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New Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning launched at AUS
Students are set to be the main beneficiaries of American University of Sharjah’s (AUS) new Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CITL). The center replaces what was the AUS Faculty Development Center and will serve the entire AUS teaching community, assisting all academic departments and disciplines. Serving as a hub for pedagogical innovation, it will help foster new teaching approaches and ideas that improve the classroom experiences of AUS students.
The center will provide programs, services and resources that nurture AUS faculty members’ teaching skills. These will include personalized instructional design and teaching method; support for blended course development; essential services for teaching evaluations, learning outcomes, grading criteria and design of assessment; evaluation, development and use of creative learning environments; and workshops, training and certification programs. Through CITL, faculty will also have access to open source or free textbook alternatives, as well as online courses and resources, including the development of self-paced online modules and resources that provide convenient ways for faculty members to access best practices and new ideas on teaching.
Dr. Norita Ahmad, who serves as the center’s new director, said it is student outcomes that drive the desire of AUS faculty to become the best possible educators. “Faculty at AUS care very much about teaching. CITL is proud to play a central role in pedagogical and technological advancement that enriches teaching and learning experiences for both faculty and students. Our objective is to build on what is already a substantial base and thereby strengthen opportunities for faculty to learn about teaching and learning, maximizing the potential for this knowledge to be shared not only with students, but the entire AUS community,” she said.
For Dr. Ahmad, this the perfect time for AUS to reinvigorate its commitment to exceptional teaching. “With the rapid onset of online teaching and learning, now more than ever, we need to focus our attention on equipping faculty with the tools to support the design and delivery of courses, and support faculty themselves. AUS takes faculty development seriously. When faculty attend formal development opportunities and engage in self-directed improvement processes, their teaching practices change and that inevitably improves the learning outcomes of students—our ultimate goal,” she added.
The new CITL will be officially launched today. Two new team members will join the center, Walid Alieldin, Instructional Design Manager and Nour Abdul Malak, Instructional Design Assistant. More information about the CITL can be found at https://www.aus.edu/citl.