"Six Things that Make College Teachers Successful" (post) outlines some key aspects of being/becoming a successful university instructor (each point is developed more fully in the post):
1. "Study the knowledge base of teaching and learning."
- "[T]eaching and learning ... includes developing effective instructional strategies, reaching today’s students, and teaching with technology."
- "Books, articles in pedagogical periodicals, newsletters, conferences, and online resources provide ample help."
- "Take advantage of your institution’s center for teaching and learning or other professional development resources" (See the Lakehead Teaching Commons website and/or visit us on the fifth floor of Chancellor Paterson Library [Thunder Bay Campus], LI 5014.)
2. "Accept all who enter the classroom door."
- "[R]ethin[k] about how [you] teach, in order to meet the needs of all learners in their classrooms."
- "Ungraded pretests and interest inventories can be used to see what your students already know about the content you will be teaching next."
- "Students in all classes need help learning how to learn the material."
- "Accept students where they are and help them to go forward."
3. "Plan for instructional management."
- "Various aspects of teaching, such as distributing papers, taking attendance, and making time for students to ask questions, need to be part of course planning."
- "Put policies in the syllabus about attendance, disturbances, cell phones, etc., and then review those policies with students."
- "You set the tone of the class, and management procedures are needed."
4. "Teach with a variety of strategies."
- "Study the literature and learn about approaches such as learner-centered teaching, guided inquiry, active learning, lecture, group work, and online discussion."
- "Use what works best given your content and your students’ learning needs."
- "The best advice is to be visual, followed by keeping students actively thinking, writing, comparing, and applying new knowledge."
5. "Use assessment to inform students of their achievement."
- " Grading policies need to be clear and grading scales easy to use."
- "Remind students that assessment is more than the assigning of a grade."
- "Assessment helps them to understand their achievement and helps teachers meet their needs."
6. "Keep the passion."
- "It is very easy to become disheartened by student complaints, lack of administrative support, budget cuts, and job insecurity."
- "[W]e have opportunities to learn, research, teach, and shape the future of our disciplines and influence the larger world through our disciplines."