National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment |

National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment

NILOA In the Field

For NILOA Newsletters, please see the NILOA Newsletters.


January 2017

Building Capacity for Learning – Centered Faculty Collaboration

Commentary by Dr. Pat Hutchings

The primary focus of the session was developing leadership skills for faculty collaboration that promote improvements in teaching and learning. The five presenters (Dr. Susan Albertine, Dr. Elise Martin, Dr. Dan McInerney, Dr. Rebecca Karoff, and Dr. Pat Hutchings) brought different experiences to bear on the topic, the goal was to invite the audience to think about principles for effective collaboration. Faculty collaboration is not just positive, but rather necessary if institutions are to deliver on promises to students and some kinds of outcomes can only be achieved when faculty work together. Otherwise, students are likely to have (at best) one neat experience after another but without connections among them. Dr. David Marshall noticed that participants struggled with old problems, however “more of the conversation indicated an emerging change and desire for groups working together,” says Dr. Marshall. Considering the crowd and participation in group exercises, one could say that the topic was certainly of interest to participants.

According to Dr. Hutchings, an outcome she would like to see is to find ways to engage faculty in assessment that is part of their regular pedagogical work. “Faculty need to be involved throughout the process, not just seen as end-point receivers of evidence about someone else’s questions,” says Dr. Hutchings.

In this session, I talked with a few others in my group about the assignment work NILOA was doing. Mary Ann Winkelmes also highlighted her Transparentcy in Learning and Teaching (TILT) assignment work. The conversation concluded with one of the participants talking about how she used to convene faculty and conduct a syllabus workshop, similar to our assignment charrette work. She enjoyed the work and found it valuable but wasn’t sure how to communicate it. I think she planned to go back to her campus and re-start that work as it had been a few years with a few more tools under her belt. What I felt from that particular conversation was that all she needed was support. I felt she left more confident and re-energized about her work.

Dr. Gianina Baker
Assistant Director
National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA)

Click here to view the latest version of the PowerPoint Presentation.

Please view the image gallery from the presentation below (click to enlarge).

Archives 2013
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"The complex, diverse learning goals, of postsecondary education do not justify a passive approach to student achievement. It is heartening to see state policy and institutional leaders working together to collect evidence of student learning and pursue continuous improvement."

Paul Lingenfelter

Paul E. Lingenfelter
President Emeritus
State Higher Education Executive Officers