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In this episode, Concepcion Godev explains the scholarship of teaching and learning. She also talks about reasons for connecting your scholarly work with your teaching, focusing on learning outcomes and how to achieve them.
Hello. This is Dr. Concepcion Godev, Faculty Fellow at the Center for Teaching and Learning at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Thanks for tuning in and welcome to Teaching and Learning Matters.
Today’s topic is The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. This concept is usually abbreviated as es-oh-tee-el, and is pronounced SoTL. The notion of “Scholarship of Teaching and Learning” was first articulated and introduced into the vocabulary of higher education by Ernest Boyer in1990 in his book Scholarship Reconsidered. This book, along with another one titled Scholarship Assessed, has catalyzed a redefinition of the notion of scholarship in academia.
Both books are the result of initiatives that have been sponsored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The goal of this foundation is to stimulate more reflection, discussion and scholarly work on the quality of teaching in higher education.
Let’s start by defining the notion of scholarship. Scholarship encompasses at least three elements:
In the case of the scholarship of teaching and learning, the target for reflection, observation and analysis is some aspect or event involving how the teaching and learning occur, or don’t occur, in a course.
The scholarship of teaching and learning offers an opportunity to integrate our expertise in a subject matter with our interests in the dynamics of teaching and learning.
Our scholarly work and our teaching are usually so disconnected that good subject-matter scholarship often does not translate into good teaching and learning. There are many reasons for turning our attention to learning outcomes and how to achieve them. Probably a powerful one is the speed at which new information is emerging. Another one is making sure that college education responds to real world job markets.
It seems that, more and more, efforts in the classroom have to be focused on how to manage information. Probably one thing that instructors have to begin to question and research is whether or not the material coverage suggested by textbooks is learnable within a specific amount a time, say, a semester.
Why students don’t get a concept that, in our minds, was clearly emphasized and explained? Why students’ performance is inconsistent depending on the task? Why 30+% of students receive grades of D, F and W in a specific class?
These are all questions that can be explored systematically in any classroom. These are questions that are relevant to the scholarship of teaching and learning.
Tune in again and remember: Teaching and Learning Matters.
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