The Office of Teaching Resources in Psychology (OTRP) provides "teaching and advising materials and provides services to teachers of psychology at all levels on behalf of The Society for the Teaching of Psychology."In support of the scholarship of teaching, all of the pedagogical resources that are housed on this site are peer-reviewed. The website includes a Syllabus Project, Blogs, Resources for Teaching, and many other areas useful for both first-time and veteran teachers of the various sub-disciplines in psychology. The Top Idea Exchange area of this site specifically provides numerous teaching resources useful to faculty members who wish to integrate contemporary and up-to-date illustrations in their teaching practice.
Type of Material:
Reference material/ collection
• This collection of resources will best be used for culling through psychology-related syllabi and teaching resources. It also may prove useful in classes in which graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) are learning the teaching practice; they may use this site to develop a teaching portfolio equipped with possible syllabi for future classes.
• Overall, the resources would be useful for graduate students and new faculty as well as the more seasoned faculty for ideas, discussions, and program development.
Two reviewers successfully accessed the website and its materials using Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
The site provides peer-reviewed materials to anyone interested in many content areas of psychology as well as non-subject areas such as advising, classroom tips, faculty development, and letters of recommendation. Faculty members teaching in the various disciplines of psychology may retrieve content from this site (for use in their own classrooms) or they may elect to share resources they believe will be reviewed successfully and thereby shared with a broader audience in their discipline.
Target Student Population:
Teachers/instructors of psychology at any level would benefit from the material on this site.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Only basic webpage navigational skills are needed for viewing and reading content on this website. No prerequisites are necessary; however, as each document submitted to this site is sent for a peer review, individuals choosing to submit teaching materials to this site will be required to have prerequisite knowledge in their chosen disciplines along with teaching background in these specific areas (and/or possible instructional design background).
• The information included provides suggestions, demonstrations, resources, as well as references to assist with content, pedagogy, and administrative issues.
• This collection of teaching resources is expansive in topics, including over 20 sub-disciplines of psychology. Numerous useful resources are available for download. Descriptive designations of downloadable items (i.e., online, graduate level, etc.) enhance the surfing experience.
• Some areas are not covered at all while others are covered rather well. Additional information in those missing areas would only make this site more useful as a resource.
• Some reviewed materials were strong but not necessarily the “best of.” Additional information in those missing areas would only make this site more useful as a resource.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
• Those teaching a new area will find interesting information that is topic-specific and that also addresses teaching in general; those teaching in a familiar area may find new ideas, new ways to add spark to their classes, and exciting topics for discussion with colleagues.
• When we begin as new faculty members, we realize that rarely are we trained for the administrative sides of our positions. The additional information on this page regarding areas such as program development and advising will help those just getting started on such responsibilities as well as those who are more experienced.
• The purpose of this collection/website—to serve as a resource to teachers in the field of psychology—is clearly met. This site could be particularly useful in providing resources to new teachers in the field of psychology; it may serve as a foundation for developing course syllabi and other documents for their classes.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
• Peer-reviewed materials are organized by category with the title, year, author, affiliation, and description on the main page. One can scroll through the information or search for specific terms.
• Clear instructions are provided for both accessing and submitting content (for review). The overall layout as well as the number of options available to the casual user are beneficial, including wikis and a Society for Teaching of Psychology blog. The potential for interactivity is certainly built into this site.
• This site incorporates a number of potentially excellent pieces to encourage participant interactivity, though at present they do not appear to be heavily utilized--the wiki and the blog are two examples. Encouraging higher usage of these areas might be a productive way to build up additional resources and content in this collection.
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