Faculty Learning Communities Symposium

This one-day symposium looked at the role Faculty Learning Communities can play in supporting and enhancing Scholarship of Teaching and Learning across the Higher Education sector.  

Dr Milton Cox (Miami University, USA) lead the symposium on how faculty learning communities can support Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. 

Milton Cox defines a Faculty [to denote academic staff in the US context] Learning Community (FLC) as ‘a cross-disciplinary faculty and staff group of 6 to 15 members who engage in an active, collaborative, year long program with a curriculum about enhancing teaching and learning and with frequent seminars and activities that provide learning development, the scholarship of teaching, and community building’.  The well evidenced FLC model emphasises that building community is a factor that the FLC advocates highlight as contributing to success in terms of engagement from staff as well as enhancing the students learning experiences through staff involvement with them.  Do they work? Yes is the short answer, there is documented evidence from a number of US institutions  over a number of year that students' learning has been enhanced as a result of faculty involvement with a FLC as well as faculty adopting as consistently scholarly approach to their learning and teaching practices. 


Milton D. Cox and colleagues designed and implemented Faculty Learning Communities (FLCs) in 1979. Since that time he has been engaged in assessing their impacts on student learning and educational development in Higher Education. He has been project director of state and federal grants establishing FLC programs, visiting over 100 institutions in the U.S. and abroad. He is author of several articles on communities of practice, the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, and is co-editor of the book, Building Faculty Learning Communities.

Dr. Cox is founder and Director Emeritus of the Centre for the Enhancement of Learning, Teaching, and University Assessment at Miami University where he initiated and continues to direct the annual Original Lilly Conference on College Teaching, just completing its 35th year. He is also founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Journal on Excellence in College Teaching and the Learning Communities Journal. He facilitates the Hesburgh Award-winning Teaching Scholars Faculty Learning Community, now in its 38th year. He is recipient of a certificate of special achievement from the Professional and Organizational Development Network in Higher Education in recognition and appreciation of notable contributions to the profession of faculty, instructional, and organisational development.