2016 Symposium on Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
Learning In and Across Disciplines
Workshop: Evidence Matters: Designing Your SoTL Study
Jacqueline Dewar, Professor Emerita of Mathematics, Loyola Marymount University
After framing a researchable question, a SoTL investigator has to gather and analyze evidence to answer the question. Because the type of question being asked often guides decisions about what evidence to gather, this interactive workshop will begin with a brief description of the What is? What works? What could be? questions in Hutchings’ (2000) SoTL taxonomy. Then participants will gain “hands-on” experience with methods for gathering and analyzing evidence that tend to be unfamiliar to those beginning in SoTL, specifically, focus groups, think-alouds, knowledge surveys, and coding qualitative data. We will also consider both practical and ethical issues that arise when designing SoTL studies. Participants will practice applying this information to design a study of their own. They will receive additional resources for carrying out the design and implementation of a SoTL investigation.
For this experiential workshop, participants are encouraged to arrive with a research question in mind. Attendees who do not have a question will be able to choose from a set of generic questions, transferable to any discipline, to utilize during the workshop.
Workshop: SoTL and Undergraduate Research
Karen Manarin, Associate Professor, English and General Education, Mount Royal University
Margy MacMillan, Professor, Library, Mount Royal University
The Council for Undergraduate Research (2011) defines undergraduate research as “An inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative
contribution to the discipline.” Often people associate undergraduate research with honours projects and research assistantships available only to a few; however, some, like Healey and Jenkins
(2009) argue it should be available to all students at multiple points during their studies.
This workshop is intended for individuals or teams interested in investigating undergraduate research from a scholarship of teaching and learning perspective. Facilitators will outline some key models of undergraduate research and provide examples of SoTL studies designed to learn about facets of the undergraduate research experience.Participants can engage in developing and refining questions around undergraduate research, determining the kinds of information that would be useful to answer those questions, and considering ways of gathering useful data.
Workshop: Framing Questions
Curtis Bennett, Professor of Mathematics, Loyola Marymount University
Disciplinary research starts with curiosity. What happens? Why does it happen? Can I make it happen? What happens if I make a change?, and How do I describe what is happening to others? Scholarship of
Teaching and Learning investigations often start with a “teaching problem,” but then treat it as a opportunity to be curious about our classes and students. Thus we turn teaching problems into questions
for investigation: Is what I am doing working? Why does it work? What is actually happening? What would happen if I try something different? The participants in this workshop will gain experience with
taking a teaching problem, turning it into a question of curiosity around teaching and learning and then refining the question so that it is something that can be researched and form the basis of a SoTL study.
In this workshop, participants will work interactively and with each other to develop their teaching problems or curiosities into first more general questions and to then narrow their questions into something that can be investigated. As time permits, there may be some discussion about what evidence might be gathered to help further frame the question going forward.
Workshop: Getting Started: Using Episodic Narrative Interviews in SoTL and Educational Development Research
Robin Allison Mueller, University of Calgary
Qualitative research has been used as a tool to explore higher education teaching, learning, and educational development for decades. The value of qualitative inquiry within the scholarship of
teaching and learning is widely acknowledged; however, qualitative methods can also pose challenges to SoTL researchers. Qualitative approaches are notoriously time consuming, as well as highly
contextualized, which leads to some difficulty with respect to identifying patterns of behavior and ensuring generalizability. Episodic narrative interviewing is an innovative phenomenological
research method that allows researchers to delve deeply into the personal experiences and stories of university teachers and educational developers, while also enabling an assessment of broader
trends and themes across a number of research participants and locations.
This workshop will allow for an in-depth exploration of the episodic narrative interview method. It will feature a combination of presentations, collaborative group work, and time for individual development and practice. Following brief introductions to each aspect of the episodic narrative interview method, participants will work in pairs or small groups to explore options for application and implementation. Everyone in attendance will have the opportunity to identify appropriate research questions, consider ethical implications, and draft their own episodic narrative interview research project, with the option of consulting with the presenter for support.
For additional information please contact the Institute for Scholarship of Teaching and Learning at Mount Royal University: firstname.lastname@example.org or 403.440.5503.