What started as part a project for the my Graduate Certificate in Instructional Design program has become a really meaningful part of my approach to collaboration.
Peer coaching is is a non-evaluative, professional learning model in which two or more colleagues work collaboratively to: design curricula, create assessments, develop lesson plans, brainstorm ideas, problem solve, and reflect on current pedagogical practices (Robbins, 2015). A common practice in k-12 environments but not as robustly utilized in higher education, structuring and implementing a peer coaching program that adhered to current research in instructional design methodologies was a key component of my graduate education at the University of Maine.
Because I at the time I had the pleasure of working with a colleague that had similar goals for their teaching and learning praxis, I was able to not only design a peer coaching program, but create innovative approaches to library pedagogy. Together, Jennifer Bonnet and I created lesson plans, integrated informational literacy frameworks, and conducted self reflexive exercises around meeting curricular goals. You can read a bit more about the work Jen and I did in this post for ACRLog that we were invited to co-edit here.
We further detailed our peer coaching process in a presentation at 2017 Maine Academic Libraries Day (MALD).
And continued to develop our thinking about peer coaching by expanding our conversation to include more actors in a presentation to the 2018 meeting of the American Library Association.
My work around peer coaching has definitely informed my approaches to institutional change. Intentionally carving out space to process new ideas and reflect on our praxis helps any institution grow in new directions.