Experiences from the Teaching Success Movement

 

Reflections from Towson University 

We recently had the opportunity to connect with the team at Towson University, a founding partner of Faculty Guild. Our goals were straightforward. We wanted to celebrate with our ten Towson fellows and share the results of the first term with their administrators.   

 
 Casey Fisher, part-time faculty member of Towson University reflecting on the first term of his Faculty Guild fellowship.

Casey Fisher, part-time faculty member of Towson University reflecting on the first term of his Faculty Guild fellowship.

Following a welcome from Towson University and David Yaskin, CEO of Faculty Guild, we had the opportunity to hear directly from a couple of fellows, including Casey Fisher, part-time faculty in Health Sciences. 

Casey shared that in his opinion Faculty Guild is all about continuous quality improvement. He expressed that the challenge with traditional professional development is applying what you are learning. With the Faculty Guild model of weekly reflection, he is able to continually apply his new thinking in the classroom as he works through the term. Casey concluded his thoughts on his first term in the fellowship by saying, “I’ve gone from presenting information to my students in class, to teaching information.”

Insights and Other Lessons Learned

In addition to hearing the feedback from the fellows, we also shared a number of first-term insights with the Towson team, including:  

  • Themes and Tags. A central component of the weekly reflection process is tying one’s reflection about what happened in a recent class to specific evidence-based instructional practices (EBIPs). Thus, an interesting picture emerges, highlighting individual patterns of teaching. For the Towson cohort of fellows, the top five evidence-based practices documented by the fellows were Connections, Collaboration, Contextualization, Higher Order Thinking and Baseline Knowledge. Learn more about our EBIPs here.
  • Growth Ideas. Another part of the weekly reflection process is documenting ideas that fellows have about new things they want to try in the future. Fellows self-reported a number of interesting growth ideas including “rethinking how classes are scaffolded” and “making assessments more structured through the term.” Learn more about how the reflection process works.
  • Worthwhile Experience. In addition to the insights gleaned from actual faculty participation in the Faculty Guild platform, we also reported on a recent survey we conducted. We’ll publish the broader set of findings from this survey in the future, but one exciting metric that we shared with the Towson team is the fact that 92% of fellows found the experience to be “worth their time.” The fact that the vast majority feel this way is terrific! 

Looking Ahead

We are grateful for the partnership we have with Towson University. They are true champions in the Teaching Success Movement. We look forward to working with them and our returning fellows in the fall as they continue to invest in their own teaching.