Teaching in the Studio

The Studio is an experimental classroom for inquiry-based teaching. It is a place where faculty can try new pedagogies and share their experiences with other faculty in a collaborative and supportive setting. The Studio provides a space for creative learning and teaching, as well as resources to support participants as they develop their scholarship of teaching and widen their repertoire of student-centered learning strategies.

What does the Studio have to offer?

  • Work closely with colleagues and LTC residents/consultants.
  • Participate in a community of practice with other pioneering faculty.
  • Access service-learning experts, teaching consultants, and Learning Support staff.
  • Consult with technology specialists from the Collaboratory, Williams e-Learning Lab, and Ryan's Adaptive Computer Lab.

What are the features of the Studio?

  • Mobile furniture that allows (and encourages) faculty to reconfigure the room and try a variety of pedagogies. It is particularly conducive to small group discussions.
  • Mobile white boards on ceiling tracks that allow the class to be partitioned into small groups, each with a white board and the ability to work in a smaller group and then report back to the larger class.
  • Access to technology to enhance student learning. The room is wired so that laptops can be brought in, and the faculty member has access to a computer and linkage to the web. Please note, however, that the Studio is NOT a computer lab. If a faculty member's pedagogy is exclusively tied to the internet, this might not be the right space for you!

What is the mission of the Studio?

  • Fundamental to the success of the Studio as a learning environment for students and faculty will be the degree to which it stimulates a community of practice among participating faculty around teaching and student learning. Communities of practice are fundamentally concerned with producing practical, useful outcomes for students and learning for participating faculty. The nature of the Studio work will require participation in "doing (teaching)," sharing perspectives about "doing" in the community of practice, and the mutual development of the individual faculty members' and the community of practice's pedagogical capabilities in the process.
  • The Studio will give faculty an opportunity to have productive conversations with other faculty committed to active learning and the scholarship of teaching.
  • The Studio will be a seedbed for new ideas that can then be transplanted in other classrooms throughout the campus.
  • The Studio will provide a "safe zone" where faculty can experiment, with the traditional student rating forms being replaced by developmental feedback and input throughout the semester.
  • Participating faculty will be able to apply the resources of the Learning Teaching Center to help solve teaching challenges faced by faculty, as well as learning challenges faced by students.
  • The Studio will serve as a place for connected learning and scholarship.
  • The Studio will encourage self-reflection and generative conversation about one's teaching and its impact on student learning.

How does the Studio work?

  • Ten to fifteen faculty (or faculty teams) will be selected each semester to teach one course each in the Studio (the limit of one course gives more people an opportunity to be involved)
  • Class periods will be scheduled in keeping with the university's typical class periods, to minimize the "disruption" for students and faculty in fitting this course into the rest of their schedules.
  • The room will accommodate no more than 24 students per session. There must be agreement between the participating faculty members and their chairpersons that the absolute cap on the course is 24.
  • Faculty teaching for the first time in the Studio will participate in the Community of Practice.
  • All Faculty will need to complete individual applications (no group applications accepted).
  • Returning faculty are invited to participate in the Community but are not expected to participate. They are asked to attend the final session of the Community of Practice and to present a summary of teaching methodologies they employed throughout the course of the semester and lessons they have learned about their own pedagogy.
  • Student evaluation forms will not be administered for courses taught by first time users of the Studio; an alternative avenue will be developed by pioneer faculty to provide developmental feedback and student input. Faculty returning to the Studio will develop and implement a specific plan for alternative evaluations. This continues to allow returning faculty to use the Studio as a lab space, attempting new teaching methodologies while valuing feedback from students.

Class Scenarios

  • You've been discussing course concepts in a classroom of 24 students. You've raised four questions you want your students to consider. You can partition the class into four groups, and assign each group a corner of the room, inviting them to rearrange furniture so that they can talk together and brainstorm ideas. Each group is given a white board which can be suspended from a track in the ceiling, which they can use as a visual barrier from other groups. After a time, the class reconvenes in its entirety by rearranging the furniture and each group takes its white board and moves it to a side wall, next to other groups' whiteboards, and thoughts can be shared, compared, contrasted, etc.
  • Classes can be videotaped, and tapes can be viewed with LTC staff to generate ideas. It could also be simulcast (with permission of faculty person and students) in real time so that people could, for example, sit in the nearby café and enjoy a cup of coffee while watching a television screen displaying the class in session.
  • Faculty can be linked to the internet and direct students with laptops to surf the web and find information to help them answer questions in real time. Practical applications can be brought into the classroom.
  • Tables and chairs can be pushed to the sides of the room and students asked to role play a script that captures the essence of course concepts and drives students to be actively engaged in creating their own understanding.

How do I submit a Studio proposal?

UD full and part-time faculty who are teaching a class of 24 or fewer students are eligible to submit a proposal.

First time users of the Studio must be willing to:

  • Participate actively in regular meetings within the community of practice (for example, every three weeks or so).
  • In the course of the Community of Practice, faculty will develop a method for gaining developmental feedback from students and other faculty in the place of the traditional teacher evaluation forms.

Faculty returning to the Studio for the second or subsequent times must be willing to:

  • Provide a plan for gaining feedback from students regarding their teaching.
  • Use the Studio as a lab where they can explore teaching practices that are new for them.
  • Participate in at least one Community of Practice where they can share their insights on the new methodologies they used during the term.

Application Deadlines:

Applications for Summer and Fall will be reviewed beginning in February. Applications for Spring will be reviewed beginning in September.

Proposal Selection Criteria:

If there are multiple proposals for time periods, we will select proposals based upon:

  • First time users of the Studio
  • Likely impact on student and own learning
  • Willingness to be part of a community of practice
  • Soundness of proposed plan
  • Class time
  • Diversity of community of practice

For more information, contact the LTC Coordinator at (937) 229-4898 or LTC@udayton.edu.