I don’t know about you but the word “scholar” in terms of my teaching comes across with a heap of connotations, many of which have me thinking “I’m not a scholar.”

The Ontario Extend Scholar Module aims to break this down into an approach that is less about “being a scholar” into one aimed at what most of want to be doing- teach better:

This module examines how you can use your classroom and your courses as a research lab to explore how you might improve your teaching practice and positively affect student outcomes and their satisfaction with the overall learning experience in your course. It invites you to consider research about teaching and learning within your discipline and provides a process to implement a research plan.

This kind of action research is often called the “scholarship of teaching and learning” (SoTL), and it involves an awareness and appreciation of effective, research-based, discipline-appropriate pedagogical approaches for examining your own practice.

This module is listed at the end of the other five, and in many ways, is a capstone to the series. But are people put off or left wondering how they take this on?

For the cohorts we are brining along over the summer, we have asked module authors and people experience in the program to write a welcome post for each module, what we have been organizing as Ideas from Lead Extenders.

Previously, David Porter, CEO of eCampus Ontario and also author of the Scholar module, wrote about Reflective scholarship is a portal to improved practice.

I had an idea to instead of asking David to write again, to have a short video conversation about the module. In out 11 minute chat, we talked about David’s scenario, how a change of teaching modality forced him to do some research into his approach, and suggestions for people to take on a foray into the Scholarship of teaching and learning.

The design of the Scholar Module breaks it down into a series of scaffolding activities that should make it less of a big undertaking. I also like how the activities are built around creating a series of planning documents shared in a place where you can find the work of others.

So are you ready to get your scholar hat on? Head this way

Featured Image: Single frame of Conversation With David Porter on the Scholar Module YouTube video shared under a Creative Commons CC BY Attribution license

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.

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