New Instructor Teaching Experience in a Research-Intensive University: Implications for Professional Development


This study explores the adjustment of new chemical and biological sciences faculty members at a research university. Eleven faculty members were interviewed twice, first in 2007, shortly after they came to the university, and again three years later. The study documented their participation in professional development activities, with special attention to their participation in activities that were organized by the disciplinary Teaching and Learning Center. Changes in teaching philosophy were evident, including modification of teaching goals and greater use of appropriate terminology. Based on these findings, the authors suggest resources that universities can offer to facilitate new faculty members’ adjustment to their new positions and, moreover, help prepare them to be change agents within their new institution by taking leadership roles in departmental cultural change.