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Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President

2013-2014 Provost Lecture Series

John Fliter

Games without Frontiers: Promoting Active Learning in the Classroom and Beyond

Friday, May 9, 2014
3:30 p.m.
Hemisphere Room
Hale Library

Dr. John Fliter
Associate professor of political science
2013-2014 Coffman Chair for Distinguished Teaching Scholars

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Fliter is an associate professor of political science at Kansas State University. He received his B.A. in political science from California State University, Northridge, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Maryland, College Park. He has written articles on freedom of speech, church-state relations, the jurisprudence of Justice David Souter, and prison reform litigation. His recent book, Fighting Foreclosure: The Blaisdell Case, the Contract Clause, and the Great Depression, co-authored with Derek Hoff, was published by the University Press of Kansas in 2012. Dr. Fliter’s research interests include the Supreme Court and the New Deal, judicial policy making, civil rights and liberties, and law, politics and literature. He teaches courses on U.S. politics, the judicial process, administrative law, constitutional law, civil rights and liberties, and law, politics and literature.


Simulations, games, and role-playing exercises involve the creation of simulated or hypothetical scenarios that provide participants with life-like problem solving experiences. These activities promote the application of knowledge, sharpen critical thinking skills, and develop in students a deeper understanding of complex decision making processes. Active learning assignments also fit nicely into the K-State 2025 plan objectives to enhance the undergraduate learning experience by providing an engaged, participatory culture of learning. My presentation explores the challenges and benefits of using these activities in the classroom, identifies how these pedagogical tools are already being used across campus, and highlights some of the active learning projects completed during the past year.