EOAS (along with Physics & Astronomy) has received funding** to extend our CWSEI work for three more years (2014-2017). We will continue course transformations, and support individual faculty members, but also add (and evaluate) a new strategy for transferring effective pedagogies to new instructors.
This key new component of the CWSEI extension work is a "paired-teaching" model for professional development for faculty. The model is intended to help spread evidence-based, student-focused teaching practices more broadly in the department. In the paired-teaching model, a new or interested faculty member doubles up on teaching a course that has already been transformed to be active and student-focused. The new faculty member gets to practice evidence-based, active instruction, using existing materials, with support from another, experienced faculty member, and support from a Science Teaching and Learning Fellow - a scaffolded learning environment.
We began the paired-teaching model in Fall 2014. In order to learn whether or not it will work, so far we have conducted "pre-experience" interviews with all faculty involved. We will follow up with targeted faculty members shortly after their paired-teaching experience, and also later in courses they teach themselves. If the model proves successful, it may help new, incoming faculty members adopt effective teaching strategies early in their faculty careers, and change the learning environment for our students more quickly.
Please contact Sara Harris, Tara Holland or Sarah Sherman with questions or comments about this project.** The funding is 50% from a private donor, 25% from the Faculty of Science, and 25% from the department. The funding supports two full-time Science Teaching and Learning Fellows, and course buyouts.