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Last modified: Tuesday, August 12, 2008

IU awarded $150,000 grant to improve graduate students' teaching skills

August 12, 2008

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Four Indiana University Bloomington faculty members have been awarded a $150,000 grant to develop a model interdisciplinary approach that prepares graduate students to be reflective practitioners who base teaching on appropriate learning theory and revise it based on evidence of student learning.

The grant comes from the Teagle Foundation initiative for Fresh Thinking Collegia on Student Learning in Research Universities. Indiana University will support the project through the University Graduate School and Instructional Support Services.

Teagle Award

Associate Instructors participate in orientation activities.

Print-Quality Photo

Grant recipients are Jennifer Meta Robinson, senior lecturer of communication and culture; Mimi Zolan, professor of biology; April Sievert, lecturer of anthropology and director of undergraduate studies affiliate, Center for Archaeology in the Public Interest; and Melissa Gresalfi, assistant professor of counseling and educational psychology.

The Teagle Foundation grant project will be used to convene The Indiana University Collegium on Inquiry in Action. The collegium brings together four departments from different knowledge domains, and diverse teaching and teaching preparation approaches to integrate efforts to develop teaching in a research university context. The IU collegium, much like the Roman original, will assemble small, specialized teams to ask questions, generate new practices and share emerging information about the success of those new practices.

The teams will work within their disciplinary contexts but share across departmental lines with their colleagues in the full collegium. In the end, graduate students participating in the collegium, and those they reach through strategic dissemination of the most promising practices, will be prepared to teach in faculty positions around the country with real-life practice in bringing the best of learning and pedagogical inquiry into action.

This grant, together with one for $80,000 received in spring 2008 by the History Learning Project (Arlene Díaz, associate professor of history; Joan Middendorf, associate director of Campus Instructional Consulting; David Pace, professor of history; and Leah Shopkow, associate professor of history), means that projects implementing scholarship of teaching and learning in new ways and supported by Campus Instructional Consulting have been awarded $230,000 in external grant funding this year, keeping Indiana University at the head of a burgeoning field.

The Teagle Foundation

The Teagle Foundation was established in 1944 by Walter C. Teagle (1878-1962), who gave the foundation a broad mandate, "to advance the well-being and general good of mankind throughout the world," mentioning many areas of concern and possible recipients of its support.