ICS Calendar Title: Vocational Wayfinding
ICS Course Code: ICS ICSD 132502/232502 W18
Instructor: Dr. Gideon Strauss
Term and Year: Winter 2018
Last Updated: January 3, 2018. Note: This is the final version of the syllabus, but there may still be small deviations from the syllabus in the actual course. These will be clearly communicated in the Google Classroom.
“What am I to do with my life?” “Who am I?” There appears to be an inextricable connection between the work that we do and our sense of who we are. As the poet David Whyte has suggested, work is for all of us a pilgrimage of identity. It is not, however, a pilgrimage for which any of us are provided with a GPS device, allowing us to navigate in straight lines with comfortable certainty towards clear career objectives that cohere in obvious ways with an immutable sense of our identity. Instead, this pilgrimage is more like the experience of Polynesian sailors, who traversed the vast expanses of the Pacific Ocean with the help of the stars, memory, and close attention to the patterns of the waves on the surface of the ocean as these reflected features of the ocean (including far-off islands). Polynesian wayfinding was a way of navigating that required alert improvisation and frequent reorientation from within a perpetually shifting context. Our vocational pilgrimages require of us to find our way in a similar manner.
In this course we will explore particular practices, frameworks, and tools, by means of which we can engage in vocational wayfinding. Prompted by our readings we will consider some of the relationships between work and identity: How does my work prompt my discovery of my sense of self? How do I try out possible selves in relation to whatever in the world is calling me toward particular kinds of work? What am I to do with my life? We will give close attention to those passages in our lives (in particular young adulthood and the middle passage of life) when both our work contexts and our experience of our identity are most obviously in flux. In addition, we will consider how to contribute skilful leadership and insightful mentoring to others as they engage in their own vocational wayfinding, particularly in the contexts of the workplace and educational institutions.
This is a hybrid course with both online elements and in-person sessions. The online elements of the course will start on January 31 and finish on April 25. The five in-person sessions will take place at Toronto District Christian High School (TDCH) from 6 pm to 9pm on each of February 14 and 28, March 21, and April 11 and 25. (Plan to bring your own supper to class on those dates!) March 14 will be an off-week. For participants doing the course or credit all outstanding work will be due by no later than May 18.
Note: These requirements are for those students taking the course for credit (as a certificate course or towards a degree).
Grasp of Subject Matter
Other Qualities Expected of Students
A RANGE: Excellent: Student shows original thinking, analytic and synthetic ability, critical evaluations, broad knowledge base
Profound and Creative
Strong evidence of original thought, of analytic and synthetic ability; sound and penetrating critical evaluations which identify assumptions of those they study as well as their own; mastery of an extensive knowledge base
Clear evidence of original thinking, of analytic and synthetic ability; sound critical evaluations; broad knowledge base
B RANGE: Good: Student shows critical capacity and analytic ability, understanding
of relevant issues, familiarity with the literature
Good critical capacity and analytic ability; reasonable understanding of relevant issues; good familiarity with the literature
Satisfactory at a post-baccalaureate level
Adequate critical capacity and analytic ability; some understanding of relevant issues; some familiarity with the literature
Failure to meet the above criteria
Burnett, Bill, and Dave Evans. Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life. Knopff, 2016. [272 pp.] (Hereafter referred to as Evans, a little unfairly.) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HF5381 .B7785 2016]
Ibarra, Herminia. Working Identity: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your Career. Harvard Business School Press, 2004. [199 pages] (Hereafter referred to as Ibarra.) [UTL Business Library: CC HF5384 .I23 2004 (Career Resources)]
Parks, Sharon Daloz. Big Questions, Worthy Dreams: Mentoring Emerging Adults in Their Search for Meaning, Purpose, and Faith. Revised 10th Anniversary Edition. Jossey-Bass, 2011. [352 pages] (Hereafter referred to as Parks.) [UTL Robarts Library: BL42 .P37 2011X]
Smith, James K.A. You Are What You Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit. Brazos, 2016. [240 pages] (Hereafter referred to as Smith.) [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BV 176.3 .S48 2016]
Whyte, David. Crossing the Unknown Sea: Work as a Pilgrimage of Identity. Riverhead Books, 2001. [272 pages] (Hereafter referred to as Whyte.) [UTL Robarts Library: BJ1498 .W48 2001X]
Argyris, Chris, “Teaching Smart People How to Learn,” Harvard Business Review, 1991. [UofT Library e-resource: http://go.utlib.ca/cat/8395274]
Brooks, David. “The Odyssey Years.” New York Times, October 9, 2007.
Buster, Bobette. “Can you tell your story?” Do Lectures, 2012. (www.thedolectures.com/bobette-buster-can-you-tell-your-story)
Byock, Ira. Dying Well: Peace and Possibilities at the End of Life. Riverhead Books, 1997. [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: HQ 1073 .B96 1998]
Christensen , Clayton M., “How Will You Measure Your Life?,” Harvard Business Review, 2010. [UofT Library e-resource: http://go.utlib.ca/cat/8395274]
DeLong, Thomas J. and DeLong, Sara, “Managing Yourself: The Paradox of Excellence,” Harvard Business Review, 2011. [UofT Library e-resource: http://go.utlib.ca/cat/8395274]
Drucker, Peter F., “Managing Oneself,” Harvard Business Review, 2005. [UofT Library e-resource: http://go.utlib.ca/cat/8395274]
Garber, Steven. Visions of Vocation: Common Grace for the Common Good. IVP Books, 2014. [UTL Knox College Library: BV4740 .G37 2014]
Gelb, David, director. Jiro Dreams of Sushi. Magnolia, 2011. [Robarts Media Commons: VideoDVD 758465]
Green, Penelope, “Really Thinking About Things,” New York Times, 2007 [3 pp.]. (http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/08/garden/08turkle.html?fta=y&_r=0)
Hall, Donald. Life Work. Beacon, 2003. [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: PS3515 .A3152 Z475 2003; UTL Robarts Library: PS3515 .A3152 Z475 1993. Note: this is not the same edition]
Hall, Donald. The Best Day the Worst Day: Life with Jane Kenyon. Houghton Mifflin, 2005. [UTL Robarts Library: PS 3561 .E58 Z74 2005]
Jerome, John. Stone Work: Reflections on Serious Play & Other Aspects of Country Life. University Press of New England, 1989. [UTL Engineering & Computer Science Library: TH2249 .J47 1989]
Keller, Timothy, with Katherine Leary Alsdorf. Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work. Penguin Books, 2014. [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BT738.5 .K35 2014]
Kurtz, Glenn. Practicing: A Musician’s Return to Music. Knopf, 2008. [UTL Music Library: ML419 .K97 A3 2007]
Lane, Belden C. The Solace of Fierce Landscapes: Exploring Desert and Mountain Spirituality. OUP, 1998. (In particular the coda to chapter 3, “Mythic Landscape / Stalking the Snow Leopard / A Reflection on Work.) [UTL Knox College Library: BV4501.2 .L31834 1998]
Meehl, Cindy, director. Buck. MPI, 2011. [Victoria University Emmanuel College: DVD Video .B855]
Meilaender, Gilbert C. (ed). Working: Its Meaning and Its Limits. University of Notre Dame Press, 2000. [UTL Trinity College Library: BJ1498 .W64 2000]
Nichols, Mike, director. Wit. HBO, 2001. [Robarts Media Commons: VideoDVD 757394]
O'Connell, Ainsley. “Stanford's Most Popular Class Isn't Computer Science—It's Something Much More Important.” Fast Company, March 2015. [2pp.]
Parks, Sharon Daloz. Leadership Can Be Taught: A Bold Approach for a Complex World. Harvard Business School Press, 2005. [UTL Robarts Library: HD57.7 .P3655 2005X]
Rankin, Lissa. The Anatomy of a Calling: A Doctor’s Journey from the Head to the Heart and a Prescription for Finding Your Life’s Purpose. Rodale, 2015. [available through the Toronto Public Library (TPL) system and online through TPL]
Riedelsheimer, Thomas, director. Rivers & Tides. Docurama, 2004. [Robarts Media Commons: VideoDVD 763130]
Senge, Peter, “The Leader’s New Work,” Sloan Management Review, 1990. [UofT e-resource: http://go.utlib.ca/cat/7755215]
Smith, James K.A. Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation. Baker, 2009. [240 pages] [ICS Library Reserve Shelf: BV178 .S63 2009]
Stanford d.school. The Design Thinking Toolkit for Educators.
Stanford d.school. Virtual Crash Course in Design Thinking. (https://dschool.stanford.edu/resources-collections/a-virtual-crash-course-in-design-thinking)
Swanbeck, John, director. The Big Kahuna. Lions Gate Films, 2000. [Robarts Media Commons: VideoDVD 753295]
Williams, Tod and Tsien, Billie, Wunderkammer. Yale Books, 2013. [UTL Robarts Library: NA680 .W55 2013Y]
Further recommendations may be made by the instructor during the course.
All assignments for a particular week must be completed by the deadlines provided in the Google Classroom, although a total of two emergency exceptions to this requirement may be arranged by means of timely email correspondence with the instructor. In the absence of such timely arrangements, assignments not completed within the required time frame will receive a zero grade.
January 31, 2018
February 7, 2018
February 14, 2018
February 21, 2018
February 28, 2018
March 7, 2018
March 21, 2018
March 28, 2018
April 4, 2018
April 11, 2018
April 18, 2018
April 21, 2018
Students with diverse learning styles and needs are welcome in this course. In particular, if you have a disability or health consideration that may require accommodations, please feel free to approach me and/or Student Services as soon as possible.
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