Quick Hits for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers: Successful Strategies by Award-Winning Teachers

Quick Hits for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers: Successful Strategies by Award-Winning Teachers

Quick Hits for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers: Successful Strategies by Award-Winning Teachers

Quick Hits for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers: Successful Strategies by Award-Winning Teachers

Synopsis

Non-tenure-track lecturers and adjunct instructors face particular challenges at US colleges, including heavy teaching loads, lack of office space, little control over the selection of course topics or textbooks, and long commutes between jobs at two or more schools. Quick Hits for Adjunct Faculty and Lecturers contains short, practice-oriented articles by experienced instructors that offer valuable teaching and career tips for balancing competing demands, addressing student issues, managing classrooms, and enhancing professional development.

Excerpt

The focus of this edition of Quick Hits, published by the Faculty Colloquium on Excellence in Teaching (FACET) at Indiana University, is teaching tips for adjunct faculty and lecturers. in this volume, the reader will find advice about how to use effective teaching strategies in order to improve and ensure student learning.

I find it a splendid irony that I’m addressing a foreword to lecturers and adjunct faculty for a publication that has as its goal the promotion of effective teaching and successful learning. As professionals dedicated to the teaching mission of higher education, the individuals who make up these two groups are keenly aware that their efforts to provide great instruction involve so much more than lecture, and that the lecture has never been the distinguishing feature of great instruction. the people who hold such titles also know well that great teaching cannot possibly be adjunct to the core purpose of a great university.

I understand the power of historical precedent; I know the titles of lecturer and adjunct have long held their place in the conventions of higher education, and perhaps at one point in history, such titles accurately reflected the work of these two groups. I am also aware that we are currently experiencing unprecedented changes in higher education due to the impact of forces such as shrinking revenues, massive and unsustainable growth of infrastructure, shifting demographics of the students we serve, new technologies for providing instruction and student services, and increasing calls for accountability. These forces are so profoundly changing expectations for higher education that we now find ourselves in the midst of a fundamental rethinking of the purposes, the operations, and the value propositions of our institutions.

In this shifting landscape, the one constant that has not changed, and that I predict will not change, is the hallmark of great instruction. Great teaching always has been, and always will be, highly engaging, extremely interactive, and deeply experiential. Great teaching always has been, and always will be, what brings students into our classrooms.

It is true that new technologies such as YouTube and Adobe Connect challenge us to consider what are the best means by which to deliver a lecture, while the “flipped classroom” challenges us to consider how we may better engage with our students. Great teachers recognize that new instructional technologies . . .

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