Teaching, Learning, & Instructional Resource

The Committee shall review, gather relevant materials, evaluate, and recommend to the Faculty Council any issue related to teaching, learning, and instructional resources at the University.

Membership 2012-2013

D. Lynn O’Brien Hallstein (CGS), Chair

Margaret Downey (CELOP)
Matthew Fox (SPH)
Janelle Heineke (SMG)
Timothy Heeren (SPH)
Devin Kearns (SED)
Marnie Reed (SED)

Blackboard Learn Presentation to Faculty Council

Membership 2010-2011

Judith Schotland (SAR), Chair

Suzanne Chapin (SED)
Alan Gaynor (SED)
Anita Gohel (GSDM)
Timothy Heeren (SPH)
Vijay Kanabar (MET)
Davida Pines (CGS)
Muhammad Zaman (ENG)

TLIR Report May 2011

Over the 2009-10 academic year, we will continue the work we began last spring evaluating instructional support at peer institutions. These data will form the basis of a recommendation for development of programs for BU’s Center for Excellence in Teaching.

Membership 2009-2010

Judith Schotland (SAR), Chair, schotlnd@bu.edu
Suzanne Chapin (SED), schapin@bu.edu
Vijay Kanabar (MET), kanabar@bu.edu
Sarah Phillips (CAS), sarahphi@bu.edu
Davida Pines (CGS), dpines@bu.edu

Resource Links:
Center for Excellence in Teaching
Faculty Annual Review and Development

Teaching Learning and Instructional Resources

Annual Report 2009-10

Judith L. Schotland, Chair

The mission of the Teaching, Learning, and Instructional Resources Committee is to review, gather relevant materials, evaluate, and recommend to the Faculty Council any issue related to teaching, learning, and instructional resources at Boston University.  After the previous Chair of the committee left the University, the committee chose to continue the project initiated last year (2008-09):

To improve teaching, learning, and instructional resources University-wide through enhancing our Center for Excellence in Teaching (CET).  To do this we surveyed equivalents to the CET and their implementation at our peer institutions in order to identify best practices for consideration at Boston University (see Appendix A).

This year we chose to also survey instructional resources in use across BU (see Appendix B) as a first step to improving the architecture, integration, communication, and support for instructional resources across the campuses, schools, and colleges of Boston University.

This pursuit was based on existing conditions at BU. Instructional resources are widely dispersed across the campuses, school and colleges.  There seemed to be no uniform standards – even within a college, let alone across a single or both campuses.  Although faculty teaching support did exist, identifying sources of that support was difficult with the existing web architecture.  And while the Center for Excellence in Teaching (CET) might seem a logical center for coordination of these resources, its diminished presence and reduced staffing and budget did not support this kind of effort.

In addition to our regular meetings, the committee met with Victor Coelho, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education, who gave us a preview of the Unlocking the Undergraduate Experience Task Force Report and the Chair met with Janelle Heineke, Director of the Center for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching.

We are happy to say that this year many of these issues have been remedied.  The Center for Excellence in Teaching has been renamed The Center for Excellence and Innovation in Teaching and whereas previously the Director had very little support, there is now a Program Administrator as well as a Program Coordinator.  The CEIT website has been dramatically improved, with multiple options grouped under the headings: Initiatives, Faculty Development, and Teaching Resources.  We also have a new Associate Provost for Faculty Development, Julie Sandell.

Our recommendations:

  1. Continue to support the CEIT to improve the integration and coordination of instructional resources across BU and to allow deployment of expanded programs and incentives such as (see Appendix A for a more extensive list):
    1. Grants for innovative teaching and curriculum development.
    2. Financial incentives for faculty development.
    3. Enhanced support for teaching fellows, including teaching awards.
  2. Enhance the CEIT website to include resources at both university and college levels within a single site. Control access via Kerberos password.

We are considering whether to conduct a survey next year to determine faculty awareness of the types of teaching, learning, and instructional resources available on campus.
Appendix A: Survey of Peer Institutions

We surveyed our seven peer institutions regarding teaching, learning, and instructional resources. The survey included requests for the following information:

  • name/contact information for teaching support
  • size of student body
  • number of teaching faculty
  • center staffing
  • operations budget
  • number years active
  • incentives for faculty involvement
  • number, size and types of grants available
  • ways teaching is recognized by the institution (awards, inclusion in a Faculty Annual Report, etc.)
  • the types of programs offered and the success of these programs
  • measureable outcomes to assess the program success
Institution Program Name Budget Staffing
Columbia1[1] Columbia Center for New Media, Teaching & Learning 

(and Instructional Technology)

$2,700,000 40
Emory Center for Faculty Development & Excellence; Emory’s Center for Interactive Teaching $525,000 11
GWU Center for Innovative Teaching & Learning; Instructional Technology Lab ? 8
NYU Center for Teaching ? 3
Penn[2] Center for Teaching & Learning $550,000 4
Syracuse[3] Center for Support of Teaching & Learning 0 0
USC Center for Excellence in Teaching Not endowed 2 ¼

Some programs at our peer institutions that administration may wish to consider adding include:

Emory:

  • Funds for Innovative Teaching or FITS Grants

GWU:

  • Curriculum Development Grants

NYU:

  • The Curricular Development Challenge Fund (CDCF)

Penn:

  • Stipend for faculty who participate in a year-long monthly seminar series
  • Prizes for graduate student teaching

o      Penn Prize for Excellence in Teaching by Graduate Students

o      Graduate Fellows Program for spring semester

  • Extensive programming for graduate student teaching fellows:

o      Workshops

o      Teaching Certificate Workshops

o      One-on-one consultations

o      Recording lectures

o      TA Training

o      Become a TA Trainer

USC:

  • The USC Fund for Innovative Undergraduate Teaching (FIUT)
  • 15 Faculty Fellows (3 yr. term)
  • Grad student support

o      Departmental and University-wide awards for Teaching Assistants

o      Consultations (course design, videotaped teaching, individual consultations)

o      Wiki for USC TAs

Appendix B: Initial Survey of Instructional Resources at BU

We sent the following survey to deans of all the colleges at BU:

Questions Answer format
1.     Do you have in-house audio/visual and/or teaching technology support staff?   Teaching technology includes Smart-board, Sympodium, Blackboard, etc. Y/N
If Yes, A/V support only & how many?
Teaching technology support only & how many?
A/V & Teaching technology support & how many?
5.     Do you have in-house information technology (IT) support staff? Y/N
If Yes, how many?
7.     Do you have an in-house Office for Instructional Resources (or equivalent)? 

( includes all or some of the following: course design, teaching strategies and techniques, production of instructional materials, workshops and consultations)

Y/N
If Yes: list website.
9.     Do you have a college-wide faculty mentoring program? Y/N
10.  Do any departments in your college have faculty mentoring programs Y/N
If Yes, list departments.
12.  Do you have a college-wide teaching fellow mentoring program? Y/N
13.  Do any departments in your college have teaching fellow mentoring programs? Y/N
If Yes, list departments.
15.  Do you have any student computer labs? Y/N
If Yes, how many?
17.  Do you have one or more in-house student tutoring and/or writing support programs? Y/N
If Yes, how are they staffed?
10.   Do you have one or more in-house libraries? Y/N
If Yes, please list.
11.  What percentage of your classrooms support multi-media, e.g., have built-in computers, projector systems, etc.?
  1. None
  2. Fewer than 25%
  3. 25-75%
  4. More than 75%
12. List any specialized TLIR support in your college.

The following colleges responded:  COM, SAR, SDM, MET, SED, LAW, SMG, SPH, and STH.

School AV Support Faculty Mentoring TF Mentoring Student Computer lab Student tutoring/ writing support IT support Teaching Technol. Support Multi-media classrooms Office for Inst. resources Faculty TLIR support Library
CAS
COM X X X X
ENG
CFA
CGS
SAR X X X X X X
SDM X X X X
GRS
MET X X X X X X X
SED X X X X X X X X X
SHA
LAW X X X
SMG X X X X X X X X
MED
SPH X 1 X X X
SSW
STH X X X2
CET

1 some programs are department specific

2 includes reading room, contributions to BU digital library, and Internet Archive

Summary of types of support available in different colleges of BU:

  • Audio visual support
  • Faculty Mentoring Program
  • Teaching Fellow Mentoring Program
  • Student computer lab
  • Student tutoring & writing support
  • IT support
  • Teaching Technology support
  • Multi-media classrooms
  • Office for Inst. Res
  • Faculty TLIR support
  • Library

Including access to these college/departmental programs (limited by Kerberos password) on the main CEIT website would facilitate access for faculty.


[1] Columbia’s budget includes both CCNMTL and Instructional Technology, i.e., staffing for operations of Blackboard, etc.

 

[2] This is the budget for CTL; Instructional Technology has its own separate budget.

[3] The Syracuse CSTL does not appear to be functional at this time.