There are six themes that can help instructors in higher education improve their teaching, writes Mary Clement, EdD, in a recent Faculty Focus article. The themes include:
“Study the knowledge base of teaching and learning,” or exploring books, articles in pedagogical periodicals, newsletters, conferences, online resources, and your school’s center for teaching and learning to learn about best practices.
“Accept all who enter the classroom door,” or accepting students for who they are when they walk through the door to help them progress throughout the course.
“Plan for instructional management,” or setting the tone for a class by posting a visual outline of what will be done during the course, putting relevant information about course policies in the syllabus, and reviewing those policies with students.
“Teach with a variety of strategies,” or using different techniques in the classroom including learner-centered teaching, guided inquiry, active learning activities, lecture, group work, and online discussion.
“Use assessment to inform students of their achievement,” or sharing your grading policies in a syllabus, and explaining to students that assessment is more than just a grade.
“Keep the passion,” or remembering what it was that drew you to the profession initially and drawing on that energy in the classroom.
“Successful college teachers recognize that many of today’s college students have learning needs. Taking actions like these helps them to meet those challenges successfully,” Clement writes in the article.