Scholarship of Teaching and Learning
impetus for a scholarship of teaching and learning was the publication in
1990 of the book Scholarship Reconsidered by Ernst Boyer, then President
of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. This book challenged
the notion that the only scholarship of value in higher education is the "scholarship
of discovery" which encompasses what academics usually refer to as research
but also includes the creative activities of faculty in the arts and humanities.
In addition to discovery, Boyer identified three other categories of scholarship:
the scholarship of integration, the scholarship of application and the scholarship
the focus of the scholarship of discovery is on the creation of new knowledge,
the scholarship of integration emphasizes connections and meanings, the scholarship
of application is concerned with the use of knowledge in the service of solving
important problems and the scholarship of teaching has as its goal enabling
students to understand.
the scholarship of teaching is more than the transmission of knowledge. As
MaryTaylor Huber writes in her article "Why Now? Course Portfolios in
Context" in The Course Portfolio (Pat Hutchings, Editor) "To
see teaching as scholarship is to recognize that the work of the professor
becomes consequential only as it is understood by others -- in this case,
students. But not only students, because the scholarship of teaching, like
other kinds of scholarship, should cumulate, add up, and contribute to the
practice of one's colleagues."
is similar to the formulation given by Lee Shulman, current President of Carnegie,
who has perhaps best articulated the characteristics and criteria of scholarly
work, whether it is the scholarship of discovery, integration, application
an activity to be designated as scholarship, it should manifest at least three
key characteristics: It should be public, susceptible to critical review and
evaluation, and accessible for exchange and use by other members of one's
scholarly community. We thus observe, with respect to all forms of scholarship,
that they are acts of mind or spirit that have been made public in some manner,
have been subjected to peer review by members of one's intellectual or professional
community, and can be cited, refuted, built upon, and shared among members
of that community. Scholarship properly communicated and critiqued serves
as the building block for knowledge growth in a field."
1994, the American Association for Higher Education initiated a national project,
From Idea to Prototype, the Peer Review of Teaching,
to develop ways of demonstrating that teaching can be a scholarly activity.
As suggested by the quotes above, in order for teaching to be regarded as
scholarship there must be documentation so that one's teaching can be analyzed,
reviewed, critiqued and improved on by one's peers. The course portfolio,
first conceived by William Cerbin a professor of psychology at the University
of Wisconsin-La Crosse, was perhaps the most valuable idea that emerged. Course
portfolios are close cousins of the more familar teaching portfolio, which
is a comprehensive exposition of one's teaching over an extended period of
time, perhaps even an entire career. A teaching portfolio might include course
syllabi, assignments, examinations, and some examples of student work. By
contrast, a course portfolio is an in-depth account of a single course and
will often include the vision that annimated the course, the planning, the
unfolding, the effect on students and their learning and finally an analysis.
Shulman has proposed four different formats as useful frameworks for the analysis
of a course, for example, through a portfolio. These are: (1) By examining
the "anatomical structure of the course", that is, what the course
is composed of and how these things fit together and contribute to student
learning. (2) A developmental or historical approach that focuses on how the
course unfolds. (3) An ecological approach in which the course is examined
in its relationship to other courses and its place in a curriculum. (4) The
course as an investigation in which new approaches or practices are tested
analysis of a course may take one of these as pure forms or make be a mixture
of two or even all of these. In fact, I think there are elements of each,
some stronger than others, for example, the course as an investigation, the
anatomy of the course and its unfolding, less its place in the entire curriculum
(though that is something I intend to investigate over time after this course
has been offered on several occasions) in the course portfolio you find here.
learn more about the origin and development of the course portfolio I recommend
aforementioned publication of AAHE. To view other course portfolios, visit
the Gallery of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning at the Knowledge
Media Laboratory of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
Other links to course portfolios can be found at the American
Historical Association's Course Portfolio Project and at the Crossroads
Project of the American Studies Association.