Teaching Enhancement Project: Congratulations to Communication and Political Science
Congratulations to Communication and Political Science, the first two departments to receive grants from the Dean's office's Teaching Enhancement Project. The leadership of their chairs, Stephen Hartnett and Tony Robinson, and the collective efforts of their faculties produced strong proposals, parts of which are available here: Communication Proposal / Political Science Proposal.
CLAS has a long-standing reputation for commitment to student learning and high-quality teaching. Many individual CLAS faculty have been recognized through teaching awards at the college, campus and system levels. The Teaching Enhancement Project differs in that it is aimed at department-wide consensus about changes to teaching practice across the faculty. The goal is to shift the cultural paradigm of an entire academic unit from one of teaching as a generally solitary practice to one of teaching as a collective endeavor with articulated, shared commitments.
This project encourages applying units to propose specific changes in faculty behavior and departmental procedure in three different areas: teaching development, teaching rigor, and teaching reward. Teaching development means that each faculty member in a department commits to learning about, improving, and innovating teaching practices. Teaching rigor includes the multiple ways in which faculty can work collectively to ensure a continued emphasis on appropriately high academic standards. Teaching reward refers to the system that a department uses for encouraging, recognizing, and rewarding good teaching as part of annual merit, tenure and post-tenure review.
Thus far, the Dean's office has been in conversation with eight departments about potential proposals. Such conversations within departments are in themselves one goal of this project. Jeff Franklin would be glad to meet with other chairs or faculties.