I don't like to toot my own horn, but I have some pretty big news to announce to the community. I have just received word from the National Science Foundation that I am receiving a new grant! Oh sure, the leadership council will claim to be responsible for this funding (especially Joanne Stewart, Barb Reisner and Jeff Raker the PI's), but we all really know that I am the one pulling the strings with this whole organizaiton. What does this mean for you, our loyal BITeS readers? Plenty! We have some bold ideas for shaping foundation level inorganic courses. We will be holding more workshops. We will be continuing to have gatherings at spring ACS meetings (my favorite part of the year!). And it means this community, the greatest community of practice in chemistry, will continue to grow and flourish.
The leadership council wanted me to include the technical abstract for the award:
"This study will provide insight into challenges faculty face as they adopt active-learning teaching strategies and the level of the support necessary to effect change in teaching practices. This project will help identify how a professional community of practice can initiate, enable, and sustain faculty change. Through classroom observations, analysis of student work, surveys of students, and interviews with faculty, we will generate data on how changes in the classroom affect student learning. We will contribute to the body of evidence for promoting faculty change by evaluating how our efforts encourage the adoption of evidence-based classroom practices. The products of our project will include: 1) 60 new syllabi, with related course materials, for a foundation-level inorganic chemistry course with content coverage drawn from core inorganic chemistry topics, 2) new knowledge on the impact of communities of practice on faculty change, and 3) improved student learning in inorganic chemistry." (Abstract on NSF.gov)
We can't wait to get started! Expect more details here in the near future. Hang on, it's going to be an exciting ride.