Faculty Learning Communities (FLCs)
Faculty Learning Communities (FLCs), identified as high-impact practices by the AAC&U, are central to the UA goal to foster culture change among faculty. The FLC groups focus their discussions and projects on learning about and experimenting with evidence-based teaching practices.
In Fall, 2013, Faculty Learning Communities (FLCs) were formed as part of the UA AAU Undergraduate STEM Education Project. Members of the AAU Project Leadership Team developed the curriculum and acted as facilitators for three FLCs. During the first year, the groups studied important peer-reviewed literature that documents the compelling evidence regarding the effectiveness of active learning strategies. They used the Learning Cycle as a foundation for creating learning tasks that encourage students to explore topics before concepts are introduced and to apply what they have learned after the concepts have been explained.
In subsequent semesters, the FLCs have been reading books such as Make It Stick by Brown, Roediger and McDaniel, 2014 and Small Teaching by James M. Lang, 2016. To learn from one another, they often perform peer observations. The program has grown to nine groups that met in Fall 2016 and nine new groups (with many returners) meeting in Spring 2017.
Joining an FLC
Prior to each semester, a group of committed faculty members, led by Zoe Cohen, Physiology, establish plans for the upcoming semester.
To learn more about upcoming plans or to express interest in joining an FLC, please contact Zoe Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In some cases, colleges, departments or other groups wish to form Faculty Learning Communities with special interests. Professionals in the Office of Instruction and Assessment (OIA) can help guide these groups. Contact information for the OIA is available at: http://oia.arizona.edu/contact.
FLC Groups for 2017
Nine FLC Groups, facilitated by thirteen facilitators/co-facilitators, met during Spring 2017. The semester began with a Kickoff for all members in January and wrapped up with a workshop with renowned educator, Saundra McGuire, in early May. The groups of 7 or 8 faculty members with common interests met seven times throughout the semester.
Tom Wilson, Honor's College, is leading efforts to clearly define and document the Mission, Goals, Expected Outcomes, Evaluation Plan and Implementation Strategies for the UA Faculty Learning Communities Program. If interested in contributing to these efforts, please contact Tom Wilson at email@example.com.
It is estimated that nine FLC Groups will be formed for Fall 2017. An invitation to join on of the FLCs with links for registering will be posted in mid-July, 2017.