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A Carnegie Academy Leadership Cluster
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign acknowledges the value of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) with support both at institutional and individual levels. Our SoTL initiative is a campus-wide collaboration that includes faculty, staff, and undergraduate and graduate students in academic and administrative units. With the assistance of the Provost's Teaching Advancement Board, the many College Teaching Academies, and the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning, our campus is committed to enhancing the effectiveness of our teaching and learning. Our goal is to assist our instructors to becomescholarly teachers; that is, to be knowledgeable in pedagogy and reflective about their teaching practices.
In addition, we support those who wish to contribute to our knowledge of pedagogy and learning through the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). This endeavor as defined by Pat Hutching and Lee Schulman (Change 1999) is a rigorous examination of the relationship of teaching and learning and is characterized by "being public, open to critique and evaluation, and in a form that others can build on."
On our campus, SoTL work is a systematic reflection and investigation of our classrooms.It is a bridge between the acts of teaching and research, with explicit focus on enhancing student learning. It is asking questions about what works, what doesn't, and why and then transforming these activities into a discipline.
Commitment for this initiativeis evidenced through our membership in the Research University Consortium for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (RUCASTL). In addition, we are pleased to have on our campus two Carnegie Scholars,Vernon Burton (2000-2001)andMichael Loui (2003-2004).
Abbreviated Timeline of UIUC's SoTL Journey
Recent UIUC Faculty Retreats Emphasizing Scholarly Inquiry into Our Teaching:
UIUC Alma Mater
The University's motto is "Learning and Labor." Lorada Taft's Alma Mater statue depicts "a benign and majestic woman in scholastic robes, who rises from her throne and advances a step with outstretched arms." Behind her stand the twin figures of Labor and Learning, joining hands in a bronze incarnation of the University's motto.
Specific Opportunities for Scholarly Inquiry
Campus-wide:The UIUC SoTL Communitygrew from the momentum of the2003 UIUC Faculty Retreatwith Lee Shulman, as our Plenary Speaker, presentations by 16 Carnegie Scholars, and our own SoTL researchers. This community, which meets approximately twice a month, provides opportunities to serve as "critical friends" for our fellow scholars, to learn about learning, to share our SoTL work. and to encourage cross-disciplinary exchanges. All are invited to join.
Faculty may apply to the Provost'sDistinguished Teacher-Scholar Program.This program offers distinguished faculty members the acknowledgement and opportunity to carry out an indepth analysis of ways to build on our knowledge of teaching and learning. It is intended that such projects would have an impact upon the campus at-large. Funding is provided for both the Distinguished Teacher-Scholar and the academic unit. Each year's recipients join the community of past awardees.
Graduate Student Opportunities:
It is our belief that our graduate students will be more informed and better prepared for their academic life if they have SoTL as a component of their education. They should approach SoTL as a rigorous and necessary inquiry abut their teaching activities. We offer two such opportunities:
"Going Public" with our Scholarly Work
Teaching and its reflection has traditionally been in solitude. As SoTL scholars, it is important that our work be shared. Here are some of the ways:
Support, Models, and Resources for SoTL
To initiate, promote, sustain, and reward SoTL, it is important to provide multiple and diverse ways to assist our faculty and students. Here are some of the ways:
For More Information, Contact Cheelan Bo-Linn (firstname.lastname@example.org) at theCenter for Innovation in Teaching and Learning.