6 Strategies for Instructor Success

Decorative: "Strategies for success" in front of a sun image


"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."

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."
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