Brett McCollum, PhD
Brett McCollum is a Professor of Chemistry at Mount Royal University, a Nexen Scholar of Teaching and Learning, an Apple Distinguished Educator, and an educational software developer. He writes a column
about innovations in educational practices for ACCN (L'Actualité chimique canadienne / the Canadian Chemical News) to connect chemists in government, industry, and academia to evidence and practices
emerging from the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. In 2016-2017, McCollum served as the Acting Academic Director of the Institute for Scholarship of Teaching and Learning at Mount Royal University,
and co-Chair of the International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning 2017 conference. McCollum is currently the Chair of SoTL Canada and a Board member of the Society for Teaching and
Learning in Higher Education.
Recipient of the prestigious Gordon M. Shrum Scholarship, Simon Fraser University (1999), McCollum developed a passion for students as partners as a first-year undergraduate student engaged in research
at Canada’s National Facility for Particle and Nuclear Physics. In his current role as a faculty member, he has participated in student as partner structures with his classes, and has partnered with
undergraduate Peer Leaders to support team-based learning in his classrooms. He has engaged in research with more than 25 undergraduate student partners, his SoTL team members twice winning awards at the
Conference of the Canadian Society for Chemistry (2014 and 2018).
Brett McCollum has contributed to three books and 24 articles on ylidene chemistry, muon spin spectroscopy, chemistry education research, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. He is an Associate
Editor of LibreTexts, the highest ranked and most visited online OER textbook project. McCollum’s SoTL focuses on effective uses of technology for teaching and learning, chemistry language learning,
open education resources, and research partnerships with students. In collaboration with Layne Morsch (University of Illinois – Springfield) and Michael Wentzel (Augsburg University), McCollum co-founded
INCLD, the International Network for Chemistry Language Development, which engages in SoTL to enhance student communication in chemistry using oral, written, symbolic, and manipulable representation modalities.
McCollum’s efforts to connect SoTL and scholarly teaching practices have been recognized through the ACIFA Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Award (2012), a Petro-Canada Young Innovator Award (2015),
the MRFA Teaching Award (2016), and a MRU Distinguished Faculty Award (2017). He continues to advocate for national funding in Canada for STEM educational research, and increased collaboration between
discipline-based educational researchers and scholars of teaching and learning.
Keynote Presentation: Saturday, November 10, 2018
Anthems and Pledges of Allegiance: Redirecting Our Trajectories to Connect SoTL, DBER, and Disciplinary Research Communities
Communities for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning have moved along parallel trajectories with communities of Discipline-Based Educational Research (DBER) in higher education. Both communities
care deeply about student learning; both communities strive to advance institutional teaching practices; both communities employ theoretical frameworks and systemic inquiry to meet our goals. However,
despite our aligned goals, SoTL and DBER have often behaved like two independent armies, rather than overlapping collaborative communities. The separation of SoTL and DBER communities has become a point
of tension in academic publishing. Furthermore, both of these communities can experience similar barriers when advocating for the adoption of evidence-based teaching practices by disciplinary research
colleagues. Brett McCollum’s keynote address will explore the anthems of SoTL and DBER, the pledges of allegiance we require of inductees, and how these community characteristics determine our paths.
Participants will be invited to examine the biases they bring to their scholarship, and how those biases impact the journals they read, the reviews they write, and the scholarly practices they adopt.
McCollum will share the actions that SoTL Canada is taking to achieve strategic points of intersection with our DBER colleagues and our disciplinary-research peers. We will explore the harmony between
our community anthems. Through cooperative discussions, we will identify the values and visions that we share with other communities, redesign our pledges, and propose personal and collective actions
that we can take back to our institutions to realize new trajectories.