LESSONS IN BUILDING A SOTL COMMUNITY

Samuel Lawrence, Jill Lambeth, Kristi Archuleta

Abstract


The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) is dedicated to establishing empirical linkages among instructional practices and student learning outcomes. An interdisciplinary panel of SoTL scholars discusses the development of a learning community at a metropolitan university. Whereas commentators have focused on the evolution of individual teacher-scholars (Weston & McAlpine, 2001), panelists will identify key turning points in the three-year history of the SoTL learning community at the University of Central Oklahoma. In the first year, the community served primarily to disseminate information about SoTL opportunities (e.g., through guest speakers). In year two, a working group was formed to introduce faculty and staff to SoTL and to encourage participation in the main learning community. In the third year, the SoTL planning committee coordinated two streams of SoTL activity: (a) lunch and learn events; and (b) a SoTL Scholars Community in which SoTL projects were initiated by pairing applicants with experienced scholars. This process resulted in diverse interdisciplinary partnerships (e.g., mass communication with biology; adult education with design; mass communication with psychology and sociology). A major challenge involves the inclusion of scholars from disciplines that do not feature social scientific research methods in their scholarship (Hubball, Clarke, & Poole, 2010). Nevertheless the SoTL community has evolved and gained momentum as it has integrated new members and facilitated the emergence of ongoing research projects. Attendees will have ways of assessing opportunities for pursuing SoTL research as an avenue of professional development.

References


Weston, C. G., & McAlpine, L. (2001). Making explicit the development toward the scholarship of teaching. New directions for teaching and learning, 86, 89-97. DOI: 10.1002/tl.19

Hubball, H, Clarke, A., & Poole, G. (2010). Ten-year reflections on mentoring SoTL research in a research-intensive university. International Journal for Academic Development, 15, 117-129. DOI: 10.1080/13601441003737758


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Copyright (c) 2017 Samuel Lawrence, Jill Lambeth, Kristi Archuleta