I gave a talk at NUS on Thursday entitled Are You Ready to Flip? Responding to Deep Faculty Challenges in an Era of MOOCs & Pervasive Online Expertise. Here’s the abstract:
The blogosphere is abuzz with MOOCs, massive, open, online courses, in which lectures are conveyed to thousands or tens of thousands of students around the globe, and the possibility of the flipped classroom, where such widely available online content is assigned outside the classroom, and classroom time is used for active learning and reflective activity. These most recent changes come at a time when the role of the professor as research authority is challenged 24/7 by ubiquitous online resources and expertise available to graduate students at the push of an internet button
Though much has been written about the technological side of these changes, the human challenges these developments pose for successful professors and lecturers are less frequently addressed. This talk begins by considering how all these challenges stem from a reduction in information asymmetry and how this reduction challenges the very notion of the faculty member’s privileged position as expert.
The talk then turns to work in deep faculty development (DFD) pioneered at NUS over the last 2 and a half years. Since its inception, this approach has spread to the US through work at iFoundry & Olin College (i2e2.olin.edu) to South America at UFMG and with the aid of Harvard-affiliated LASPAU (www.laspau.havard.edu) and to Europe through work at TUDelft and Politecnico Milano. Using an amalgam of results from leadership studies, executive coaching, neuroscience, and mindfulness research, the approach helps faculty members develop deep noticing, listening, questioning (NLQ), and narrative design skills necessary in these fluid and creative times.
The talk highlights the concrete benefits of this approach to faculty career development, success, and happiness and concludes with an invitation to attend a short series of deep faculty development workshops open to NUS faculty this semester (semester 2).
I have written and spoken about the need for engineering education change, but this is the first time I directed similar arguments at an individual faculty member’s expertise in teaching and research.
The powerpoint slides from the talk are available in the viewer below: