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5 questions for the teacher coaches

What can we expect from the teacher coaches in the coming year? University lecturers Astrid Van Weyenberg and Maarten van Leeuwen talk about their plans.

What do you do as teacher coaches?

Astrid: ‘For early career lectures, it can feel like they are being thrown in at the deep end. We are there to provide support and guidance.'
Maarten: 'We are also there for colleagues who have been working at the university for some time and want to exchange ideas about their teaching practice. For these lectures who are just starting out, we offer coaching and intervision meetings that focus on specific themes such as activating education or thesis supervision. We’re also involved in the BKO track. We observe lectures for the BKO portfolio.'

What does your guidance look like in practice?

Maarten: ‘We mainly think along with the teachers. We help them reflect on questions such as: What teaching methods can I use? How do I design my lecture as well as possible? How do I keep the preparation hours within limits?'

What is the interaction like between the two of you?

Astrid: 'It's actually rather easy-going, nothing to complain about.'
Maarten: 'Absolutely. It‘s going very well. I’ve also spoken extensively with my predecessor Olga van Marion and she’s given me some tips. What I think Astrid and I share is that we both find it very satisfying to be able to think constructively with colleagues on the basis of our own experience.’

What do you personally like most about being a teacher coach?

Maarten: 'For me it's the thinking along and sparring with colleagues. It forces me to reflect on my own teaching practice, so I also learn a lot from it.’
Astrid: ‘It’s the same for me. When I talk to other teachers, I always hear something that I can use in my own lectures. Especially new generations of lecturers often come up with new teaching methods. That's what makes the peer review meetings so much fun: productive conversations often arise between more and less experienced teachers.’

Where is the focus for you this academic year?

Astrid: 'Our focus is on guiding the early career lecturers. They are often still finding their way. It’s very good that the Faculty recently produced a handbook containing a lot of useful information for lecturers.’
Maarten: ‘And we have of course planned separate theme sessions. We especially want to make it clearer and easier for lecturers to ask for help or support.'

Starting on februari 27th, the teacher coaches will hold a new round of coaching and intervision meetings.
De dates can be found here, as wel as a registration form to participate.

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