Evidence-Based Instructional Practices
Evidence-Based Instructional Practices are research-based strategies that have been proven to have a significant, positive impact on student learning. In this course, participants will delve into the research behind various instructional practices as well as explore how to apply them to their teaching. By the end of this course, participants will be able to:
- Describe evidence-based instructional practices
- Adapt and adopt evidence-based practices that foster student learning in their discipline
In this week-long workshop, participants learn how to transform their classes with team-based learning. Team-based learning is a teaching strategy in which students are assigned to permanent teams and students’ grades are based on their performance on individual and team tasks. Students are held accountable for completing reading assignments using short, multiple-choice quizzes that students complete as an individual and then as a team. A variety of in-class activities get students talking to their teammates about class material, resolving differences in their understanding, and applying their knowledge to authentic tasks. Teammates are held accountable for contributing positively to team performance via peer evaluations that become part of students’ final grades.
At the end of this intensive workshop, participants will be able to redesign the class of their choice using team-based learning. Specifically, participants will be able to explain the guiding principles and motivation behind team-based learning. They will also draft and receive feedback on:
- course objectives specifying what students will be able to do at the end of the course
- learning objectives for one unit
- team-based learning assignments for one unit
Peer Coaching: A Classroom Observation Program
Peer coaching is a process in which teachers work in pairs to learn how to observe each other’s teaching and give specific, concrete suggestions for change. Partners observe each other’s classes and survey each other’s students using a time-tested protocol. Afterwards, pairs meet to share the students’ comments as well as their own observations and expertise. They also write letters for each other for use in job searches (graduate students) or use in the “Evidence of Effective Teaching from other professionals” section of the Annual Performance Review (faculty).
Classroom Observations (by Academy staff and affiliated faculty)
Do you want to enhance your teaching and your students’ learning while earning higher student evaluations? A staff member chosen by the Teaching Academy or an affiliated faculty will visit your face-to-face class and administer mid-term evaluations to your students. After this visitation, the consultant will give you feedback from the students and from his/her own observations.
All visitations are confidential and provide formative feedback only. For faculty this means that the consultant cannot write a letter for the “evidence from other professionals” section of the annual performance evaluation (APR). For that, you must ask a peer or join Peer Coaching or the Peer Review Network. In the APR, you may reflect on the experience and the changes you made in the “evidence from the instructor” section.
Research shows that classroom visitations such as these improve student evaluations. Instructions who give midterm evals and discuss them with a consultant earn end-of-term evals in the 74th percentile. Instructors who don’t give midterm evals earn end-of-term ratings at the 50th percentile.