Preparing to Teach at Royal Roads
Teaching at Royal Roads requires:
- Understanding and implementing relevant elements of the RRU Learning, Teaching and Research Model (LTRM).
- Deep knowledge of the learning outcomes, topics, and skills that your course addresses and how that course relates to other courses in the program.
- An appreciation of who your students are – your target audience.
- You’ll also need basic Moodle and other technology skills and some great teaching strategies.
Let's dive into these four areas a little more:
1) The RRU Learning, Teaching and Research Model (LTRM)
You’ll find it easy to get acquainted with the model if you are not already familiar with it:
- Review the Learning, Teaching and Research Model booklet, pages 8-30 in particular.
- Talk to other RRU instructors – especially your Program Head or Intellectual Lead.
- Discover how others have implemented the LTRM by viewing videos & examples on the Learning, Teaching and Research Model page of the CTET website.
- Drop into or call CTET Studio and have a chat.
2) Your Course and the Program
General descriptions can be found on the www.royalroads.ca website – just click on the school and program. You’ll find descriptions of the courses and faculty for each program. Perhaps you have already had a brief introduction to this information from your Program Head or Intellectual Lead – if not, contact them!
Get to know your course. If it has not already been provided, ask for a copy of the Course Outline and for access to your Moodle site. The program office can provide this or point you to the right person.
- Read the Course Outline.
- Notice the Learning Outcomes that should be accomplished through this course.
- Study the Assignments – do they make sense to you? Do you understand what students are being asked to do and how they relate to the Learning Outcomes? Do you know how to assess the assignment?
- Look through the Readings and Resources and review those with which you are unfamiliar.
- Are you comfortable with the Learning Activities (discussions, team activities, etc.)?
- Look at the Development Notes or Tasks Timeline for your course (usually a hidden link near the top of the course landing page) - This will contain important information and can be discussed with a CTET Instructional Designer, CTET Studio, and/or your Program Head.
If the course requires only minor changes (date changes, a change in instructor contact information or a few readings updated) additional
support can be accessed through CTET Studio. Faculty and program staff can also help you with any of the above items. If the program has determined that there are significant changes needed in an existing course, a CTET Instructional Designer will have been assigned and the program can connect you.
3) Who are your students?
The answer to this question will only be fully revealed during your course as you get to know individuals and their motivations, strengths, and challenges – but you can learn a lot about them before the course begins:
- Discuss the cohort/students with the Program Head and other Program Staff – unless this is the first course in the program, instructors and staff are developing a picture of these students and can share valuable information.
- Read the student profiles – they are available either through the Program Office or through Moodle profiles. Ask the Program Office where the best place is to find these.
4) Teaching Skills and Strategies (including Moodle)
Your program will likely recommend (and perhaps require) that you participate in one or more professional development workshops. They may have provided you with upcoming dates. You can find a listing and description for each workshop on the CTET website under Workshops and Events, and you can find upcoming offerings listed in the Crossroads Events Calendar.
Most workshops are offered multiple times a year and some are special events offered only once. Whether you are in the Victoria area and prefer to attend in person or are someone working from across an ocean and want to participate online, workshops offered by CTET are available to the public (through Professional & Continuing Studies) for a fee, but the fee is waived for RRU Faculty. In particular, you should consider:
- Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW): an intensive 3-day workshop for new and experienced instructors, focusing on face-to-face facilitation and teaching strategies.
- Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) - Fundamentals: an intensive 5-week online course, focusing on asynchronous online facilitation.
- Facilitating Learning Online (FLO) - Synchronous: a 3-week online course, focused on synchronous online facilitation.
- Moodle: Getting Around: a short workshop (on campus or self-study online) introducing basic Moodle skills.
- Moodle: Editing & Enhancing: a short workshop on campus or 3-week online course to help you gain Moodle editing skills.
- Getting Started with Collaborate Ultra and Teaching with Collaborate Ultra – two separate workshops to help you get comfortable with the technology and teaching skills for using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, our web-conferencing tool.
Make Use of CTET support: CTET Studio, Instructional Designer & Faculty Development
- If you have been assigned an Instructional Designer, they can provide a great deal of direction and help. (Your Program Office should tell you if you have an Instructional Designer)
- Drop in or call CTET Studio for help on a specific question or for a general brainstorming discussion
- Participate in a CTET workshop
- Explore additional teaching resources on the CTET website