Faculty Development Cohorts Offered at the Faculty Center

The Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning offers opportunities for faculty to examine important and new topics in teaching and learning with Faculty Development Cohorts (FDCs). FDCs are occasionally offered at regional campuses.

Faculty participate in multiple workshops, which include a series of hands-on experiences designed to help innovate or refine teaching techniques and learning activities. Participants may receive support from representatives of the Faculty Center, Office of Institutional Research, Research Initiative for Teaching Effectiveness (RITE), Research and Commercialization, Office of Instructional Resources, Center for Distributed Learning, Libraries, and other relevant units and individual faculty members. After completing the workshops, participants often produce a final project for inclusion in the Faculty Center Web site.

Faculty are requested to share data on the effectiveness of activities and environments on student learning for potential publication. Participants may also use any data collected in their classroom for their own publication. If you have questions, please contact the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning at 407-823-3544 or e-mail fctl@ucf.edu.

Fall 2018 Cohorts

Course Innovation Project: Active-Learning Strategies for Classes of Different Sizes and Modalities

Wednesdays, 1:00 p.m.–3:00 p.m., 8/29, 9/19, 10/17, 11/14

The Faculty Center will host a Course Innovation Project for up to 15 participants who will develop and implement multiple active-learning strategies for at least one class. 

In order for students to develop expertise, they need to become active agents in the learning process, capable of integrating their studies and mindfully regulating their efforts.  Active learning engages students with their own learning process.  As a model of instruction, active learning refers to strategies that encourage students to adopt meaningful approaches to their learning (intentional, goal-oriented, and reflective efforts) rather than approaches marked by cognitive passivity (minimalistic or obligatory efforts).  The model covers a range of techniques including active listening and reading, writing for critical thinking and problem solving, interactive role play and simulations, case-based and project-based learning, as well as experiential and team-based learning. 

Faculty members who meet the following criteria will receive a $500 grant:

  • Attend all four meetings
  • Conduct and share research on active learning with peers and provide informal feedback on others’ projects
  • Develop classroom or online activities and assignments
  • Deliver a revised lesson plan and/or assignment description with an appropriate assessment instrument that incorporates active learning strategies.

Registration for this CIP is now closed.

Course Innovation Project: Teaching in Active-Learning Spaces

Tuesdays, 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., 8/28, 9/18, 10/16, 11/13

Active-learning classrooms (ALCs) are flexible, student-centered spaces that facilitate the use of active-learning strategies. Faculty on the main and downtown campuses moving into these spaces may recognize the opportunities and challenges associated with teaching in ALCs. This flipped-format Course Innovation Project will address challenges through four important instructional practices that will be impacted by moving to an ALC: implementation of active learning pedagogies, management of physical space, methods of assessment, and adoption of instructional technologies. We will address these practices considering the spaces being designed at UCF (e.g., round tables or tablet chairs, high-tech and low-tech). To receive the $500 grant, faculty must attend four cohort meetings, develop activities and assessments appropriate for use in an ALC that can be used for their course, and submit a (re)designed lesson plan that could be used in an ALC. The cohort will meet on Tuesdays, August 28, September 18, October 16, and November 13 from 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m. Faculty interested in teaching in the Sandbox classroom in Spring 2019 must participate in this CIP.

Registration for this CIP is now closed.

Course Innovation Project: WAC Methods for Implementing Student Peer Review

Wednesdays, 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., 9/5, 9/26, 10/17, 11/7

Research in Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) has shown that one of the most influential active-learning experiences students can engage in is peer review. Peer review asks students to access their own knowledge and employ that knowledge by critiquing their fellow students’ work. The benefit of peer review is that the practice of providing critique is a learning experience in and of itself and that students receive extra feedback to help them prepare stronger, more effective drafts of scholarly writing. When integrated as a core concept into a course, peer review can be an effective means of bolstering student writing by offering low-stakes learning opportunities. However, what does an effective prompt look like? What are some best practices for preparing for and implementing peer review? This CIP will answer these questions and support faculty as they build or workshop peer-review assignments used in their classes.

Registration for this CIP is now closed.

Book Club: Minds on Fire by Mark Carnes

Mondays, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m., 9/10, 9/24, 10/8, 10/22, and 11/5

Due to popular demand, we will reprise Minds on Fire: How Role-Immersion Games Transform College by Mark C. Carnes (2014). This study is based on interviews with students and faculty who participated in the pedagogical innovation “Reacting to the Past,” which began at Barnard College (https://reacting.barnard.edu/). The book addresses the problem of student disengagement and demonstrates how role-immersion games channel students’ competitive (and sometimes mischievous) impulses into transformative learning experiences. Several faculty members at UCF are already implementing these ideas in their courses and are reporting very high levels of student engagement. Participants will receive a copy of the book. We will meet five times during the semester on select Mondays at noon.

If interested, please send an e-mail to Eric.Main@ucf.edu.

Book Club: A Guide to Teaching in the Active Learning Classroom: History, Research, and Practice by Paul Baepler, J.D. Walker, D. Christopher Brooks, Kem Saichaie, and Christina I. Petersen

Tuesdays, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m., 9/11, 9/25, 10/9, 10/23, 11/6

As UCF moves forward with the design of more active-learning classrooms (ALCs) on the main and downtown campuses, it will be important to have a resource for effective teaching in these new spaces. This book offers a practical guide for optimizing the impact of these spaces on student learning. It includes everything from the learning theories and research that support the use of ALCs to assessing how effectively the spaces are used. Special emphasis is placed on instructional practices that best utilize the flexible spaces in ways that support student learning. Participants will receive a copy of the book. We will meet five times during the semester on select Tuesdays at noon.

If interested, please send an e-mail to Julie.Donnelly@ucf.edu.


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Tosha Dupras
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Ezekiel Walker
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