Agenda Defining Engagement The National Context for Engagement NIU Context for Engagement Engaged Scholarship Engaged Learning Summary Q & As
What We Mean by Engagement Mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources Continuous, region-wide access to research, artistry, and scholarship Deeper civic and academic learning for both partners and enriched scholarship in a context of reciprocity Enhancement of community well-being and of the future of the university
Community Engagement describes the collaboration between higher education institutions and their larger communities (local, regional/state, national, global) for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity. Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, 2006
Why Engagement in Higher Education? The Civic Purpose of Higher Education "Unless education has some frame of reference, it is bound to be aimless lacking a unified objective. The necessity for a frame of reference must be admitted. There exists in this country such a unified frame. It is called democracy." John Dewey, 1937
National Context for Engagement 1.Applicable 2.Collaborative 3.Problem Solving Together 4.Demonstrated Outcome 5.Benefits to Institution and Community
NIU Context for Engagement Strategic Planning Imperatives All Benefit from Engagement Carnegie Award for Community Engagement Engaged Learning Assessment Center for P-20 Engagement Office of Regional Engagement/Rockford
Historical Model of University Life TeachingResearch Public Service Separate Silos
Inter-connected Engagement Model Discovery, Learning, Engagement: A direct, two-way interaction where partners learn together, discover new knowledge, and achieve mutual benefits. Our teaching, learning and research activities are strengthened through collaborative knowledge-exchange relationships.
Engagement is R/Evolutionary Come to the table as a problem-solver Learn to work with communities and students as co-learners and discoverers Adopt a sense of responsibility to contribute to public good Increase capacity for collaborative work Develop a capacity for risk & experimentation Focus on impact, outcomes, benefits Develop new views of research & teaching methods and academic cultures/habits
Features of Engaged Scholarship setting universities aims, purposes, and priorities; relating teaching and learning to the wider world; facilitating the back-and-forth dialogue between researchers and practitioners; and taking on wider responsibilities as neighbours and citizens. Association of Commonwealth Universities Engagement implies strenuous, thoughtful, argumentative interaction with the non- university world in at least four spheres:
Government Policy analyses Growth management and sustainability advice Workforce education and training Strategic planning Development of collaborative networks
Major Shifts in Faculty Work From Provider (faculty) driven Autonomous Discipline-based Ivory tower Quality based on how much you have To Learning driven Collaborative Interdisciplinary Civic Engagement Quality based on how much you contribute and how applicable
Whats the difference? Who formulates the questions Who provides expertise/data Who participates in analysis and interpretation Who bears the risk and enjoys benefits Who defines success Who puts the knowledge into action
Engagement and Learning Service-Learning Academic Service-Learning Community-based Learning Other Experiential Learning Cooperative Education Work-integrated Learning Internships Practica Clinical Field studies Selection of method is determined by learning goal
Kellogg Commission New Covenant Respond to the current needs of an increasingly diverse student body Provide those students with more practical opportunities to prepare for the real world, and Put university knowledge and expertise to work on community problems.
Improved retention Increased academic content knowledge Improved higher order thinking skills, understanding complex problems Confident choice of major/career Personal outcomes – self-esteem, empowerment, motivation Social outcomes – pro-social behaviors, multicultural skills, interest in community issues, civic life Evidence of Impacts of Engaged Learning
Why do these methods work to improve student learning? Learning by doing, yes, but more important, learning with consequences Learn that knowledge has power Demonstrate the usefulness of abstract ideas and theories Students explore and identify their interests and talents Enhances motivation through a sense of responsibility to others Inspires us to be better professionals!
Engaged Learning Engineering students, professors, and professionals are working to make locomotives more fuel efficient as part of a greener railroads project.
Law Professors, students, and community agency personnel working together to solve the legal needs of the public in Rockford
Engaged Learning Mapping out emergency evacuation routes with professionals as part of a U.S. Homeland Security project
Engaged Learning Students spend five days per week at PDS sites, taking NIU classes and working in classrooms with teachers to improve schools.
Summary Engagement is a core element driving higher education quality and impact in the 21 st Century. Engagement is relevant to every institution regardless of type; the level of relevance to discovery and learning varies according to mission and purpose. Each institution must articulate its engagement mission and link it to a coherent research and teaching agenda.
Value of Higher Education What is it that public higher education does that is unique, valuable, and irreplaceable in our society? The answer is that public universities create, share and implement new knowledge without a profit motive.
Bibliography Holland, B (2009). Leading engagement in Higher Education: How engaged is your institution and how do you know? Presented at the Engagement Academy for University Leaders, Roanoke, VA Holland, B. & Sandmann, L. (2009). Leading Engagement. Presented at the Engagement Academy for University Leaders, Roanoke, VA
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