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A Framework for Assessing Teaching Effectiveness (FATE)
Shawn Simonson, Boise State University
In higher education, teaching evaluation is often inadequate and inaccurate, neither improving teaching directly nor incentivizing teaching improvement. Complicating this is that effective teaching is difficult to assess and one or two subjective measures do not accurately consider all aspects of teaching and are often nebulous without established standards. COVID-19 may actually have helped by drawing more attention to this and reducing resistance to change as people became uncomfortable with student course evaluations not telling the complete teaching story that faculty and departments want told.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Faculty Evaluation
Resource Type: Blog Post

Start somewhere: Resources on equity and inclusion for STEM and higher education
Kate White Temple University Naneh Apkarian Arizona State University Kate White (Western Michigan University), ASCN Research Director Naneh Apkarian (Western Michigan University)
These recent articles and resources are meant to serve as a starting point for learning about equity, inclusion, diversity, and justice - with a particular focus on addressing systemic anti-Black racism - within STEM and higher education. This list of resources is long, but not by any means exhaustive. As change agents and scholars, we know that effecting change requires informed action. We hope you will use these and other resources to develop concrete and informed action plans. Please use the comments to share additional resources and concrete actions being taken by you and your institution. We also invite you to join the conversation in our Equity and Inclusion Working Group. If you would like to join, please fill out the form to Join the Network and indicate that you would like to join Working Group 5 (Equity & Inclusion). On Wednesday, June 10, we join the movement to #ShutdownSTEM ( This site may be offline. ) .

Change Topics (Working Groups): Equity and Inclusion
Resource Type: Blog Post
Program Components: Professional Development:Diversity/Inclusion

Communicating and Collaborating Across Disciplines
Judith Ramaley, Portland State University; Judith Ramaley
Those of us who are working on ways to attract students to the study of STEM fields must design a curriculum that prepares our students to understand and manage complex problems where scientific knowledge interacts with other ways of looking at the world. This means finding ways to work across disciplinary boundaries so that these problems can be studied in their broader social, political and environmental context. Boyd (2016, p. B4) argues that "if we really want to matter, we need to think critically about the questions we ask---and the questions we don't ask---and what influences that distinction." The questions we ask have powerful effects on how we design the curriculum, what we expect of ourselves and our students and how we work together with colleagues in our own department as well as other fields to prepare our graduates to live and work in a changing and uncertain world.

Resource Type: Blog Post
Program Components: Professional Development:Curriculum Development

What we wish we would have known about theories of change and change theory at the beginning
Laura Muller, The Jackson Laboratory; Melissa Eblen-Zayas, Carleton College
Six years ago when we first met, we were two individuals who identified a common challenge on our campuses – namely supporting students who arrived with varying comfort and experience using quantitative (Q) skills in STEM and social science contexts. Talking with others, we were eager to think about how we might collaborate to do better for our students. We wanted to make a change, but change theories or theories of change? We didn't know what those were! As we have learned about change strategies and change theory over the last six years, we've repeatedly come across ideas that make us think, "Wow, we wish we would have known this when we started this project!" This post is an effort to share some of what we've learned with other practitioners who might be trying to change things on their own campuses.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Change Leaders, Guiding Theories
Resource Type: Blog Post

What does systemic change mean to you?
Mark Connolly University of Wisconsin-Madison Mark Connolly
One of ASCN's working groups is focused on theories of change. Its role in the project is to help people engaged in change efforts understand theories and models that could profitably inform systemic change work. At this stage in our working group's development, co-leader Susan Shadle and I are trying to help our 15 members not only get acquainted with each other but also with each other's ideas about systemic change. In November, we asked the group members to answer in 1 or 2 pages this question: What does systemic change mean to you? Below is my response to that question. It is the first of several responses from members of our working group that will be posted on the ASCN blog.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Guiding Theories

How do we recruit, support, and retain diverse faculty? Reflections from our discussion series
Patricia Marsteller, Emory University
Equity, inclusion, diversity, and justice are foundational in effective higher education settings, including STEM disciplines. Our ASCN working group brings together communities whose work focuses on justice, equity, inclusion, and diversity (JEDI) in higher education. In spring 2021, we focused on a series of informal conversations centered on recruiting diverse faculty. In the series we discussed: Why recruiting diverse faculty is important. Promising practices for department leaders, such as creating detailed and inclusive recruitment plans, utilizing cluster hires, broadening searches, using faculty search advocates, and providing JEDI education for faculty and for search committees. Working with other institutional actors (e.g., data analysts, deans) for institutional and departmental reflections, hiring plans, and data needs.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Faculty Evaluation, Equity and Inclusion, Policy
Resource Type: Blog Post
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Personnel/Hiring, Professional Development:Diversity/Inclusion

Creating new knowledge about change by combining research-based knowledge with the wisdom of practice
Kadian Callahan, Kennesaw State University; Charles Henderson, Western Michigan University
One of the core ideas behind the formation of the Accelerating Systemic Change Network (ASCN) is to create and amplify knowledge by fostering interactions between two basic types of people who are working to improve postsecondary education: change researchers and change agents. While there is some overlap in these groups, they mostly operate independently. And, more importantly, each has access to different ideas and types of knowledge. Through knowledge creation and amplification, ASCN builds capacity within and across these two groups to more successfully enact change in undergraduate STEM education. Specifically, ASCN uses the model of a "Knowledge Creating Company." This way to think about business organizations was first published by Nonaka and Takeuchi (1995) who credited it for the success of Japanese companies in the 1980s and 1990s. It has since become highly influential in focusing businesses worldwide on the importance of knowledge and knowledge creation. In contrast to the Western approach to knowledge management, which views knowledge as explicit, Japanese companies place significant value on tacit knowledge.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Guiding Theories
Resource Type: Blog Post

Announcing the Curated Teaching Evaluation Change Initiative Repository
Casey Wright, Western Michigan University; Carlos Goller, North Carolina State University; Sharon Homer-Drummond, PhD, Tri-County Technical College; Stephanie Salomone, University of Portland; Christine Broussard, University of La Verne
The Aligning Faculty Incentives with Systemic Change Working Group is excited to report we havecurated a repository of teaching evaluation change initiatives to support national efforts at the systemic change of faculty teaching evaluation.  Teaching evaluation is an area of critical focus for systemic change efforts to align undergraduate students' experience in STEM courses with best practices for inclusive learning (NASEM, 2020; Boyer 2030 Commission, 2023). Since the academy is deeply resistant to change (Wise et al., 2022), it is critical to share innovations that have successfully impacted teaching evaluation with the systemic change community (e.g., Simonson et al., 2023). We have created the Curated Teaching Evaluation Initiative Repository to meet this need. For the repository, we define an initiative as a concerted program or set of related efforts that have been undertaken to change the policies, processes, or practices around teaching evaluation. These initiatives are not limited to resources for individual faculty to change their teaching practices but instead describe efforts that have been successful in creating systemic change.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Faculty Evaluation
Resource Type: Blog Post
Program Components: Professional Development:Course Evaluation, Institutional Systems:Incentive/Reward Systems, Evaluating Teaching, Professional Development:Diversity/Inclusion

Themes in the National Discussion on Reforming STEM Teaching Evaluation
Ann Austin, Michigan State University
The January 2021 National Dialogue on Reforming Stem Teaching Evaluation in Higher Education, hosted by the National Academies of Sciences Roundtable on Systemic Reform in Undergraduate Stem Education, in collaboration with AAU, APLU, ACSCN, and the TEval Project, involved faculty and administrative leaders from a variety of institutional types in very engaged conversation about teaching evaluation and innovative institutional projects. The lively conversation was evidence of the growing interest nationally in identifying models for more wholistic, effective, and inclusive forms of teaching evaluation as well as resources for initiating campus-wide discussions about reform in teaching evaluation.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Equity and Inclusion, Assessment, Faculty Evaluation
Resource Type: Blog Post
Program Components: Professional Development:Course Evaluation, Institutional Systems:Evaluating Teaching, Evaluating Promotion and Tenure

Departmental Change: Starting an Initiative
Joel Corbo, University of Colorado Boulder; Courtney Ngai, Colorado State University; Gina Quan, San José State University; Sarah Wise, University of Colorado Boulder
The Departmental Action Team (DAT) Project supports departments as they make changes to their undergraduate programs through implementing DATs. This blog post is the second part of a four-part series on DATs, and describes the groundwork laid before a DAT officially forms in a department. Our first blog post describes our use of project principles. If you are interested in learning more, we are leading a free webinar (Tuesday, March 30, 12pm EST) about facilitating change using the DAT model. Register for the webinar.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Change Leaders, Guiding Theories
Resource Type: Blog Post