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Communities of Practice are groups of faculty with a common interest in a particular academic or higher education leadership issue who seek to share ideas, leverage connections and conversations and create innovative solutions. Proposals are invited for small groups of peers to form a Community of Practice.
What is a Community of Practice?
Communities of Practice (CoP) are groups of faculty and with a common interest in a particular academic or higher education leadership area who seek issue to share ideas and leverage connections and conversations. Popularized by Dr. Jean Lave and Dr. Etienne Wenger in the late 1990s, a community of practices is, “a process of social learning that occurs when people who have a common interest in a subject or area collaborate over an extended period of time, sharing ideas and strategies, determine solutions and build innovations.”
A CoP might build a coalition of peers from multiple colleges or departments so that faculty from different units can discuss different approaches to a common problem. Or a CoP might serve as a discussion forum for a group of faculty reading a common text, or provide a group of colleagues the opportunity for deeper discussion on a specific topic.
Typically, a CoP will run for a limited period of time (6- to 9-months), will meet periodically (we request at least monthly meetings as a goal) and will be required to provide Faculty Affairs a brief summary of activities upon completion. Individuals seeking formal changes to existing OSU policies are encouraged to pursue other venues already established for such a purpose such as Faculty Senate committees or college/unit committees.
Academic faculty leaders who would like to organize a community of practice may submit a proposal to the Office of Faculty Affairs. The proposal should include the following:
Proposals may be submitted to Faculty Affairs and will be reviewed and approved by the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs on a rolling basis. Approved communities of practice will be required to submit an annual summary report to the Vice Provost.
Questions related to the Community of Practice program can be directed to Michelle Klotz.
Current and Past Communities of Practice
Call for Applications - CAAI Faculty Learning Community - Spring ‘22: Community for the Advancement of Antiracist Instruction (CAAI): A learning community led by and for instructors and TAs
The Community for the Advancement of Antiracist Instruction (CAAI) is a learning community in which instructors and TAs engage in antiracist work related to their teaching. This grassroot project was designed and will be facilitated by a team of instructors and TAs from programs across campus. The intention is to create a space where instructors and TAs have agency and are empowered to explore antiracist teaching in community. The learning community will culminate in the creation of an individualized antiracist teaching action plan. This professional development opportunity is sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning and Faculty Affairs. Participants will attend 2 synchronous, Zoom sessions; an introductory session on Friday, April 8 3:00 pm-5:30 pm and a concluding session on Friday, May 13 3-5 pm. Participants will also engage with four interactive, asynchronous Canvas modules over the course of 5 weeks. OSU instructors and TAs from any campus (Corvallis, Cascade, Ecampus, etc.) are eligible to participate. See the full Call for Proposals and apply by March 6: CAAI Application Link. Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org. Notifications regarding acceptance will be announced by March 18.