An essential part of welcoming, new faculty and administrative leaders into the Vanguard community is known as the new Faculty experience. We call it an experience for a number of reasons. First, we recognize that those who join Vanguard bring with them a wealth of prior learning and experiences which will immediately be assets to the individual and to our community. Second, active learning has been demonstrated in study after study to be more effective at facilitating learning, so we aim to have the New Faculty Experience be emblematic of such teaching approaches.
There are nine learning outcomes for the New Faculty Experience:
- Get Set – finalize all items related to employment, Vanguard, including benefits, compliance, training, and associated paperwork.
- Plug In – get plugged in and put on such as a laptop, phone, and VU accounts. Set up campus Wi-Fi on your devices.
- Breathe – Be still, and know that I am God.” Reflect on the call God has for you in your teaching. It is common ways to integrate faith and learning.
- Geek Out – Discover how our learning management systems (LMS), Canvas, and enter assignments and key dates.
- Tune in – Get to know VU students by analyzing data and hearing their stories. Identify support services available to help students thrive.
- Prepare – Finalize class syllabi and plan your first couple of class sessions. Visit classrooms/learning spaces + practice using technology.
- Equip – Identify ways you can equip students for learning through retrieval practice, interleaving, spacing and other approaches.
- Explore – Visit places and people on campus. Explore how VU is structured and how shared governance contributes to decision-making.
- Connect – Begin to establish relationships with fellow faculty, Teaching + Learning, people within your discipline, + future mentors.
A graphical version of the New Faculty Experience learning outcomes is shared with participants during the program.
Two Essential Outcomes
Historically, faculty have shared that the two most valuable learning outcomes for them have been: 2. Breathe and 8. Connect. It can be challenging to have others in the community want to fit even more content into the New Faculty Experience, while maintaining the emphasis on those most essential elements. We aim to have ongoing ways to connect new faculty with the information, skills, and tools they need to be successful, without overwhelming people who are new to Vanguard and establishing foundations for their flourishing and well being.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most often asked questions pertaining to the New Faculty Experience:
Q. How often do you hold the New Faculty Experience?
A. Once a year, in August, the week prior to the Faculty and Academic Gatherings.
Q. Who participates in the New Faculty Experience?
A. Any new faculty who have been hired either for an August start, or in January of that same year. Even those who have taught as adjuncts for Vanguard are expected to participate, given the emphasis on building connections and exploring the unique role that resident faculty play in the life of our community.
Q. Who provides instruction for the New Faculty Experience?
A. Various faculty members and administrative leaders facilitate sessions. Students also help to shape the program and provide stories of their unique contexts and experience at Vanguard. Our aim is to have new faculty get connected with many others and to begin forming relationships early on.