Virtual Center for Teaching & Learning

Faculty Learning Communities & Reading Roundtables

Faculty Learning Communities and Faculty Reading Roundtables are discussion groups focused on a variety of topics and texts. In the past, members of these groups have generated ongoing collaborations, shared insights and experiences about their lives as professors, and developed plans for enriching our existing programs. Some groups are still gathering ideas for future projects.

See below:

Faculty Reading Roundtables (FRR)

Faculty Reading Roundtables are faculty book discussion groups. Different books are read each year, and faculty members are invited to join by the beginning of the semester so the books (provided courtesy of the Office of Faculty Development) can be ordered. Each FRR meets several times during a year, according to the schedules of its members. Each FRR determines its own missions, goals, agenda, schedule of meeting and events, etc. A faculty facilitator leads each FRR.

Faculty Learning Communities (FLC)

Faculty Learning Communities are faculty groups, either topic or cohort based, often interdisciplinary, which actively collaborate on the FLC’s topic for an academic year. Topics can be focused on teaching, learning, research, or aspects of academic life, with each FLC creating its own mission, goals, agenda, schedule of meetings and events. A faculty facilitator leads each FLC. Learning communities will each have a small pot of funds available for sundry expenses.

Connecting with Other Members

Each member agrees to participate in the group’s meetings, activities, and dissemination of ideas. Each member also agrees to contribute to the creation of the midyear and end-of-year reports and to submit an assessment report on his or her experience as a participant.

Group Discussion Boards
Each FLC and FRR has a private discussion board accessible from Pirates' View Vista, making it much easier for members to participate in group meetings and discussions. To access the discussion board for a group, sign in to Pirates' View Vista and follow the links for "Faculty Development  - Virtual Center for Teaching & Learning."


Our overall goals for these programs are numerous and interrelated:

  • To build university-wide community through teaching, learning, and scholarship
  • To emphasize that teaching is serious intellectual work
  • To learn more about how, why, when and where students learn best
  • To improve our effectiveness and enjoyment of our work as professionals
  • To research teaching and learning based upon theory, evidence, practice and assessment of outcomes
  • To encourage scholarly productivity
  • To increase faculty collaboration across the disciplines
  • To create an awareness of the complexity of teaching and that it requires career-long professional development in both the content of one’s discipline and in teaching that discipline

Faculty Symposium

It is fitting that the campus at large should benefit from the experience you have had while participating in these groups; it is equally important that we share our knowledge and wisdom with our colleagues. One opportunity to do just that will be a Faculty Symposium to be held just before the finals week of the academic year that will consist of faculty-led, interactive presentations or demonstrations open to all faculty. The Symposium will focus on issues connected with teaching, scholarship, student learning, and academic life and careers, and should be the direct outcome of work you have done in your groups.

Operations and Outcomes

The Office of Faculty Development will facilitate and coordinate the formation and logistics of the FLCs and FRRs. Each group is responsible for determining its ongoing schedule, its work, and how it disseminates the outcomes of that work to colleagues and the campus. Each group will submit a one-page midyear report (December) and a one-page final report (May) that summarizes and analyzes the work and outcomes of the group. The groups as wholes, or individual members, are also encouraged to consider disseminating their work in additional ways such as: publishing an article or essay, giving a presentation at conference or on our campus, creating a group website to share their work with the campus, etc.