President's Teaching and Learning Collaborative:
Scholarship of Teaching & Learning (PTLC)
The University of Colorado's Four Campus President’s Teaching and Learning Collaborative: Scholarship of Teaching and Learning is “an extension of work begun as an institutional participant in the Campus Program of the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (CASTL), 2006-2013.”
The President’s Teaching and Learning Collaborative: Scholarship of Teaching & Learning (PTLC) was established in 2006. It offers faculty from all campuses an opportunity for professional development and the experience and intellectual practice of work in two scholarly endeavors: teaching and research. The PTLC seeks to promote the practice of inquiry in teaching and measuring student learning. The Collaborative assists University faculty in developing scholarly research projects on teaching and learning intended for refereed publication.
This program is modeled on and sponsored by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning and is now in the eighth year of its participation. The goals of the collaborative are: to include fostering inquiry and leadership for the improvement of student learning, developing and synthesizing knowledge about learning and teaching, and promoting institutional change in support of the scholarship of teaching and learning. Colleges and universities document and assess their efforts, and provide ongoing evidence of impact. PTLC program assesses the work in an effort to better understand and document the development of leadership capacity, knowledge building, and institutional change. The collaborative is a project where all faculty of the University of Colorado system are invited to become faculty investigators in teaching and learning. The President’s Teaching and Learning Collaborative is an extension of work begun as an institutional participant in the Campus Program of the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (CASTL), 2006-2013.
All faculty members and teaching professors on any campus of the University of Colorado are encouraged to apply. We seek faculty with a record of innovation in teaching and/or assessment of learning as well as those just beginning to examine their teaching and their students’ learning. Experience in educational research is not a requirement.
Scholarship of teaching and learning is often described this way:
- “problem posing about an issue of teaching or learning,
- study of the problem through methods appropriate to the disciplinary epistemologies,
- applications of results to practice,
- communications of results, self-reflection, and peer review” (Cambridge, 2001).
Cambridge, B. (2001). Fostering the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Communities of
Practice. Pps. 3-16 in To Improve the Academy. D. Lieberman and C. Wehlburg, Eds. Bolton,
The aim of the program is to broaden participation of faculty in effective inquiry in learning and teaching. Familiarity with the literature on learning and teaching in one's discipline is an on going necessity, and the goal of the program is that PTLC participants publish their research. Creating and disseminating scholarly work in teaching and learning to contribute to scholarship and practice in and across fields is central to the PTLC. To this end, each scholar designs and undertakes an investigation aimed at deepening her or his understanding of, and practice related to an important issue in innovative learning.
To date there have been 95 faculty researchers from all four CU campuses who have worked in the collaborative.
President’s Teaching Learning Collaborative
Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching & Learning
University of Colorado Extension Report, June 21, 2012
For the past six years, the President’s Teaching and Learning Collaborative (PTLC) has continued, and expanded, the scholarship of teaching and learning at the University of Colorado (CU). A program spread over all four campuses of the University of Colorado, PTLC has continued the work initiated by CU’s association with the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. We have continued to advertise the program as modeled on and sponsored by the Carnegie Academy for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, which has helped to maintain the program’s philosophy and alerted potential scholars to its organization. With that being said, PTLC has grown into a more independent, self-realized program as well.
One of the challenges over the last few years has been PTLC’s ability to effectively incorporate researchers from all four of the University of Colorado campuses into a cohesive group. In an effort to strengthen researchers’ interactions with one another, we have implemented bi-annual cohort gatherings at which researchers present their work in a poster- style conference setting. This specifically meets one of our goals, to introduce a Spring Conference, and has helped facilitate researcher cooperation. At this last Fall Conference, for example, a current researcher was exposed not only to current cohort members working on similar material, but was directed toward a former cohort member as well. Another current researcher remarked that the conference helped to reinvigorate her research, both her work on the scholarship of teaching and learning and her discipline-specific scholarship.
The conferences themselves, though, have presented some problems; namely, how to achieve a balance between giving every researcher a chance to share his or her work while still allowing time for researcher interaction. This problem is what inspired our turn to the poster- style conference. At previous meetings (which were similar, if not perfectly parallel, to our current conferences), researchers would present to the group as a whole, presenting one at a time in a lecture fashion. Although this allowed for every researcher to hear every single research project, it did not allow for an organic or prolonged interaction between researchers. At our poster presentations we now allow one half to present their posters for a time, and then switch so that the other half, previously mingling, presents in their own turn. This structure enables researchers to seek out those projects, or peers, most in line with their own efforts. Researcher feedback regarding this format has been, overall, very positive.
Another focus for our last two years has been the PTLC portion of the President’s Teaching Scholars Program website. PTLC’s section of the website has consistently expanded, becoming a hub of information for researcher and general interest alike. Reports for cohorts have been updated on a fairly regular basis, and this last few months faculty portraits have also been included. Potential researchers not only read about the purpose of PTLC, but can see a snapshot of past cohort members enacting that purpose. The portraits also establish a standard of scholarship outlined in the researcher responsibilities, since each portrait includes where and when the scholar published or presented their findings.
As the director for the Faculty Teaching Excellence Program (FTEP) and the President’s Teaching Scholars Program (to which PTLC is attached), Mary Ann Shea is the primary contact listed unilaterally across the website. Meeting the CASTL goal to locate and advertise an individual who is responsible for furthering the scholarship of teaching and learning, Mary Ann’s presence on the website also highlights the potential interconnectedness of the three programs.
Additional Links: Frequently Asked Questions, Call for Proposals (which includes links to the call for proposals, benefits and committments, IRB campus websites, researcher responsibilities, and testimonials from past participants), Participants and their Research (which includes links to past participants, campus faculty coordinators, faculty portraits, research projects, and publications), Faculty Researcher Library Resources, Reports, and Videos and Podcasts. You can also access this information through the tabs on the left hand side of this webpage.