Faculty Cohorts on Teaching
The CTE’s Faculty Cohorts on Teaching program seeks to bring faculty together to explore innovative approaches to significant teaching and learning questions. Participating faculty spend a year investigating a new pedagogical approach that they also implement in a course taught during the cohort year. A late spring kick-off meeting sets the stage for the conversation, and then monthly seminar meetings during the academic year are organized around relevant readings in the pedagogical literature and case studies developed by cohort participants.
All Boston College faculty are eligible to participate. See below for descriptions of the two cohorts for 2019-20.
Benefits and Expectations
Participating faculty receive a $2,500 stipend and the opportunity to interact with an engaged group of colleagues. Please note that individuals who have administrative roles and teach are eligible to participate in a cohort but ineligible to receive the stipend, as per Boston College policy. Faculty who choose to participate can expect to:
- attend a kick-off meeting the spring before the cohort launches;
- participate in monthly cohort meetings during the academic year;
- develop a short teaching case to be shared with other members of the cohort;
- experiment with at least one significant revision to their teaching during the cohort year; and
- submit a brief final report within one month of concluding the cohort, as well as participate in other assessments the CTE conducts of the cohort program.
Applications for the 2019-20 cohort program are now closed and participants have been notified of their acceptance.
Interested faculty were asked to submit a brief online application that includes a description of the spring course they hope to revise as well as a project proposal explaining what they hope to gain from their cohort participation.
Applicants were asked to have their department chair send a very brief email to firstname.lastname@example.org indicating their support of the applicant’s participation in the cohort. Part-time faculty were asked to have their chair speak specifically to the ways the department will benefit from their participation.
Any questions about Faculty Cohorts in general -- or about the specific cohorts being offered next year -- can be directed to email@example.com.
Applying Learning Sciences to Our Teaching
As Silvia Bunge reminded us in her 2015 Excellence in Teaching Day keynote, our students’ learning habits — as well as the teaching habits many of us have inherited — are not always well-suited to help students realize their full potential in the classroom. Luckily, recent findings from cognitive psychology and other learning sciences suggest ways to help students learn more effectively by developing empowering capacities such as metacognition, motivation, reflection, and self-agency. The “Applying Learning Sciences to Our Teaching” cohort invites faculty to participate in a year-long collaborative inquiry into this fruitful intersection of theory and practice. Participants will each identify a learning problem common to the courses they teach and then experiment with implementing different pedagogical responses to that problem, informed by the learning science literature.
Teaching for Inclusion and Social Justice
As institutions of higher education welcome increasingly diverse student bodies and seek to expand the diversity of perspectives reflected in their curricula, faculty can sometimes struggle to carve out classroom spaces that support all students as they strive to meet their learning goals. The question of inclusion and social justice in the classroom has implications for all parts of our practice: pedagogical approach, classroom interaction, and curriculum development.
The “Teaching for Inclusion and Social Justice” cohort invites faculty to participate in a year-long inquiry into this complex pedagogical puzzle. All participants are asked to identify at least one new pedagogical strategy they want to implement in one of their courses meant to improve either the inclusiveness of their course content or their classroom climate. We seek faculty from a range of disciplines to participate, particularly those whose subject matter doesn’t necessarily lend itself to discussions of “diversity.” Although we welcome a broad definition of inclusion and justice in this conversation, we focus most of our emphasis around questions of race/ethnicity, gender, class, sexuality, religion, and ability.