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Development of a Faculty Learning Community to Transform STEM Teaching and Learning
Research has demonstrated that student learning and academic success are improved when students are actively engaged during class. Yet these evidence-based teaching practices are not widely adopted in introductory STEM courses. Faculty report the primary factors that hinder their implementation of evidence-based instructional strategies are insufficient time to plan and prepare materials, concerns about content coverage, and a lack of institutional support. We will describe the development of a faculty led learning community, the Transforming STEM Teaching and Learning Academy, that was established to support STEM faculty as they adopt evidence-based best practices in their courses. Faculty from 5 colleges and 9 departments have been represented thus far. The Academy introduced STEM faculty to the latest research on effective instruction in undergraduate STEM and exposed them to a variety of pedagogical techniques that have been successfully implemented in STEM courses to improve academic success. In addition, the program informed faculty about existing campus resources available to improve student learning, such as the Center for Teaching and Learning and Office of Assessment and Accreditation. These groups led professional development workshops for the Academy participants. Peer collaboration, support and feedback were integral parts of the cross-disciplinary program. Faculty who participated in the program reported an increase in their implementation of evidence-based instructional strategies. In addition, faculty noted that they were more equipped to pivot online in March 2020. Several examples of course transformations by the STEM faculty will be presented.
Poster of Development of a Faculty Learning Community (Acrobat (PDF) PRIVATE FILE 756kB Jun3 21)
Development of a Faculty Learning Community to Transform STEM Teaching and Learning -- Discussion
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