Collaborative Teaching, Shared Pedagogies: a #digped Discussion

Collaborative Teaching, Shared Pedagogies: a #digped Discussion

The conversation curated and archived via Storify.

This Friday, July 20 from 1:00 – 2:00pm Eastern (10:00 – 11:00am Pacific), Hybrid Pedagogy will host a Twitter discussion under the hashtag #digped focused on collaborative teaching and shared pedagogies. In “Digital Humanities Made Me a Better Pedagogue: a Crowdsourced Article,” we assembled ideas on the subject from a team of authors, who surveyed the thinking of a much larger group via hyperlinks, crowdsourcing on Twitter, and workshopping at several THATCampun-conferences.

The article begins with the assertion: “Pedagogy is inherently collaborative. Our work as teachers doesn’t (or shouldn’t) happen in a vacuum.” While this might not seem like such an audacious claim, collaborative teaching is rarely institutionalized at an administrative level. It is still customary to have only one instructor of record assigned to each class. This practice obscures — and discourages — the collaborative work of colleagues, teaching assistants, and often the students themselves. We have previously argued for the importance of an increased focus on “participant pedagogy,” and we should remain equally attentive to the fact that our pedagogies are (and must be) developed in concert with fellow teachers.

This question previously posed, “Why do teachers continue to teach alone?,” gives way to a series of questions that can help us build a framework for how and why teachers can (and should) work collectively:

1. In “Publishing as Pedagogy” on PhD2Published, I write, “teaching itself has become, for me, my most important act of writing and publishing.” In the same article, I argue that my syllabi are peer-reviewed, not only by the institutions where I work, but by the greater online community and by my students. What does the creation of teaching materials (like syllabi and assignments) have to gain from academic publishing practices like peer-review?

2. Katherine D. Harris writes, in a blog entry about “Acknowledgments on syllabi,” “We don’t always have time to be innovative. Taking Mary Shelley’s thoughts here: it’s better to create from chaos than nothing.” What methods do we use for creating syllabi and curriculum, and how do those methods depend upon borrowing from (and adapting) the work of our peers? How do we credit these official and unofficial collaborations?

3. Why should we collaborate in the classroom (or online learning space)? What strategies can we devise to disrupt the convention of one teacher, one class? What work needs to be done at an institutional level to facilitate this? How can collaborations between teachers work to encourage (or in concert with) collaborations between students, or between teacher and student? In what ways have you collaborated with other teachers in classroom practice, with or without digital technologies?

Read the various articles linked to here, and feel free to suggest more resources on collaborative pedagogy in the comments section below. If you are unable to join us on July 20 at 1:00pm EST (10:00am PST), we will continue the #digped conversation every other Friday for the rest of the Summer. If you have suggestions for future topics, tweet them to @slamteacher.

[Photo by Ian Sane]

About the Author

Jesse Stommel (@Jessifer) is Director of Hybrid Pedagogy and Assistant Professor of Digital Humanities at University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is an advocate for lifelong learning and the public digital humanities. His personal site can be found at jessestommel.com.

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