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TILT/Reinvention Center course development competition opens

March 27, 2013

This competition supports the development or redesign of core, foundational, or gateway undergraduate courses across the University.

The Institute for Learning and Teaching has announced the 2013-14 TILT/Reinvention Center Science of Learning Course Development Competition.

This competition, formerly titled the Provost's Course Redesign Competition, supports the development or redesign of undergraduate courses across the University and in particular courses that can be described as core, foundational, or gateway courses.

The goal of the competition is to encourage faculty and their departments to extend efforts to examine how students can become engaged learners early in their collegiate career. The course redesign process, which is informed by recent research on the science of learning, is designed to result in improved student learning, enhanced academic success, and increased student retention.

The new name of the competition recognizes The Reinvention Center, a consortium of 65 top-notch U.S. universities dedicated to enhancing undergraduate education on their campuses. CSU is now the host campus for the Center, with Vice Provost for Academic Affairs Alan Lamborn as executive director. Vice President for Student Affairs Blanche Hughes also sits on the Board of Directors of the Center. Membership includes such universities as MIT, Johns Hopkins, Case Western Reserve, University of Colorado and several schools from the state of California system.

Redesigning 100 courses in 5 years

Funded through generous contributions from the Provost and CSU Online Plus, as well as private contributions, the competition is designed to support 100 courses over a five-year period, starting with 20 courses in the coming year. Proposals can be submitted not only for lower-division courses, but also for those at the 300- and 400-level.

Funding and staff support will be provided for 10 course-design projects in the first half of the 2013-14 academic year, with a second call for proposals issued in fall 2013. Proposals may be new or may extend a successful redesign project from the 2012-13 academic-year competition.

Deadline for proposal submissions is Monday, April 22, at 1 p.m.

Learning ecologies approach

The development process builds on the University's strengths in research on the science of learning. It employs a "learning ecologies" approach to course development, which draws on the distinctive contributions that can be made to learning and teaching by a residential learning environment.

This approach considers not only how a course might be improved by looking at its course goals, curriculum, assignments, and assessment, but also how it might be enhanced by drawing on the wide range of resources that might support student learners beyond the course, such as tutoring and study groups, participation in learning communities and undergraduate research, service learning initiatives, mentored research activities, and so on.

Additional information about the competition, its use of research findings from the science of learning, and the learning ecologies approach to course redesign can be found at

Contact: Mike Palmquist