Next semester, I’m teaching a doctoral level course titled College and University Teaching. My main “problem” for the course is how to help future faculty develop knowledge and skills that they will need in their teaching roles. I have a physical classroom (which is fairly flexible with moveable tables and chairs and decent a-v should I need it), but I also plan to teach just under half of it online (long story on the “just under half of it” bit; institutional requirements and such). The course objectives include (but are not limited to) the following:
• Identify different perspectives on learning
• Synthesize primary literature and key resources on postsecondary teaching
• Evaluate a wide variety of traditional and developing models and styles of college teaching
• Evaluate current and emerging practices of assessing teaching and learning in higher education
• Locate and use resources to improve teaching knowledge and practices.
For my video, I offer Mike Wesch’s (of The Machine is Us/ing Us fame) take on knowledgeable vs knowledge-able students:
I agree with him that it’s important to help students learn to ask important questions and to use resources to find the answers to them.
If you happened to read my last post, you’ll know that this week I’ve started to think that it is important to think about what this course is before deciding how to go about it. If I think of the course, for example, as a seminar (definition: a group of advanced students studying under a professor with each doing original research and all exchanging results through reports and discussions), that’s a different thing than if I think of it as an event (definition: an important occurrence; a happening).
My conception of what the course is will necessarily influence how I see my role in it (if I see it as a seminar, for example, I see myself as a research expert guiding new researchers through the process of doing original research, whereas, if it see it as an event, I see myself as an event coordinator, bringing the students in and designing activities for them to participate in). My conception of what the course is also will influence how I accomplish the different objectives (if I see it as a seminar, I might have them do original research on learning theories, while if I conceive of it as an event, I might have them talk about their own theories with others and situate them within the broader context of learning theory). And so forth.
I’m just beginning to consider this idea of thinking through what the course is, and I’m still thinking about what that means for the college teaching course and how this will shape what we will do in it!