• Research on Teaching and Learning

  • From issues of interdisciplinary literacy to strategies for addressing the rich and growing diversity of our student community, to the questions raised by new educational technologies, the Center helps the college face exciting challenges and opportunities.  Our work with faculty is grounded in educational philosophy and research; the sections below provide links to key texts that we have used to inform our work with faculty.


    Barr, R. & Tagg, J. (1995). From teaching to learning - A new paradigm for undergraduate education.
    November/December, 13- 25. Reprinted with permission of the Helen Dwight Reid Educational Foundation. Retrieved from http://ilte.ius.edu/pdf/BarrTagg.pdf
    Is the college experience preparing students to master the knowledge, talents and skills needed to thrive in a knowledge society? The authors, outlining the failures of the traditional instruction paradigm, advocate for a new learning paradigm in which student learning becomes the college’s end goal.

    Brown, J. S., Collins, A. & Duguid, P. (1989). Situated cognition and the culture of learning.
    Educational Researcher
    , 18(1), 32-42. Retrieved from http://www.exploratorium.edu/ifi/resources/museumeducation/situated.html
    This article opposes school learning, the “what,” taught in a self-contained, de-contextualized model, and authentic learning, the “how,” learned in an apprenticeship model. In the apprenticeship model, concepts, activities and the disciplinary culture are interdependent, knowledge is socially constructed, and learners are enculturated into communities of practice through purposeful, meaningful activities.

    Leamnson, R. (1999). Thinking about teaching and learning: Developing habits of learning with first year college and university students. Sterling: Stylus Publishing.
    As a better alternative to remediation, the author suggests focusing on a “nodal problem,” that impedes student success across disciplines and modes of communication. He chooses language use because thought is incarnated for us in words, and teaching students the habit of thinking means forcing them to struggle with language.

    Integrative Learning

    Huber, M.T. & Hutchings, P. (2005) Integrative learning: Mapping the terrain.
    Retrieved from http://www.carnegiefoundation.org/sites/default/files/publications/elibrary_pdf_636.pdf
    Despite campus barriers to integrative learning, colleges and faculty must help students learn to make connections between disciplines, within a major, between curriculum and co-curriculum, or between academic knowledge and practice. This calls for collaborative, intentional teaching that frames and investigates questions about student learning while nurturing, deepening and assessing it.

    Gale, R.A. (2006). Fostering integrative learning through pedagogy.
    Retrieved from http://gallery.carnegiefoundation.org/ilp/uploads/pedagogy_copy.pdf
    Helping students develop integrative habits of mind requires faculty awareness of the pedagogies that promote integration. Gale discusses familiar pedagogies of integration, the shift from coverage to student experience and engagement, and flexible assessment of student learning evidence. He calls for an integration of pedagogies supporting deeper, more connected learning.

    Lardner, E. & Malnarich, G. (2009).When faculty assess integrative learning.
    Change, September/October, 28-37.  Retrieved from http://www.evergreen.edu/washcenter/resources/upload/When_Faculty_Assess.pdf
    A project to investigate the impact of learning communities on student learning at Evergreen State College used a collaborative assessment protocol to examine student work for evidence of integrative learning. Enlightening conclusions about integrative and interdisciplinary learning, effective assignment design and integrative prompts, and cross-departmental conversations are discussed.

    Professional Development

    Angelo, T. (2001). Doing faculty development as if we value learning most: Transformative guidelines from research and practice.
    In D. Lieberman & C. Wehlburg (Eds.), To improve the academy. Resources for faculty, instructional and organizational development, Vol. 19. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
    If the purpose of faculty development is to help faculty help students become better learners, “if we value learning most,” argues the author, “then transformation is clearly required.” Angelo proposes seven “transformative ideas” which can potentially change practice and promote high-quality deep learning, and seven guidelines for transforming academic departments into scholarly learning communities.

    Fink, D. (2001). Higher-level learning: The first step toward more significant learning.
    In D. Lieberman & C. Wehlburg (Eds.), To improve the academy. Resources for faculty, instructional and organizational development, Vol. 19. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
    To help faculty find new ways of teaching, the author sought a language to describe important or significant kinds of learning that make sense across disciplines. Her interactive taxonomy of higher-level learning can help teachers develop a set of goals for their courses that go well beyond covering the content.

    Technology for Teaching and Learning

    Courtney, S. (2001).Technology and the culture of teaching and learning.
    In D. Lieberman & C. Wehlburg (Eds.), To improve the academy. Resources for faculty, instructional and organizational development, Vol. 19. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
    Courtney examines the impact of new technologies on six key dimensions of traditional cultures of teaching and learning. He reports that with technology, teaching is de-centered, the classroom is re-cast as the site for the construction of new knowledge, learners form collaborative communities and learning is more relevant to students’ lives.

    Chen, H. L. & Penny Light, T. (2010). Electronic portfolios and student success: Effectiveness, efficiency, and learning.
    Washington D.C: Association of American Colleges and Universities Publications.
    This is a comprehensive report on the growth of ePortfolio as a means of capturing student learning across contexts and over time; fostering integrative, reflective capacities that build habits of mind and prepare students to make informed judgments. Eight issues central to successful implementation are outlined.

    Clark, J.E. & Eynon, B. (2009). E-Portfolios at 2.0 – Surveying the field.
    Peer Review, 11(1), 18-23.
    This article outlines the driving forces that have spurred the growth of the ePortfolio movement in the past ten years, highlights the work being done in the United States as well as in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Asia, and discusses the future and promise of the ePortfolio movement.