Technology-enhanced learning

TEL Learning Communities

A group of 8 faculty sit around a table and discuss integrating technology into the classroom while a slidshow is projected onto a screen.

Learning Communities have a rich history in higher education. Originally developed for students, Learning Communities have emerged as a powerful way to bring faculty together to explore common problems, share ideas, and develop solutions collaboratively across disciplines. A Learning Community is a gathering of equals—typically 8-10 faculty, though communities may also include staff and students—who together determine the focus and outcome of the group.

The peer-to-peer, self-directed, informal nature of Learning Communities fosters a supportive environment for chasing curiosity, taking risks, and exploring the practicalities of teaching, while breaking down traditional academic silos. Learning communities are a sustainable model for fostering faculty-led innovation, professional development, and active peer-to-peer engagement across the University.

In CNDLS’ Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL) Learning Communities, technology may be central to, or just one component of, the community’s focus. These Learning Communities might address many different topics related to teaching and learning. For example, TEL Communities may choose to explore:

  • active learning in STEM
  • developing a digital presence
  • increasing student engagement
  • flipping the classroom
  • technology and well-being
  • blended and hybrid learning

In the first few meetings, the Community as a whole discusses and determines a more narrow focus, the concrete outcome(s) for the group (which could include presentations, conference papers, course redesigns, or other options), and the agenda for community meetings. Members generally gather at least once a month over the course of a year to learn together and work toward the Community’s agreed-upon outcomes. You can find descriptions of present and past TEL Learning Communities here.

How to Get Involved

All Georgetown faculty are eligible to participate in TEL Learning Communities. Full-time faculty are eligible to be faculty coordinators, who, in addition to participating in their community, also recruit members and coordinate logistics with CNDLS staff. If you have an interest in serving as a faculty coordinator or would like to know more about Learning Communities at Georgetown, please reach out to cndls@georgetown.edu.