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ERIC Number: EJ1202967
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
Shifting Culture: Professional Development through Academic Course Transformation
U.S. colleges and universities are facing the challenges of eroding public confidence and financial support, along with high failure rates, especially at a time when increasing numbers of students are matriculating. The demographic profile of students going to college is also more diverse, with students coming from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. First generation students perform worse than their peers; many students begin their postsecondary studies not "college ready." And employers report that many graduates are not prepared for the workplace. These issues are even more critical as postsecondary education is increasingly required for economic opportunity. To increase student success, institutions have directed substantial resources toward infrastructure that surrounds the classroom (advising, LMS analytics, targeted inclusion programs, supplemental instruction). They have largely ignored the process of classroom teaching and learning in the classroom. Efforts to improve undergraduate education must target what transpires in classrooms across the entire institution. Classrooms initiatives must be engaging, relevant, and appealing to a diverse group of faculty and instructors. Such initiatives must also adapt to a broad range of disciplines so they can impact a large number of students across the institution. To positively impact student engagement, motivation, and learning, instructors must utilize "high impact" practices that do not simply conform to policies or allow one to "check a box." The Purdue University "Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation" (IMPACT) initiative is a comprehensive multi-year campus-wide collaborative effort designed to achieve greater student-centered learning environments by incorporating active and collaborative learning as well as other student-centered teaching and learning practices and technologies into courses. The creation of a student-centered learning environment aims to foster student engagement and student competence, as well as increased attainment of course-specific learning outcomes, retention, and degree completion. Since 2011, 321 faculty from "every" academic college or school at the Purdue West Lafayette campus participated in professional development activities within an IMPACT faculty learning community (FLC). Students exposed to highly student-centered classrooms developed in IMPACT report significantly higher levels of perceived competence, ability to transfer knowledge to other relevant courses and experiences, higher learning gains, and higher motivation. Faculty interviews and focus groups show that faculty view IMPACT as a valuable source of professional development that positively impacts both their own teaching practice and student outcomes.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana