The following definition is excerpted from an essay on the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning by Dr. Bill Cerbin, Professor of Psychology, UW-LaCrosse:

"Scholarly teaching is something we should all be engaged in every day we are in the classroom.  It is when we step back and reflect on the teaching we have done, in a form that can be publicly reviewed and built upon by our peers, that we have moved from scholarly teaching to the 'Scholarship of Teaching and Learning.' SoTL is based on the premise that the purpose of teaching is to advance student learning, and the purpose of SoTL is to improve the practice of teaching through scholarly inquiry into teaching and student learning."


Laurie Richlin, in "Blueprint for Learning" (Stylus, 2006), presented the following distinction between scholarly teaching and the scholarship of teaching and learning:

Scholarly Teaching Process:

  1. Identify big questions in a course
  2. Select teaching goals
  3. Design learning objectives
  4. Consult literature
  5. Choose and use learning experiences
  6. Conduct systematic observation and assessment
  7. Document observations
  8. Analyze results
  9. Obtain peer evaluation

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning:

  1. Take results from scholarly teaching process...
  2. Identify key issues
  3. Synthesize results
  4. Place results into context of knowledge base
  5. Prepare manuscript
  6. Submit for peer review
  7. Disseminate - publish and present


For additional resources, click here.

For a list of journals that publish the scholarship of teaching and learning and address general issues of higher education, click here.

Page last modified August 1, 2012