Announcing the Center for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching (CALT)!

Balloons on the ceiling.The following announcement was distributed to the campus community on October 7, 2020:

“Dear UMBC Community,

I am delighted to announce the establishment of UMBC’s Center for the Advancement of Learning and Teaching (CALT). A core recommendation of UMBC’s Strategic Plan, the Center will “provide support for research and training in best pedagogical practices.” At the heart of the Center’s work is UMBC’s distinctive commitment to, and engagement with, inclusive excellence. The new Center will not only perpetuate best practices, but also produce and support research-based initiatives designed to foster the learning and development of all students. Undergirding and informing this work is a dedication to learning analytics, assessment, and evaluation at the levels of course, program, and institution. CALT will act as both a central resource and a coordinating nexus for educational innovation, research, and student success.

Initially, the Center will incorporate and extend the work of the Faculty Development Center (FDC), which was established in 1999. Dr. Linda Hodges, who has served with distinction as the Director of the FDC since 2010, will serve as the inaugural Executive Director of CALT. Dr. Hodges directed the McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning at Princeton University for six years before joining UMBC and her outstanding leadership has driven the expansion of staff and services, a new focus on the scholarship of teaching and learning, and support for pedagogical research.

The Provost will convene a task force of faculty and staff under Dr. Hodges’ leadership that will make recommendations to the Provost on the development of the new Center. The task force members include:

  • Diane Alonso, Psychology, the Universities at Shady Grove
  • Sherri Braxton, Division of Information Technology
  • Delana Gregg, Academic Success Center
  • Anthony Johnson, Physics and Computer Science and Electrical Engineering
  • Anita Komlodi, Information Systems
  • Jeff Leips, Biological Sciences
  • Tim Nohe, Visual Arts
  • Orianne Smith, English, and President, Faculty Senate
  • Donald Snyder, Media and Communication Studies

It is envisioned that upon completion of the task force report, an advisory Provost’s Project Advisory Board composed of key representatives of the Center’s collaborators will be established to provide coordination for aspects of the CALT’s work. Thus, efforts of numerous units on campus with similar goals will be efficiently communicated and/or coordinated to conserve campus resources and expedite success.

Provost Philip Rous