Over the coming academic year, you’ll see a new “Spotlight on Students” feature in our CTSI: Focus blog, as well as in our online resources and faculty programming. This feature is part of our efforts to enhance student-faculty interaction at the UofT. But what is this, and why is it important?
In looking at student-faculty interaction, we mean exploring the ways students can interact with their instructors both within and outside the classroom. Through positive interactions, instructors can influence students’ orientation to and investment in their university experience, as well as shape their future learning. Such interactions can positively affect course design, student satisfaction and engagement with course content, while also creating collaborative opportunities between faculty and students.
How can we make interaction a priority when classes are large and there are limited opportunities for interaction outside of class time? The UofT campus can be challenging for students to navigate and find the right supports. It’s hard for instructors to find time to manage email and respond to each individual inquiry, and learn about students’ diverse needs and interests. While the 2008 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) data showed improvement in student-faculty interaction at UofT, we know there are further opportunities to expand our initiatives and continue to improve these interactions.
In “Spotlight on Students”, we’ll be profiling:
- Faculty who are trying out strategies that enhance student-faculty interactions
- Academic resources your students might need on campus
- Areas of student life at UofT that support students outside of class
- Ways to expand your current teaching strategies as you interact with your students
We’re looking forward to finding new ways to help you re-engage with your classes and sharing approaches and strategies that put focus on our students!