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Dean of Students

Common Read Recommendation Form

Posted on Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

The University of Northern Iowa community is beginning the selection process for our "common read" for the 2015-2016 academic year. This book will be used in the curriculum for the First-Year Cornerstone class, provide inspiration for a Strayer Wood Theatre production, and bring together the campus and municipal communities in discussion around critical issues.  The common read selection committee is seeking your book recommendations for this campus-wide project.

This year, the common read must relate to the theme "And Justice for All ...", with a focus on social injustices (poverty, class, education, racism, and other social ills).  The common read selection committee will choose one fiction and one non-fiction book related to this theme from the submissions.

Before submitting your recommendation, ask yourself the following:

1. Will this book stimulate critical thinking and discussion among new UNI students?

2. Will this book provide opportunity for a common intellectual experience for the broader Cedar Falls/Waterloo community through year-long, campus-wide programming?

The criteria for book selection is listed below. The common read should:

- engage students and generate questions, reflection, and conversations across a variety of topics, including a current issue related to the theme "And Justice for All ..."

- be relatively short (preferably 350 pages or less), and at the intellectual level of what should be expected of a college freshman

- challenge students to use critical thinking skills and consider multiple perspectives, moving beyond dualistic (either-or) thinking

- have an author who is currently living, and potentially able to come to campus for a lecture

- be available in a relatively inexpensive paperback edition (less than $15)

- encourage student-driven programs and initiatives

- be readable, tell a good story, and have the ability to enhance classroom teaching by a variety of instructors

Having considered all of the questions and criteria listed above, please complete all of the fields below to submit your recommendation by noon on Wednesday, October 1.