Faculty Study Group Archive
This archive highlights previous Faculty Study Seminars. More information about these seminars can be found by contacting the Office of Instructional Development.
FSS: Using Evidence of Student Learning to Improve Higher Education
By the scholars of NILOA (Kuh, Ikenberry, Jankowski, Cain, Ewell, Hutchings, Kinzie)
Many UND faculty are paying attention to evidence of student learning, whether fully persuaded of the value or not. Given that reality, it is important to ensure that the time invested in that work is time well spent. A new book, Using Evidence of Student Learning to Improve Higher Education, written by the scholars at the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA), aims to offer “both a compelling rationale and practical advice” for “doing assessment” in ways that faculty will find valuable.
It sometimes seems like the constraints and pressures on universities grow exponentially. We read in the Grand Forks Herald that businesses aren’t sufficiently satisfied with the intellectual skills they see in the new UND grads they hire. That same refrain, extended to university grads in general, is found in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and an oft-cited study (detailed in Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses) by Arum and Roksa. Learning outcomes matter – both on campus and beyond. But how do we reframe the conversation around them in ways that make it genuinely interesting and useful for faculty?
That is exactly the question these writers address. Although external pressures from accreditors, and also from public conversations such as those cited above, may have been an early spur for assessment, that spur has led to an unfortunate association between assessment and compliance with “outsider” demands. These authors argue that it’s more productive – and much more satisfying for faculty – to adopt an approach focused on teaching and learning. Which classroom strategies, program curricula, and institutional practices prove especially useful in enabling students to achieve the learning we want for them? “Harness[ing] evidence of student learning to improve teaching and learning and propel students to greater accomplishments is ultimately what matters.”
Who should read this book? Faculty who are engaged in assessment and those who are skeptical of the value of assessment will be equally interested in reading and discussing what these scholars propose as a newer – and better – approach to the work.
This seminar will be facilitated by Joan Hawthorne, who oversees assessment and regional accreditation for UND. To join the group, contact joan.hawthorne@UND.edu.
FSS: How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens
By Benedict Carey (Random House, 2014)
A common challenge for virtually all students (especially beginning college students) is to figure out the best (or most effective) way to study. The strategy employed by most students involves self-discipline, hard work, finding designated study areas (perhaps a carrel at the library), making flash cards, and avoiding distractions. These approaches, they believe, are key to acing their exams. But do they work? What if we could learn more, with less effort?
Carey addresses some fundamental questions about learning. Does daydreaming help the learning process? Is a designated desk the best place to study? Can you recall more if you alter your routine? Is distraction actually good? Is repetition necessary? Is it better to stay up late before an exam or wake up early for one last cram session? He takes the reader through decades of educational research about how our brain works at absorbing information and argues that, by default, we have the ability to learn quickly and efficiently. Although some of the techniques offered by Carey may be counter intuitive, he suggests that they can lead to deep learning.
Who should read this book? All faculty members who spend time teaching undergraduate students (especially first year students) will be especially interested in this book. The approaches to learning discussed will likely translate into valuable advice to help our students succeed in the classroom.
Benedict Carey dropped out of college after his first year. But then after, “freeing his inner slacker,” he graduated from the University of Colorado with a bachelor’s degree in math and from Northwestern University with a master’s in journalism. He is currently a science reporter for the New York Times.
This seminar will be facilitated by Jeff Carmichael, Associate Professor of Biology and Acting Director of OID. To join the group, contact Jeffrey.Carmichael@UND.edu.
Engaged Writers and Dynamic Disciplines: Research on the Academic Writing Life by Chris Thaiss and Terry Myers Zawacki (Heinemann, 2006).
As part of our year long effort to help programs and departments think about student writing across their curriculum, Chris Basgier will lead a faculty study seminar on Chris Thaiss and Terry Myers Zawacki’s (2006) Engaged Writers and Dynamic Disciplines: Research on the Academic Writing Life.
In this book, the authors compare faculty and student perceptions of academic writing in the disciplines in order to develop recommendations for individuals as well as programs looking to integrate writing more fully into students’ learning experiences. Engaged Writers and Dynamic Disciplines was described by one reviewer as “an exceptionally thoughtful investigation of writing in the academic disciplines . . . a smart and elegant book.” We encourage you to consider inviting your departmental colleagues to join the Faculty Study Seminar with you as on way to enhance collaboration and coordination across your curriculum.
Faculty interested in taking part in the FSS should email Chris Basgier at christopher.basgier@UND.edu
with your contact information (e-mail and phone). You will be contacted for your schedule in order to set an initial meeting date.
Whistling Vivaldi : How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do by Claude M. Steele (W.W.Norton & Co. 2010).
“Stereotype threat” describes the anxiety people feel in a situation in which they might be judged or treated in a negative way due to stereotypes about a group to which they belong. It can affect people in various ways and, because there are stereotypes about all groups, it can affect anyone. In higher education stereotype threat may impact the performance of women in math or engineering; men in nursing or elementary education; Native American students in discussion based classrooms; or African American students on standardized test. The implications for our classrooms and institution are great. What can we do about it?
In Whistling Vivaldi, Claude Steele turns to findings from social psychology to suggest strategies and interventions for mitigating stereotype threat. In what has been described as a “readable, inclusive, research-based, concrete, and hopeful” book, Steele summarizes research that shows how the concerns students face as a result of these stereotype threats affect a wide range of educational outcomes. He explains how the threat of a stereotype, and the extra efforts required of students who try to dispel it, interfere with academic success. The additional stress and anxiety, which can operate without awareness, can lead to underperformance in the classroom. Steele offers practical advice for educators to help counteract these messages.
This study seminar is open to both staff and faculty and will be co-facilitated by Sandra Mitchell (Associate Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion) and Anne Kelsch (Director of Instructional Development). The group will meet four times during the semester, at times mutually agreed to by participants, to read and discuss the book (books provided). If you are interested in participating, contact Anne Kelsch at email@example.com or 7-4233 with your contact information (e-mail and phone). You will be contacted for your schedule in order to set an initial meeting date.
Locus of Authority: The Evolution of Faculty Roles in the Governance of Higher Education by William G. Bowen & Eugene M. Tobin (Princeton University Press, 2015).
A recent Inside Higher Ed article describes a new book by William G. Bowen and Eugene M. Tobin as “seek[ing] to deliver a friendly but urgent message about the importance of shared decision-making to higher education’s future.” It is exactly that sense of urgency about the need to “do more” with shared governance at UND that led to many large-scale discussions on leadership and governance over the last 18 months.
To build on and sustain the momentum already generated, Bowen’s and Tobin’s book will be the focus of a Faculty Study Seminar opportunity in spring 2015. In Locus of Authority: The Evolution of Faculty Roles in the Governance of Higher Education, the authors suggest “we need new ways, maybe even radically new ways, of engaging faculty members and administrators in discussions of options, and how to seize them, that will cut across departmental lines and at times across campus and even institutional boundaries.” Might Bowen and Tobin have advice for us as we continue to consider ways to strengthen collaborative governance at UND?
If you’re interested in learning more about the collaborative governance evolution that Bowen and Tobin suggest we need, please consider joining this Faculty Study Seminar reading group, which will meet during the spring semester, at times mutually agreed to by participants, to read and discuss. Books will be provided by the Provost’s Office, and your only obligation is to read and engage in discussion.
To sign up, e-mail Anne Kelsch (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your contact information (e-mail and phone). You will be contacted for your schedule in order to set an initial meeting date.
Assignments Across the Curriculum: A National Study of College Writing (2014) by Dan Melzer.
All around campus, students are beginning to mark due dates for writing assignments onto their calendars, and faculty are likely imagining what those papers will look like. When we think about improving student writing, we often start with a critical look at the final drafts as we note what students haven't done. What happens if we start by taking a close look at our own writing assignments? What do our writing assignments tacitly tell our students about the reasons for writing? What do we really ask students to write in college? How good are we at creating good writing assignments? Does it matter what students are asked to write in other courses?
In Assignments Across the Curriculum: A National Study of College Writing, Dan Melzer offers a way for us to answer these types of questions as he presents an analysis of over 2,000 undergraduate writing assignments from the natural sciences, social sciences, business, and humanities in 100 postsecondary institutions in the United States. Analyzing the writing assignments as classroom artifacts, Melzer gives us a nearly unprecedented opportunity to understand undergraduate college writing more broadly and to consider our own writing assignments in that context.
Join us for this faculty study seminar focused on a broad view of college writing assignments and the implications for anyone interested in helping students become better writers. This seminar will be facilitated by Jessica Zerr. To join the group, contact jessica.zerr@UND.edu
How College Works (2014) by Daniel Chambliss and Christopher Takacs
"In an era of fixed or even shrinking resources, can the quality of collegiate education be improved at no additional cost?" This is the provocative question that Daniel Chambliss and Christopher Takacs set out to answer via a 10-year longitudinal study of undergraduates at his own institution. Chambliss and Takacs did not begin with the assumption that students themselves "know" what they needed in order to learn and grow. Quite the contrary, in fact. Many student assumptions turn out to be highly questionable: some assume that more small classes are always better, for example, but making classes smaller can increase difficulty in enrolling in the classes of their choice, perhaps making it impossible to stay on track for graduation. Similarly, their preferred living arrangements (private rooms, bathrooms shared with a minimal number of suitemates) are not conducive to making friends with peers – and yet developing close (and intellectually engaging) relationships with peers will enhance the undergraduate experience.
Still, Chambliss and Takacs believed that by following students and tracking the experiences that actually changed their trajectory – whether students had desired and sought those experiences or not – it should be possible to determine the kinds of experiences that we can be more purposeful about providing more broadly.
Chambliss and Takacs characterize one particular finding as "most striking to us." They go on to explain: "Time after time, in descriptions of a wide variety of situations, students told us of how encounters with the right person could make a decisive difference." In fact, they say, "This pervasive influence of relationships suggests that a college – at least insofar as it offers real benefits – is less a collection of programs than a gathering of people."
So what do we do with that finding at UND? With our own student population and our own distinctive challenges – given a student population of almost 15,000 and research expectations that continue to ratchet up – where are our opportunities to intervene in the student experience? Would a study of our students even lead to the same findings? If not, what might we predict would be the take-home? Are there ways to learn more about what makes a difference for our students – and if so, how might we do that? These are the questions we'll discuss as we read the 2014 book, How College Works, winner of the Harvard University Press's prize for an outstanding publication about education and society.
This seminar will be facilitated by Joan Hawthorne. To join the group, contact joan.hawthorne@UND.edu.
Make it Stick: The Science of Successful Learning (2014) by Peter Brown, Henry Roediger, and Mark McDaniel.
Have you been asking your students to underline, reread, memorize, or review the material you cover in class? Did you learn and study this way yourself? In the new book, Make it Stick; The Science of Successful Learning, Brown, Roediger, and McDaniel report that so many of the study techniques that we teach our students to use in order to succeed in our classes only create temporary, ephemeral knowledge that disappears very rapidly over time. The authors have synthesized recent findings in cognitive psychology and other fields to provide practical learning techniques that we can use to improve our teaching and increase our students' learning. Surprisingly, Brown, Roediger, and McDaniel argue that innovative, student-tailored teaching strategies are not the answer to more successful, long term learning. What is the answer? Join this faculty study seminar to find out.
The authors of Make it Stick employ a broad array of examples to illustrate their findings, ranging from the choices seasoned pilots make to avert disaster, to the training practices of Minnesota police officers, to the ingenious knowledge retention strategies a medical school student devised in order to pull himself from the bottom of his class to the top. The chapters build toward practical study techniques that we can use to teach students, train athletes, or learn new information ourselves.
In this Faculty Study Seminar participants will read and discuss Make it Stick, while also sharing their own experiences and interpretations of the text and its suggestions. The book uses informative and lively writing (Brown is a professional writer of fiction and nonfiction) as it examines a revisionary approach to teaching and poses arguments that readers may or may not accept. As a result, group members will have an opportunity to discuss the applicability of these findings in the context or their own classroom and their teaching and learning experiences.
This seminar will be facilitated by Kim Stewart. To join the group, contact kimberly.stewart@UND.edu.
Writing in the Senior Capstone: Theory and Practice (National Resource Center, 2013) by Lea Masiello and Tracy Skipper.
Capstones or senior-level "culminating experiences" are usually designed to help students integrate and synthesize learning they've gained across a major or the entire curriculum. Many of those capstones feature writing assignments as a convenient means of asking students to both practice and demonstrate high-level intellectual skills they'll need upon graduation: the ability to reflect, conceptualize, plan, research, problem-solve, integrate, and evaluate. In a new book, Writing in the Senior Capstone: Theory and Practice, Lea Masiello and Tracy Skipper examine writing assignments used in capstone from two key perspectives.
First, the book draws on the literature to examine what's known about the ways that writing can help students achieve a number of desired outcomes including improved "critical thinking, mastery of disciplinary content, and oral and written communication." They also describe evidence that writing assignments can promote development of other traits and skills likely to be valuable once students leave college, including collaboration, independence, and innovation.
Second, the book provides ideas for "maximizing the usefulness of writing in the capstone." It's easy to add a writing assignment to a course, but it can be considerably more difficult to identify strategies for ensuring that the assignment fulfills its intended purpose. Bringing extensive experience with both capstone courses and writing across the curriculum, Masiello and Skipper draw on their years of experience combined with a rich and deep knowledge of the literature to offer "detailed strategies" and "practical suggestions" for using writing more effectively within the capstone. In the second half of the book, they provide ideas for enhancing the usefulness of various kinds of assignments ranging from the informal and unrevised through portfolios and research projects.
In this Faculty Study Seminar, facilitated by Joan Hawthorne, participants will read and discuss the Masiello and Skipper book, while also bringing in their own experiences and ideas. Since the book is short and unintimidating (Masiello and Skipper are very readable writers), group members will also have an opportunity to extend the discussion beyond the text itself in response to topics and issues of shared interest.
If you are interested in participating, contact Joan Hawthorne at email@example.com or 7-4684.
Learner-Centered Teaching: Five Key Changes to Practice, 2nd ed. (Jossey-Bass, 2013) by Maryellen Weimer .
As faculty we strive each semester to improve our teaching. Maryellen Weimar, a noted researcher on effectiveness in the college classroom, would argue that teaching should not be our primary focus -- student learning should be. And while the two seems obviously linked, for the most part we function on the assumption that if there is teaching, there is learning. Weimar asks that we test that premise and design our courses in a way that ensure the kind of learning we want for our students really is occurring. Ultimately she reminds us that our courses should be designed to facilitate more and better learning for our students, and that research has established methods that work in accomplishing that goal.
This is a thoroughly updated edition of a classic, well respected text. Weimar offers a comprehensive introduction to learner- centered teaching, including a review of current practice in a variety of disciplines. There is also a good overview of research in support of learner-centered practice and in-depth discussion of the impact of student developmental issue on the effectiveness of this approach. The book is practical as well with concrete examples, handouts, and sample assignments dealing with very real concerns such as overcoming student resistance, developing self-motivated learners, and effective evaluation and assessment of learning.
In the words of one reviewer, "If you're discouraged by the task of teaching poorly prepared passive learners who seem to resist deep learning and prefer surface approaches, you will gain much from this book. "
If you are interesting in joining this Faculty Study Seminar, contact Anne Kelsch at firstname.lastname@example.org or 777-4233.
Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty (Harvard University Press, 2013) by James M. Lang
When we discover students cheating in our classrooms the initial impulse is often to either internalize the blame ("If I had only done something differently") or attribute the blame to the student's moral or motivation deficiencies. In the new book, Cheating Lessons: Learning from Academic Dishonesty , author James Lang proposes that cheating is the result of both teaching methods and student choices and he provides clear and specific suggestions for how instructors can essentially eliminate cheating before it starts.
Lang's book is divided into three sections. The first section provides a history of student cheating in higher education and proposes that cheating is not a new phenomenon, instead its history is at least as long as the history of the American university system, itself. Lang briefly describes who is cheating but he quickly shifts his focus to try to answer the question of why students cheat in the first place. Lang's case studies provide concrete examples of the type of classroom environments and teaching methods that, according to Lang, unintentionally foster an environment that encourages student cheating.
The remaining sections provide practical applications of his findings that allow instructors to learn how to become better teachers. Lang shows teachers that by identifying the types of cheating they encounter in their classes and reevaluating their teaching methods, teachers can ultimately develop a culture of academic honesty extends beyond individual classrooms to the larger university.
In this Faculty Study Seminar, facilitated by Kimberly Stewart, participants will read and discuss Lang's book, while also sharing their own experiences and interpretations of the text and its suggestions. The book is very clearly and accessibly written while examining controversial issues. As a result, group members will have an opportunity to discuss the applicability of his findings in the context or their own classroom and teaching experiences.
If you are interested in participating, contact Kimberly Stewart at email@example.com or 7-6381.
What the Best College Students Do by Ken Bain (Belknap Press, 2012)
In this faculty study seminar, we’ll read a book targeted not at us, but at our students. What the Best College Students Do is about how successful college students found their passions and learned how to learn. The book combines research on motivation and learning with individuals’ stories to identify some key characteristics of students who stand out from the crowd.
If you are thinking about how to nurture your best students and how to help all students fully engage in their education, this is a group you want to join. Faculty study seminars meet four times over the semester at a time agreed on by the group. Books are provided by OID, and your only obligations are to read and be ready for discussion.
This seminar will be facilitated by Ryan Zerr and Kathleen Vacek. To join, send an email request with your fall weekly schedule to kathleen.vacek@UND.edu.
Faculty Learning Community: Diversity, Isms, and Otherness
Leveraging the eye-opening book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Professor Michelle Alexander, this four-session faculty learning community experience is designed to build knowledge of scaffolding on topics relating to diversity, isms, and otherness.
In these sessions, participants practice how to identify windows of learning opportunity in the midst of student frustrations.
There will also be opportunities for cross-disciplinary dialogue, self-reflection, resource sharing and group discussion. Participants will build skills necessary for engaging people using listening acuity, nuanced language, well-timed questions, and attentive facilitation. Each participant receives a copy of the book.
This Faculty Learning Community is designed and facilitated by Malika Carter, UND Director of Multicultural Student Services. Kathleen Vacek, coordinator of the University Writing Program, will co-facilitate.
Shared Governance and Leadership Interest Group
Many faculty would like to have a stronger voice in where the University heads and in the decisions that guide that path. The good news is faculty are not alone in that wish. Under the leadership of President Kelley and Provost DiLorenzo and in collaboration with the University Senate, this fall the Office of Instructional Development will be facilitating a series of conversations on shared governance and leadership in higher education. This group, structured like an OID Faculty Study Seminar, will provide a means for all faculty with an interest in faculty governance and leadership issues to learn more about the subject and to share their ideas. The formation of this group is based on the President's and Provost's support for the recommendations made by the Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Shared Governance and is the first step in the creation of a formal program designed to develop a stronger culture of shared governance and future faculty leaders.
The group will meet throughout the fall semester, at times mutually agreed to by participants, to read and discuss. Books will be provided by the Provost's Office, and your only obligation is to read and engage in discussion.
To sign up, e-mail Anne Kelsch (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your contact information (e-mail and phone). You will be contacted for your schedule in order to set an initial meeting date. For more information about the Shared Governance and Leadership Interest Group, contact Anne Kelsch , 777-4233.
Integrating Multilingual Students into College Classrooms: Practical Advice for Faculty
by Johnnie Johnson Hafernik and Fredel M. Wiant (Multilingual Matters, 2012).
UND is becoming a more linguistically diverse place. The percentage of UND students coming from other countries has nearly doubled from 3.5% in 2001 to 6% today. And it's not just international students who may use multiple languages—for example, New American and American Indian students may be multilingual as well. This straightforward book provides practical information for helping international and non-native English speakers succeed in college classrooms. The book explains why many non-native English speakers, even though they have passed English proficiency exams, still struggle with the academic demands of college reading, writing, speaking and listening. The author, a professor and expert on English as a second language in the college classroom, provides solid advice for faculty faced with dilemmas such as grading papers, understanding accents, and understanding the different educational and cultural backgrounds of multilingual students.
Anne Walker (Teaching and Learning) and Kathleen Vacek will co-facilitate this Faculty Study Seminar. If you are interested in participating, contact Kathleen Vacek at email@example.com or 7-6381.
Academic Motherhood: How Faculty Manage Work and Family
by Kelly Ward and Lisa Wolf-Wendel (Rutgers University Press, 2012).
Academic Motherhood analyzes the stories of over one hundred women who are both professors and mothers, examining how they navigated their professional lives at different career stages. Kelly Ward and Lisa Wolf-Wendel base their findings on a ten year longitudinal study that asked tenure track women how they manage work and family in their early careers (pre-tenure) when their children are under five years old, and then again in mid-career (post-tenure) as their children mature. The faculty studied work in a range of disciplines and at institutions with differing policies regarding family leave and tenure. The book intends to help institutions and the tenure track faculty who teach at them "make it work." Writing for faculty and administrators, as well as scholars, Wolf-Wendel and Ward bring an element of optimism to the topic of work and family in academe. They provide insight and policy recommendations that support faculty with children and offer problem-solving approaches at the personal, departmental and institutional level, as well as addressing the concerns of dual career couples.
Lori Reesor (Vice President for Student Affairs) and Anne Kelsch will co-facilitatethis Faculty Study Seminar. If you are interested in participating, contact Anne Kelsch at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org or 7-4233.
Teaching Naked: How Moving Technology Out of Your College Classroom Will Improve Student Learning
by José Antonio Bowen (Jossey-Bass, 2012).
Referring to PowerPoint as the "most abused new technology," José Bowen makes a compelling case inTeaching Naked for how to prioritize the benefits of the human dimension of learning. While technology is often accused of isolating people, Bowen argues that "a few minutes of questions at the end of an hour covering material from behind a podium is hardly an interactive experience either." He advocates for using technologies to increase student engagement outside of the classroom and "thus prepare them for real discussions (even in the very largest classes). . . . The goal, in other words, is to use technology to free yourself from the need to 'cover' the content in the classroom, and instead use class time to demonstrate the continued value of direct student to faculty interaction and discussion." Bowen's work is part of the ongoing conversation in higher education about the inverted or "flipped" classroom in which content delivery takes place outside the classroom, often utilizing technologies such as podcasting, and classroom time is used for active learning (inverted from the traditional model of class time as lecture or content delivery and homework—thinking or skills based work—done outside class). Bowen argues that if students are going to pay high dollars for campus classes, faculty need to provide more than what can be found online by maximizing their face-to-face time with students. He illustrates how technology can be most powerfully used outside class sessions to ensure that students arrive to class more prepared for meaningful interaction with each other and faculty, and offers practical advice on how to engage students with new technology while restructuring classes into more active learning environments.
Ken Bain (author of What the Best College Teachers Do) writes of Teaching Naked, "Everyone who is concerned about the future of higher education should read it . . . . Bowen makes the most intelligent argument I've encountered about how we should think about teaching and learning and emerging technologies. It is also a powerful guide to more effective teaching and deeper learning."
Lori Swinney (Director of the Center for Instructional and Learning Technology) and Anne Kelsch will co-facilitate this Faculty Study Seminar. If you are interested in participating, contact Anne Kelsch email@example.com or 7-4233.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can't Stop Talking (2012) by Susan Cain
Universities are embracing more student centered learning that often emphasizes stu-dent participation, like group discussions, brainstorming, debates and oral presenta-tions. But is this the optimal learning environment for all students? Could we be ig-noring the strengths of students who value listening and independent work? Susan Cain's book Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, exam-ines the social constructs of "extrovertism," presents studies on introverts and extro-verts, and discusses the needs and values of each group in the context of the class-room, the career, and the community.
In this seminar we will evaluate Cain's findings and arguments and will discuss how these findings might make us re-think our classroom pedagogies and practices. We will discuss why society seems to place so much emphasis on developing skills like speaking while de-emphasizing skills like listening, and how this may shape what we value in an educational setting.
The Handbook of Scholarly Writing and Publishing (2011) by Tonette S. Rocco and Tim Hatcher
This faculty study seminar offers an opportunity to discuss the ins and outs of scholarly publishing. It will be suitable for both early-career faculty and more experienced faculty who mentor colleagues and graduate students.
We will get the conversation started by discussing readings from The Handbook of Schol-arly Writing and Publishing, a recent book described as "a groundbreaking resource that offers emerging and experienced scholars from all disciplines a comprehensive review of the essential elements needed to craft scholarly papers and other writing suitable for submission to academic journals. The authors discuss the components of different types of manuscripts, explain the submission process, and offer readers suggestions for work-ing with editors and coauthors, dealing with rejection, and rewriting and resubmitting their work. They include advice for developing quality writing skills, outline the funda-mentals of a good review, and offer guidance for becoming an excellent manuscript re-viewer." We will also be sure to learn from the collective experience of the group.
The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Reconsidered: Institutional Integration and Impact (2011) by Pat Hutchings, Mary Taylor Huber, and Anthony Ciccone
Examines four "critical areas where engagement with the scholarship of teaching and learning can have a significant effect." This book builds on premises articulated in Ernest Boyer's ground-breaking 1997 book, Scholarship Reconsidered, which of-fered "a new paradigm that recognize[d] the full range of scholarly activity by college and university faculty and question[ed] the existence of a reward system that pushed faculty toward research and publication and away from teaching." The conversation precipitated by the 1997 book focused on how and why institutions could value the scholarship of teaching and learning in tenure and promotion processes.
Inspired by Boyer's ideas, faculty began recognizing the ways in which they could bring their research skills to bear on the work in their own classrooms, making a dif-ference in the learning of their students and discovering knowledge worth sharing through traditional scholarly venues. Now we have a new book by three highly re-garded scholars, recognized for their SoTL experience as much as for their expertise in higher education, which picks up that conversation. In this book, we'll learn how these authors see the future of SoTL, which they predict will rapidly come to have an impact on areas of higher ed-ucation often viewed as distinct from SoTL such as the evaluation of teaching and assessment of learning, as well as continuing to influence classroom teaching.
What do you need to know about SoTL? How can we ensure that UND, building on a rich history of scholarly teach-ing developed through our Bush Scholars program of a decade ago, will once again be at the forefront of a field that many view as critical to the future of higher education?
From Brain to Mind: Using Neuroscience to Guide Change in Education
by James E. Zull (Stylus, 2011).
If you are familiar with James Zull's 2004 book, The Art of Changing the Brain, you know he has both a keen interest in how the brain learns and a knack for making specialized research accessible and relatable to what we do in higher education. In his latest book, Zull (Professor of Biochemistry and former Director of the University Center for Innovation in Teaching and Education at Case Western Reserve)considers how recent findings in neuroscience can inform our teaching practice. Looking at how the brain receives and processes information, he gleans applicable insights about cognitive development and metacognition. Zull argues that due to major social and economic change, a teaching and learning approach that is informed by cognitive science is increasingly necessary. In an environment in which our students can expect to hold multiple jobs (some of which may not yet exist), where technology is constantly shifting, and where information and opinion seem infinitely available, the awareness of how and why we think as we do is essential to society's well-being.
If you are interested in participating in this FSS, please contact Anne Kelsch , 777-4233.
How Learning Works: Seven Research-Based Principles for Smart Teaching
by Susan A. Ambrose, Michael W. Bridges, Michele DiPietro, Marsha C. Lovett, and Marie K. Norman (Jossey-Bass, 2010)
From the publisher: Distilling the research literature and translating the scientific approach into language relevant to a college or university teacher, this book introduces seven general principles of how students learn. The authors have drawn on research from a breadth of perspectives (cognitive, developmental, and social psychology; educational research; anthropology; demographics; organizational behavior) to identify a set of key principles underlying learning, from how effective organization enhances retrieval and use of information to what impacts motivation. Integrating theory with real-classroom examples in practice, this book helps faculty to apply cognitive science advances to improve their own teaching.
If you are interested in participating in this FSS please contact Kathleen Vacek , University Writing Program coordinator, 777-6381.
Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses
by Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa (University of Chicago, 2011)
From the buzz its publication generated, including reviews in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, and The New York Times, it is clear that this is an important book for academics to understand and take into account. Aram and Roksa followed 2,300 students at 24 universities over a four-year period and analyzed their results on the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA) and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)—both of which are administered to UND students by Institutional Research. In the most reductionist sense, the book argues that students don't study very much and therefore don't learn very much. This should not surprise faculty who have been complaining for years that students don't spend enough time doing course work. On the other hand, the scope of the problem is surprising: for example, the authors observed "no statistically significant gains in critical thinking, complex reasoning, and writing skills for at least 45 percent of the students in our study" during the first two years of college and over one third of students who complete four years of college show no improvement in critical thinking skills. Aram and Roksaalso postulate that a lack of rigor and low faculty expectations are part of the problem.
If you are interested in participating in this FSS, please contact Anne Kelsch, 777-4233.
Successful Science and Engineering Teaching in Colleges and Universities
by Calvin S. Kalman (Jossey-Bass, 2006)
This book offers broad, practical strategies for teaching science and engineering courses and describes how faculty can provide a learning environment that helps students comprehend the nature of science, understand science concepts, and solve problems in science courses.
The student-centered approach focuses on two main themes: reflective writing and working in collaborative groups. When faculty incorporate methods into their courses that challenge their students to critically reflect, collaborate, and problem solve, students gain a better understanding of science as a connected structure of concepts rather than as a simple tool kit of assorted practices.
Reflective writingWriting to learnConstructing student knowledgeSelected methods for using collaborative groupsChanging students' epistemologiesTraining students to solve problemsUsing technology to aid your teaching
If you are interested in participating in this FSS please contact Kathleen Vacek, University Writing Program coordinator, 777-6381.
Good Mentoring: Fostering Excellent Practice in Higher Education
by Jeanne Nakamura andDavid Shernoff with Charles Hooker (Jossey-Bass, 2009)
Mentoring students is an important part of our role asfaculty members. We mentor students both formally and informally through our interactions, but what messages are we passing on to the next generation of scholars? Nakamura and Shernoff studied three different successful academics that had been deemed to be "good mentors". The authors studied not only the academics but also several generations of their students to understand what ideals and practices had been passed on and how these traits were communicated. This book presents a way of looking at mentoring more objectively, and is a good jumping off point for discussing our own mentoring practices. Although the lead academics chosen for this book are all in the natural sciences, with a focus on graduate mentoring, the ideas discussed are applicable to most disciplines and to both graduate andundergraduate mentoring. Other specific mentoring topics that could be explored include gender roles in mentoring relationships and the challenges of placing boundaries in the age of socialmedia.
If you are interested in participating in this FSS, please contact Gretchen Mullendore, 777-4707.
Helping Faculty Find Work-Life Balance: The Path Toward Family-Friendly Institutions
by Maike Ingrid Philipsen and Timothy B. Bostic (2010, Jossey-Bass)
If you laughed out loud when reading the words "faculty" and "work-life balance" in the title of a single book, or if you are one of the more optimistic among us, we hope you'll join us to read this book and discuss issues of dual career couples, parenting, and living an academic life.
From the publisher: "Helping Faculty Find Work-Life Balance gives voice to faculty and reveals the myriad personal and professional issues faculty face over the span of their academic careers. Based on years of in-the-field research and two gender-based studies, Maike Ingrid Philipsen and Timothy Bostic give the issue of work-life balance a fresh perspective by taking a comparative approach to the topic in regard to both gender and career stage. The authors' research reports on the experiences of male and female faculty at early-, mid-, and late-career stages. In addition, the book goes beyond the typical 'family-friendly' approach and takes an all-encompassing 'life-friendly' view, recognizing the need to strive for balance in the lives of all faculty members.
Philipsen and Bostic describe enablers and obstacles that faculty encounter during their careers and how policies and programs might more effectively address the needs of faculty. Helping Faculty Find Work-Life Balance is filled with illustrative cases from exemplary institutions to showcase what they are doing to reform the system."
This FSS will be co-facilitated by Joe and Kathleen Vacek. To participate, contact Kathleen Vacek, 777-6381.
The Challenge of Bologna: What US Higher Education Has to Learn from Europe, and Why It Matters That We Learn It
by Paul L. Gaston. (2010, Stylus)
What is the "Bologna Process"? Why are faculty talking about "tuning"? And what does this have to do with teaching and learning at UND? These are questions we will address through conversations about The Challenge of Bologna.
But here is the backdrop to the book. Faculty everywhere – including in Europe – are facing ever-growing numbers of transfer students. Students tell horror stories of accumulating 150 or 180 credits from four or five different (accredited) colleges, but being unable to graduate because each college rejects many of the equivalencies accepted by some or all of the others. A mini-scandal was provoked this fall when a report documented nonsensical transfer policies applicable to public institutions within a single city. And transfer is only one aspect of the problem. Politicians and employers claim that it's impossible to know what a degree in Physics or History means. What will those grads know? What can they do? Can anything be taken for granted?
Europe is confronting these challenges through a process called "tuning," and tuning projects are already being piloted in several states. As we read about the European model – and our counterpart – we will consider implications for UND and for the U.S. more generally. If you are interested in thinking about the future of higher education, you will want to read this book.
This FSS will be facilitated by Joan Hawthorne. To participate, contact her at 777-4684.
Teaching for Understanding at University: Deep Approaches and Distinctive Ways of Thinking
by Noel Entwistle (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009).
Written for teachers across disciplines, Teaching for Understanding at University concentrates on how students reach a personal understanding of the subject they are studying. In the introduction Entwistle states that changes in the academic world mean that teachers "are facing problems for which agreed solutions can no longer be expected, and so we have to think for ourselves and adjust quickly to new conditions." To facilitate that process, he offers "a way of thinking about how teaching affects learning" and "a range of concepts and principles that allow academics to think about pedagogic issues in a more precise way." Ultimately, Entwistle's aim is to encourage a "broad, integrative way of thinking," a "deep understanding" not just focussed on the study topics, but on their implications for life in general. Covering academic understanding, teaching approaches, assessment methods and evaluation of teaching, the book provides a comprehensive introduction to the latest ideas on teaching and learning.
If interested in this Faculty Study Seminar contact Anne Kelsch, 777-4233.
Teaching Writing Online: How and Why
by Scott Warnock (National Council of English Teachers, 2009).
The fastest growing student population at UND is online. To meet this demand, more and more faculty are developing online courses and redeveloping face-to-face courses for online delivery. What is the best way to coach a writing assignment delivered online? How can you migrate your face-to-face teaching practices into an online environment? Scott Warnock draws on his experience teaching online writing courses to provide guidelines for managing online conversations, responding to students, and organizing course material. Warnock proposes that online writing instruction is more than just a trend; it offers faculty an opportunity to put composition theory and practice to work in their teaching. Instructors new to online teaching and experienced teachers looking to improve their practices will find useful ideas for teaching the writing components of an online course.
If interested in this Faculty Study Seminar contact Kathleen Vacek, 777-6381.
Crossing the Finish Line: Completing College at America's Public Universities
by William Bowen, Matthew Chingos and Michael McPherson (Princeton University Press, 2009).
America's public universities enroll a high percentage of the college attending population-- about two-thirds of all full-time students seeking B.A.'s and more than three-fourths of all students in four-year programs. Long revered for their dedication to equal opportunity and affordability, public universities like UND play a crucial role in building human capital. And yet less than 60 percent of the students entering four-year colleges today graduate. Bowen, Chingos and Mc Pherson try to shed light on this reality by probing graduation rates at twenty-one flagship universities and four statewide systems of higher education. The conclusions are compelling. The President of the American Council on Education noted, "Crossing the Finish Line is a must-read for anyone concerned with the disturbing fact that Americans can no longer count on each generation being better educated than the last."
If interested in this Faculty Study Seminar contact Joan Hawthorne, 777-4684
Teaching What You Don't Know
by Therese Huston (Harvard University Press, 2009).
Your graduate work was on bacterial evolution, but now you're lecturing to 200 freshmen on primate social life. You've taught Kant for twenty years, but now you're team-teaching a new course on "Ethics and the Internet." The personality theorist retired and wasn't replaced, so now you, the neuroscientist, have to teach the "Sexual Identity" course. Everyone in academia knows it and no one likes to admit it: faculty often have to teach courses in areas they don't know very well. The challenges are even greater when students don't share your cultural background, lifestyle, or assumptions about how to behave in a classroom. This practical book offers many creative strategies for dealing with typical problems. Encouraging faculty to think of themselves as learners rather than as experts, Huston points out that authority in the classroom doesn't come only, or even mostly, from perfect knowledge.
The Learning Paradigm College
by John Tagg (Jossey-Bass, 2003).
Tagg's book begins with a simple but profound question: "What are colleges for?" Noting that typically "the successful college . . . is the one that fills classes with students and thus grows in enrollment," Tagg advocates for a paradigm shift towards a learning centered environment that attends to students rather that classes and he documents how this is happening at some institutions. Tagg argues that to change our paradigm from teaching to learning is to view education through a new lens—"seeing" our work in a different light and having diverse experiences as we and our students interact to learn. Reviewers refer to The Learning Paradigm College as "one of the most important, provocative, and accessible works to have entered the higher education literature in many years, . . . it is broadly applicable to every postsecondary institution."
If you are interested in reading this book as part of a Faculty Study Seminar, contact Anne Kelsch, 777-4233
Respite for Teachers: Reflection and renewal in the teaching life. Ann Arbor
by Casanave, C.P. & Sosa, M. (2007) University of Michigan Press.
Casanave and Sosa's book is not designed to teach something new; instead, the purpose of the book is to inspire faculty to spend time reflecting on the joys and challenges of teaching and of connecting with students and colleagues. The authors cover a wide variety of diverse topics, including a comparison of teaching and musical groups, difficult students, fear and curiosity, grading, mentoring, solitude, as well as a chapter about students who "just don't seem to belong where they are." Most of these chapters are designed to both raise an important issue and inspire at the same time. One reviewer noted that while the book is accessible and avoids jargon and terminology it "is very much grounded in theory and does an excellent job encouraging ... teachers and researchers to think about how to reduce the gap between theory and research and classroom practice."
If you are interested in reading this book as part of a Faculty Study Seminar, contact Scott Baxter, 777-6381
Discussion as a Way of Teaching: Tools and Techniques for Democratic Classrooms
2nd ed. by Stephen D. Brookfield and Stephen Preskill (Jossey-Bass, 2005)
Brookfield and Preskill have written this 2nd edition of their book for all teachers and leaders who use discussion to help people learn. One book synopsis states "Brookfield and Preskill clearly show how discussion can enliven classrooms, and they outline practical methods for ensuring that students will come to class prepared to discuss a topic. They also explain how to balance the voices of students and teachers, while still preserving the moral, political, and pedagogic integrity
of discussion." This revised edition includes new material related to the use of discussion for online teaching, as part of democratic participation, and theoretical foundations for the use of discussion. So if you're interested in the use of discussion in the university classroom, this book can provide practical, usable tools to either get you started or enhance your current practice.
If you are interested in reading this book as part of a Faculty Study Seminar, contact Sonia Zimmerman, 777-2200
Engaging Ideas: The Professor's Guide to Integrating Writing, Critical Thinking, and Active Learning in the Classroom
by John C. Bean (Jossey-Bass, 1996)
John Bean designed Engaging Ideas as a nuts-and-bolts handbook for instructors who want to successfully integrate writing into their courses. Bean explains the fundamental link between critical thinking and writing in the classroom, and provides several strategies on how to address these concerns: "The goal of these activities is to transform students from passive to active learners, deepening their understanding of subject matter while helping them learn the thinking
process of the discipline: how members of the discipline ask questions, conduct inquiries, gather and analyze data and make arguments." Bean gives practical advice on every state in the writing process— from designing an assignment to offering feedback. This book is a great starting place for faculty interested in practical advice on how to use writing and critical thinking successfully in the classroom.
If you are interested in reading this book as part of a Faculty Study Seminar, contact Kathleen Vacek, 777-6381