Joseph M. Incandela, Ph.D.
professor & academic administrator
Find samples below of my work as a professor of Religious Studies and endowed chairholder:
Syllabus for Religious Studies 240: "Catholic Social Thought." Click the icon at left to download the syllabus.
Sample Assignment for Religious Studies 240: One option that students have for their semester project in this class is to correspond with death row inmates to learn more about capital punishment in the United States. Click the icon at left to download the full assignment.
Sample Assignment Rubric for Religious Studies 240: Students can access rubrics through the course website for each assignment they submit. They then receive a completed rubric back from me when their papers are return. Click the icon at left to download the rubric.
Syllabus for Religious Studies 370: "Aquinas's Search for God—Faith Meets Philosophy." Click the icon at left to download the syllabus. See also "The 3 Essential Functions of Your Syllabus" by James Lang from The Chronicle of Higher Education in which this syllabus is mentioned.
Video Trailer advertising "Aquinas's Search for God": Click the icon at left to view the video.
App developed for "Aquinas's Search for God": Available on iTunes app store and Google Play
Online Self-Assessment Form for Religious Studies 370: Students must fill out an online self-assessment form after every class in which they evaluate their own learning, contributions to the seminar, and the performance of the entire group based upon a rubric they themselves derived at the beginning of the semester. Click the icon at left to be taken to the form.
[Dr. Incandela] is a very talented professor. His classes always fill quickly, and students remark years after graduation that what they learned in his classes still influences their lives.
—Susan Vanek, Saint Mary's College, Associate Dean for Advising
When I was a high school senior looking at colleges, I met Dr. Incandela while visiting Saint Mary's and the two of us struck up a conversation when I stopped at the Religious Studies table. By the time I left campus later that day, I had made up my mind: Saint Mary's was definitely a place where I could see myself flourishing under the care and wisdom of professors like Dr. Incandela, and I look back on that conversation as integral to my decision to attend the college. I knew from that first conversation that Dr. Incandela was not only a man of great intelligence, but also a man of integrity and compassion. That initial inkling grew into a strong conviction over the course of my time at Saint Mary's, where I had the opportunity to take three courses with Dr. Incandela and to learn from him when he served as my academic adviser. I have never worked harder in any courses in my life as I did in Dr. Incandela's classes, nor have I ever been so deeply rewarded. Dr. Incandela expects a great deal from his students because he believes that they are capable of rising to the task, and he gently but firmly nudges his students to achieve their fullest potential. His courses challenged me to explore some of the most complicated ethical, political, and theological questions I have ever considered, and I reflect on these courses as among the most formative that I've taken in my entire undergraduate (and perhaps even graduate) experience. As Dr. Incandela opened our minds, he also opened his heart to us, and even invited us to his home to share in a special meal at the end of the semester. No matter how busy he was, Dr. Incandela always took time for his students and made our needs a priority.
—Sarah King-Politano, Saint Mary's College Class of '09
Joe Incandela is, without question, one of the most profoundly gifted educators I have ever met. Joe teaches students, not just classes, as he encounters each learner as unique. Proof of this talent is evident in student feedback, as offered on ratemyprofessors.com: 'Dr. Joe is simply amazing...he offers a fun, trusting, challenging classroom atmosphere that fosters amazing discussions. His papers make you think and he gives more feedback than any other professor does.' His colleagues at Saint Mary's often marvel at his ability to foster such growth in the student. Joe willingly shares new discoveries in pedagogy and technology in colloquia and seminars for faculty.
—Susan Baxter, Saint Mary's College, Senior Lecturer in Communication Studies & Writing Proficiency Program Director
Students lined up to take his classes and spoke of him with deep respect. Joe is multi-talented, a gifted leader and communicator with years of valuable experience and proven vision.
—Gail Mandell, Ph.D., Saint Mary's College, Emerita Professor & Schlesinger Chair in Humanistic Studies
Joe is a terrific administrator and a bright intellect. He is also one of the top teachers at Saint Mary's College. His course, Catholic Social Thought, is widely known among the faculty for its depth, rigor, and thoughtful organization. Joe is the recipient of the College's highest teaching award and service award. It is without hesitation that I recommend Joe Incandela as an academic professional of the highest caliber.
—Tom Fogle, Ph.D., Saint Mary's College, Professor of Biology
I still talk about the class [I] took with you, and beyond that, your dedication to Saint Mary’s is an example to students, faculty and staff alike. . . . Thanks for all the time and effort you invest in Saint Mary’s and its students. And thanks for being the kind of professor that I know I will stay in touch with after graduation.
—Bridget Meade, Saint Mary's College Class of '12
Joe is always respectful of others' work. I have been so impressed with Joe's kindness toward others while being able to make tough decisions. He demonstrates a willingness to listen and offer solutions when asked. And he is tireless in his contributions to the work before him. Students find his classes to be challenging and thought-provoking settings where their ideas are stretched and their ability to articulate their viewpoint honed.
—Nancy Nekvasil Ph.D., Saint Mary's College, Professor & Chair of the Biology Department
Professor Incandela presented abstract Aquinas material in creative ways that made concepts easier to grasp. [He] was always open to discussing Aquinas outside of class and for him, no question was a bad question.
—Samantha Grady, Saint Mary's College Class of '15
One of the reasons Joe is such a good administrator is that he is an outstanding teacher who genuinely respects good teachers. He also possesses a great wit and unfailing good judgment in his use of it. He is that rare and wonderful candidate every Dean search committee is looking for--a great administrator who has also been a first rate teacher and faculty colleague.
—Marc Belanger, Ph.D., Saint Mary's College, Associate Professor & Chair of the Political Science Department
Dr. Incandela is among the best professors I have ever had. His lessons have remained with me for over twenty years... Not only does this professor possess a brilliant and beautiful mind, he has a heart that is fully invested in each of his students, which makes his impact so profound.
—Therese Johnson Borchard, Saint Mary's College Class of '93