Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Forum is a group of UW faculty, graduate students, and staff who began meeting in 2003 to discuss their shared interest in examining the effects of their teaching on their students’ learning.  If you are interested in finding out more about the SoTL Forum or joining us for a meeting, contact sotl@u.washington.edu.

This site provides an overview of scholarship of teaching and learning, presents information about the Annual Teaching and Learning Symposium at UW, and offers examples and resources for SoTL at UW and beyond campus.

What is the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning?

“The scholarship of teaching is not merely teaching our scholarship. Nor is it simply teaching well… The scholarship of teaching means that we invest in our teaching the intellectual powers we practice in our research” (Bender & Grey, emphasis added).

Efforts to improve teaching and learning have prompted a wide range of challenging questions. For example, how does active learning in large classes influence students’ comprehension of the lecture? Does online discussion improve students’ understanding of reading materials? What do writing assignments contribute to student learning in a course?

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning addresses questions such as these by systematically examining student learning. What has been discovered by others who have addressed this question? How can I identify answers to this question through my own teaching? How can answers that emerge contribute to the work of a broader community of scholars?

From this perspective, teaching can be approached as a form of scholarly work, providing a setting in which "faculty frame and systematically investigate questions related to student learning – the conditions under which it occurs, what it looks like, how to deepen it, and so forth--and do so with an eye not only to improving their own classroom but to advancing practice beyond it" (Hutchings & Shulman, emphasis added).