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From Rusty to Robust: Overcoming the Challenges to Effective Faculty Development

The past 10 years have witnessed some massive growing pains in education. Nearly all aspects at all levels have been touched by efforts to reform in an attempt to create meaningful learning opportunities for today’s students. New tools, skills, approaches, and media have redefined the way we create those experiences, and educators who don’t learn and engage in them will see themselves become increasingly irrelevant. In short, faculty development now more than ever is necessary to an institution’s viability.

Getting Started with Faculty Learning Communities

Your institution may have department meetings and may even have communities of practice, but does it have faculty learning communities (FLCs)? An effective FLC can positively impact its members’ engagement in and involvement with both their discipline and their institution.

Professional Faculty Development: The Necessary Fourth Leg

The well-known three-legged stool of academic life—teaching, research, and service—has been assumed to cover the main responsibilities of faculty in academic communities. But is there a missing leg that would add strength and stability to the stool? I propose there is. It’s professional faculty development, and I would also propose that faculty committed to teaching should be its most articulate advocates.

A Good Conversation about Teaching and Learning

Last week somebody asked about my goals for this blog. I gave a rather generic answer and realized I hadn’t thought about goals since we first started the blog.

Promoting Research while Advancing Instruction, Part 1

It’s an issue many colleges and universities are facing today: How do you expand research capacity while still preserving an institution’s traditional emphasis on effective teaching? How is it possible to improve your reputation in one of these areas without abandoning your reputation in the other? How can you expand your mission in an environment of increasingly strained budgets, greater competition among institutions (including public, private, for-profit, and virtual universities), and rigorous accountability? And how do you balance the expectation of so many legislatures and governing boards that you demonstrate student success with their simultaneous expectation that you obtain more and more external funding from sponsored research and the frequent pursuit of grants?

Two Lessons Learned at The Teaching Professor Conference

I’m just back from The Teaching Professor Conference. Part of what makes the event so successful is the way it confronts faculty with how much there is to learn about teaching and learning, and how much of that learning can be achieved by working with one another. Each year I am inspired by the insights participants bring to the conference and share freely with others.

Strategies for Growing a Campus-Wide Professional Development Program

Professional development is essential for maintaining and developing the skills of higher education employees. Beyond educating students, colleges also have to keep faculty and administrators continually updated with the latest technology, changes in enrollment characteristics, and larger societal issue so that they can help students be more successful.

“Learningful” Conversations: The Value of Exchanges with Colleagues

I’ve been reading pedagogical literature for a long time and so I don’t often come upon a topic I haven’t seen before. But this week I came across one — it was an article on conversation in an international faculty development journal.

Recent Seminars

Building a Comprehensive Professional Development Program

Professional development promotes the vitality of your campus community and supports long-term student success. This seminar will give you the framework you need to develop and implement a successful professional development program for your campus.

audio Online Seminar • Recorded on Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

How to Evaluate the Impact of Faculty Development Programs

Effective faculty development programs deliver valuable training and can greatly enhance teaching and learning at your college or university. When they are ineffective, however, they can be a big waste of everyone’s time and money. We’ll show you how to measure the success of your faculty development efforts.

audio Online Seminar • Recorded on Thursday, March 17th, 2011

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