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It takes a village: team teaching for student learning

This post will provide additional information and resources related to team teaching — how to do it and how to reflect critically through team teaching. Posters from ACRL 2015 and the CSUSM Teaching Expo 2013 are referenced and included.

May, 2015 – In your eyes: Critical reflection through team teaching

Team teaching can provide a great way to reflect critically upon our practice. Having a trusted partner who will push us to really dig deep and reflect on our teaching can be an invaluable professional (and personal) experience.


  • Faculty of Education and Social Work. The University of Sydney. (N.D.). Reflection. Retrieved from http://sydney.edu.au/education_social_work/groupwork/docs/Reflection.pdf
  • Brookfield, S. (1995). Becoming a critically reflective teacher. San Francisco: John Wiley & Sons. (This book can provide you with an excellent foundation in critical reflection. If you don’t have time to read the whole book, pay special attention to the chapters on the “four lenses”, which include: autobiographical lens, colleague lens, student lens, and theoretical literature lens.)
  • Costa, A., & Kalick, B. (1993, October). Through the lens of a critical friend. Educational Leadership, 51(2): 49-51. Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org

[Poster presented at ACRL 2015 on March 27, 2015]

Poster presented at ACRL 2015 titled "In your eyes: critical reflection through team teaching"


April, 2013 – How To

This Spring, Allison Carr (CSUSM Social Sciences Librarian) and I team-taught three research modules of General Education in Lifelong Learning 101 (GEL 101), a college success class taken by around 80% of incoming CSUSM freshmen. The research modules consist of four 75-minute class sessions and are typically taught by a single librarian.

Team-teaching provided many benefits from both an instructor and student standpoint — students were more deeply engaged and were able to witness to “real-life” collaboration, we were able to come up with more interesting activities since we were constantly brainstorming together, and we got instant and constructive feedback on our teaching from each other. And, not for nothing, we had fun working together, something that can help to stave off the dreaded “burn-out”.

Want to give team-teaching a try? Before you dive in, consider whether or not your potential collaborator is someone you trust and with whom you can communicate honestly. And, more importantly, take an objective look at yourself — are you in a good place (professionally and personally) to be a good collaborator? If you have these two pieces, then you’ve got a good start to a productive team-teaching experience. And then, go ahead and dive in!

Team Teaching Resources

Getting Started
Team Teaching Literature

IT TAKES A VILLAGE: Team teaching for student learning

[Poster presented at CSUSM Teaching Expo on April 26, 2013 — click on image to see hi-res version on piktochart.com]