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Sample Letters of Recommendation for Educators

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Sample Letters of Recommendation for Educators document sample

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									   Creating an Educator’s
Profile, Portrait, and Portfolio

    OUHSC Educational Grand Rounds
                      June 16, 2006

               Valerie N. Williams, Ph.D.
        Colleges of Medicine and Public Health
    University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

                V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
               EGR Announcement
   The purpose of this session is to introduce the Educator's Portfolio
    as a tool for faculty reflection, self- and peer-assessment, and
    structured documentation of teaching and broader educator roles.
    The overall goal of the session is to provide a framework for
    structuring an educator's portfolio and to address frequently asked
    questions about what to include and how to use a portfolio as a
    resource toward achieving educational goals and/or toward
    academic advancement review.

                          V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
             What do I Need? An Educator’s
      Profile, Portrait, or Portfolio
Objectives: At the conclusion of this session
participants will be able to posit answers to the
following questions:
     Why bother with a teaching profile, portrait or
           What is a teaching profile?
           What are the key features of a teaching portrait?
           What evidence is needed to build a teaching

     How can a teaching profile, portrait, portfolio be
      used to align interests, goals and performance?
                     V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
     Why bother?
What matters most to you about
  your roles as an educator?

  Descriptive key words????

        V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                           Why Bother?
              First Things First

   What’s so important about being an
    ―educator‖ that I’m willing to invest my
    expertise, energy and effort in the role(s)
    at an AHC?

   What is my #1 goal as an educator?

         – Please use 2-minutes to write down your answers.

                     V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
           Why Bother?
       Personal Reason #1…
Are you thinking through, reflecting on and
measuring your personal teaching and
learning benchmarks for excellence?

– What evidence do you have that you are
  accomplishing your personal goals as an
– When necessary, can you make that evidence
  available to your peers?

               V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
            Why Bother?
       University Reason #1…
    Educational standards are teaching and
We’ve been thinking about not fixed forever.
learning benchmarks for excellence…
 The bar is being raised by changes in knowledge,
– Boyer on the Scholarship of Teaching
the creation of new tools to enhance teaching and
– Glassick on Assessing Scholarship
    learning and the expectations of our peers,
– Carnegie Foundation Center for Advancement of
   disciplines, Learning sources and the learners
   Teaching and funding (CASTL) Nursing, Medicine,
   Engineering, Clergy themselves.the professions studies
                        education in
 – Group on all its dimensions, at an conference for
Teaching, inEducational Affairs ConsensusAHC, is noton
   Scholarship of Teaching
                   the faint-hearted!
 – Health professions accrediting bodies…
                   V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
            Getting Started…

You probably have
several puzzle pieces
available already.

(Find and) organize

                 V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                    Getting Started…
   Goals (e.g., Yours, Department,                 Learner feedback
                                                    Learner performance (quizzes,
   Teaching tasks & activities (to
    date)                                            exams, standardized tests/shelf
   Environments of teaching                         exams, ―OSCEs,‖ national
   Content (taught to date;                         exams)
    lectures; courses; simulations;
    cases)                                          Peer feedback
   Instructional methods                           Peer coaching
    – Standard                                      Lessons learned (post teaching
    – Innovations
    – Syllabi                                        reflections/improvements)
                                                    Educational scholarship
   Learner types
    –   Undergraduate                               Goals attained; benchmarked
    –   Professional (novice/ advanced)             Awards & Recognition
    –   Graduate
    –   Post-Graduate                               Educational leadership roles
                             V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Assembling the Portfolio Puzzle
         Not a ―Black Box‖

                                   Expectations
                                      – Your own
                                      – Disciplinary
                                      – Institutional

                                   Purpose Drives
                                      – Profile
                                      – Portrait
                                      – Portfolio
          V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                   Puzzle Piece #1
   What do you expect of yourself as an educator? Where
    does your expertise fit in the college’s curriculum?

   What does your college’s accrediting body and/or your
    discipline demand as educational program requirements?
    (Content, context, process, outcomes)

   What does OUHSC expect with regard to teaching as a
    professional activity of the faculty? (See Faculty Handbook Section
    3, page 3-24)

                         V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                   Teaching Defined
          OUHSC Faculty Handbook (2003) Section 3.6.1

    Teaching, which is the transmission of
     knowledge and cultural values, focuses upon
     helping students to learn.

    Teaching refers to academic activities that promote
     Faculty supervision or guidance of students in recognized academic pursuits
      learning among those should also be considered with whom a
     that confer no University creditindividuals or groupsas teaching.

     faculty member interacts. The term teaching duties for
     Faculty performing non-administrative professional and clinicalas used
      here includes, but shall be regarded as giving regularly
     which they are employed is not limited to engaged in teaching when
     these activities contribute to the academic mission.
      scheduled instruction, directing graduate work, and
     counseling, advising discharge of This includes the
     Professional librarians in the students. their professional duties shall be
     regarded as engaged in teaching.
      direction or supervision of students in reading, research,
      internships, or fellowships.
                             V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
               Teaching Assessed
        OUHSC Faculty Handbook (2003) - Excellence

   Faculty members who excel in teaching:
    – exhibit their command over the subject matter in classroom
      discussions, lectures, or clinical supervision,
    – present material to students in an objective, organized way that
      promotes the learning process.
    – are recognized by their students and university colleagues as
      persons who guide and inspire their students.
    – strive continuously to broaden and deepen their knowledge and
      understanding of their discipline,
    – seek to improve the methods of teaching their subject,
    – keep informed about new developments in their field,
    – use appropriate instructional technologies, and
    – prepare educational materials that are up-to-date and well-

                        V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
               Teaching Assessed
     OUHSC Faculty Handbook (2003) – Influence and Reputation

   Faculty members who excel in teaching may
    demonstrate their influence and reputation by:
    – student and peer evaluation
    – authoring textbooks
    – lectures and publications on ―pedagogy‖
    – publication of such instructional materials as
      laboratory manuals and videotapes,
    – development of multimedia instructional materials
      and computer assisted learning techniques.
   Excellence in academic advising may serve to
    augment evidence of excellence in teaching.

                       V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Puzzle Piece #2
 Purpose Drives

   V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
What is a Teaching Profile?
                            A teaching profile
                             offers a one-
                             dimensional view or
                            As a list of teaching
                             activities and roles it is
                             the narrowest
                            At minimum it should
                             answer critical
                             benchmark questions…
        V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                       Puzzle Piece #2
             Scope and Scale: CV or Annual Report

   What are your specific contributions to the educational program?
   What teaching items are/or could be listed on your curriculum vita?
   For example: (include quantity and quality benchmarks)
     – Content expertise
     – Instructional topics (lectures/courses taught)
     – Instructional materials and/or methods created (e.g., CAI,
       simulation, PBL, TBL, lecture, cases, etc)
     – Learner outcomes (reported)
     – Advising & mentoring (doctoral and master’s students)
     – Educational research & scholarship
     – Educational service (local, regional, national, international

                         V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Evaluate and Report:
• Clerkship feedback &                       Design                                Develop and Assess:
   improvements made
                                           Educational                             • EKG Workshop &
• Feedback to Attendings
   from Clerkship Director                  Program                                • Hypertension Workshop
• Feedback to Chair re:
                                                                                   • Pulmonary Embolism
   Clerkship strengths/
                                     Organize and Implement:                         Lecture (PA Students)
   areas for improvement
                                     • Scheduling Content
• Educational Scholarship
                                     • Faculty Assignments
   (tba)                                                                    Develop
                                     • Director Med Ed (Presby)
                  Evaluate           • Represent Resident               Class Session(s)
                  Program               interests to Hospital
                                                                           or Course
                                        (Committee Rep)

                                     Assess Learners and Provide:                     Mentor
                                     • Clerkship evaluation letter
                    Performance      • Dean’s database updates            Deliver:
   Review:                           • Resident 360 Evaluation            • Intro to Human Illness
   • Resident evaluations              (designed & implemented)           • Principles of Clinical Medicine II
   • Student evaluations                                                  • EKG Lecture
   • Clerkship evaluation                   Assess                        • Venous Thrombosis Lecture
     comments                                                             • Intro to Clinical Medicine
   • Self-Assessment (tba)
                                                                             (Periodontal Residents)
   • Peer feedback (tba)                  Performance                     • Recommendation letters
                                  V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
 A teaching portrait
  includes more details
  than a profile.
 It includes richer
  ―color‖ as a metaphor
  for the scope and/or
  descriptions that
  accompany listings of
  faculty teaching
                 V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                            Puzzle Piece #2
    Scope and Scale: Annual Report Details, Brief Narrative for Awards
      and/or Academic Advancement, Educator’s Biographical Sketch

   Briefly describe your educational activities, tasks,
    contributions, products and outcomes related to
    the educational program. Include quantity and
    quality benchmarks. For example:

     –   Innovations                                 –          Administration
     –   Curriculum                                  –          Peer Coaching
     –   Mentoring results                           –          Peer Review
     –   Discipline Leadership                       –          etc.

                          V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                    The most complete
                     representation of the
                     educator’s work
                    Segments
                     representing the full
                     spectrum of an
                     investment, expertise,
                     methods, and results
                     over time may be

V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
                              Puzzle Piece #2
            Scope and Scale: Big Picture, Longitudinal, Detailed in
                     Quantitative and Qualitative Items

The Portfolio…
Brings together of a professor’s most important
teaching strengths and accomplishments. It
houses in one place the scope and quality of a
professor’s teaching performance. The portfolio is
to teaching what lists of publications, grants, and
honors are to research and scholarship…

Peter   Seldin (1990)

                            V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Purpose of a Complete Educator’s Portfolio
 An educator's portfolio is a record of your
        Acquisition and use of competencies as an
        Resource material for educational scholarship
        Tools for learner and self-assessment
        Teaching and educational leadership
        Reflections and adaptations
        Indicators of excellence based on national

 Done well, the portfolio can serve as reference
 and resource material for professional
 development and/or academic advancement.
                 V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
         Documentation Resource
   A portfolio is factual

   It is a professional’s ―file folder‖ for individual* teaching, educational
    scholarship**, learner/curriculum records and reflections (e.g.,
    quantitative and qualitative data).

   Hutchings and Schulman argue that teaching becomes scholarship
    when it demonstrates current knowledge of the field and current
    findings about teaching, invites peer review, and involves
    exploration of students’ learning. Items in the portfolio should
    demonstrate ―scholarship.‖

     *The EP is not a place to keep ―official‖ records
     ** Scholarship includes specific elements…

                             V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Criteria for Scholarship in Teaching

            V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
              Portfolio Sections
…relate directly to faculty roles as educators

1. Educational                                     4. Administering
   Philosophy    (p45)                                Educational Programs
2. Curriculum and                                  5. Scholarship in the
   Coursework                                         Teaching/Learning
3. Teaching                                           Domain     (p23)

   A.   Content                                    6. Self-Assessment and
   B.   Methods                                       Peer Review        (p31)

   C.   Assessing Learners                         7. Educational
   D.   Mentoring and                                 Leadership
        Advising Learners
                                                      Crandall Portfolio Example

                         V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
            Questions to Guide
Creating Portfolio Sections
 Questions that follow may stimulate your thinking about
 teaching and learning encounters to date. You can also
 create your own questions or use ―unguided‖ reflection to
 outline the beginnings of an educator’s portfolio.

 Remember, the educator’s portfolio is a tool for systematic
 collection and reflection on your teaching. Selected material
 from the portfolio or the entire document may be used for
 peer review. Consider how you will use the EP to decide
 what to include in it.

 See Worksheet 2
                   V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
          Educational Philosophy
   Describe your philosophy of education or of teaching and
    learning. What should the experience of learning entail
    for students? What should the teaching experience
    entail for the educator?

   How should the teaching experience evolve for you
    individually and in your work with discipline colleagues
    as you share course or content responsibility?

   What is the environment for learning/teaching?

   How do you want to contribute to the teaching/learning
    experience in its evolution and/or stability?

                      V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
     Curriculum and Coursework
   Note the products of your work through
    authorship or co-authorship and development or
    production of learning materials.

   Note the types of learners for whom you have
    developed educational or assessment materials.

   Include sample letters in this section that speak
    to your capabilities or competence as an

                    V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
A. Content (areas of content expertise)
B. Methods and Instructional Strategies
   (including small and large group instructional
   methods, team or problem-based learning,
   computer aided instruction, use of distance
   technology, use of simulation or case study, and
   so forth)
C. Assessing Learners (novice to expert; pre-
   professional, residents, fellows, continuing
   education learners and academic peers both
   disciplinary and interprofessional)
D. Mentoring and Advising Learners

              V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
      Teaching: Content and Methods
   What are your skills in delivering instruction to various
    levels and types of learners?

   What steps are you taking to develop data sources as
    documentation of your teaching abilities?

   Who will help you with peer review?

   What are your plans regarding content and methods
    assessment of your teaching by peers and conducting
    self-analysis of these elements?

                     V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
       Teaching: Assessing Learners
   What methods will you use to assess learner progress?

   What are your skills and competencies in this area?
    How do you continue and how have you developed
    your knowledge to date?

   Who will help you develop assessment tools?

   How will you measure their reliability and validity over
    time for consistency and precision?

                     V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Teaching: Mentoring and Advising Learners

   What are the formal and informal channels you will use
    to mentor and advise learners?

   What will you use to document your contributions to
    student mentoring? What are the outcomes of your

   How will you capture the ―informal‖ development of
    student skills, abilities, and knowledge based on
    affective goals your college has established (e.g.,
    student commitment to lifelong learning)?

                    V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
    Administering Educational Programs

   What contributions are you making toward evolving
    the educational frame?

   What best exemplifies outcomes achieved with your

   What are your roles as a team contributor?

   What are your leadership roles in administering
    educational programs?

                    V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
             Scholarship in the
         Teaching/Learning Domain
   What are you contributions toward advancing the
    discipline or interdisciplinary work through:
    – Regional,
    – National, or
    – International scholarship?

   What questions are you asking about the learning
    environment, learning methods, learner assessment, the
    curriculum, or educational leadership?

   Note training grants, publications, invited presentations,
    and leadership roles in this regard.

                        V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
    Educational Leadership
 What are your goals with regard to the
  teaching mission and educational leadership?
 What have you achieved during the past
 What is your greatest accomplishment as a
  teacher to date?
 What are your plans with regard to
  advancement or promotion to more
  significant opportunities in the teaching
  leadership domain?

              V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
    Self-Assessment and Peer Review
 What developmental objectives do you have to improve
  your skills, knowledge and competence as a teacher?
 Who are your mentors in this area and what are you
  striving to learn?
 What recognition, honors or awards have you been
  nominated for and/or received?
 How does your peer and self-assessment relate back
  to the evolution of your educational philosophy, teaching
  methods, and learner assessment approached and
 How do your student evaluations relate back to the
  evolution of your educational philosophy, teaching
  methods, and learner assessment approached and

                    V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
         Continuing Professional

   What formal continuing professional
    development have you invested in to
    improve your capabilities as an educator?

                 V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
For their insights, assistance and feedback:
   Dr. Sonia J. Crandall, Associate Professor, Family and
    Community Medicine, Wake Forest University School of
   Dr. Mark A., Assistant Professor, OU College of
   Dr. Deborah Simpson, Professor, Family and Community
    Medicine, Associate Dean for Educational Support and
    Evaluation Medical College of Wisconsin
   OUHSC Faculty Leadership Program Fellows
   OU College of Medicine Faculty Workshop Participants
                      V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
Questions & Comments

      V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
     Teaching Portfolio Examples
 SJ Crandall Teaching Portfolio, Wake Forest University
  School of Medicine (Handout).
 Mark A., MD, Educator’s Profile, OUHSC College of
  Medicine (Handout)
 Carnegie Foundation Launches Free Online Tool for
  Knowledge Sharing
    – /keep/
   Teaching to the Test
      (online teaching portfolio)
   University of Nebraska Peer Review of Teaching project

                       V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688
1. Boyer EL. 1990. Scholarship Reconsidered: Priorities of
   the Professoriate. Princeton, NJ: Carnegie Foundation
   for the Advancement of Teaching.
2. Glassick CE, Huber MR, Maeroff GI. Scholarship
   Assessed—Evaluation of the Professoriate. 1997. San
   Francisco, CA: Jossey–Bass.
3. Hansen PA, Roberts KB. Putting teaching back at the
   center. Teaching and Learning in Medicine. 1992;
4. Hutchings P, Shulman LS. The scholarship of teaching
   new elaborations and developments. Change.
5. Glassick CE. Reconsidering scholarship. J Public Health
   Management Practice. 2000;6:4–9.

                    V.N. Williams, Ph.D. (405) 271-2688

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