Virtual (hosted by Stevens Institute of Technology)
November 7, 2020
November 7, 2020
November 7, 2020
Background: There are well-established yet non-intuitive best practices for remote teaching and learning. Faculty are generally exposed to these best practices through university teaching centers of excellence sponsored workshops. Unfortunately, these workshops are not mandatory and faculty continue to rely upon their immediate peers for information. On the other hand, relying on immediate peers only advances knowledge that is accessible in proximity. Methods: With the sudden move to remote teaching at the United States Military Academy, we searched for new approaches to reach faculty quickly so they can design their remote courses effectively and seamlessly. In addition, we sought methods to continually reach faculty throughout the semester. We achieved these goals by traditional methods such as a newsletter, well-designed best practices website and workshops. We also introduced a new forum, “The Remote Teaching Office Hours for Faculty.” The Dean’s Fellows for Remote Teaching set up a weekly time where faculty can drop in to ask questions and share information. Experts would be available to answer specialized questions such as intricate questions about platforms or best pedagogy to reduce cheating. The Office Hours was set up without presentations but short clips of information (~3 minutes) with immediate Q&A opportunities for faculty. Just like office hours for students, faculty are encouraged to drop in at any time during the 45-minute window of Office Hours to ask about anything in which they are interested. Results: Attendance at Office Hours has been consistent and high with faculty sharing screens with information and asking questions. Students have attended office hours to describe to faculty how consuming remote classes was experienced. Faculty enjoy the collegiality afforded by meeting and like the interactive dissemination of information that differs from other traditional forms. The pedagogical conversation initiated by individual faculty through the chat window spontaneously continues for the entire week until the next Office Hours. The conversations erased disciplinary boundaries and shaped pedagogy across campus with faculty considering everyone in the Office Hours with the same familiarity as their colleague in the office down the hall. Conclusion: Remote faculty Office Hours is a scalable and feasible method to disseminate good online pedagogy immediately and quickly university wide. In addition to dissemination of strong online pedagogy, community was built between faculty, staff and student support services at a time that face-to-face relationships were unlikely to form.
Wallen, B. M., & Thomas, D. M. (2020, November), Office Hours for Faculty - A Means to Increase Remote Teaching Capabilities Paper presented at 2020 Fall ASEE Mid-Atlantic Section Meeting, Virtual (hosted by Stevens Institute of Technology). https://peer.asee.org/36053
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