Faculty Learning Communities

What are Faculty Learning Communities (FLCs)?

FLCs are small groups of teachers that come together periodically to discuss a particular topic, issue, or practice. The goal is to advance teaching and learning through reflection, dialog, and peer support while building networks among faculty with common interests and a diversity of experience.  In some cases an FLC may set out to create some document or resources, while in others the goal may simply be to share with and learn from colleagues.

How do I join an FLC?

There are a number of different opportunities to join an FLC on campus, including the TLTC's Elevate Fellows Program, the Office of Undergraduate Studies' Faculty Fellows Program, and various groups organized within college and departments. The TLTC's FLC Fellows Program creates opportunities for faculty of all ranks to propose, host, and participate in a semester-long FLC. Below, you can browse the list of FLCs available this semester through the FLC Fellows Program.

Please note:

  • Only join the FLC if you are able to attend all of the scheduled meetings.  Use the registration link and password below to register for all of the meetings on our Eventbrite page.
  • The FLC will be confirmed if we get at least 6 faculty members to participate, and each is capped at 12.
  • At the conclusion of the semester, faculty who have participated in all of the FLC's meetings will receive their choice of a TLTC gift from our premium swag catalog.  Details on that will be shared with the FLCs.

Spring 2018 FLCs:

Building Empathy on Assessment Matters
FLC Fellow: Kate Izsak, Undergraduate and Graduate Director, Program in Terrorism Studies/Assessment Consultant, BSOS
Tuesdays 3-4pm: February 20, March 6, April 3, April 17, May 1
Sharon L Akers Training Room
1103 Edward St John

Participants will collaborate to explore how administrators and faculty can build a better understanding of each other’s perspectives on the learning outcome assessment process and identify concrete strategies to make participation more meaningful for faculty and their students.

Register here with the password "2018" by 2/16

Student-Centered Approaches to Teaching and Learning
FLC Fellow: Dylan Selterman, Department of Psychology
Tuesdays noon-1pm: February 20, March 13, April 3, April 24
Sharon L Akers Training Room
1103 Edward St John

What does scientific research on motivation tell us about how to structure courses that focus on students’ intrinsic motivation and autonomy in the learning process? Participants will explore the literature and think deeply about how to further shift emphasis toward student-centered teaching and learning.

Register here with the password "2018" by 2/16

Creating an Engaging Learning Environment in a Large-Enrollment Class
FLC Fellow: Jess O’Hara, Assistant Director, Public Health Science Program
Wednesdays 10-11am: February 21, March 7, April 4, April 18, May 2
Sharon L Akers Training Room
1103 Edward St John

There is no question that large-enrollment courses come with unique challenges, especially when it comes to incorporating engaging, active learning experiences. We will explore relevant scholarship and discuss various strategies, technologies, and resources to enhance climate, engagement, and learning in large courses.

Register here with the password "2018" by 2/16

Preparing Students for a World in Flux
FLC Fellow: Spencer Benson, Instructional Consultant, TLTC

If you were given a clean slate and the resources to design a new college/university to meet the needs of today’s students for life in 2040 what would it look like? How would it be different/same as UMD is today? To engage this hypothetical question, we read, discuss and critique Cathy Davidson’s new book “The New Education: How to Prepare Students for a World in Flux”.
Interested individuals should email sbenson@eii-consulting.com by Feb 16 with a 1-2 paragraph statement describing what they bring to the FLC and what they hope to get out of participation in the FLC. Any additional comments or suggestions regarding the focus and organization of the FLC are welcome and encouraged.  Spencer will reply with invitations and coordinate scheduling.

Queer Faculty Learning Community
FLC Fellow: Alice E. Donlan, TLTC Director of Research
Fridays 10-11am: February 23, March 9, March 30, April 6, April 20, May 4
Sharon L Akers Training Room
1103 Edward St John

This FLC will serve as a space where Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Queer (LGBTQ) instructors can build community, and learn more about teaching and learning from a queer lens. Throughout the semester, we will discuss the four pieces of effective teaching in the Fearless Teaching Framework (Climate, Content, Practice, and Assessment) and discuss how our work as instructors intersects with our identities as queer people.

Register here with the password "2018" by 2/16


What do our FLC Fellows do?

FLC Fellows are trained on facilitating effective community meetings and then take the lead in organizing the group’s activities and discussions throughout a semester. Afterwards, they share their experience though some scholarly outlet (e.g., Innovations in Teaching & Learning Conference, Lilly Conference) or the creation of a resource reviewed and distributed by the TLTC. This is a great professional development opportunity for the facilitator and participants, and an excellent addition for the instructors’ teaching portfolios.

How are FLC’s Funded?

Faculty selected as FLC Fellows will receive a total of $500 from the TLTC, to be transferred to their department or office, which can be used to support the FLC (e.g., additional resources, food, travel) and their own professional development (e.g., teaching or research resources, conference travel, organizational memberships). Funding may not be taken as salary or to buy out of teaching responsibilities. The first $250 is transferred when the FLC is approved and at least six faculty members commit to attending the meetings. The remaining $250 is transferred after the TLTC receives confirmation of meeting participation and the Fellow’s final deliverable (e.g., conference presentation, resource submission and approval). More details on funding requirements will be provided to Fellows in a service agreement. As an incentive and thank you to faculty who join and participate in all scheduled meetings of a TLTC FLC, each will receive their choice of gifts from the TLTC's premium swag catalog.

How many people meet in an FLC? How often do they meet?

FLCs can vary in size, but our goal is to have groups of 6-12 faculty members who all agree to meet at least five times within a specific semester or summer. FLC’s are intended to be interdisciplinary, and although they may focus on a discipline-specific topic, the invitation to join the group must be open to all campus faculty.

Where do the FLCs meet?

The Fellow leading the FLC will chose a meeting time and location. We encourage you to meet in one of the Edward St. John spaces and we’ll help you schedule that if one is available for your meetings. If you meet in ESJ we can provide water, coffee, tea and snacks for the meetings.

How do I become an FLC Fellow?

Any member of the faculty (tenure- or professional-track), staff, or administration at the University of Maryland is eligible to propose an FLC. The TLTC will review proposals and (subject to funding availability) select those that address significant topics related to teaching and learning. Preference will be given to proposals that explicitly link the FLC goals to one or more aspect of the TLTC’s Fearless Teaching Framework.

This process is currently closed for Spring 2018. Please check back in August.