Brandy Miller and Meghan Briggs: Building Confidence as a Means of Enhancing the Student-Centered Learning Environment

Presentation topic

This workshop introduces participants to the advantages of a student-centered classroom and explores techniques for creating this type of learning environment. After a brief overview of different techniques, the facilitators will focus specifically on increasing student confidence as a means of creating an engaging educational environment. An exploration of common pedagogical differences between the United States and Belgium will reveal different approaches and areas where cross-cultural interaction can aid teachers in continually improving their instruction methods.

Why have you chosen this topic?

We have chosen this topic as a way of sharing new methods to be used as “education tools” to enhance the learning environment in English classrooms. By collaborating our past and current experiences from various works in education and in classrooms, we have picked a topic that is relevant to enhancing student-teacher relations by promoting participation and confidence-building.

What do you hope participants will gain from attending your workshop?

We are hoping to provide insightful tools and methods to educators that can be used to enhance their lessons and approaches to improving learning environments. By actively engaging our participants in the workshop, we hope to demonstrate our methods through an active learning-by-doing approach.


Meghan Briggs is currently working as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at Thomas More Hogeschool in Mechelen, Belgium. Though originally from Overland Park, Kansas, she graduated from the University of San Francisco in 2013 with degrees in European History and French Studies. Prior to receiving her Fulbright grant, Meghan served in the Peace Corps in Indonesia for two years. These experiences have made her passionate about education, and she intends to devote her career to the development of educational opportunities for marginalized peoples.

Brandy Miller is currently splitting her time as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at two Brussels secondary schools, Athénée des Pagodes and Institut de la Vierge Fidèle. Originally from Santa Maria, California, Brandy forged a non-traditional path by independently studying in Munich, Germany for 3 years. Through her involvement with an international education NGO called CISV in Germany, Israel and Japan, Brandy discovered her passion for peace education and multilingualism. In May 2016, she graduated from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon with a degree in German Studies.