There are three areas of focus:
- Theory (T)
- Improved Practice (IP)
- Assessment (A)
First Semester - Understanding the Undergraduate Learner/USMA Cadet
All program readings will be on our Blackboard site, but each participant will receive a binder to serve as a "Teaching Resource Book," not only to organize program reading material but our CTE newsletter and other material relevant to the study of teaching and learning. During the first semester, we will explore the psycho-social development of the undergraduate, theories of motivation, the nature of learning, and learning styles. Focus on T & IP.
The semester's activities will include:
- Reading/reflection - application to instructional practices
- Class "profile" - throughout the semester, as theories and ideas are discussed, participants will keep a reflective journal about one class they are currently teaching, looking at the cadets through the various "lenses" we'll be discussing.
- Classroom visits - each participant will have at least two visits from a Master Teacher arranged individually to include a pre-observation discussion of class; observation; post-observation discussion sharing impressions of observer and instructor; written response of observer. Additional visits may be scheduled if requested by the instructor.
- Teaching Philosophy - at the beginning of the program, participants will write (and share) a teaching philosophy which they will re-visit at the end of each semester to determine to what extent they would revise that philosophy based on their experiences in the program.
Two foci this semester: course design; testing and grading will be explored (presentation, readings, discussion). Focus on T, IP, & A
- Practice principles of course design on a course they have already taught--i.e., explore a re-design.
- Practice creating (and critiquing) test questions
- Discuss issues related to grading based on their experience.
Third Semester — Techniques of Instruction
Group sessions will be presentations of various "active learning" strategies; collaborative, cooperative learning; Michaelsen's team learning; Cross & Angelo's Classroom Assessment; using technology for instruction. Essential articles on these topics will be provided as well. Focus on IP & A.
- Profile a class based on principles learned last semester--i.e., assess their learners.
- Identify techniques (from those presented in sessions) that work within their discipline and focus on one specific technique to employ and report on results.
- Work with classroom assessment techniques, identifying those most suited to discipline and courses and report experience.
- Design (and possibly implement) a Classroom Research Project
Fourth Semester - Putting It All Together
This is the "capstone semester" - focus on A & IP
- Implement CR project (if they have not already begun)
- Share results of classroom research projects
- Develop presentations/publications from projects
- Receive guidance & practice in observing instruction
- Complete teaching statement
- Assess "Master Teacher" program and suggest modifications