5 Summary of Session 6
You have learned the significance of disseminating SoTL outcomes for peer review, for sharing, and for possible uptake in different and sometimes unanticipated contexts.
By engaging in purposive reflection, documentation, assessment, and analysis of teaching and learning, and doing so in a more public and accessible manner, we not only support the improvement of our own teaching’ (Shulman, 2000, p. 50), but we also contribute to our community of teacher scholars, enabling all of us to teach more effectively and more of our students to learn more deeply.
SoTL has an impact at various levels and especially on the individual SoTL practitioner. You have seen that SoTL enables educators to generate research from teaching. SoTL provides intellectual nourishment for educators who engage in it and affirms their professional identity (Hoon et al., 2020). Further, SoTL has the potential to make substantive contributions to evidence-based improvements of curriculum, learning design, student-informed adjustments to teaching and learning, and institutional-level policies of student support. Without SoTL, policymakers will make decisions without a firm grounding in the classroom-based practicalities and insights of educators and students (Felten and Chick, 2018).
You have seen that it is not the scale of the inquiry or the scale of the impact that is important; instead, it is the critical reflective and reflexive nature of the process of SoTL which is significant. Further, SoTL enhances the sense of belonging among students who recognise that the curriculum and delivery of teaching is informed by research, and that SoTL is a vehicle that continually aims to improve teaching and learning.