Ideas for Teaching and Learning

Ideas for Teaching & Learning was a regularly featured column in the monthly newsletter produced by the Centre for Teaching and Learning . Between 2012-2013, I wrote over 26 pieces conveying interesting ideas, strategies, and considerations for Queen’s faculty and graduate students. The featured Wordle gives an overall sense of the common themes and diverse topics conveyed in the authored pieces.


Here are two examples of Ideas for Teaching & Learning pieces I wrote:

Reconceptualizing Higher Education

In a recent article, Brew (2012) calls for the reconceptualization of higher education. This reconceptualization means appreciating, “the importance of context, the significance of interpretations and revision on the basis of looking again”. It means “the development of academic communities of practice where both students and academics engage as legitimate peripheral participants”. It means “bringing research and teaching together” to treat students as “the adult people they are, with something valuable to contribute as well as to learn”. In her paper Brew offers a model for this reconceptualization that combines teaching, learning and research together. Where does the future of higher education lie? How will we at Queen’s define reconceptualization in higher education? Will we take up the challenge of bringing research and teaching together to invite students into an academic community of practice?

We invite you to attend the I@Q Undergraduate Research Conference, where research, teaching and learning are combined, happening March 7-8, 2013 in the Queen’s Learning Commons in Stauffer Library.

Brew, A. (2012). Teaching and research: New relationships and their implications for inquiry-based teaching and learning in higher education. Higher Education Research & Development, 31(1), 101-114. doi: 10.1080/07294360.2012.642844

Reflective Practitioner: A Reading Week Reflection Activity

Reflection-in-action offers an opportunity to gain new perspectives and develop strategies within the immediacy of the moment (Schon, 1983). Situated within the bustle and activity of the winter term, reading week offers us pause – a chance gain new perspectives on current teaching and classroom action. To spur your reading week reflection, we offer an inspirational quote:  Creativity requires the freedom to consider the “unthinkable alternatives,” to doubt the worth of cherished practices – John Gardner

What cherished practices have you utilized so far this term? What has been effective or ineffective about your classroom and/or teaching? What “unthinkable alternatives” might in fact be a possible for you? Come visit CTL this reading week to critique cherished practices, tinker with “unthinkable alternatives”, and reflect amid the action of this busy term.

Schon, D. A. (1983). The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think in Action. New York: Basic Books.

ED Philosophy Themes

Conversational: When planning for ‘Ideas for Teaching & Learning’ my goal was to write in a conversational tone to grab the reader’s attention. I aimed to inspire readers to learn more, and regularly included links to information and resources. Through informal conversation, I received feedback that the column was well received each month; inspiring a quick thought or reflection on teaching and learning.

Literature Informed: My column was regularly took one of the following forms: highlighting a seminal piece of literature, highlighting SoTL or referring to scholars to inspire reflection or innovative thinking.

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