Throughout the last few weeks I have been refining my syllabus, selecting readings, revising my assessment strategies, and generally gearing up for the fall semester.
I have been taking a number of different professional development short-courses and workshops at the Center for Teaching, Learning & Technology at ISU. The most recent one that I attended pertained to course portfolio designs. That is, how we document the intellectual work of teaching. The majority of the attendees were faculty members in tenure-track jobs.
What I realized, upon later reflection, is that new faculty members and graduate students who are sole instructor’s of record share some similar concerns. We are both in the process of determining what teaching methods work for us, as well as determining what works best for students. For faculty, of course, there is the need to create a portfolio for tenure review and promotion. For graduate students, there is a need to create a portfolio for prospective employers. However, the overarching goal for many of us in the workshop was the desire to be the best educators we can be that involves much time and effort. For me, curiosity is a driving factor. In other words, I want to know what it is that my students learn from me and from each other. The course portfolio workshop was useful, and here are some links to exemplary portfolios created by the authors of the book workshop participants read. I wrote a review of the book for The Link, the CTLT newsletter for faculty at ISU. The content is not public, yet. When it is, I’ll post the content link for quick reference.