Learning is meaningful construction and creative use of intelligent cognitive tools, both internal mental models and external instruments. Learning is also participation, collaboration and dialogue in communities of practice. Finally, learning is also criticism of the given, as well as innovation and creation of new ideas, artifacts and forms of practice. – Yrjö Engeström
The quality of instruction cannot be raised by odd tricks… What is needed is theoretical insight into learning and teaching. Only such an insight can help educational planners, instructors…develop consistent and workable solutions in changing situations. – Yrjö Engeström
CITL Web Site
Click here to access the Centre of Innovation for Teaching and Learning subsite. The subsite includes useful tips and suggestions from instructors at other institutions, a summary of educational technologies available at NLC, as well as blogs by NLC instructors.
To create a three-pronged Hub of Excellence - Teaching and Learning, Technology, and Research - that builds on continuous improvement endeavors, excellence in instructing and learning at Northern Lights College, further enhanced by:
- Strengthening instructional and learning practices, course design, and curriculum renewal through access to research based practices;
- Promoting the development of discipline-specific and /or cross discipline learning communities regarding instruction and learning;
- Fostering, and participating in institutional based and community/ regional/ provincial/federal research projects;
- Establishing a Physical/Virtual space for the Excellence Hub; and
- Activating formal regional/provincial partnerships in teaching and learning excellence.
The initial stages of implementation of the plan will involve the following:
- Initiating a mentoring program with opportunities for feedback on classroom performance that are outside the College’s formal supervisory and review processes;
- Establishing a Centre of Innovation for Teaching and Learning webpage that provides access to:
- teaching resources,
- information on learning difficulties and other special needs,
- information on teaching and learning from other learning organizations, and
- a calendar of events including informal sessions, conferences, reports, seminars, training and special events
- Establishing an instructional design centre where instructors can receive assistance to plan effective and innovative learning experiences and plan instruction using technology, including the effective use of the Desire-to-Learn (D2L) learning management system.
- Improving the training and certification of instructors and staff in teaching and learning and leadership.
The CITL’s virtual presence will be vital. The physical presence will begin in the libraries, but as a regional centre, accessibility on the web will be more important for quick access to resources and information, as well as for networking and archived materials. The online presence will be coordinated with the Education Technology department, the Library and the NLC Communications department.
Coordinator - David Batterham
In addition to his CITL responsibilities, David also works part-time as a Career and College Preparation instructor with students on the Fort St John, Dawson Creek and Chetwynd campuses. The coordinator will be accessible to all teaching faculty across the region and to make the CITL accessible to all.
The role of the coordinator is to help to consolidate and extend our current teaching and learning processes, making them available to a wider range of College staff by fostering collaboration on teaching and learning within campuses, within departments and across the region. The coordinator will make professional support more available by helping to build a library resource base and bringing in and/or building workshops and seminars related to teaching and learning.
Northern Lights College currently provides significant and extensive Educational Technology support. The College promotes Instructional Skills Workshops (ISW) and Vancouver Community College’s Provincial Instructor Diploma program (PIDP) for all staff, as well as investing heavily in leadership training through Royal Roads University courses. Informally, staff engage in peer mentoring and in the sharing of ideas and resources.
For more information on the Centre of Innovation for Teaching and Learning, contact David Batterham.