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Fostering Blended Learning: Successful Partnerships and Faculty Development for Institutional Change

Chantal Levesque-Bristol (Purdue University, USA)
Tomalee Doan (Purdue University, USA)
Additional Authors
Donalee Attardo (Purdue University, USA)
Session Information
July 9, 2013 - 9:10am
Faculty Development and Support
Areas of Special Interest: 
Institutional Initiatives
Major Emphasis of Presentation: 
Practical Application
Institutional Level: 
Universities and Four Year Institutions
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Information Session
Lakeshore A
Session Duration: 
50 Minutes
Information Session 4
Virtual Session
Best in Track

IMPACT course redesign. Purdue University is flipping, blending, transforming, and reinventing the way we teach, students learn across the disciplines, and institutional change is fostered.

Extended Abstract

Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT) is a successful campus-wide course redesign and faculty development program at Purdue University, a large R1 research university in Indiana. Sponsored by the office of the Provost, it is supported by staff and resources from multiple units across campus, including the Libraries, the Center for Instructional Excellence (CIE), Instructional Technologies at Purdue (ITaP), and Purdue Distance Education (PEC). At the end of 2013, after a 4-year implementation, IMPACT will have transformed over 90 large foundational courses from all colleges/schools across campus - in the process, working closely with over 100 faculty to do so. In addition, over 25,000 students will have taken an IMPACT class. Since the program's inception, 25,000 students have taken a course redesigned through IMPACT. IMPACT is not only a successful course redesign program but it also fosters institutional change through collaboration between faculty and support units campus-wide.

Although multiple redesign models are presented to faculty during the program, 90% of the redesigned courses used a form of blended learning. Some of the blended models use a supplemental approach in which face-to-face lectures are supplemented with online activities and homework; Other blended models use a replacement approach in which some of the face-to-face lectures are replaced by online activities and homework; and some of the models use a flipped approach in which the lectures are recorded and made available online and the face-to-face class time becomes dedicated to group work, team based learning, problem-based learning, and/or well as online activities.

Although there are course redesign efforts going on at other institutions of higher learning, the broad scope of IMPACT makes this faculty development program unique. IMPACT is not limited to certain colleges, schools, or disciplines; rather, it is a cross-disciplinary effort touching courses in all academic colleges and schools. Support of the transformation effort, focused on the use of blended learning to achieve greater student engagement and learning gains, is not owned or confined to one campus unit; rather, it is a joint collaborative effort by several university departments. The collaboration among the units and the systematic assessment of learning outcomes at the course level has been a catalyst for Campus-Wide and Institutional Change. For example, it has become a useful model informing the development of the Core Curriculum, the assessment of course embedded outcomes, and the discussion around Purdue's First-Year Foundation of Excellence. In this session, we will spend time discussing how blended course redesign and assessment of the effect of such redesign on learning gains including critical thinking, problem solving, and information literacy, can be a catalyst for institutional change.

In this information session, we will also focus on the nuts and bolts of this innovative faculty development and course redesign program that is IMPACT. We will share with participants the research-based redesign curriculum and strategies used in this program, provide details on the financial and personnel support offered to faculty fellows throughout the different phases of the redesign (from conceptualization to assessment of learning outcomes), as well as successful institutional partnerships for a faculty development program of this scope. We will also discuss the ways in which we present technologies in the context of the course redesign program as a tool/strategy to enhance student learning and engagement. The assessment of course level student learning outcomes is a foundational goal of this large faculty development program. Student learning outcomes include performance on course specific learning objectives, as well as broader objectives such as critical thinking, problem solving and information literacy.

The target audience for this session includes faculty, faculty developers, instructional designers/developers, librarians, and academic administrators (Deans, Provosts). These potential participants are most likely to benefit from this session. Challenges, successes, and lessons learned from the successful IMPACT course transformation program at Purdue will be shared, and we will engage participants in a conversation for the last 10 minutes of the session.

At the end of the information session, participants will have learned the following:

  • How to launch an effective course redesign program at their institution.
  • How to identify institutional partners, including libraries, faculty development office, and instructional technologies, to collaborate on a course redesign program to foster blended learning.
  • How to select and identify the curriculum components of a successful faculty development program to support blended course redesign
  • How to adequately support faculty innovations by providing appropriate rewards and incentives.
  • How a large faculty development program can foster the development and assessment of student learning outcomes, including performance on course specific learning, critical thinking, and information literacy.
  • How to use blended course redesign as a catalyst for Campus-Wide and Institutional Change (e.g. Core Curriculum, First-Year Program, Registrar's office, design of learning spaces).

To achieve these goals, the session facilitators will present a 40 minute overview of Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT) faculty development program. The presentation will focus on the following elements. 1) Research-based redesign curriculum and strategies. 2) The Faculty Learning Community (FLC) part of the faculty development program. 3) Tips for presenting and integrating technologies as a tool/strategy to enhance student learning and engagement. 4) Tips on building successful institutional partnerships for a faculty development program of this scope. 5) Details of the financial and personnel support offered to faculty fellows throughout the different phases of the redesign, from conceptualization to development and assessment of student learning outcomes. 6) Assessment tools provided to faculty to aid in the assessment of student learning outcomes. 7) Challenges, successes, and lessons learned from the successful IMPACT course transformation program at Purdue. The facilitators will enhance their presentation by providing handouts covering the topics listed above as well as showing videos created to support faculty development.

The final 10 minutes will be dedicated to questions and discussion with participants. Participants will be encouraged to consider the information just presented and apply it to their own institutions.

Lead Presenter

Chantal Levesque-Bristol is Professor of Educational Studies and Director of the Center for Instructional Excellence at Purdue University. She holds a Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Ottawa, and has been a Visiting Professor at the University of Rochester and Professor of Psychology and Director of the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning at Missouri State University. She has taught courses in statistics and research methods at the undergraduate and graduate level. Her scholarly work is in the area of human motivation generally and academic motivation specifically. Using the theoretical framework of Self-Determination Theory, she conducts basic research in motivation and social psychology and applied research in education, learning, and student retention, and has been active in several Teaching and Learning program. As Director of the Center for Instructional Excellence (CIE), she provides support for the instructional community and resources to faculty interested in learning pedagogies and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL). The Center for Instructional Excellence is also one of the lead partners of the IMPACT program (Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation); the University wide collaboration to transform foundational courses to be more student-centered She is the recipient of several Teaching Awards and Research Awards. She is a grantee of the National Institute of Mental Health. She has lectured at several institutions of Higher Education on motivation and learning principles. She can be reached at