More than 153 UA-Pulaski Technical College faculty have improved their teaching practices through a program with the Association of College and University Educators (ACUE). This rigorous, evidence based, 25-week course engages instructors with independently validated research to improve student achievement and close equity gaps. ACUE Focus is a question and answer series where faculty share their experiences with ACUE.
Angela Kremers, Ed.D.
Dean of Technical and Professional Studies
1. Which ACUE course did you complete?
Effective Teaching Practices
2. Was completing the course worth the time and effort you invested? Why?
The Effective Teaching Practices course was well worth the time and effort. I gained valuable insight and ideas for new strategies to implement in the classroom to engage students and foster their growth.
3. What key takeaways or teaching practices impacted your teaching the most? Why?
The key practices that impacted my approach to teaching were those that empowered students to learn in a safe environment where they feel encouraged, and comfortable making mistakes that they can grow from. Active interaction between the students and faculty and students among their peers is key to fostering learning and collaboration.
4. Can you describe a specific teaching practice or positive interaction you had with students as a result of your learning in the ACUE course? What did the student(s) say or do?
One of the practices that stands out is creating a classroom that is student-centered. The syllabus is a guide but allowing the pace to flow based on where the students are in their knowledge and growth is key. By focusing on the students and their real-time progress, success is achieved.
5. As you know, each module in the ACUE course asks participants to implement practices in the classroom and then reflect on that implementation. Could you talk a little about what it felt like to try new things with your students?
It is rewarding to make a change and see increased student success. One practice is having students assist each other. When this was implemented, you could see the students relax and learn to rely on each other to help when they were stuck on a topic or technology task. Collaboration and teamwork flourished with this practice.
6. Why do you think it is important to view teaching as a lifelong skill that you continually refine?
There is so much to learn and so many things change over time. New research helps inform and we can always learn from others. Being a lifelong learner is good practice for every facet of life.
7. What’s one word you would use to describe your experience in the ACUE course and why?
Transformative. ACUE helped make positive change in my instructional strategies and practices.