Concurrent Session 1
Wednesday June 20, 2012
Interactive workshops | 11:00 - 12:00pm (60 mins)
CS1.01 - Blurring Boundaries between Teaching and Learning: The Learning Partnerships Mode
M. Baxter Magolda (Miami University of Ohio) - United States
This session will expand on the Learning Partnerships Model introduced in the keynote presentation. Baxter Magolda will provide a brief overview of the model and how it blends challenge and support to promote complex learning and development simultaneously. She will illustrate learning partnerships through examples of its use in teaching and advising contexts. Examples of the model's implementation in diverse curricular contexts will help participants judge the model's utility in their own educational practice. Session participants will be invited to discuss the degree to which they currently use learning partnership components in their teaching or how they might envision using them. Session participants will also be invited to discuss challenges of using this kind of model including student reactions, educators’ assumptions about students, teaching and learning, and institutional barriers.
CS1.02 - The 3M National Teaching Fellowship: The Nomination & Selection Process
R. Marken (Program Coordinator & Members of the Selection Committee) - Canada
This will be an informal question and answer session. Three members of the Selection Committee will respond to participants’ concerns, clarifying aspects of the published criteria and their implementation.
CS1.03 - 3M National Teaching Fellow "Welcome to my class" - The Opening Act in Anatomy 101
B. Singh (University of Saskatchewan) - Canada
Anatomy is a challenging subject. Most of the students in professional health science programs are not necessarily aiming to become an anatomist! The first lecture/class in anatomy, which most likely is the first class for students in their professional programs such as medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, kinesiology or nursing, plays a critical role in setting the stage for the anatomical sciences and, potentially, for the whole program. Anatomy is also taught in many courses in biology. Students and teachers start to form impressions and opinions of each other from the moment they meet for the first time, and the first impressions play critical roles in an interaction lasting only a few weeks.
We will enact the first class in veterinary anatomy. This will be the first opportunity for the students (you) and the teacher (me) to interact and create a vision of the anatomy course, the teaching methods and the fun that we will have during the course. The topic of the day would be the anatomy of an organ (so, come unprepared), and will provide a glimpse of my somewhat simple teaching methods, my way of explaining concepts and the sense of openness inherently needed to create a collaborative learning environment. I hope to demonstrate an engagement that leads to student contributions to the first lecture and throughout the course.
Following the class (35 minutes), we will collectively reflect for about 15 minutes on how to create an engaging and collaborative first session in any subject that would lead to a higher participation with an aim to create a summary list of items that foster or hinder a good start to learning in a course. The summary would be shared among the participants and submitted to the conference organizers.
CS1.04 - Policies and practices to enhance university teaching: Perspectives from senior administrators, faculty, and educational developers
A. Saroyan (McGill University), L. Taylor (Dalhousie University), D. Stockley (Queen's University) - Canada
• Professor Alenoush Saroyan, McGill University
• Professor Lynn Taylor, Dalhousie University
• Denise Stockley, Queen's University
Panelists representing senior university administration:
• Professor Anthony Masi, Provost, McGill University
• Professor Carolyn Watters, Vice President and Provost, Dalhousie University
• Professor Alan Harrison, Provost and Vice Principal, Queen’s University
Panelists representing faculty who participated in project:
• Dr. Aaron Newman, Dalhousie University
• Dr. Ilana Bank, McGill University
• TBD, Queen’s University
A teaching development project entitled University Teaching: Meeting Challenges and Demands, funded by the Max Bell Foundation of Canada, was implemented from 2006-2010 at McGill, Dalhousie and Queen’s universities.
The overall goal of this project was to enhance the quality of teaching in Canadian universities through policies and practices, including teaching development initiatives. The initiatives for this project, offered in a span of two years in each institution included a) a 35 hour workshop on course design and teaching (CDTW) offered during five days, b) classroom observations with feedback during an entire term following the workshop, and c) informal teaching discussions during an entire year.
The workshops were delivered through each institution’s Teaching Development unit. In all 42 professors took part in this project.
Participants at all three institutions demonstrated gained knowledge in principles of course design and teaching and the application of this knowledge to the courses they taught. They found that both the workshop and consultations provided them with ideas for improving the quality of student learning and for enhancing the design of their course curricula.
Participants consistently voiced that any intervention of this nature was most effective in the second year of their appointment, when they had had a chance to teach and had become aware of their own teaching needs. Moreover, that they had had a chance to establish their research activities and were freer to concentrate on teaching. Participants also agreed that consultations following the workshop and during the term while they were teaching were essential in enabling them to put acquired concepts and knowledge into practice.
The educational developers involved in this project found that the consultation model had to match institutional resources in order to be successful. At McGill, follow-up on demand, done individually, turned out to be the most effective approach. These ‘just-in-time’ consultations were requested by faculty most often to deal with issues surrounding the assessment of student learning. At Dalhousie, monthly discussions worked best and Queen’s the teaching squares model of peer consultation was found to be most effective and sustainable.
Additional evidence of impact continues to amass from all three sites. These include nominations for or success in obtaining internal and external teaching awards, dissemination through scholarly venue on the topic of the scholarship of teaching initiated by participants, and the adoption of the CDTW locally, nationally and internationally by postsecondary institutions.
While the impact of teaching development activities such as the one described above is accumulating, such programs for the most part, are based on voluntary participation. Moreover, in research-intensive universities, policies and practices have not evolved at the level that would lead to the kind of support typically provided for research.
The purpose of this invited session is to:
• Highlight the increasing importance placed on quality teaching internationally;
• Provide a forum to share innovations on university teaching development being implemented in Canadian universities; the types of evidence that senior administrators will require in order to provide greater support and increased budget for the development and recognition of teaching; and what evidence is being used to guide university decision-making;
• Develop mutual understanding between administration and educational developers of administrative constraints for providing release time and other opportunities and resources for teaching development and to explore ways to move forward within these constraints.
CS1.05 - Redefining boundaries: Perceptions of technology use in higher education settings
V. Venkatesh (Concordia University), M. Fusaro, A. Couture (Université du Québec à Montréal), J. Rabah, W. Varela, A. Dahl, K. Alexander (Concordia University) - Canada
The integration of information communication technologies (ICTs) in higher education settings in North America has reached a point where one is hard pressed, indeed, to find a classroom utterly devoid of any digital technology. The varying practices of technology integration have profound implications for stakeholders’ perceptions of course effectiveness. In the present study, we present statistical models which help predict university students’ and instructors’ attitudes towards effectiveness of technology use for academic courses, in addition to gauging their proficiency and knowledge of specific types of ICT tools.
This study was undertaken by researchers from the sous-comité sur la pédagogie et les technologies de l’information et de la communication (SCPTIC), which works under the auspices of la conference des recteurs et des principaux des universités du Québec (CREPUQ). Data for this study were collected from 15,020 students and 2,640 instructors from 12 Québec universities. The rigorous probabilistic sampling strategy used in this study represents 10% of the student population and 20% of the instructor population in these Québec universities.
The survey instrument used was originally developed in 2004 by Concordia University’s Centre for the Study of Learning and Performance (CSLP), then redesigned, translated and piloted at l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) in 2009. The survey gauged course structure preferences, perceptions of the efficacy of learning strategies and teaching methods utilized in higher education classrooms, as well as the level of technology knowledge of university instructors. The instrument also yielded data detailing the variety of ICTs utilized by students and instructors in higher education settings in Québec.
Results from multivariate regression analyses show that students and instructors both perceive teaching methods and pedagogical styles as the most important factors that impact the quality of classroom experiences (R-square=.55 for students, R-square=.21 for instructors). For students, positive impressions of quality of the course is more strongly predicted by intellectually-stimulating content and formal, lecture-style presentations. For instructors, however, lecture-style teaching negatively predicts their quality of classroom experiences; the use of interactive forms of teaching like class discussions are significantly predictive of a positive perception of the learning experience.
In the proposed interactive workshop session, participants will be invited to engage with the research team using electronic clickers. The first part of the workshop will address the results of student perceptions of technology integration, while the second part connects with instructors’ perspectives on the same issue. Through a series of multiple-choice queries, participants will be able to weigh in on what they feel students and instructors feel about technology integration in higher education. The data from participants will be captured live, with the results contrasted with the responses from the 15,020 students, and the 2,640 instructors included in our study. This interactive approach will promote a deeper understanding of the use of technology in higher education from two key perspectives, while using a technology-enhanced forum for a discussion based on attendee participation and feedback.
CS1.06 - Leadership pédagogique et amélioration continue des programmes: quelles sont les clés de la réussite?
M. Bélisle, N. Fernandez (Université de Montréal) - Canada
PRESENTATION WILL BE DELIEVERED IN FRENCH
Les buts de cet atelier sont (1) d’explorer collectivement les conceptions spontanées des participants au sujet du leadership pédagogique; (2) de faire état des modèles conceptuels (Carless, et al., 2000, Gregory-Mina, 2009) issus des écrits scientifiques, notamment en lien avec les compétences (Wisniewksi, 2004), les rôles (Stark, 2002, Lucas, et al., 2000) et les styles (Barnabé et Dupont, 2001) associés au leadership, ainsi que les principes de bonnes pratiques liées à la gestion du changement (Lucas, et al., 2000; Stark, Briggs et Rowland-Poplawski, 2002) et des innovations pédagogiques (Bédard et Béchard, 2009); et (3) de discuter de la place du leadership pédagogique dans un contexte d’amélioration continue des programmes de formation (Briggs, 2007; Lattuca et Stark, 2009) et des pratiques pédagogiques en enseignement supérieur (Diamond, 2002). Les discussions prévues dans cet atelier permettront d’alimenter un projet de recherche-action en cours auprès de leaders pédagogiques du milieu universitaire qui a pour but de documenter les pratiques efficaces existantes et de contribuer à la formation de ces individus. De plus, cet atelier permettra d'apporter un éclairage quant au potentiel et aux limites que les modèles conceptuels existants représentent pour favoriser un apprentissage du leadership qui soit adapté à la réalité du contexte à l'intérieur duquel chacun des participants évolue.
Cet atelier se déroulera sous forme de discussions en plénière et de travail en petits groupes. Dans un premier temps, les participants seront invités à partager en plénière leurs conceptions du leadership pédagogique pour en dégager des caractéristiques communes et divergentes. S’en suivra des présentations de modèles conceptuels de leadership pédagogique et d’exemples de bonnes pratiques en contexte universitaire. L’atelier se conclura par une séance de travail en petits groupes sur les conditions de réussite liées à l’exercice d’un leadership pédagogique dans un contexte d’amélioration continue des programmes de formation et des pratiques pédagogiques en enseignement supérieur.
Les participants prendront conscience de leurs propres conceptions du leadership pédagogique et les confronteront avec des pratiques existantes et des modèles conceptuels validés par la recherche. Cet atelier leur permettra de se questionner relativement aux pratiques de leadership pédagogique existantes dans leur milieu et d’explorer des pistes de solution en vue de promouvoir l’amélioration continue des programmes de formation et le développement des pratiques pédagogiques en enseignement supérieur.
CS1.07 - Experiments in listening
M. Weisberg (Queen’s University) - Canada
What does it mean to be an effective listener? What form(s) does our listening take? Do we listen differently in our academic lives from how we listen to a friend, a spouse, a child? How does the form of our listening affect our interlocutors? Affect ourselves? What helps us listen better? What gets in the way? What’s the relationship between how we listen or are listened to and how we and others learn?
Much of our academic and professional lives consist in us listening or being listened to, yet we rarely explore how we listen and how that can affect teaching and learning. Through a series of activities involving writing, reflecting, small group discussion, and at least one listening exercise, in this Workshop we’ll try to do just that – listen.
CS1.08 - Don’t judge a book by its cover: Using vignettes to address stereotypes and preconceptions about students
C. Popovic (York University) - Canada
In this workshop participants will use vignettes to explore the benefits and disadvantages of stereotypes in the context of higher education, looking first at stereotypes that others may make about us, before turning our attention to our own preconceptions about students. The ways we view others can be seen as a means of establishing boundaries, this workshop will explore ways to challenge those potentially harmful boundaries and barriers particularly when they adversely affect student learning.
Purpose: The workshop is based on an international research study with lecturers and first year students in the US and UK (Popovic and Green 2012), and is targeted at educational developers with an interest in using vignettes to challenge faculty over commonly held stereotypes about students.
Methods: I will use vignettes to explore the benefits and disadvantages of stereotypes in the context of higher education, looking first at stereotypes that others may make about us, before turning our attention to our own preconceptions about students. I will demonstrate how to use vignettes to approach this sensitive topic with faculty. Using this approach I will present a series of short descriptions; gradually participants will discover the complexities of an individual person, complexities that may be obscured by initial preconceptions. As new information is revealed participants will review their initial reaction and discuss their revised responses. Participants will be actively involved in using the vignettes to explore their own beliefs about students and the impact of certain characteristics on student success.
I will briefly share the findings of our research regarding which commonly held stereotypes tend to be upheld and which are frequently unfounded. At the end of the workshop participants will be encouraged to reflect on the usefulness of vignettes to address the issue of stereotypes with their faculty at their home institution.
Intended learning outcomes: Participants will:
• Identify commonly held stereotypes faculty have of their students, and discover which are true and which are unfounded
• List the dangers inherent in failing to challenge unfounded stereotypes
• Experience the use of vignettes to challenge commonly held stereotypes
• Establish the value of using vignettes with colleagues in their own environment.
Popovic, C. and Green, D. (2012) Understanding Undergraduates: challenging our preconceptions of student success, London and New York, Routledge.
CS1.09 - Exploring the boundaries of supporting students with disabilities
V. Brown (University of Waterloo) - Canada
For students with disabilities, “the value of a postsecondary education … cannot be over-stated” (National Council on Disability, 2003, Section II C). Their success at the postsecondary level is influenced by both the direct and indirect impact of the disability, and our institutions have a responsibility to provide appropriate support services to these learners. Although most Canadian institutions provide formal disability support services, many students choose not to participate in formal systems (Fichten et al., 2003; Moisey, 2004). Many seek support directly from their instructor, some requesting formal accommodations while others prefer informal support.
As instructors, we have specific responsibilities to provide accommodation as guided by laws and by institutional policy and practice. But much of the research related to supporting postsecondary students with disabilities focuses on functional aspects of teaching, such as the integration of assistive technologies, universal design of instruction, or effective accommodations.
At this session, we will explore the subtle -- and not so subtle -- boundaries that surround our efforts to support students with disabilities. Floyd and Casey-Powell (2004), for example, emphasized the importance of focusing services on students’ needs, rather than the expectations of the institution. As instructors, how do we meet these needs and expectations? What institutional policies, for example, are in conflict with potential accommodations we want to provide to our students? What boundaries need to remain rigid and which ones should become more porous?
To give context to our discussion, we will begin by examining [presenter]’s (2008) research on the use of disability-specific support systems by graduate students studying at a distance. The focus of this research was to better understand the needs of students with disabilities and explored their experience with disability-specific support services, including their choices related to disclosure, participation in services, and the impact of their disability on their studies. With respect to the essential services and accommodations needed, four themes emerged: “flexibility; effective course design and delivery; interaction with peers and instructors; and instructors’ awareness of the issues facing students with disabilities” (p. 93). The experiences of participants in this research will serve as a foundation for our interactive discussion on the conflicting boundaries that surround our support efforts.
Fichten, C. S., Asuncion, J. V., Barile, M., Robillard, C., Fossey, M. E. & Lamb, D. (2003). Canadian post-secondary students with disabilities: Where are they? Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 33(3), 71-114.
Floyd, D. L. & Casey-Powell, D. (2004, Winter). New roles for student support services in distance learning. New Directions for Community Colleges, 128, 55-64.
Moisey, S. D. (2004). Students with disabilities in distance education: Characteristics, course enrolment and completion, and support services. Journal of Distance Education, 19(1), 73–91.
National Council on Disability. (2003). People with disabilities and postsecondary education. Retrieved January 24, 2012 from http://www.ncd.gov/publications/2003/Sept152003.
Presenter’s citation – removed for peer review. (2008).
CS1.10 - Breaking the boundaries of the podium
M. Bronet (John Abbott College) - Canada
Students sitting in rows at aligned desks with feigned interest looking forward, looking downward onto laps where cell phones lie, or day dreaming of past and/or future events, while the “sage on the stage” drones on about this, that, and the other. Who is actively engaged? At best, the teacher, and maybe not even. Students and teachers confined to traditional educational paradigms, where both physical and psychological boundaries limit imagination, interaction, engagement, socialization, and learning.
Active or participatory learning by the student within a classroom environment has been recognized as an effective, efficient, and superior instructional technique yet few teachers in higher education have adopted this pedagogical strategy. This is especially true in Science where teachers primarily lecture to passively seated students while using static visual aids or multimedia projections. Teachers generally teach as they were taught and lecture formats have been the norm. Although student-learning theories as well as student learning styles, abilities, and understanding strategies have changed, traditional teaching techniques have not evolved past the “chalk and talk” instructional strategy.
This research shows how the breaking of these confines encourage, engage, socialize, and deepen understanding by the in-class group assignment or activity. This research looked into student’s perceptions of cooperative learning in order to gain insight and understanding as to how students felt about this learning technique and paradigm. Student’s attitudes were then compared to student grades to determine whether cooperative learning impeded or ameliorated academic performance. The results revealed significant differences measured in all the survey questions pertaining to perception or attitudes. As a result of the cooperative learning activities, respondents indicated more agreement to the survey questions pertaining to the benefits of cooperative learning. The experimental group exposed to cooperative learning thus experienced more positive attitudes and perceptions than the groups exposed only to a lecture-based teaching and learning format. Each of the hypotheses tested demonstrated that students had more positive attitudes towards cooperative learning strategies.
Participants to the session will learn of the research literature in this area, be exposed to social constructivist theories, and understand the methodology used to assess student perceptions. Participants will be asked to participate in a group-learning experience, where colleagues will collaborate in a multi-disciplinary activity where each member will contribute their knowledge to solve and/or design a particular task. Participant groups will then discuss their approach and/or solution to the learning activity. This follow-up activity will demonstrate not only how groups could learn through peer instruction and involvement but also from between groups sharing knowledge, experience, and understanding. Participants will the learn the theoretical framework of social constructivism, discuss how active learning can be implemented, understand how students perceive the group learning experience, and how this active learning paradigm deepens students understanding and improves academic performance. Participants will discuss how physical “boundaries” of the classroom, i.e. rows of desks, large classes, lengthy syllabus content, and psychological “boundaries”, i.e. abdicating role responsibility, cultural attitudes, can be overcome to create an environment of learning and inclusion.
CS1.11 - Rethinking group work: Maybe our assumptions and expectations are wrong
S. Carliner, (Concordia University) - Canada
ABOUT THE PRESENTATION: Group work is widely advocated for and used in higher education. According to its proponents, group work serves many useful purposes: it replicates the team environment in the workplace and, thus prepares students for it; it promotes peer learning and provides a framework for students to learn from one another. Group work even has ancillary benefits. For example, class teams provide many researchers with a rich, ready source of original data for research used not only in studies on the scholarship of teaching, but also in other fields like management and human resources. That many students do not like group work is rarely a deterrent to its wide use.
Although group work does have a place in higher education, perhaps the assumptions underlying its extensive use should be revisited to make they still hold true today. Some specific questions to consider include: how representative are the groups used on course projects to teams in the workplace? As higher education moves to competency-based models, can group work, as currently devised, really support the development of competencies, especially when a high level of “freeloader” effect is at work? Do other teaching methods and assignments exist that let students learn from one another without involving group work? In research, is the data from classroom teams truly representative of the workplace?
This session raises these questions within two contexts The first is empirically derived research cases of workplace projects in the fields of instructional design and technical and professional communication, which raise questions about the mis-matches among the missions and makeups of workplace and classroom teams. The second context emerges from an experience report of graduate students who worked on capstone projects in their programs that rely on skills taught in introductory courses and that were developed through group projects.
This session then shows how the insights gained guided the recent redesign of one of the introductory courses—including a move away from graded group work in favor of individual assignments supported by structured peer learning.
The session concludes by suggesting broader implications and offers more specific suggestions on when and how to use groupwork as well as when to avoid it—and other types of peer learning activities that can replace it.
METHODS USED IN THE SESSION: Ultimately, this session is intended to spark a meaningful conversation on the role of group work in a university education. To do so, this session presents findings in an interactive way. The speaker presents "raw" results, participants are asked to suggest implications to group work in academic courses, and the presenter thens presents conclusions.
EXPECTED LEARNING OUTCOMES: By the end of the session, participants should be able to: (1) name the assumptions underlying the use of group work in university courses, (2) describe evidence that raises concerns about those assumptions, (3) suggest issues to consider when choosing groupwork to ensure that, when it is used, it truly supports all of the intended goals.
CS1.12 - New ground: Improvisation and exploring boundaries through play
J. Butterworth (McGill University) - Canada
This highly interactive workshop provides the opportunity to go beyond learning boundaries through play, experiential learning activities and facilitated discussion. Participants will learn and practice the basic principles of improvisation which will then be related to exploring teaching practices and learning environments in higher education. Presentation skills, improving group dynamics, creating positive environments and encouraging interactiveness will be central themes of discussion and peer-sharing. Participants will be playfully challenged to examine their own boundaries in terms of collaboration, emotional intelligence, status(power and privilege), active listening and relate these to their pedagogical methods and process.
This workshop engages diverse groups and encourages meaningful dialogues. By inviting participants take a step beyond their usual choices and styles of expression, this workshop provides an example how actively establishing safe and respectful learning environments allows full expression of perspectives and experiences. It also embodies how the pursuit of knowledge and learning is a collaborative, energizing and empowering process for students and instructors.
Theatrical improvisation empowers people to practice their skills of embracing the unexpected and of taking risks. It encourages people to break out of patterns of behaviour that may hold them back professionally, socially, or personally. It enhances one's ability to communicate, cooperate, and to develop more responsive listening skills. Improvisation promotes collaboration, transformation, and discovery.
Participants will be led through set of improvisation games that demonstrate improvisation principles. These activities offer the opportunity to go beyond comfort zones and examine learning boundaries to discover more about oneself, the hidden curriculum, group dynamics and communications. Practical applications and an exploration of pedagogical methods will follow experiential activities wherein participants will discuss and share their expertise and experiences in order to build and enhance teaching practices and learning environments.
After attending this workshop, participants:
1. will be able to identify five principles of improvisation.
2. will appreciate how accepting offers facilitates collaboration.
3. will appreciate how emotional intelligence impacts group dynamics.
4. will appreciate the dynamics of privilege and oppression (status), and the uses of power between groups.
5. will gain knowledge through improvisation exercises about active listening and how it impacts communication.
6. will have the tools to integrate their experiences into their pedagogical process.
CS1.13 - Formative assessment and practice in a law classroom
R. Leckey (McGill University) - Canada
This proposal regarding formative assessment engages directly with the conference theme of Learning without Boundaries. It addresses ways in which the inventive use of formative assessment can help to dismantle two boundaries that are often present as barriers to maximum learning in a highly competitive professional faculty, such as a law faculty. One boundary is between professor and students. The other boundary is that amongst students themselves. While the concrete examples are drawn from a law classroom, the lessons presented are relevant to instructors in other fields, particularly ones where students submit written work.
The purpose of the session is to share positive and negative experiences gained while practicing formative assessment, in particular of student writing, in law teaching. Specifically, the presenter will discuss his integration of evaluation of students’ writing by peers, by the instructor (including individualized and collective feedback), and by themselves. There will also be discussion of solicitation of student feedback on the instructor’s writing. Attention will be paid to ways in which the assignments have been adjusted over time in response to experience and student feedback.
The session will be interactive and the methods used in the session will include brief exposition by the presenter, clicker questions, and participants’ writing of short answers to share with one another.
The outcomes will include, specifically, awareness of concrete means for carrying out peer evaluation and for leading students to revise their work. Another outcome, more generally, will be recognition that a move towards formative assessment in multiple steps does not necessarily entail a massive increase in time invested. The interactive exercises will have prompted the workshop participants to connect the evaluation practices discussed with their own areas of teaching and courses.
CS1.14 - Shifting boundaries: Promoting teaching and learning then and now
J. Britnell, P. Borin (Ryerson University), D. Dawson (University of Western Ontario) - Canada
Just 10 years ago there were big ideas on the horizon of the teaching and learning world of higher education, for example, most teaching will be online (no need for teachers). Some of those ideas have taken root, developed, and influenced what we do and what we value today. As a result, changes have affected individuals and institutions in a variety of ways, for example, new employment positions such as VP Teaching and Learning, teaching chairs, teaching stream faculty, and curriculum consultants.
In this session, we will discuss the big ideas in play 10 years ago and how they have evolved. We will then consider how today’s influences may shape the future of higher education and follow up with a visioning exercise imagining where these ideas will lead us in 10 years’ time.
The purpose of this session is to review major influences on teaching and learning in higher education prevalent 10 years ago, to reflect on the impact and evolution of these influences beyond the boundaries expected and to predict how current ideas will affect the trajectory of teaching and learning in higher education in the years to come.
We will begin with a brief presentation of major ideas from the teaching and learning literature. Through discussion in small and large groups, participants will engage in reflection, discussion and a visioning exercise to identify current big ideas and portray the potential evolution and impact of those ideas moving forward. A framework will be provided to consider the potential changes, for example, changes in infrastructure, employment positions, evaluation of teaching faculty, of students, reward structure. We will consider how these ideas have changed how and what you do today.
Session learning outcomes will include the development of a framework for planning and anticipating change, an increased awareness of the impact and influence of big ideas on teaching structures and practices in higher education, and the use of a creative approach to planning.
In conclusion, the session will reinforce why it is worth paying close attention to the potential of big ideas to inspire and shape changes in higher education and that doing so can allow us to imagine various pathways. The session will provide insights and context and demonstrate the ongoing influence of literature and big ideas on higher education and on our own work.
CS1.15 - Transcending boundaries: Pan university conversations as research method and influence on change
A. Johnson, T. Johnson, J. Fewer (Memorial University of Newfoundland) - Canada
In May 2011, the Senate of Memorial University unanimously ratified an institutional framework for teaching and learning. The precursor of this significant moment in the university’s history was an intense three months of pan-university collaborative consultation. The processes applied in the consultation were congruent with the principles of adult learning and appreciative inquiry – grounded in personal experience and focused on positive learning outcomes. Asking the right questions in the consultative process connected the community in a powerful, shared conversation about positive learning experiences and created momentum towards the development of a robust framework that will guide future initiatives in teaching and learning at Memorial. The high level of engagement and enthusiasm indicated that the university community was ready for a conversation about teaching and learning. Since the framework was ratified, significant progress has been made on implementing many of the recommendations proposed. In this session, the presenters will invite participants to experience a mini - version of the structure of the consultation sessions. Presenters will also share their analysis and insight on why the process was successful, highlight now the consultative process has informed the implementation phase of the initiative, and consider how Memorial’s experience could be replicated elsewhere.
CS1.16 - Exploring the meaning of “development” in educational development
J. Timmermans (University of Waterloo) - Canada
In education, the term “development” is used in many contexts. We refer, for example, to the “development of student learning,” the “development of epistemic beliefs,” and the “development of expertise.” The frequent use of this term suggests a commonly agreed-upon understanding; however, closer analysis reveals that the definition remains vague.
The term “development” also lies at the heart of our identities and work as educational developers. However, in the field of educational development, we have paid great attention to determining whether our work is most appropriately conceptualised as “faculty,” “instructional,” or “educational” development. The comparatively less attention the term “development” has received may reveal a collective discomfort that the notion of “development” somehow implies a “deficit view” (e.g., Land, 2001, 2004; Lycke, 2010; J. H. F. Meyer, personal communication, February 14, 2009). Yet, there is a need to conceptualise the term “development” in educational development in order to provide a firmer theoretical foundation on which the scholarship and practise of educational development may rest. The challenge, Meyer notes (personal communication, February 14, 2009), lies in “translating what is essentially a deficit notion (something is missing, we the anointed will rectify this situation), into one that is positive and empowering.”
This workshop therefore has two goals: The first is to conceptualise the notion of “development.” The second is to explore collectively the implications of adopting a developmental approach in our work as educational developers.
• To address the first goal, we will explore what development is, how it happens, and what may be done to instigate it by reflecting on questions, such as
• What are principles of development?
• How do learners proceed from one stage of development to another?
• What are common sources of development?
• What contexts are most influential in instigating development?
• Are some types of discrepancy more effective than others at instigating development?
• With what actions do learners respond to instigators of development?
We will draw on the literature in the areas of epistemic beliefs development (e.g., Kegan, 1982, 1994, 2000; Rule & Bendixen, 2010) and threshold concepts (e.g., Meyer & Land, 2003, 2005), as well as in the areas of biology, philosophy, and psychology to address these questions. A model for capturing principles of development will be presented and discussed.
Insights gained from exploring these questions will then be applied to address the second goal of this workshop: understanding the implications of adopting a developmental approach to the work of educational development. What is the role of educational developers in the developmental process? What knowledge must we have of the people with whom we work and the institutions within which we work to facilitate development? That is, how can understanding current cognitive, affective, and epistemic boundaries enable us to design experiences that lead to development –that cause these boundaries to be exposed, challenged, and redrawn, potentially leading to the expansion and irreversible transformation of perspectives, selves, and, institutions?
CS1.17 - Multiple levels of assessment to demonstrate the impact of a scholarship of teaching and learning initiative
C. Amundsen, G. Hum, C. Stephanie (Simon Fraser University) - Canada
Purpose and Perspective:
One of the recommendations of a 2008-10 Task Force on Teaching and Learning at Simon Fraser University was the establishment of a partnership between the faculty-initiated Institute for the Study of Teaching and Learning in the Disciplines and the newly envisioned Teaching and Learning Centre. The purpose of this partnership is to support faculty in investigating questions about teaching and learning of interest to them, and to promote conversations and collaborations about teaching across the university, as supported by small ($3K or less) and larger ($10K or less) Teaching and Learning Grants.
The process for the small grants ($3K or less) is year-round, formative and developmental, supported through proposal development workshops, wherein all projects are funded once proposals are finalized. The larger grants ($10K or less) are competitively awarded, adjudicated by a university level committee of faculty peers and restricted to two annual submission deadlines.
With the design of our program in place, we have turned to the development and implementation of an assessment framework to assess the impact of the grants program, and to provide evidence for program revisions. The focus of this workshop is on the assessment framework.
Our assessment framework targets three levels of impact: individual (faculty and student), program/department and institutional. We have identified multiple assessment points at each level. An example of one assessment point at the individual level is evidence of the application of project findings to teaching practice. At the program/department level, we are documenting, for example, how and to whom project findings are disseminated. At the institutional level, we are documenting, among other aspects, the number of projects completed and the number of project collaborations across academic units.
Methods to be used in the session:
Assuming the parameters of a short interactive workshop (55 mins.), we propose the following:
(20 mins) Brief explanation of the Teaching and Learning Development Grants program, outline of the assessment framework and data collected to date. (A 2-page handout will be provided with information and citations to the literature drawn upon to design the grants program and assessment framework.)
(20 mins) Workshop participants will be given a handout with assessment points we have identified at each level (individual, program/department and institutional). We will ask them, working in groups of 3-4, to discuss their overall impressions of what we have presented and to suggest revisions to the assessment framework and/or additional assessment points, noting this on the handout.
(15 mins) We will ask participants to share highlights from their small group discussions and to consider the meaning of our work for their own practice. A compilation of artifacts will be e-mailed to interested individuals.
1. Acquire a sense of how one institution is systematically going about assessing the impact of a scholarship of teaching and learning initiative.
2. Practice using your knowledge and experience to provide feedback and suggest additions or revisions to the assessment framework.
3. Consider the applicability of the presenters’ experience to your context.