What to Do After Reflecting on Your Teaching

Now that you’ve gathered some information, analyzed it, and reflected on what that data reveals about your teaching practice, what are the next steps? How can this information translate into better learning experiences for your students and professional growth for yourself? Being purposeful in making changes and adopting new interventions as a result of learning from your reflective teaching practice is the last piece in this ongoing loop of professional development.

When you first engage in the process of self-reflection, you will be the main audience for these reflections as you verify your assumptions and expectations about teaching and learning and different qualities of your own teaching. As you continue to engage in this process, it will serve you well to find peers who can help you engage in more complex scholarly discussions about teaching in your discipline or in higher education in general.

The final dimension of the Effective Teaching Framework, “Reflection, Growth, and Leadership”, focuses on those personal and collaborative efforts you engage in to contribute to growth in self and others. These efforts can be as personally and professionally fulfilling as they are impactful on the micro and macro learning environments here at the University of Alberta and beyond.

Engagement in Documented Self-assessment

Documented self-assessment, informed by multiple sources (e.g. peers, external experts, or students) leads to changes in your teaching practice and the improvement of students’ achievement of learning outcomes (Hattie, 2009; Marsh et al., 2015). These concentrated and deliberate methods of capturing and articulating lessons learned from experience form the cornerstone of any reflective teaching practice.

Pursuit of Teaching and Learning Professional Development

Regular engagement in formal and informal professional development opportunities including teaching and learning courses, workshops, discussions with peers, or engaging in scholarship of teaching and learning projects are excellent ways for you to learn more about how to integrate new teaching interventions into your practice.

Educational Leadership

Mentoring peers and contributing to the support and development of individuals’ teaching abilities and the teaching culture at the University of Alberta is an effective way for you to grow professionally and demonstrate your willingness to engage in the broader teaching and learning community. Engaging in peer-teaching observations and informal and formal mentorship programs are two examples available to you.

Contributions to Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

Contributing to the scholarship of teaching and learning by disseminating results based on research of the impact of your teaching practice, especially new and innovative interventions you’ve developed as a result of a reflective teaching practice, can elevate your reputation on campus and beyond. Publishing articles in reputable journals, writing a blog for The Quad, and presenting at the University of Alberta’s Festival of Teaching and Learning are avenues for your contributions.

Works Cited

If you are interested in learning more about this subject, you can find these and other resources related to the Effective Teaching Framework in our reading list on our Libraries Reading List Service.

Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning: a synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203887332

Marsh, J. A., Bertrand, M., & Huguet, A. (2015). Using data to alter instructional practice. Teachers College Record, 117(4), 1-40. http://www.tcrecord.org/Content.asp?ContentId=17849  

CTL Guide to Teaching Dossiers

Faculty members at the University of Alberta are responsible as scholars “active in teaching, in research, and in service” and are evaluated in terms of their performance in these three categories. In view of the University’s multifaceted teaching evaluation policy (GFC Policy 111), a Teaching Dossier may provide the basis to compile input from self, students, and peers. The CTL Guide to Teaching Dossiers (PDF), in conjunction with resources on the CTL Teaching Dossiers webpage, is designed to help instructors document their growth and achievements in teaching and to present evidence of these in the form of a Teaching Dossier.