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Thursday, June 19 • 10:30am - 11:20am
CON4.14 – The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Transforming Institutions Coast to Coast (Room A237)

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This panel of experts, some authors for an upcoming special issue of New Directions in Teaching and Learning (anticipated 2015), will outline ways in which post-secondary institutions in Canada develop and sustain programs around the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning that impact the institutional pedagogical climate.

This work is of ongoing importance: Poole, Taylor, and Thompson (2007) discussed how scholarship of teaching and learning at various levels (institutional, disciplinary, and national) could improve quality, but little work has assessed whether their recommendations have been implemented. According to Wutherick and Yu’s (2013) mapping of SoTL in Canada, much is happening, often supported by grants, staff, and collaborative research groups. There is little evidence, however, of the impact of SoTL on teaching and learning quality at the institutional level (or on professors and their students). As Christensen Hughes and Mighty (2010) noted, “researchers have discovered much about teaching and learning in higher education, but … dissemination and uptake of this information have been limited. As such, the impact of educational research on faculty-teaching practice and the student-learning experience has been negligible” (p. 4). More recently, Poole and Simmons (2013) identified the continuing need for assessing SoTL’s impact on institutional quality.

Nicola Simmons, as panel moderator, will provide an overview of SoTL history in Canada, including national and provincial organizations, and then introduce panellists’ five minute case studies:

  1. Gary Poole, Roselynn Verwoord (University of British Columbia), and Terry Beery (University of Cincinnati) use Williams et al’s (2013) model describing how SoTL can become embedded institutionally, thus increasing its impact. The model features networks and communities of practice, describing how these entities can operate at three levels (micro, meso and macro). They explore the analysis of social networks as they are manifest in SoTL work. The expanded model will better inform the practice of those with a mandate to increase SoTL’s impact.
  2. Janice Miller-Young, Miriam Carey, Karen Manarin Michelle Yeo (Mount Royal University) outline preliminary results from a study of the impact of their SoTL Scholars program, by surveying and interviewing five years of scholars regarding their SoTL activity and the impact of participating in the program on their subsequent career activities. 
  3. Beth Marquis and Arshad Ahmad (McMaster University) discuss the development of a new SoTL institute at McMaster University. This research looked at teaching and learning-related research institutes worldwide (via a website scan and surveys of members) to determine features and perceived impacts. They report on the integration of this work into the new institute and the impact it is having on SoTL development across campus.
  4. Thomas Mengel, University of New Brunswick reflects on Renaissance College’s (UNB) mandate that includes experimenting and innovating with teaching and learning at the larger university. He will outline successes and shortcomings, and necessary steps to increase RC’s contribution to the SoTL at UNB.

In summary, we will discuss what can be learned from these case studies in small and large groups, drawing parallels and exploring distinctions, outlining challenges, and suggesting recommendations for synthesized models.

Thursday June 19, 2014 10:30am - 11:20am EDT
A237 McArthur Hall

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