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American Sociological Association: Why should you consider publishing your teaching materials in TRAILS?
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This is a transcript of the Why should you consider publishing your teaching materials in TRAILS? video. Please refer any technical questions on the transcript to the ASA webmaster.
Why should you consider publishing your teaching materials in TRAILS?
[TRAILS Logo is shown and camera zooms in]
The Teaching Resources and Innovative Library for Sociology
[Picture of Woman writing on blackboard that says Traditional Indicators of Good Teaching. Teaching Portfolios is then added as a bullet point. ]
The traditional indicators of good teaching include teaching portfolios which can be wonderfully useful
[Picture of Africa-American man as a classroom instructor]
especially to the person constructing them
[Picture of a pile of colored folders. Women in a suit blurred and looking distressed in the background]
But there is no way to know if tenure and promotion committees actually spend much time looking at them.
[Words written on gray background that says: Traditional Indicators of Good Teaching. Teaching Portfolios is then added as a bullet point. Followed by Classroom Observation as a bullet point.]
Classroom observations can also be useful. But one or two visits
[Picture of a college classroom]
But one or two visits in a semester often without any systematic or shared criteria
[Picture of a long table in a classroom]
Can only capture a narrow and often artificial sense of the teaching environment
[Words written on gray background that says: Traditional Indicators of Good Teaching. Teaching Portfolios is then added as a bullet point. Followed by Classroom Observation as a bullet point. Student Evaluations is the third bullet point.]
Student Evaluations are both the single most widely used assessment of teaching quality and the single most unreliable assessment to quality.
[Gray background. Picture of TRAILS website. Words read: TRAILS is a cutting-edge educational tool to promote high-quality teaching that also offers professors a new form of evidence of teaching excellence to support their promotion and tenure. ]
TRAILs offers an additional, more objective form of evidence of teaching excellence for promotion. and tenure review.
[Image of TRAILS website]
Although this cover page might not seem like a big deal, in reality it is an artifact of one of the most exciting elements of TRAILS.
[Image of man and women looking over a laptop]
When users subscribe to TRAILS, they electronically sign the TRAILS user agreement and explicitly agree that whenever they use a TRAILS resource
[Image of TRAILS user agreement]
either in its original or modified form. They will include the TRAILS suggested citation. In this way,
[Gray background with words: TRAILS is building a cultural norm of citing teaching. ]
we are working toward a cultural norm of citing teaching
[Image of woman with books ]
just as we have a long-standing norm of citing research.
[Image of TRAILS website ]
For TRAILS offers, the suggested citation can be used to update their curriculum vitae where they can site their teaching accomplishments
[images of business people ]
alongside their research accomplishments and give department chairs, deans, provosts, and tenure and promotion committees important additional evidence of their teaching excellence.
[Image of TRAILS website]
Now, I'm not saying that publishing a teaching resource in TRAILs is the same thing as publishing a research article
[Image of data graph and switching over to research books]
where data was collected an analyzed and the results were written up in the context of relevant literature
[Image of TRAILS website with "Teaching as public credential" used as a heading]
But publishing a resource in TRAILs is an example of scholarship well beyond posting a syllabus on your personal web page or in a online collection that is not peer reviewed.
[Image of TRAILS logo with "TRAILS Subscription Base" used as a heading. Logos of Social Psychology Quarterly and Sociological Methodology also appear]
We have about 650 subscribers which places TRAILS right between Social Psychology Quarterly and Sociological Methodology in terms of its subscription base. And the number of submissions to TRAILS is steadily growing. Moreover,
[Image of TRAILS website]
with a citation system, TRAILS promotes
[Gray background and writing that says: we are moving towards restructuring the faculty reward system.]
we are consciously moving toward restructuring the faculty reward system
[Gray background and writing that says: to take into account the scholarship of teaching.]
to take into account the scholarship of teaching.
[Gray background and writing that says: Through the peer-review of teaching resources.]
Through the peer-review of teaching resources.
[Image of TRAILS logo. Screen reads: http://trails.asanet.org. For more information, technical questions, review status subscription: Email: email@example.com. Call 202-383-9005 x318.