The challenges of assessing transformative learning: Lessons learned from an instructional design workshop for Colombian engineering faculty
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The authors designed and delivered a workshop on Instructional Design for Colombian engineering faculty at three different universities. The workshop drew from the backwards design model and scholarly literature on engineering education. The participants were asked to assess the workshop using a pre-post survey with Likert-type items and open-ended questions. Results from the assessment of the first offering of the workshop suggested a change in participants’ perspectives that the instrument could not fully capture. A revised instrument used during the second offering allowed deeper insights into this change. Based on these results, the authors argue that a professional development program can transform faculty’s perspectives, particularly when it is aimed at helping faculty inform their teaching practice using evidence-based educational research. The assessment of such a program must, therefore, move from an incremental to a transformational notion of learning. The research question driving this work was: How can one assess the transformative learning of engineering faculty about instructional design? This experience with Colombian faculty suggests that a transformative learning framework can inform the assessment of participants’ learning in professional development programs for engineering faculty. Preliminary results of the application of this framework suggest that most workshop participants transitioned from a teacher-centered to a learner-centered conception of teaching. © 2018 TEMPUS Publications.