Reflecting on and Documenting your Teaching

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The Office of Teaching and Learning offers resources for faculty and instructors to improve their teaching practice through reflection, and document their teaching practice for tenure, promotion, and awards. These resources are grounded in research and demonstrate our commitment to scholarly approaches to improving teaching and learning.

The Office of Teaching and Learning encourages instructors to regularly gather and review feedback as part of a reflective teaching practice. Reflecting on feedback, whether from students or peers, through the lens of your teaching philosophy, forms a critical component of the teaching dossier.

Gathering Peer Feedback

If you are planning to request an In-Class Peer Observation of Teaching for your Tenure and Promotion Assessment File, see the LOU 15 Assessment of Teaching guidelines and the AVPA’s website for Peer Observation of Teaching for Tenure and Promotion for more information. The In-Class Peer Observation Form is required to be completed by the Peer Observer during the observed class and will be included in the faculty member’s assessment package.

OTL has developed three additional resources to support the Peer Observation of Teaching process:

  1. Pre-Observation Meeting Resource: This optional resource offers suggestions and discussion prompts for the pre-observation meeting between the Faculty Member and the Peer Observer.
  2. Post-Observation Meeting Resource: This optional resource offers suggestions and discussion prompts for the post-observation meeting between the Faculty Member and the Peer Observer.
  3. Selecting a Peer Observer: Resource for Faculty Members and Deans: This optional resource offers suggestions and best practices for consideration when identifying and selecting Peer Observers.

Gathering Student Feedback

Mid-Semester Feedback

Gathering Mid-Semester Feedback from students allows instructors to gain insight into how students are navigating and perceiving the learning environment. The feedback can be used to understand what approaches are working well within the course, and what modifications you may want to consider to improve the course or learning environment.

Interpreting Feedback from the University's Student Feedback Questionnaire

Interpreting End-of-Course Feedback gathered through the Student Feedback Questionnaire provides all instructors an opportunity to reflect on how their course and teaching practices were perceived and experienced by students.

Teaching Philosophy Statements

A teaching philosophy statement is a reflective document that clearly and logically communicates an instructor’s fundamental values and beliefs about teaching and learning and outlines how these beliefs are demonstrated through their teaching practice. Teaching philosophy statements usually consist of four key components related to teaching:

  • beliefs (what beliefs about teaching do you hold and why?)
  • strategies (what teaching practices do you employ?)
  • impact (what effect does your teaching have on learners, yourself or your colleagues?)
  • future goals (how will you improve your teaching?)

(Kenny, Berenson, Jeffs, Nowell, & Grant, 2018, Teaching Philosophies and Teaching Dossiers Guide)

As a reflective scholarly document, teaching philosophy statements are usually written in the first person and incorporate scholarly evidence to support pedagogical claims about the effectiveness of teaching practices on student learning.

The Office of Teaching and Learning offers workshops, consultations and resources to guide faculty and instructors through the process of writing a teaching philosophy statement.

Teaching Dossiers

A teaching dossier (also known as a teaching portfolio) is a critically-reflective narrative summary of an instructor’s teaching accomplishments and effectiveness. Teaching dossiers summarize teaching practices, responsibilities, accomplishments and evidence of effectiveness. A strong teaching dossier typically contains a teaching philosophy statement and several artifacts used as evidence of teaching accomplishments. Artifacts in a teaching dossier can include: student feedback, samples of lesson plans and course outlines, descriptions of scholarship of teaching and learning research and evidence of professional learning and development activities related to teaching.

The Office of Teaching and Learning offers workshops, consultations and resources to guide faculty and instructors through the process of writing a teaching dossier.

 

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