, as well as a framework and techniques for engaging complex issues of identity, power, and privilege in the classroom. Request a workshop here.


Ming Li, Noelle, and Eleanor present a workshop at Fall Teaching ConferenceFOR GRADUATE STUDENTS: The Bok Center holds a Fall Teaching Conference and Winter Teaching Week each year. These pre-semester conferences offer new Teaching Fellows a chance to prepare for the semester, as well as for more experienced teachers and scholars to continue to develop their skills and to explore areas of interest in teaching and learning. One or more sessions on equitable and inclusive teaching are offered at these events.



Christina Ciocca Eller points to a screen while presenting a Faculty LunchFOR FACULTY: The Bok Center hosts an annual series of Faculty Lunch conversations on aspects of teaching and learning, some of which specifically engage with questions of equity and inclusion. Each lunch is moderated by one or more faculty colleagues, who share their experiences in the classroom and lead a broad discussion of the lessons learned and opportunities for adaptation.

Submit an Inquiry

Please use the Equity and Inclusion Inquiry Form to tell us more about your questions or concerns. We are happy to assist with custom workshops, resource recommendations, nebulous questions, or anything in between! We look forward to being in touch.