The SoTL Advocate

Supporting efforts to make public the reflection and study of teaching and learning at Illinois State University and beyond…


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Spring SoTL Offerings at ISU

The Office of the Cross Endowed Chair in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning will offer three events this spring: two workshops and a brown bag lunch with the Chair of our IRB to discuss protection of human subjects in SoTL research.

Reservations via email to Jen Friberg (jfribe@ilstu.edu) will be taken for ISU faculty, starting next Monday, 2/6/17.  Read below for details on each event:

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New SoTL Journals to Explore

Written by Jennifer Friberg, Cross Endowed Chair in SoTL and Associate Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Illinois State University

Recently, three new SoTL journals have been established to focus on research on teaching and learning. The focus of each is different, but each makes unique contributions to the evidence-base for making pedagogical decisions or reflecting on teaching and learning. The mission and scope, current article listing (if available), and link to receive updates for each journal are provided below.  Other new SoTL journals will be highlighted over time. Please email Jen Friberg (jfribe@ilstu.edu) if you are aware of new(er) SoTL journals that could be featured in a future blog!

Art History Pedagogy & Practice (mission and scope copied from AHP&P website)

Art History Pedagogy & Practice (AHPP) is a peer-reviewed, open-access e-journal dedicated to advancing teaching and learning in art history. The journal provides a forum for scholarly discourse that articulates and presents the range of pedagogical methods for learners in formal, informal, and virtual learning environments. Art History Pedagogy & Practice embraces multiple research models that examine the effectiveness of instructional strategies and technologies that build the skills, theories, concepts, and values necessary to art historical practice. Art History Pedagogy & Practice also fosters exchange between art history and allied fields including art and museum education, studio art and design, visual and material culture, and the digital humanities by considering the role of technology and the material object to enhance understanding and intellectual development.

AHP&P recently published their first issue, which included the following contributions:

Those interested in regular updates related to the work of AHP&P should register to join the journal’s email list.

 

Research & Practice in College Teaching (mission and scope copied from the journal’s website)

Research & Practice in College Teaching’s objective is to publish articles focused on promoting student learning. Articles should address themes around promoting effective practices in teaching and learning. The Journal reflects the breadth of the work in the scholarship of teaching and learning. We accept articles in the following categories.

  1. Data-Driven Studies
  2. Literature Reviews
  3. Case Studies

Research & Practice in College Teaching just published their second issue, which included the following contributions:

 Those interested in regular updates related to the work of this journal should register to join the journal’s email list.

 

Teaching and Learning in Communication Sciences & Disorders (mission and scope copied from the journal’s website)

Teaching and Learning in Communication Sciences & Disorders (TLCSD) publishes articles that reflect current and exemplary scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) research in speech-language pathology and audiology. Articles submitted to TLCSD may also reflect current trends in the format of SoTL work, including original research, quantitative or qualitative in nature, reflective essays and case studies, both grounded in the literature. Manuscripts related to teaching and learning in continuing education contexts as well as in higher education will be considered. We invite manuscripts which also fall within the umbrella of evidence-based education in CSD, including:

  • Scholarship of Teaching & Learning Research
  • Scholarly Teaching
  • Early Discoveries
  • Reflections on SoTL
  • Student Voices
  • Book Reviews: Two types of Book Reviews will be considered for publication:
    • Critical reviews of SoTL texts specific to speech-language pathology or audiologywhich examine academic and/or clinical applications to teaching and learning in CSD
    • Reviews of new (non-CSD)SoTL texts which critically examine content and describe possible applications to academic and/or clinical CSD teaching and learning.

TLCSD plans to publish their inaugural issue in late winter/early spring of 2017.

Those interested in regular updates related to the work of TLCSD should register to join the journal’s email list.


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Taking a Scholarly Approach to the New Academic Term

Written by: Jennifer Friberg, Cross Endowed Chair in SoTL and Associate Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Illinois State University

screen-shot-2017-01-09-at-12-42-50-pmMany of us have are anticipating (or maybe already experiencing!) a new academic term. My fellow Redbirds have one more week before we are back in the classrooms of Illinois State University. Recent conversations with colleagues have revolved around course design/prep and general thoughts about the upcoming semester. I’m guessing this is the case at most colleges and universities.

For me, the weeks before a new term are always times of reflection and consideration. I ask myself questions like: What worked last time I taught this class? What didn’t work? How can I engage more students in a way that makes sense for my course and my course design? Again, I’m guessing that I’m not alone in pondering these topics. And, while we can choose answer these questions via SoTL inquiry, that isn’t always possible for a number of different reasons (resources, competing priorities, etc.). Thankfully, there is ample research on teaching and learning that we can apply to help answer these questions — we just have to access it!

The following resources each describe the evidence base for common beginning of the academic term issues: How do I construct a syllabus? How will my students best learn? What is the advantage of various grouping strategies for my students? What are “best” practices for the first day of class? Happy reading and have a great term!

The Center for Teaching and Vanderbilt University constructed a very useful webpage to highlight important, evidence-based considerations for syllabus construction, addressing questions such as:

  • What are the most important elements of a learner-centered course syllabus?
  • What is the relationship between syllabus construction and course design?
  • How can the tone of the syllabus impact learners?
  • What other resources are available to support faculty in constructing “good” syllabi?

Indiana University of Pennsylvania have gathered a reference list of “what to do on the first day of class,” with cross-disciplinary research and evidence from several different disciplines (e.g., sociology, psychology, calculus, English), as well.

Kathleen McKinney collated a sampling of things we know about learning from SoTL research, outlining findings from seminal texts in teaching and learning from the last decade.

Rick Reis from Tomorrow’s Teaching and Learning offers suggestions — grounded in evidence — for establishing collaborative groups for students, and in so doing, offers pros and cons for random, instructor generated, self-selected, and mixed groups.

 

Public domain photo downloaded from: https://pixabay.com/en/teach-word-scrabble-letters-wooden-1820041/