STLHE 2015 has ended
Achieving Harmony: Tuning into Practice
Thursday, June 18 • 1:45pm - 2:45pm
RTD.15 - Examining patterns of effective teaching practices across disciplinary areas

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Variation in the use of effective teaching practices across disciplinary areas can be an impediment to improving undergraduate education but can also provide an opportunity for dialog. Using data from the 2013 and 2014 administrations of the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE), this session will explore the similarities and differences in patterns of engaging teaching practices across disciplinary fields for instructors in Canada and the United States. FSSE measures instructor perceptions and expectations of undergraduate student engagement in educationally purposeful activities and the extent to which instructors promote student learning and development in their courses at four-year colleges and universities. The focus of engaging teaching practices examined in this session will be the value instructors place on students participating in reflective and integrative learning activities, instructor emphasis on higher-order learning activities, and the opportunity students have to engage in discussions with diverse others. During this session, participants will 1) learn about a method for measuring instructor engagement in effective teaching practices, 2) examine and discuss patterns in engaging teaching practices across disciplinary fields for instructors at Canadian institutions, 3) consider how these patterns compare to those of instructors in the United States, and 4) discuss what these patterns say about the different teaching contexts and fields and what that means for efforts to improve undergraduate education. Understanding the similarities and differences in disciplinary cultures in different contexts may help make sense of the disciplinary dissonance and shed light on how to achieve teaching and learning improvement across contexts.

Biglan, A. (1973a) The characteristics of subject matter in different scientific areas. Journal of Applied Psychology, 57, 195–203.

Braxton, J. M. & Hargens, L.L. (1996). Variation among academic disciplines: Analytical frameworks and research. In J. Smart & W.J. Tierney (Eds.), Higher education: Handbook of research and theory, XI (pp. 1– 46). New York: Agathon Press. 

Nelson Laird, T. F., Shoup, R., Kuh, G. D., & Schwarz, M. J. (2008). The effects of discipline on deep approaches to student learning and college outcomes. Research in Higher Education, 49, 469-494.

Smart, J. C., Feldman, K. A., & Ethington, C. A. (2000). Academic disciplines: Holland's theory and the study of college students and faculty. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press.

Thursday June 18, 2015 1:45pm - 2:45pm PDT
Bayshore Salon ABC

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