CETL strongly believes in the concept of Communities of Practice (CoP) because they are a useful means of Knowledge Management and transfer within our institution, whilst also giving faculty members opportunities to take leading roles in sharing specialist skills with the entire UAEU teaching community. In previous years, CETL focused on one CoP, which was the Faculty Fellows Program (FFP). However, over the past year, CETL has created two additional CoPs, as described below.
The CETL FFP is structured to give outstanding faculty members and instructors an opportunity to serve in a leadership role by leading the professional development activities and events that occur at UAEU via CETL. The Faculty Fellows are selected through an application process and based on their demonstrated unique skills and abilities, promote excellence in teaching and learning at UAEU, a dynamic and engaging experience. The 2019-2020 Faculty Fellows are:
Blended Teaching & Learning (BTL) is a contemporary teaching methodology that has been successfully implemented at leading universities in North America and is starting to spread throughout Higher Education Institutions globally. Due to the fact it is a relatively new teaching style, there are very few academics who possess the skill-set necessary to design and deliver a BTL course. In 2017, CETL identified 11 UAEU faculty and instructors who do have relevant experience of BTL, and this is how the BTL CoP was formed. The BTL CoP continued to support CETL’s BTL initiative in 2018 by contributing towards the two BTL symposiums and Blended Course Transformation project. These members are:
Blackboard is the official Learning Management System (LMS) at UAEU that allows for collaborative interactive and active learning to occur in a blended environment. CETL, in-line with its strategy to foster a culture of innovation in teaching and learning, provided Blackboard FPD training sessions and workshops over six full days (10am to 6pm). This FPD program is suitable for instructors teaching face-to-face, blended, or an online course and was delivered by an expert from Blackboard Middle East company. Nine-teen UAEU faculty members from different colleges participated in the program, which equipped them with the ability to use very advanced features of Blackboard for the purposes of teaching and learning. These faculty members then became the CoP known as CETL’s Blackboardians:
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