University joins teaching innovation network
Queen’s will collaborate with six other top North American research universities to increase the adoption of improved teaching methods in post-secondary education.
“The Bay View Alliance (BVA) is a unique research network that will develop and evaluate practical ways for encouraging innovative teaching and effective practices,” says Alan Harrison, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “The work of the network will be a valuable resource as we work to improve the student learning experience in line with the recommendations of the Academic Plan.”
The BVA will focus on leadership practices that best support widespread adoption of effective teaching methods, with an emphasis on the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.
The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation recently provided more than $803,000 over four years to support the launch of the BVA. The foundation is an American philanthropic institution supporting original research and education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and in economic performance.
“The alliance is an exciting opportunity to build on the new teaching ideas faculty members bring forward and introduce in their classrooms,” says Brian Frank, Director of Program Development for the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and DuPont Canada Chair in Engineering Education Research and Development, and a member of the BVA steering committee. “By participating in the network we will have a better understanding of the processes and supports necessary for sustaining teaching innovations across departments, faculties and universities.”
The BVA will design and implement a range of pilot interventions across interested institutions, and study the results to gauge their effect on the adoption rate of evidence-based teaching approaches. Academic and administrative personnel from all levels within participant universities will share, compare and analyze aspects of their academic culture that encourage the adoption of new teaching methods.
Queen’s, University of British Columbia, Indiana University Bloomington, University of Kansas, University of Saskatchewan, University of California at Davis, and University of Texas at Austin comprise the BVA. Queen’s will host a BVA workshop later in the academic year with a focus on services that support sustained change.