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This is a book for anyone who has ever considered engaging in the scholarship of teaching and learning – known familiarly as SoTL – and needs a better understanding of what it is, and how to engage in it. The authors describe how to create a SoTL project, its implications for promotion and tenure, and how it fosters:
* Increased satisfaction and fulfillment in teaching
* Improved student learning
* Increased productivity of scholarly publication
* Collaboration with colleagues across disciplines
* Contributing to a growing and important body of literature
This guide provides prospective SoTL scholars with the necessary background information, foundational theory, tools, resources, and methodology to develop their own SoTL projects, taking the reader through the five stages of the process: Generating a research question; Designing the study; Collecting the data; Analyzing the data; and Presenting and publishing your SoTL project. Each stage is illustrated by examples of actual SoTL studies, and is accompanied by worksheets to help the reader refine ideas and map out his or her next steps. The process and worksheets are the fruit of the successful SoTL workshops the authors have offered at their institution for many years.
SoTL differs from scholarly and reflective teaching in that it not only involves questioning one’s teaching or a teaching strategy, but also formally gathering and exploring evidence, researching the literature, refining and testing practices, and finally going public. The purpose of SoTL is not just to make an impact on student learning, but through formal, peer-reviewed communication, to contribute to the larger knowledge base on teaching and learning.
While the roots of SoTL go back some 30 years, it was Ernest Boyer in his classic Scholarship Reconsidered who made the case for the parity of the scholarships of integration, of discovery, of application, and of scholarship of teaching as vital to the health of higher education. Glassick, Huber, and Maeroff ’s subsequent Scholarship Assessed articulated the quality standards for SoTL, since when the field has burgeoned with the formation of related associations, a proliferation of conferences, the launching of numerous journals, and increasing recognition and validation by institutions.
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