Becoming a Faculty Member
What it’s like to work at Dunwoody
Dunwoody employs more than 250 collaborative, fun, and caring people. Around 95 of these employees are full-time faculty members, and 70 are part-time adjunct instructors.
Each and every one of our employees are dedicated to a supportive work environment and the success of our students. And the numbers show! 95% of our graduates secure a job in their field each year. And with an 11:1 student to faculty ratio, Dunwoody students find that faculty genuinely care for them and are invested in their futures.
Many faculty members in our technical programs come straight from industry. Here at Dunwoody, we teach industry experts how to become teachers. This training, combined with your knowledge of the industry, opens up a whole new career path you may never even have known was possible!
Teaching you to teach
To ensure your effectiveness as an educator, you will participate in a comprehensive, well-rounded Faculty Development program. The program adheres to the same Dunwoody model of authentic, applied, and collaborative learning to translate your passion for your field into your students’ success.
At the center of the Program is the Faculty Development Collaborative (formerly the Faculty Development Advisory Committee), which consists of Dunwoody faculty and staff members from across the College. This means the Faculty Development Program is determined and delivered by faculty, for faculty.
More details about the structure, membership, activities, and procedures are included in the Faculty Development Collaborative charter, which is updated regularly and posted on the Faculty Development SharePoint site.
Faculty development programming is a function of the Center for Innovation in Technical Education (CITE).
Dunwoody Faculty Development Program
To meet as many schedules and needs as we can, we offer program activities that are flexible and utilize the full menu of resources and services available. We offer activities that are:
- in-person, online, and/or blended
- asynchronous and synchronous
- just-in-time and thematic topics
- regularly scheduled and as requested
- small and large cohorts
These activities include:
New Faculty Orientation
New Faculty Orientation prepares new instructors for their first year of teaching. Orientation consists of four self-paced modules delivered through the College’s LMS, Canvas. Modules are done in phases throughout the first year to match what instructors need to do during that phase.
Adjunct instructors complete the first module in New Faculty Orientation. Modules 2-4 are optional .
Topics covered include:
- Getting to know your students
- Creating a productive, inclusive learning environment
- Instructional techniques for effective learning
- Assessing and providing feedback
- Reflecting on your practice
Signature Faculty Development Events
At key points in the academic calendar, Dunwoody holds all- or multi-day signature events. These provide opportunities for faculty to collaborate and learn from each other; explore new ideas and strategies; receive administrative updates; and reflect on experiences and goals together.
Signature events are typically conference-style, and often include:
- keynote presentations
- live and recorded breakout sessions
- deep-dive working sessions
- meet ‘n’ greets
- open forums
- assessment planning and reflection
Monthly Faculty Development Sessions
Each month during the academic year, the Faculty Development Program hosts a faculty development session. These sessions take many forms and focus on a high-interest, current topic related to classroom instruction.
Most sessions are held in a hybrid environment. Faculty can find session links and materials, including a recording of the session (as appropriate) and resources to supplement and extend learning, on the session page on the Faculty Development SharePoint site.
At Dunwoody, teaching observations act as one component of a more holistic peer review process. Schools and departments may have their own policies or practices regarding this process, and CITE is available to perform and/or provide support for teaching observations when requested.
CITE uses a collaborative model of teaching observations, wherein observations are made between peer instructors and within a culture of continuous improvement. The process for teaching observations includes four steps: a pre-observation meeting, the in-class observation, a post-observation debriefing, and then individual reflections. Such a recursive process reinforces its formative purpose and provides an opportunity to maximize the learning gained from the observation.
Since teaching observations can be applied to a number of situations, the frequency and timing of observations depends on the purpose of the observation.
To promote innovative instruction and collaboration between faculty members, the Program supports and facilitates faculty cohorts. Faculty cohorts are learning communities of 3+ faculty from within or across disciplines who meet regularly over the course of a semester or year to engage in self-directed study about a teaching-related topic. A faculty cohort may focus on a particular area of interest or project (i.e., increasing cross-departmental collaboration), or a particular cohort (i.e., new instructors).
Faculty can connect with the Faculty Development program to schedule an individual or small group working session to:
- Ask a question about online course design
- Discuss learning activity ideas
- Get support for assessment of student learning
- Strengthen a syllabus
Grants & Fellowships
Dunwoody recognizes that faculty bring a wealth of prior experience and knowledge, as well as a strong potential for enhancing the educational quality at the College. To realize that potential, Dunwoody supports faculty’s desires to develop their instructional capacities and to improve their courses beyond regular faculty development programming with internal grants for innovation in teaching and learning and with fellowship opportunities.
Faculty fellows work in partnership with CITE to build and strengthen the relationship between faculty and CITE. CITE relies on faculty fellows to act as advocates, changemakers, and “linchpins to foster vibrant communities of teaching and learning that extend the teaching and learning capacity of the institution and beyond” (Colby, Cruz, Cordaro, & Cruz, 2022, para. 9).
Colby, S. A., Cruz, L., Cordaro, D., & Cruz, C. (2022). Fellow travelers: Taking stock of faculty fellows programs in the age of organizational development. To Improve the Academy: A Journal of Educational Development, 41(2): 2. doi: https://doi.org/10.3998/tia.844
Faculty have access to support and resources from other areas of the College:
- Instructional Strategies in Virtual Classrooms course from EdTech
- Support and resources to help you manage your classes and share information from Dunwoody IT including the Faculty IT Resources course (Canvas, requires Dunwoody login)
- Resources and services from the Newkirk Learning Commons, including a collection of physical and ebooks, journals, and other media related to teaching and a Faculty Development Libguide
- Collaboration with Career Services for support with activities like scheduling speaking opportunities in classrooms for career preparation.
- Publications sharing campus-related events and updates, such as the Dunwoody Observer, the Dunwoody news blog, and the Dunwoody Dates shared calendar on Outlook.
External Partnerships & Resources
Faculty Development can help you register, pay for, and implement learning from selected development opportunities provided by external partners, such as those from:
- Canvas by Instructure
- AEFIS by Heliocampus
- Simple Syllabus
- Watermark (formerly EvaluationKit)
- Online Learning Consortium
- Quality Matters
- American Technical Education Association
- The Teaching Professor (Magna Publications)
Dunwoody Recognition and Growth Programs
Dunwoody’s Human Resources Department offers an annual Leadership Development Program that is open to all employees. This program helps interested employees strengthen their leadership competencies.
Areas of emphasis for the program include knowing and understanding one’s strengths and impact, building effective relationships, and better understanding the higher education landscape.
Celebrating Employee Success
Success stories about Dunwoody faculty accomplishments are always welcomed to be included in Dunwoody College News and/or shared on Dunwoody’s social media platforms.
Past employee success stories have highlighted:
- Employee-written commentaries or research articles published by outside trade publications
- Employees presenting at local and national conferences
- Volunteer work and/or class service projects
Annual Service Awards
At the end of each academic year, Dunwoody presents several awards to deserving faculty.
These awards include:
- Distinguished Teacher Award
- Outstanding Academic Innovation Award
- Instructor of the Year Award
- Crosby Fellowship for Learning Excellence and Innovation Award
- William H. and Kate Dunwoody Outstanding Service Award
Living in the Twin Cities
Located in an artistic and vibrant area on the western edge of downtown Minneapolis, our urban campus is surrounded by restaurants, shops, and the recognizable Walker Art Center and Sculpture Garden. Whether you are new to the Cities or new to the area, we’re certain you’ll find that Minneapolis offers more than you ever imagined.