Core Teaching Principles & Best Practices
- Inquiry-guided learning: Students work inductively, building up their own analysis and creating their own understandings, with our guidance.
- Active-learning classrooms: Most classroom time consists of students DOING, not just listening. If used at all, lectures are interactive.
- Uncovering concepts & nuances rather than simply covering a body of facts.
- Students are neophytes in our disciplines: Students do what professionals in our disciplines do, albeit at an appropriate level, rather than simply reading results from other researchers.
- Promote critical & creative thinking: Assignments require both these important cognitive practices.
- We measure student improvement: We do not assume our practices yield good learning. Well-conceived assessments measure both critical and creative thinking.
- We push assignments to Bloom’s upper levels. We emphasize applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating over simple remembering facts.
- Low- and higher-stakes [informal & formal] writing and speaking opportunities: Students need practice on these important skills; low-stakes options mean less grading for instructors and lower pressure for students.
- Promote developmental as well as cognitive outcomes: We teach the whole student. We’re attentive and supportive of the major life transition students are making from high school to college.