The Professional Learning team within the Centre for Learning and Teaching is currently running the Exploring Learning and Teaching (ELT) program for Semester 2. ELT is an intensive program for teaching staff at ANU who are new to teaching or looking to consolidate their teaching practice. The program gives participants the opportunity to meet and connect with each other and establish important collegiate relationships they may be able to draw on as their teaching journey continues. One participant’s feedback noted that “ELT has hugely improved my teaching skills, and I met some amazing people from across the uni! I would highly recommend to any staff member.”
During the program, participants learn techniques to make the learning experience engaging, purposeful and inclusive. Participants are given opportunities to reflect on how they might use some of the approaches introduced during the course in their own teaching practice.
With respect to digital technologies, we provide a space for participants to experience different educational tools, and then ask how they might use these tools in their own course. We look at examples of what makes good feedback so that participants can learn how to provide effective feedback as well as learn skills for assessing fairly and consistently. We also have a lot of fun exploring how learning can be interactive.
Reflection is encouraged and we ask participants to think about who they are as an educator, how they will prepare their lessons and what resources they will use to engage students. We also provide practical, take away resources such as teaching toolboxes and small group activities, demonstrating their use in the sessions. A participant providing an account of their course experience agreed that, “Of particular note are the provision of practical teaching strategies and the enhanced understanding of diverse learners, which can be directly applied to improve teaching practice. The program’s emphasis on peer observation, feedback, and self-reflection encourages continual professional growth, with a focus on promoting inclusive teaching.”
As part of the program we examine the foundations of learning and teaching as well as discuss adult learning principles. Participants are able to reflect on what teaching means to them and are given an opportunity to enhance the skills they need to progress their teaching practice. Another participant has noted that the best thing about the program is being given “the opportunity to reflect in depth on principles of adult education, what makes for a good and effective learning experience, and learning new teaching tools to use in the classroom.”
If you are interested in attending this free program or have been thinking about joining ELT, there is another program running in December and more sessions at the start of Semester 1, 2024. “Invest in this course – it will equip you with the pedagogy, emotional intelligence and practical tools to transform your teaching.”
Fiona Hennig, Professional Learning team, Centre for Learning and Teaching.